The Practice of the Vital Groups

Saturday, January 28, 2012


In less than three weeks we drove 5500+ miles and visited 16 localities, taking hospitality in 15 of them. It has been years since we visited saints and churches east of the Mississippi. Steve spend almost all of his first 21 years of his life living in Tallahassee. He graduated from Florida State University.  It was our intention to post a photo or two and a report of our visit for every place we stop. Thanks to all the saints and especially those in our group for remembering us in their prayers and thanks for all the fellowship we had with the saints along the way. The following was our schedule. The side bar of this blog includes what we saw and enjoyed. Excuse that some items were not posted in chronological order--we sometimes up-loaded photos from our phone before we were able to find time to type in our comments, our enjoyment from the places we visited.

7-JanSat Cypress to Tucson
8-JanLDTucson to El Paso
9-JanMonEl Paso to San Antonio
10-JanTuesSan Antonio
11-JanWedsSan Antonio to Houston
12-JanThursHouston to Baton Rouge
13-JanFridayBaton Rouge to Tallahassee
15-JanLDTallahassee to Gainesville
17-JanTuesGainesville to Tampa
18-JanWedsTampa to Atlanta
19-JanThursAtlanta to Birmingham
20-JanFridayBirmingham to Shreveport
21-JanSatShreveport to Austin 
Stop in Tyler then to Austin
23-JanMonAustin to Odessa
24-JanTuesOdessa to Albuquerque
25-JanWedsAlbuquerque to Flagstaff
26-JanThursFlagstaff to Cypress

Friday, January 27, 2012

JANUARY 26 Flagstaff Photo

JANUARY 26 Flagstaff to Cypress

Tom had to leave early to work in the clinic in the nearby city. We had a nice breakfast with Nancy and some fellowship and prayer. We left about 9AM for a final leg of our trip. It was another day of driving. Stops for restroom, stops for gas, stops for coffee, stop for lunch.

We arrived back in Cypress about 4PM so we stopped by the Post Office to pick up our mail--a bag of nearly 3 weeks worth. Then we headed over to John and Eva's to drop off the "cancer tea" that we had picked up in Odessa. We got to visit with John. No one else was home for they had gone to the doctor to drop off a sample for testing. It was good to see him.

Finally--back home. Time to unload the car, up-pack, and get the dirty clothes in the washer. Time to sort the mail and find what needs to be answered right away. Actually because we drove in manageable distances we were not tired out when we arrived home. Also by the prayers of our vital group we were sustained and supplied with the bountiful Spirit. Nearly every stop we had some time to fellowship and get to know the local saints better. We surely became more burdened for the circulation among the churches. What a rich supply we all enjoy in this divine fellowship in the Body of Christ.

Thank the Lord for a safe and profitable time visiting the churches. Including the stop in Tyler, Texas we visited 16 churches and traveled over 5500 miles in less than 3 weeks.

JANUARY 25 Albuquerque to Flagstaff

After breakfast we went to the campus team coordination. One of the attendants was the young son (baby) of one of the serving couples. He kept the time from being routine or formal. We sang some songs on loving the Lord and shared that the Lord wants us to be romantic Christians not religious Christians. Several students joined the time including a very new one. We had quite a bit of fellowship on how to care for our friends and relatives. We realized that we need to take the time and fellowship with our group to have the wisdom on what to do. We enjoyed how the Lord is sovereign to arrange the people that we are with. The Lord worked out for several of the students to have classes with those they were burdened for. We were re-impressed how we need to be saved from our opinions about who the Lord can raise from the dead. We may not believe but if we will get with the saints, their faith will become our faith. Our knowledge of those around us kills our prayer and our faith and limits what the Lord can do. We need to bring our burden to our group and have the other saints pray. THEIR faith becomes our faith.

Around 11:30AM we left for Flagstaff and arrived about 5:30PM. We stayed with Tom and Nancy Cho. Tom is a doctor who works in Flagstaff and two times a week he works in a clinic in a small city about 50 miles away. Nancy fixed a very nice dinner. We made sure we knew where to get the recipe. Tom had to leave at 7:30PM to get with another brother. They needed to coordinate with the saints in Phoenix via Skype about the up-coming GTCA time in Flagstaff what was to begin this weekend--Starting on January 27th and going for about 2 weeks. It appears that the saints who are coming will be renting two vacation houses for their stay. We weren't sure how the food was being worked out. There are only three couples in Flagstaff with some contacts from the previous GTCA visit last year.

