FOR I AM PLANNING TO TAKE A TRIP TO SPAIN… AND I AM SURE THAT WHEN I COME THE LORD WILL GIVE ME A GREAT BLESSING FOR YOU"> (Romans 15:24, 29 TLB)
Glorious NEWS from Spain! Jan and I visited Madrid on our way to Russia to meet the Mayor of St. Petersburg. When we arrived, our TBN Europe staff were in the middle of their Praise-a-Thon®. To my astonishment and delight, calls were pouring in not only from all over Spain, but many from Portugal and Spanish speaking colonies from all over Europe!
As it turns out, a satellite company, eager for new business, had granted us a low cost trial of three months to see if we had viewers on HISPASAT 1-B. WOW, WE DID! So on the one hand, we rejoice that many Spanish speaking souls can now receive TBNE; on the other hand, we took a deep breath at the new $35,000 a month bill that was presented to your excited Founder/President!
We did use the occasion to advise our staff that we would appreciate knowing beforehand of such financial commitments, but since no long term contract had been signed, no significant harm was done. I have now committed to a one year contract, and if these early returns continue, we will sign up for a longer term contract.
We know from our scripture in Romans that the Apostle Paul was planning a trip to Spain and promised to stop off in Rome on the way. Apparently, he never made it as he was later imprisoned in Rome and gave his life for the Gospel there. But I am quite sure that Paul is rejoicing in Heaven since his great epistles are being poured into Spain and all of Europe, via SATELLITE! Praise the Lord!
So to my dear Partners of TBN I say, "Let us rejoice that yet another ‘FOOTPRINT' has been planted on Spain and all Europe!" I also ask, "Will you help us with the increase in cost?" Actually the amount needed is very small. I estimate that if everyone would add only 50 cents a month to your giving, the new satellite cost would be covered! In time, even that may not be needed since the Spanish Christians are giving to the TBNE Praise-a-Thon®s. While Jan and I were there, nearly $100,000 had been pledged to our station in Madrid; but, please, let's help them for this first year at least.
Dear Partners, thousands of letters and emails are pouring in daily from all over the world! As I have said so often on Praise and Behind the Scenes, my favorite task each day is to dive into the great testimonies and "Macedonian Calls," that reach us.
How do you place a value on communications like these:
"HI TBN – HOW ARE YOU? I'M WRITING FROM TURKEY. I'M WATCHING YOUR TV PROGRAMS. I LIKE JAUN COURCH. SHE IS PERFECT PERSON. YOUR PROGRAMS VERY GOOD. I AM ISLAM BUT I AM LEARNING YOUR RELIGION WITH YOUR PROGRAMS. YOUR RELIGION—FRIENDLY, BEAUTIFUL, WELL PERSON AND PEACE. I HOPE WILL LEARN THIS ALL WORLD. I'M CELEBRATING YOU AND WAITING YOUR PROGRAMS."
It was signed with "LOVE, MUHAMMED." He gave us his full name, but we have been warned many times to never give out full names in the Middle East for obvious reasons.
This next one sent me right through the roof -- at least in spirit! There was no salutation, just this text:
"MY MOMA WAS VERY SICK. I WATCH YOUR SHOW, AND THEY TELL ME HOW TO MAKE HER BETTER. SO I TRY THIS, AND SHE DID NOT DIE. NOW I LOVE HIM SO MUCH, I HAVE CONVERTED FROM BEING HINDU, TO A EUROPEAN CHRISTIAN!"
We do not know exactly where in Europe he was writing from, but he did give us his email address and signed it, "Jebus X."
I do not know what messages like these do for you, but there really are no words for the joy this brings to my spirit! As we have all said—it makes all the pain, sorrow, warfare, disappointments, etc., WORTH IT, many thousands of times over! All Praise be to the LORD GOD most high!
Ah, dear Partners, the question is always the same: shall we keep on going, building, giving, and winning? I know these are very uncertain times. This world is in turmoil—where will the next terror attack hit? Where is the economy headed? The stock market is going nuts! It's like no one has any answers—but that is the VERY TIME we must flee to the Word of God. This I know for sure—the only safe investment is in the Kingdom of God! I know it is harder now for some to give, to sow, into this great world harvest of souls—but hear the Word of the Lord:
"HE THAT GOETH FORTH WITH WEEPING BEARING PRECIOUS SEED…"
The "seed" we bring today is our tithes, offerings, and gifts of love to keep this great Voice called TBN on the air with, now, over 3,000 TV stations fed by 25 great angel satellites worldwide! Some of us may give "with tears" and some trepidation as we watch with great uncertainty the world drama played out each night on the 6 o'clock news!
But read on --
"SHALL DOUBTLESS COME AGAIN WITH REJOICING, BRINGING HIS SHEAVES WITH HIM." (Psa. 126:6)
I think most of us have thought of these "SHEAVES" as being the souls of men and women, boys and girls, saved as the result of our witness—and of course, this is true. But think with me a minute—seed costs money—no doubt about that, I now KNOW those "sheaves" are also God's multiplication and reward back to us for our giving so that sheaves of souls may be brought into the Kingdom of God.
Play the stock market if you dare—as for me and my house, we choose to:
lay up... treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal…" (Matt 6:20).
God bless you, our dearest and most faithful Partners. The love Jan and I have for you cannot be put into words! For 29 years you have loved us, encouraged us, and supported this God ordained ministry we all love and call TBN.
We too are "planning a trip." Not just to Spain, but to a much better place, and--
"I AM SURE THAT WHEN I COME THE LORD WILL GIVE ME A GREAT BLESSING FOR YOU." (Rom. 15:29 TLB)
Jan and I at the ruins of an old church in Spain. Now a whole NEW kind of church is beaming into Spain, Portugal and the Spanish colonies of Europe!
Our trip to Spain had a surprise for us! "HISPASAT 1-B"– a new satellite channel – is ON THE AIR, carrying the Gospel in SPANISH to every Spanish speaking region throughout all of Europe!
Budapest, HUNGARY is ON THE AIR! The precious people in Eastern Europe are rejoicing and they are sending us glorious testimonies! Because of YOUR faithfulness, YOUR TBN can keep going, keep growing, and keep winning SOULS!
A "sputnik" for RUSSIA! We have the opportunity to be on 24 hours a day in the RUSSIAN language, on a SATELLITE that reaches across the continent of Russia--SHALL WE GO?