One request that is made quite often in the Mideast Updates over the past 11 years, is for prayer. Why is prayer requested? It is because God’s intervention is needed. I wonder how many of us, yours truly included, pray in a nonchalant way, not really grasping the gravity of what we are doing and not realizing what is involved in the miraculous answers to our prayers. 

About two weeks ago I read a devotional by Jonathan Cahn that I have thought about quite a lot since and decided to share an insight in today’s update — hopefully as an encouragement to someone.

The storyline centers around Abraham sending his servant to find a wife for Isaac. The first scene is at the town well where women came to draw water. As he came to the well, he prayed that God would show him the right woman by having her come to draw water at the well and offer to draw water for him as well as for his camels. Before finishing the prayer, a young woman named Rebekah, came out to the well and did exactly as he had just prayed.

So, the question one might ask is, when did God answer the servant’s prayer? Was it when Rebekah came to the well? No, it would have been earlier. In order to come to the well at the right time, Rebekah had to have already been on the way before the servant saw her, and before he had even prayed.  That means she would have had plans to go out to the well exactly as she did in order to arrive exactly at the specific time when she arrived. For that to happen, every other event of her day had to happen exactly as it did. The slightest delay, or lack thereof, and it wouldn’t have happened as it did. 

This tells us that behind every event, there are innumerable previous events in an incalculable chain of timed events leading up to and causing the event to happen just as it does. And it is not only a chain of time, but of space. and interactions — seemingly insignificant things like a gust of wind, a drop of rain, a random thought, or the things that obviously can only be controlled by our Creator God, like the movement of the sun and stars, and the gravity of a galaxy. You might think that is going too far, but all must work together with absolute precision for any specific event to happen as it does. 

So, for God to answer the servant’s prayer and bring Rebekah to the well that day, He had to make those things work perfectly together in time and space. To answer that prayer, He had to move the universe…And so it is for all of us as God’s children. For God to answer even one of our smallest prayers, He must direct all things and move and coordinate all events of time and space to make it happen. He must move the universe. And, because His love for us is so great, He will move the universe. His love is greater than time and space…greater than the universe He created. Think on this the next time you take something to the Lord in prayer! It gives us a new way of understanding the verse that says “All things work together for good for those who love God and are called to His purposes.” !!

On to the House of Blessing…

The phone call from Pastor R was very short this week but he shared a little bit having to do with the 20 Muslim men who were reached with the Good News of the Gospel. As you may recall, the mosque where they were testifying of their commitment to Christ, was attacked by militants. A large portion of the mosque was damaged and part of the roof collapsed, leaving many occupants dead, although the twenty new believers escaped unharmed. Sadly, Pastor R told me that, days later, three of the men — all from one family, were found bleeding and dying on the road, having been brutally stabbed by the militants. 

It’s hard for those of us living in western society to imagine things like this. We tend to take our freedoms for granted. Yes, there is brutality and murders all around the world, but for the most part, we still have the right to think as we want and belong to whatever religious belief system we choose. This is not the case in many nations around the world, including most Islamic nations today. We need to pray for the remaining 17 men and those they have already brought to the feet of Jesus. 

The lyrics of an old chorus remind me of what it means to commit to Jesus:


I have decided to follow Jesus; I have decided to follow Jesus; 

I have decided to follow Jesus; No turning back, no turning back


Tho’ none go with me, I still will follow, Tho’ none go with me, I still will follow,

Tho’ none go with me, I still will follow; No turning back, no turning back

 My cross I’ll carry, till I see Jesus; My cross I’ll carry till I see Jesus,

My cross I’ll carry till I see Jesus; No turning back, No turning back


The world behind me, the cross before me, the world behind me, the cross before me;

The world behind me, the cross before me, the world behind me, the cross before me; 

The world behind me, the cross before me; No turning back, no turning back



That really is the commitment we as believers and followers of Jesus have made, no matter where in the world we live or what culture we are in. It means that this world is not our home! We’re just passing through!

In a previous update, I told the story of how two of the HOB female missionaries had been abducted, confined, and severely beaten by seven Muslim women. When an Imam heard the story and asked to see the women, he promptly ordered them to be set free, telling the captors that they were known for the good things they do for the refugees. As the story went, these seven women were soon brought to Jesus and they became followers of Him also. I have the names of these seven women so that we can hold them up in prayer to be strengthened in their new faith. Their names are: Rabeha, Subhia, Fahmya, Labibeh, Offa, Nuffa, and Fatma. 

In other HOB news, some funds were raised within Syria and two more truckloads of sacked wheat were purchased. The teams of missionaries then divided the supplies up and took the wheat, along with Oregano tea to over 2,500 individual family tents. The missionaries visited and distributed supplies to many refugee camps. 

In past weeks, rain water could be captured and used for drinking. At this time of year however in the Mideast, the rainwater is too dirty for drinking. This means that there is always a great need for drinking water — especially since the cholera infection is still such a problem. People are dying in all of the camps from the infection. Please pray for divine protection for all of the House of Blessing missionaries as they mix with people, whether they are healthy or sick. Romans 8:2 is a good verse for us all to cover our lives with — especially in the days of Covid 19 and many other diseases plaguing mankind, including the threats of new diseases we are hearing about. It reads like this in the Living Bible:

For the power of the life-giving Spirit — and this power is mine through Christ Jesus — has freed me from the vicious circle of sin and death.  


Pastor R continues to battle his own physical issues. With many threats against Pastor R and the HOB leadership including attempts to ruin the HOB reputation and the work that God is doing through them, some of the HOB men have taken special steps to stand in protection of Pastor R. Because so many see him as their spiritual father, 12 men have decided to stand guard at his hospital to make sure nothing happens to him. He has of course made it clear that he has no fear of what any man can do to him as he is more than ready and happy to go HOME. They, however, have insisted. 

Please pray for all of the House of Blessing leadership, missionaries, and the entire community of believers scattered all across the Mideast. We will never know until we are united on the other side, just how much our prayers have meant. 

Thank You!

Forever in His Service,



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