While Tom was away be got a private DVD showing. Tom and Nancy had gone to Israel for a conference and a tour. Tom had made a very nice 45 minute video of the time. We began to watch while Tom was at the other brother's house working out the GTCA details. When Tom returned we got to see the complete video with captions and sound plus live comments from Tom and Nancy. There is a lot to see in Israel--especially in Jerusalem. Religion has made almost every significant place in the New Testament a shrine or some tourist stop. You are impressed with the places and cities of the early saints. How massive was the original temple. What big stones. There were picture of models of the early city of Jerusalem and the temple. Quite a good video/DVD  of their trip and tour.

Tom and Nancy only had a one bedroom apartment. They are looking to purchase a home in Flagstaff but have a house they will need to sell or rent in Fullerton, CA. They were gracious to give us their bedroom and they slept in the living room.

JANUARY 24 Odessa to Albuquerque

After a BIG breakfast with the Fleenors we were off again. This time to Albuquerque. Again we too lots of smaller state roads but the traffic was light and often the speed limit was nearly the same as an Interstate. Towns like Seminole and Denver, Texas and areas around them were covered with pumping oil wells. This must be one of the most productive areas in Texas if you were counting oil wells. Even the air in some areas smelled of oil.

Also we passed many areas that had large wheeled irrigation sprinklers. We couldn't tell clearly since it is still considered winter, the crops appeared to be cotton and hay (for cattle).

We arrived at Jim and Carol Danek's house in Albuquerque about 4:30PM. Carol, who is a teacher, had to work late--so Jim was the cook. We have discovered some brothers who are great cooks along the way--Jim is one of them. He fixed us a fabulous meal and it was topped off by a helping of "Cookies and Cream" and "Home-made Vanilla" Ice cream made by Blue Bell. Another couple joined us for the dinner and fellowship--very enjoyable time. Note: Only Outback restaurants in California carry Blue Bell ice cream.

After dinner we went to a prayer meeting in the home of one of the saints that is located in the foothills of Albuquerque. We prayed about the GTCA trip to Greenly, Colorado and that some of the stores would allow BfA to set up tables. We also prayed that some older, more mature saints could move there to help the church life have a good beginning. We also prayed for the shepherding of the saints in Reno, Nevada. After the meeting we came home and went to bed earlier because everyone needed to get an early start the next day.

JANUARY 23 MONDAY Austin to Odessa

Due to some problem with Steve's eye, he needed to stop by to see a sister who is an eye doctor. She had recently bought a practice in Austin. She and her husband had moved from the West coast to Austin. It turned out that Steve had an eye infection and some abrasions on his left eye. She prescribed some eye drops which we picked up at the local Walmart on the way out of town. We finally got out of Austin about 11:30AM.

The trip to Odessa was via lots of smaller state roads. This was quite interesting, very different from driving on an Interstate--rolling hills, small towns and a variety of speed limits. It would be hard to go to sleep on this leg of our trip.

We arrived in Odessa a little before 6PM. We had supper with our hospitality, Neal and Sue Fleenor and also with Max and Joann Hale. After supper we went to the meeting hall were some saints were gathered for fellowship.

We enjoyed the fellowship concerning the matter of bearing remaining fruit. As branches (John 15) our function is to bear fruit. There is a reward for bearing fruit and a discipline in this age for not bearing fruit. We can have our joy made full or we can be those cut off from the top enjoyment of the Lord, cut off from our function, cut off from the fellowship with the saints and ultimate cut off from God's economy. Also when the Lord comes back, according to Matthew 25, we have to be those who made a profit. Brother Lee was burdened that we all could be those who bear remaining fruit, that we make a profit. His study in Taiwan and his vital group training was to produce overcomers--first to overcome barrenness--the most subtle and deadly enemy of seeking Christians. He discovered the place we need to focus our labor on is my friends and relatives, your friends and relatives and the new ones's friends and relatives. If we don't see this we may labor in vain and waste our time--like the disciples fishing on the wrong side of the boat.

