July 2017

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Hello from Brooklyn Connecticut!

We have enjoyed the privilege of visiting with the Open Bible Baptist Church here in Brooklyn. Pastor and Mrs. Davis and the church have been long time supporters of our ministry. They began over ten years ago when we raised support to work with the military and continued to help us as we shifted our focus to the German speaking people of Nuremberg. Now as we make preparation to plant a church in the Pacific Northwest, they have pledged their continued support. Pastor Davis is also a church planter who began the ministry in the New England area nearly 20 years ago. Now they are helping to plant a church on the opposite side of the country in Astoria Oregon!

It was a blessing to hear from two churches in July who have increased their support of our ministry as we make the transition to Astoria. We have heard from many more churches who intend to continue supporting us for the church plant. Each of these churches has helped to reduce the costly and time consuming process of raising additional support. It is also vital as we continue to hunt for a house in the area. Because of Bella’s allergies, it will be important to find housing that will not pose any mold problem and we ask you to pray that we can find such a place. Praise God for the additional support and for those who have continued with us!

In July, we met with dear friends in Alabama and they are also very excited about the church plant in Astoria. They showed me a piano in their home and said they felt the Lord wanted them to donate it to us for the ministry. Praise the Lord! I trust he will continue to provide each step of the way as we trust Him!

Last week I received some troubling news from Veterans United, a loan agency that specializes in VA loans. For some strange reason, they would not approve us for a loan even after they had given us pre-approval. I assume this has to do with their failure to understand mission work. For some business, it is hard for them to understand how we pay our bills. Despite having credit scores well above 750, a housing allowance guarantee from BIMI, and VA backing; they have refused to loan for 1 year. We certainly don’t want to wait that long for a house so we ask you to pray. Interest rates will likely increase so we don’t want to wait too long. For those of you praying, we did not make an offer on the house we told you about in our last letter. We are still searching and appreciate your prayers.

Please pray for traveling safety and support for our travels as we finish up our meetings around the United States. There are yet several churches that we need to visit and then we plan to transition to visiting new churches who will partner with us. We have journeyed many thousands of miles and have many more to go. In October, we put new tires on the van and will likely need to replace them before winter. We have needed to change the oil a couple times each month and the kids are a bit saddle sore.

Soon, you will receive a letter with information about our support level and support goal as well as items we will need before we begin. To date, we have only lost 4 of our supporting churches! For now, please continue to pray for new support, housing in Astoria, and a couple to come and work with us. Not only is the Lord Jesus Christ great! he is also able. Thank you so much in having a part in this great endeavor!  -The Byers Family

June 2017

JUNE Prayer Letter PDF Download

Dear Church,

Greetings from the beautiful state of Tennessee. Our travels last month brought us to churches in New Jersey, and New York. We have several more churches to visit before we can head out west.

I trust you have received the packet of letters we sent last month concerning our change of field from Europe to church planting in the Northwest. It would be a blessing to us if you would update any bulletin, display board, website list, or map that you might use to remind people to pray for us. If you need a more recent family picture, we will have one posted to our website at www.thebyersfamily.net. We have also printed new prayer cards with the updated picture shown on this letterhead. As you can see by the picture, I am the fifth tallest person in our family now. Even Bella stands taller than her old dad.

The response from our last letter has been most encouraging and exciting. Well over 20 supporting churches have contacted me to express their approval, excitement, and support of our church planting endeavor in Astoria, Oregon. We are evaluating our needed support to determine how much additional support we may need in order to begin the church planting work in Astoria. At present, it seems that we are at 75% of our needed support, but it may be that we just had a low month in July. Please pray with us that our support can be raised in a very short time and that we can begin the work quickly. We trust the Lord will help us to find like-minded churches who will help us!

Just last week, Bella suffered from another severe and sudden asthma attack. She was taken to the hospital via Ambulance where she stayed the night. The doctors believe she suffered from an anaphylactic shock that was brought about by her allergies. Bella is recovering but certainly needs prayer. The pollen count has been dangerously high on the east coast. Unfortunately, we have continued in this area because we do not have the support for housing in the northwest as of yet. There are many expenses involved in getting settled in Astoria and we are trusting the Lord to help us with these as well as the many decisions that need to be made. The housing market is very difficult for buyers at the moment and renting is not easy or inexpensive for a family of our size. Traveling has also been much more costly than expected.

People seem to enjoy seeing our children and how they have grown. As our kids sing and pass out prayer cards, answer questions and talk with church members; a bond seems to grow between them and with our supporting churches. Therefore, it has been important to me that our family stay together during our reporting. We have two tents and have been relying on them to provide affordable housing as we travel. Camping is far cheaper than staying in a hotel. The entire family can spend the night with electric, water, and showers for around fifty dollars per night. In spite of this, the cost of fuel, tolls, eating out of a cooler, and other travel expenses has limited our saving for the move to Oregon.

