Last year I preached in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Delaware, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Connecticut, Alabama, Idaho, Montana and California, as well as Canada and Australia. I preached 298 times in 56 churches. Many were saved and many also got some things right with the Lord during these meetings.
In January I saw a doctor who gave me a shot in each foot which was intended to dissolve the heel-spurs. It's great stuff, a week later both my heels fell off! (No, not really!) I also got another prescription for my chest. It stopped the cough for about two weeks and then it seems to have come back. That's four doctors and two "naturalists" so far. I will probably go to a respiratory specialist if I can find a way to get into one.
Run out of town!
We had a Sunday - Wednesday meeting in Kansas in January. Tuesday morning at 8AM it was 45o. At 9 o'clock it was 35o and by 10 it was 22o. We went to breakfast with the pastor and came back to find our hose frozen solid. I ran 75 foot of hose to the next hydrant and in ten minutes it froze while we had the water running! We couldn't disconnect the hose and use our fresh water tank because our water pump was broken.
The wind was blowing snow sideways. I told Kathy, "This snow is coming from Colorado and not touching the ground until Arkansas!"
We also had the problem that I had no conditioner in my diesel fuel to keep it from gelling. The pastor had already decided to shut the meeting down a day early but when we ran into all the trouble after breakfast he said, "I think you should leave now or you're not going to get out." I plugged in my engine block heater. It was a race to see if it could heat the engine up enough to start it before the fuel gelled. By 2PM we got it started and headed off into a violent blowing snow storm. (These are the storms that went all the way to Detroit and dropped so much snow.) We didn't stop until we had crossed Oklahoma and made it to Texas, 320 miles away. Seven inches of snow dropped behind us but we were in safely below the storm.
The "Declaration" cards and a new catalog are being printed right now. They should be done shortly.
We are going to offer a few of the posters as T-shirts. I'll let you know more details as they become available.
Long time coming
Over the years many people have recommended doctors to me that they felt could help with my neck. In January I met a man in Detroit who had had C3-C7 done. It wasn't fused solid as they would have had to do back in 1999 when they first told me I needed surgery again. Instead it was a series of individual metal plates screwed to each vertebra all held together in a flexible manner. He has good mobility. It was the first time I ever heard of a procedure that I felt was the answer for me. Of course, I can't just drop everything and head for Detroit. Especially when I haven't even seen this doctor. But, we will be in Toledo in August and I'm going to try to get in to see her. (Yes, I said, "her.") If she Oks the surgery we are going to set June and July of 2009 aside to drive back east and have the surgery. I do not want to have it in Detroit in the winter if I can help it.
Please pray that all of this works out. I know it seems like a long time to you but it is the first time I've seen "light at the end of the tunnel." Your prayers are greatly appreciated.
One week in our lives
In Jan. we had a Sun.-Wed. in the Detroit area and then only had to drive 18 miles to the next meeting on Thursday for a Thur.-Sun. Piece 'a cake! Not so. While driving those 18 miles my phone rang. My mother's last relative, my uncle, had died. His funeral was to be held Sat. morning 270 miles away in Ohio. We had to be there. An hour later the phone rang again. My wife's great-aunt (her grandmother's sister) who we greatly loved and had turned 101 on Kathy's birthday, Jan. 7, had died two days later. Her funeral was also 270 away in Ohio on Monday morning.
I preached Friday night and then Kathy & I drove 270 miles through the night to attend the 10AM funeral for my uncle. Then we immediately turned around and drove 270 miles back to Detroit so I could preach that Saturday night. Following the service Sunday night we again drove 270 miles through the night back to Ohio. Then Monday we drove about 200 miles going to and returning from the town where the funeral was. Tuesday morning we headed back on the road and drove about 280 miles to a one night meeting in Tennessee and then drove again Thursday to start a Thursday - Sunday about 100 miles away.
The motor home & truck
It's hard to believe but the motor home is five years old and the truck is eight. The motor home has 50,000 miles on it, the truck has just over 100,000.
Beside the house water pump going bad in January we also blew the inverter again. That means we would normally fire up our generator but the generator had also quit working. Also, one of our slideouts wouldn't work. Each time we had to bring it in or out I had to go outside and jump the wires to make it work.
But all that is fixed now. THANK YOU for your prayers!
In Christ's Service,
Samuel C. Gipp, Ph. D.