Also we need to labor together. We should fish with a net and not with a pole. We should each make a list of those we know and consider which 2 or 3 the Lord's wants to save now. Then we should weekly make a time with our group to study, fellowship over and pray for and care for each others' gospel candidates. By our fellowship we will have the wisdom--who should contact them, when they should be contacted and what should be the content. We were impressed that to bear fruit takes time and we need to take little steps week by week so that our friends and relatives can be gained.

A brother we stayed with in Odessa on our last trip had told us about a special plant in that area that when chopped up (leaves and branches) could be made into a tea that has been effective for some cancers. One of the sisters in our group in Cypress--her father has cancer. This brother in Odessa sent some of that special tea to the meeting which we are bringing back to Cypress.

Back home for more fellowship and a good night's rest.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

JANUARY 24 Alburquerque Photos

JANUARY 22 Austin

Lord’s Day morning we went to the meeting of the central district in Austin which began at 10AM. They have three districts and a far north district is meeting now as the church in Round Rock. They had a nice breakfast at the hall for new and returning students. Chairs were set up in little circles for the breakfast time. After breakfast the chairs were returned to a four square arrangement with each section facing another. The brother felt to have the breakfast for some new ones who had never been to a big meeting. They wanted to slow down the “train” so the new ones could get onboard.

At 10:30AM Tim Seay gave a little introduction explaining how when we meet ”each one has”. He also shared that in the Christian meeting it is normal to say “amen”. He used the verses in 1 Corinthians 14 about the unlearned can say “amen” at your giving of thanks.

This week, the church has been going over the little booklet, “Praise” by Watchman Nee. This ties in with the summer training on Psalms. A brother gave an introduction and the saints shared over an hour. Note: Austin has their Lord’s Table in the evening. Many saints were eager to share and stood up waiting their turn. Some shared on the sacrifice of praise and that it came at a cost. Praise is the quickest way for saints to mature in life. Nothing can ripen and mature as praise. Prayer signifies warfare, praise signifies victory. We need to learn to accept everything from the Lord’s hand. God is never wrong and whatever he does is good. We need to learn to praise God today. We need to stop manipulating and plotting and learn to praise.

After the meeting we had fellowship with some saints that we knew, Here are a few: Bill and Linda Deball, Sam and Vanessa Yu, Tobi’s husband and their young son (Tobi was home sick), Bill and Camilla Ard. Steve had a problem with one of his eyes and a sister who is an eye doctor looked at it briefly.

We had lunch with Chris Lynch and family and one other couple and a single sister. In the afternoon we caught up with typing in our blog and rested.

Steve and Chris went to the meeting a hour before the Lord’s table for some fellowship with some of the Austin brothers.

The Lord’s Table was full of praise to the Lord. After the table a number of saints share more from the booklet on Praise by Watchman Nee.

After the meeting we returned to the Lynch’s for later supper. We had an “interview” with their high school and junior high daughters. The older daughter shared about what has helped her the most is having college age companions. They call and text each other. The girls come to their parents Friday home meeting and participate because it is smaller.


We arrived in Austin around 8:30PM. Had a little bit of fellowship and went to be bed earlier.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

JANUARY 22 Austin photos 01

JANUARY 20 Shreveport photo

JANUARY 21 Tyler photo

JANUARY 19 Birmingham photo

JANUARY 21AM Shreveport

Ed had to leave early for work. We had a very enjoyable breakfast with Tonya. During that time she shared how she got saved and touched the recovery. She was saved in a Baptist church at an older age. Some teen-agers shepherded her Some of these young people were taking down a storage shed and found four Watchman Nee books in typewritten form which they read.  Later a visiting brother from Moscow lent them two books for a day and a half. Tonya and another sister copied the books by typing them and made four copies with carbon paper. They worked non-stop through the night because the brother need to take them back with him. Six of them later got to go to Moscow and be with the saints there Later they were invited to join a 2 week training. Tonya got to go to the full-time training and served in Russia and Israel. We fellowshipped with Tonya about ones she was burdened for in Israel and considered how the shepherding need of these ones could be taken care of. Then we prayed about this matter.

We left around 11:30AM with food and hugs from Tonya.

JANUARY 20 Birmingham to Shreveport

In the morning after breakfast and more fellowship we left for Shreveport. We passed through several stretches of rain.

