Late in October, approximately 700 members and friends of Bibles International gathered together in Grand Rapids to enjoy the Harvest Dinner. As you can imagine, planning an event in which we demonstrate what we've been doing during the past year, and what we expect to be doing in the coming year, and serving 700 meals, even though they are catered, is a huge undertaking and takes weeks of preparation. This year was no exception. We're grateful for those who joined us to celebrate the Lord's work through Bibles International. Already this year, we have dedicated six new New Testaments, an unprecedented event for Bibles International up until now. The meal, the music, the decorations and ambiance are all created with the intent of praising the Lord for His goodness to us, and through us, to peoples all over the world.
Our speaker this year was Brother Fernando Angeles, a Tenek Indian from Mexico. It was a privilege to have him and his wife, Christy, with us for the event. Fernando and Christy came to Bibles International for translator training in 2006, when the translation was begun. Prior to their translation work, there was no Scripture in the Tenek language. Fernando and Christy are continuing their work on the Tenek New Testament and need our prayers as they reach out to those around them there in Mexico, teaching them the truths of salvation by grace through faith. Fernando shared with us the importance of getting the Scriptures into his mother tongue.
For those of you who sent me birthday cards and gifts, thank you so much. I had one of the most memorable birthdays I've had in many years. You would think this might all have happened to commemorate the beginning of a decade, but that was not the case. (I have two more years before that will occur.)
This year my graduating class from high school celebrated our fiftieth anniversary. I've long been planning to attend that event, since there have been many I've not been able to attend due to being out of the country. Unfortunately, the committee planned this one on one of the few Saturdays in October when I had other events planned so I missed another class reunion. As I think back over the past 50 years, I ask myself where they've gone. It seems they've flown by. The other question I've asked myself, as my life winds down toward the end, is if I have made a difference for eternity in these past years. I pray that there are many who have been positively impacted by my life in these years.
In Michigan, all those over 60 can vote by absentee ballot. I'm thankful to have had the opportunity to vote in this important election. I pray each of you will take advantage of the same opportunity, asking for the Lord's direction as you vote. It seems this election will have far-reaching implications.
I still need your prayers as I try to determine where I should retire. I have no relatives in the state of Michigan, but I've lived here longer than any other place as an adult. Most of my friends are here, my church is here, and my medical community is here. Suddenly, because of a phone call I got today, this decision has become much more urgent. Please ask the Lord to show me clearly where I should make my home during my retirement days.