We arrived in Shreveport about 4:30PM and went to Ed and Tanya Mullhearn who are newly weds. Tanya grew up in Latvia, went to the full-time training in Moscow and served in Russia and Israel. After a little rest we went to the meeting and had dinner, singing and fellowship until about 8:45PM.

JANUARY 19PM Atlanta to Birmingham

After coordination we had lunch with some full-timers and working saints at a Mexican restaurant. We left for Birmingham about 2PM and arrived about 4:30PM. This was our shortest travel day of our trip so far. We had a little rest and had supper with Jerry and Coco Hyman, Ed, and Pat Walls. When Dick Wagner (now in Atlanta) lived in Birmingham he contacted Ed on several jobs where they were working together. He is the fruit of long term care. We knew Jerry and Coco from Memphis and we knew Pat in the first migration to Memphis and later in Austin. In Tampa we stayed with her daughter. Later the Chens from the city of Anniston came over for fellowship. It was good to hear about the Lord’s sovereign arrangements to bring Ed into the church life.

Brother Lee found out we need to focus on our friends and relatives so we talked about Ed’s 19 year nephew, Chris how WE could take care of him. We considered some practical steps for him to be in and stay in the church. Out of the fellowship some practical steps came out (i.e. getting a driver’s license) and we prayed about them. Pat has contact with a number of doctors from the middle-east which believe is sovereign of the Lord and we prayed for them. We were impressed that if we will work together and fellowship and pray we will have the wisdom on how these can be gained.

At private school in the area uses the Recovery Version for their curriculum. One of the students that graduated from their came to the church and is in the full-time training in Anaheim. Others may also be open. We had some very good prayer for these ones.

JANUARY 19AM Atlanta Campus Team

After breakfast we went to a coordination meeting with the full-time teams from Atlanta and Athens. Again we were impressed with Brother Lee’s discovery. One brother pointed out something practical about fruit-bearing: For singing we need a hymn book, for the truth we need a Bible, for fruit-bearing we need a notebook (of the names we are praying for).  We had fellowship at the end concerning scheduling our time. This confirms Brother Lee’s word of scheduling our time to bear fruit and contact people. They have a website for full-timers to schedule their time as individuals and as a team. The schedule includes morning revival, private prayer, ministry reading, Bible reading, appointments, etc. 

JANUARY 18 Tampa to Atlanta

The trip was long but traffic was not to bad. We had some rain along the way. We arrived around 4:30PM and rested an hour until some saints arrived for dinner at our hospitality. It was good to see older saints seeking to build the church through the vital groups.

We walked to the Atlanta hall after the prayer meeting. There were two prayer meetings. One near our hospitality and one in central Atlanta. We sang and pray-read for about 45 minutes. We had much prayer for the GTCA cities and especially Chapel Hill , Chattanooga, Knoxville and Birmingham. Steve was born in Atlanta in 1946. When he was in the military in S. Carolina for two years we went to Atlanta from Columbia, SC.

After the meeting, college age young people got together at our hospitality for fellowship on the vital groups and on fruit-bearing. 

Saturday, January 21, 2012

JANUARY 17AM Gainesville--Tampa

Good fellowship at breakfast about possible warm doors. To gain friends and relatives Cornelius gathered his friends and relatives and invited Peter to come. This is a principle concerning our friends and relatives.

We got to Tampa around 4 and we stopped by the meeting hall and picked up Aaron Fetrow and went to visit Dan and Olga Roseblade, the son and daughter-in-law of Bill and Jane Roseblade who live in Cypress. Dan was at work but Olga was a home with their three little girls. We had a good time visiting. The girls gave us a tour of their rooms and showed us the birthday cards they were making for their neighbor.

Then Aaron and another college brother, James, gave us a quick tour of the University of Southern Florida campus. The school is doing quite a bit of building and up-grading making it a very attractive campus.

We joined the saints in Tampa for a love feast at the meeting hall--a large two story house on 2 acres of land. At supper the brothers got together and had fellowship about the increase of the church.

At 7:30PM we had a prayer meeting. We prayed concerning the training and the video training, Europe, the gaining international students here for their countries when they go back, the Chinese-speaking conference, vital groups and the USF campus.

After the prayer meeting we had some fellowship about the vital groups. We were reimpressed where we need to focus in our labor. This should be considered as one of the secrets of being able to bear fruit, even much fruit. The other secret is that we need to labor together patiently to bear others as fruit.

We stayed with Kevin and Laura Lo. Laura has two little boys and she serves one the campus.

JANUARY 16PM Gainesville

We had lunch with some of the brothers at Jason Deli. We had supper with the Sbardellas. Around 30 local saints came over in the evening. We time began with very strong prayer that expressed the saints' hunger for the Lord and eagerness to fellowship. We realize for fruit-bearing that we need to focus on friends and relatives.

JANUARY 21AM Our Busy Schedule

Sorry of the delay in posting. It is much easier to type from a computer than from our phones. The last few days we have been getting to the saints' homes late afternoon after lots of driving. Sometimes we would get a rest for a short time before supper and fellowship. A number of times we didn't get to bed until nearly 12 midnight. Then we were up, morning revival, pack, eat breakfast and out the door by 8AM or earlier to drive to the next stop. Today January 21, Saturday our drive is a little shorter so we hope to do a little catch up on our posting. Sorry things are not all in order--some photos are not with the text for that day. Hopefully you can figure it out. Grace to you all.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

JANUARY 17 Tampa-University of South Florida

A personal tour of campus. Aaron, standing next to Carol, took a 4 year break in his college education to serve at the Ministry Conference Center project in Anaheim. He was a great help to the project. He worked often with Steve related to purchasing and materials pick up. He was very involved in the maintenance of the equipment that was used on the project.

JANUARY 17 Some Saints from Gainesville

JANUARY 16 University of Florida

Entrance to University of South Florida campus

Monday, January 16, 2012

JANUARY 16AM Gainesville

We had breakfast together with Bruce and Karen Sbardella. We mentioned before that Bruce and Karen used to live in Cypress. Bruce moved to Gainesville in July 2005 to be on the campus team. Karen still helps Lord's Move to Europe. 

Afterwards breakfast Bruce took us on a tour of the University of Florida campus. Wow! What a large school in size and numbers! The school covers 2000 acres and has over 50,000 students from over 100 countries. There are a number of buildings dedicated to cancer research. Totally there are over 900 buildings on the campus. What a fishing pond for the Lord to gain young people! 

Remember to pray that the Lord would add more to their campus team--some have gotten married and moved to other cities and/or had children and are not available at this time.

JANUARY 15 Tallahassee & Gainesville

We went to the Lord’s Table at Phillip and Julia’s home. There were approximately 30 there with 11 guests from out of town. Seven were visiting from Austin and two from Cypress and two from Gainesville. The meeting had an air of informality with little children sitting on parent’s laps and wandering in and out of the meeting. It reminded us of Brother Nee’s word in the Normal Christian Church Life about meeting in the homes.

We shared something from John 15 and Matthew to show if we bear fruit and make a profit we will be full of joy. If we do not, we sense we are cut off and we will be weeping (unhappy) and gnashing our teeth. Brother Lee by experiments and study discovered a definite direction for our fruit-bearing. We should go to our friends and relatives and by working together in a vital group as a net we can gain them. By regular fellowship and prayer we will have the wisdom of whom, how, what way and when we should contact our gospel candidates. We need to have the pillar of the gospel/fruit-bearing. We need all four pillars of the Lord’s recovery: Truth, life, the church and the gospel. To have two or three pillars is not sufficient.

One of the local brothers gave an opening word on The Four Pillars of the Lord’s Recovery. That was the same week that the church in Cypress was in—Week 8. We enjoyed seeing the two aspects of God’s salvation—the blood for redemption and the water for regeneration. Christ by His death on the cross not only took care of sin but also released the divine life to produce the church the bride.

Practical point: Some of the saints in Tallahassee make it their habit to take the new ones with them when they make trips. This has been a great help for the new ones to go to other localities and to be in the homes of other saints.

Eighteen to twenty saints went to the Golden Corral for lunch and for more fellowship.

We left for Gainesville about 3:30PM and arrived about 5:45PM. This was probably one of our shortest drives so far. Good thing—we were quite tired but we were able to get to bed earlier that we had before.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

JANUARY 14 Tallahassee photos Sat. Night. Carol with 2 new girls from Saudi Arabia.

JANUARY 14 Tallahassee

After breakfast at Aaron and Charis' apartment we got together at Mike and Barbara Lynch's house with a number of saints for fellowship on what the Lord is doing. We are all impressed and our experience confirmed Brother Lee's word that we need to focus on our friends and relatives and the new ones friends and relatives. We realized our need anew to fellowship with one another to have the wisdom concerning how to care for others. By our fellowship in the groups our burden for others is maintained. It was good to hear the stories of how the Lord has caught and gained various ones. Many international students have been saved and a number gained. Our fellowship continued until after 1:30PM and continued then at a restaurant. We did not get back to the apartment until after 3:30PM.

Then at 6:30PM we gathered again at Mike and Barbara's for supper. Thirty three came from 13 countries. Many of these are graduate or post graduate students--mostly from Florida State University. Included in this number was a young couple from Iran who recently got saved, who brought an Iranian friend for the first time. Besides this one there were 3 other new ones. Two flesh sisters from Saudi Arabia (see photo in the next blog above) and one girl from Germany. It seems that the prayer that the churches have been offering to the Lord for the middle east and Europe are somewhat being answered here by the Lord bringing so many overseas students to and into the Lord's Recovery.

It was quite an enjoyable time with lots of interaction among those attending before, during and after the meal. There was singing accompanied by a number of music instruments. After some sharing on a bird's eye view of the contents of the book of Revelation, chapter by chapter, there was some singing of a chorus in several different languages including, Korea, Spanish, Iranian, and Hungarian. We left early at 10:30PM. Aaron who we are staying with is a doctor needed to get some rest for he has to be at the hospital this Lord's Day early.

JANUARY 13 Steve's old home in Tallahassee

For nearly the first 21 years of his life Steve lived in Tallahassee. He graduated from Florida State University. This photo is the house at 1535 Hickory where he lived for many years. His parents lived there until about 5 years ago when they moved to San Jose, CA to live near Steve's sister, Janet, and her family. The house on Hickory can hardly be seen. The present owners have let the flowers in the front yard grow up--blocking the view. 

JANUARY 13--Baton Rouge to Tallahassee

Again this was a long drive. We left at 9AM and arrived at about 5PM. We lost an hour with the time change between time zones. We had supper at Aaron and Karis apartment (where we are staying). A number of new ones including ones from India, Hungary and from another country that I cannot spell. They have lots of international students. Some saints have a burden to gain these international students and build them up in vital groups and then send them back to their countries. (Note: There were 6 saints visiting for a long weekend from Austin)

After supper Bill Menton (visiting from Austin) and Carol and I went to visit some couples who wanted to have some fellowship about caring for the children. (In the past I was involved with the Full-time Training in Anaheim) and became familiar with what Brother Lee had to say about the children.) By our time together we realized how much we need to fellowship. The fellowship and prayer issues in the care and shepherding. We also realized how there is the need from more children's materials to use in the homes and in the corporate meeting based on the view conveyed in the new book that Living Stream published last year on the gaining of the second generation for the Lord's Recovery.

Two burdens Brother Lee had through the years was the need for us to help the children in their character. He used the illustration of the dye and the cloth. The quality of the cloth (humanity) determines how brightly the dye (the Lord as grace) shines out. Paul had a very high humanity and the highest education--thus the Lord shown out of him brightly after he received the Lord. Most people's character is formed by the time they are fifteen so we need to redeem those early years to help them in their humanity. We ourselves need to be a good pattern and also we can tell stories that present a good pattern to them. We saw the need to collect good stories to use with the children. Also Brother Lee was burden that we use our homes with our children. They have or will have many friends and classmates. By our using our homes in coordination with other saints (i.e. our vital group) we can gain their friends and classmates and their families. In this way they become the seeds of the gospel. Such a fruit-bearing life will help preserve both them and us a parents. If we don't bear fruit we will dry up and will be cut off from top enjoyment of the Lord, from our function, from the fellowship with the saints and eventually from God's economy (see John 15).

As some of  you know Steve lived in Tallahassee for nearly all of his first twenty years. On the way into town this time we stopped by our old house on 1535 Hickory and took a few pictures. Steve's parents now live in San Jose, CA .

JANUARY 11PM- 12AM Houston/Katy

We arrived in Houston about 3:30PM. It is rather a short trip from San Antonio to Houston. We had fellowship with Tom and Gwen Ware. They had moved since we visited last down near Rice University. After dinner we went to the city of Katy which is on the west side of Houston. This is considered the west district of the church in Houston. We joined into their prayer. We were impressed by their burden for people. We had a good fellowship. It was good to see a number of saints from other localities that had moved to that area--Rudy and Lisa from the Austin area and the Britts from the Dallas.

JANUARY 13 Baton Rouge Photo

JANUARY 13 Baton Rouge

Another longer day of driving. We passed some oil refineries on the way East from Houston. We thought of Don  LaBounty and his work with pressure vessels for such facilities.

We arrived in Baton Rouge and has supper with Fred and Debra Koch. Then off to the fellowship with about 30  saints there in Baton Rouge. Several years ago the church purchased a 4500 sq. ft. house on 5 acres that also included a barn. It has a large room which has worked well for their meetings. A couple also lives in the house. Lots of good fellowship together. We hope that some of the saints from Baton Rouge could write and include some of the matters in this blog that came out during that time of fellowship. We were all encouraged about the appointing and preparing God who wants us to bear fruit and is preparing people around us for us to bear as fruit and that through Brother Lee's labor the Lord has opened the way for every one talented one to make a profit.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

JANUARY 10 Photos from San Antonio


January 10AM: We used some of the time in the morning to get some rest and check on e-mails. We went to Leon Valley (N. of San Antonio on the I-10) to have lunch with Michael Jenkinson at the Original Rudy's BBQ. The food and the fellowship was good. Michael had stayed with us during the 2011 Winter Training and is serving on the full-time team here in San Antonio. It was good to hear how the Lord is blending the team together.

January 10PM: Saints came over to Brad Nabers house (where we are taking hospitality) for fellowship. We had a good time considering Brother Lee's study concerning the God-ordained way. It was pointed out that when Brother Lee went back to Taiwan the average increase in the Lord's recovery was between 2-3%. When the saints had moved from the mainland of China the increase had been over 100 fold but the increase had gradually declined. He pointed out that if we were a business and we had a 10% increase we should close the company, or fine another line of work or change the personnel. Brother Lee pointed out that although we have the highest truth and the rich experience of Christ we had a big problem concerning the increase. His going back to Taiwan in 1985 was mainly because of the low rate of increase. His experiments and study were to consider the ways of the gospel used by Christianity and by the Lord's recovery to find the most effective way to gain people. There were several results of his study--first that the Lord's way is to go to people not to invite people to come to us. He had some strong words to say about the regular practice of big gospel meetings saying that they do save people but not many people remain. Concerning door knocking Brother Lee discovered that we need to be selective. "As a result of our studying and experimenting, we have found a direction. We have discovered from numerous testimonies that it is best to be selective in our door-knocking...First, we should begin by knocking on the doors of those we know, that is, our friends and relatives. Second, we should knock on the doors of the friends and relatives of the saints. Third, we should knock on the doors of the friends and relatives of the newly saved ones." (Crucial Words of Leading, Bk 2 p 251). This is why he said a number of times when he came back from Taiwan that we don't need to knock on "cold" doors because we have plenty of "warm" doors--the people that we know.

The other thing we were impressed with is that we should work together to gain as a group to labor together to gain these ones. We need a time each week to study, fellowship, pray and coordinated to consider how WE as a group gain these ones we are burdened for.

CLEO WHITINGTON: Some of you know George Whitington who was has been in the Lord's recovery in Texas nearly from the beginning. His wife, Cleo, had to have emergency surgery late on January 10th and her colon needed to be removed. Her condition is quite serious. We hope to have more details. O Lord our sister!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

JANUARY 9 (El Paso & San Antonio)

January 9AM (Monday): We had breakfast with Debbie and Antonio. A big point that has helped their young ones is to encourage and take them to the summer and winter training. This has help them to see the importance of the the church and God's economy--to see the "big picture." They do things together as families and take care of each other's families. This family has helped all three of their children learn to play the piano. Their younger son who is in the 5th grade is taking guitar lessons every Friday early evening with a few other young boys. He is playing in the home meetings and in the regular church meetings. Every night their younger son reads the Bible and prays with one of his parents.

January 9PM: This was a lo-o-o-g drive (500+ miles) from El Paso to San Antonio including going through at least of 100 miles of snow (:. The temperatures were generally in the low 30's all day. We arrived in San Antonio about 6:30PM. After supper we went to our hospitality with Brad Nabers. We had lots of good fellowship.


January 7 Saturday AM: There were not many sights between California and Tucson except hundreds wind generators of electricity.

January 7--Saturday PM: We arrived in Tucson about 5:30PM for a little fellowship with our hospitality (Gary and Barb Liemer) and then we went to a home meeting with 7 saints besides us. We met with a young couple. We sang and read the first chapter of Speciality, Generality, and Practicality of the Church.

Some points from our fellowship: 1. We need to fight for the faith but not for the doctrine. 2. The points our faith are: The Bible is the Word of God; God is uniquely one and triune; The person of Christ--the perfect man and complete God; the work of Christ--including His crucifixion, resurrection and ascension; Salvation--we need to repent and believe; Church--is universally and locally one.

Then we had some fellowship about dealing with the self and offenses. (This is what we were covering in Cypress). Not just in the big meeting but especially in the groups we need to deal with offenses by going to the Lord to enjoy Him as our forgiving element and also by getting into the word that the self could be killed and the hurt feelings could be washed out.

January 8--Lord's Day AM: Before the meeting we had some fellowship about praying for people specifically and then had some specific prayer about ones we are burdened for. The saints we stayed with have a burden to migrate to Bellingham, Washington.

We went to the Lord's Table and prophesying meeting. They had overflow from the winter training from the 17 saints who had gone. Also the saints shared from the third week of the Morning Revival on the Focus of the Lord's Recovery. Christ coming was not just for salvation but for the purpose of Him being the cornerstone for God's building. Romans 8 is the center of the Bible and the center of the universe focusing on God's intention of dispensing Himself into man.

January 8--Lord's Day PM: After the meeting we left for El Paso and enjoyed listening to part of the 2010 Team Reunion that was held in Austin, especially to the testimony of the new ones concerning being in the homes and being in the homes.

We arrived in El Paso about 5:30PM and we stayed with Antonio and Debbie Aguirre. Salvador Nunez came over and we had some good fellowship about the vital groups and prayed for some needs in both our localities. Their small group has 25 new ones to take care of. They pray for each of them, each week by name. Debbie has two times a week 12-25 sisters come to her house to read a book or a Life-study. Their vital groups gets together on Saturday evening. The saints have a time with some of the children in the homes on Saturday. On the Lord's Day all the saints and children go to the table meeting. During the prophesying meeting they have some materials for the children in another room.

Friday, January 6, 2012


"Today in the church age, the God-Men who were perfected and matured are Zion, the overcomers, the vital groups within the churches." (Practical Points Concerning Blending, p. 45)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

By Studying and Experimenting, A Direction for Fruit-Bearing Has Been Discovered

 “As a result of our studying and experimenting, we have found a direction. We have discovered from numerous testimonies that it is best to be selective in our door-knocking. This selectiveness has several aspects. First, we should begin by knocking on the doors of those whom we know, that is, our friends and relatives. Second, we should knock on the doors of the friends and relatives of the saints. Third, we should knock on the doors of the friends and relatives of the newly saved ones. Hence, we should begin with these various groups of friends and relatives.” (Crucial Words of Leading in the Lord's Recovery, Book 2: Leading the Saints to Practice the New Way Ordained by the Lord, p.  251)

Every Drop of Our Blood, Every Bit of Our Strength and Every Minute of Our Time

“We must do everything we can to strengthen the vital groups. We should spend every drop of our blood, every bit of our strength, and every minute of our time to strengthen the vital groups, making the vital groups so beautiful, so high, and so attractive. This is the only thing we should stress to get people.  A number of things can attract people, but not so effectively as the vital groups.” (Fellowship Concerning the Urgent Need of the Vital Groups, p. 236)

The Overcomers, the Vital Groups are Today's Zion

The overcomers, the vital groups, are today’s Zion. My burden today is to help you reach the peak of the vital groups, that is, the overcomers’ Zion. Although we may have a good church life, among us there is almost no realization, no practicality, no actuality, and no reality of the Body life. This is the need in the recovery today.” (Practical Points Concerning Blending, p. 17)

Getting ready for trip

Carol and I spent some time with Rachael Molet to learn how to use new phones so can send up dates as we travel.