In closing, I would like to remind each one that we are praying for the Lord to send a couple to work with us for a few years when we plant the church. Experience and Ecclesiastes have taught us that two are better than one. I believe the Lord is able to send a like-minded couple to help us to begin the work on the Oregon coast.

Sincerely,

-The Byers Family

May 2017 – An Open Door

Please read all four of the attached letters which are available for download and suitable for printing! These are vital to understanding our change of ministry and the reasons behind it.

Pastor Adams Letter Dr. Hembree Letter

 

Dear Praying Churches,

Since June of 2005, we have been missionaries to the country of Germany. God has richly blessed with souls saved, baptized, and discipled. Praise the Lord for this ministry! and thank you for your vital role in supporting us. It is clear to me that our ministry in Europe has not only been a time of reaping precious souls for Jesus Christ, but also preparation for what lies ahead.

Each of you know how the door for our work in Nuremberg Germany has closed with the people under the leadership of a German national, and you have also been praying with us that God would open a door for a new missionary endeavor. After praying, fasting, and seeking God’s face; it is clear to me that the Lord has opened the door for our family to plant a church in Astoria Oregon.

According to a 2014 Gallup poll, Oregon is one of the least religious states and also one of the most liberal politically. The spiritual need for Baptist churches in Astoria is overwhelming and the costal climate will be a welcomed change for Bella. Our pulmonologist highly recommends this move as the climate will be therapeutic for her lungs.

When I was seventeen years old and surrendered my life to preach the gospel, it was in my heart to plant a church in the Northwest just like my pastor did. Pastor Adams came to Portland Oregon 35 years ago, to a place described to him as “the fundamentalist graveyard.” Greater Portland Baptist Church was born, is thriving, and would now like to reproduce itself just 3 hours away in the town of Astoria. By God’s grace, our family will be leading that endeavor!

You have faithfully supported our work with the military, German speaking people, Iranians, and Syrians. The labor has been rewarding, fruitful, and blessed by God. Thank you so much for your unrelenting giving, prayers, and encouragement during these years. We have done as the Lord commanded us, and we could not have done it without you.

It is my prayer that you will consider how God is leading in our lives and commit to helping us to fulfill the great commission in Astoria Oregon. If you desire to take this journey with us, you may continue sending support in the same way you have been sending it, and approaching the same throne of grace you always do. Please contact me as soon as possible so that we can schedule a time to update your church on the work in Germany and the plan for Astoria. I pray the Lord will bless each of you and I thank you for the opportunity to represent your church for the Kingdom of God.

Sincerely,

Kevin L. Byers
Missionary

March 2017

March Prayer Letter PDF Download

Dear Praying Churches,
Thank you so much for praying for us during the month of March. The family is doing well and enjoying spring in the United States. The creek behind our house here in Tennessee is roaring while the flowers accent the budding trees that cover the hills just beyond.
A few weeks ago we finished up a trip to New Jersey where we updated five of our supporting churches and shared the work with one new church. We also visited a supporting church in Virginia and yet there are still many more we would like to visit.   Please do not hesitate to send an e-mail if you would like to schedule a meeting. We will do the best we can and try to visit your church.
Before we left Tennessee in early March, Pastor John Copeland challenged the church with the story of a man who made an enormous impact for Christ over his lifetime by simply handing out 10 tracts each day while asking the question, “if you were to die today, would you go to heaven?” The Lord spoke to my heart about this, and we left Tennessee with a load of tracts in the car. We were able to distribute all of those and had run out by the time we arrived in Virginia, where we stocked up. Caleb got excited  handing out tracts, and discovered some coins with the gospel message at a church in New Jersey. The pastor offered some coins to Caleb, and  after church that night; we stopped at the grocery store where Caleb began sharing them. One lady told him that God would bless him for sharing Jesus. This was in NEW JERSEY!!!  I couldn’t believe it.
He found a couple in the grocery store and gave a coin to them. In return, they offered him a tract and told him he was doing a good work. Caleb brought the tract to me and asked me if it was correct. (The young man has learned a few things about cults) Everything was correct so he located the people and thanked them while giving  them one of our prayer cards. The people, excited that he was a missionary; gave him $25.00! It is such a blessing to see the Lord openly reward kids as they serve God. It was a good reminder to me that the eyes of the Lord are in every place beholding the evil and the good. You may remember Caleb  from our video in Nuremberg Germany where passersby brushed him aside refusing his tracts. He has been at it for a long time and still going strong!
Upon returning to Tennessee, I had the privilege to fill in for Pastor Copeland Wednesday night and all day Sunday during his bout with the flu. Thankfully he is doing much better after a full recovery.
Although our supporting churches are scattered across the fruited plain of America, we will do our very best to visit and hope you will have patience as we work to fill in our schedule. It has been a joy to visit churches that we have not seen for more than 10 years and see how they are going strong for the Lord. Our hearts have been encouraged to see growth and steadfastness among Bible believing Baptist Churches. Another encouragement to our family comes from those who are so keenly aware of each trial we have been through, each prayer request, and each praise that we have written about. I can’t tell you what a blessing it is to know you are actually reading our prayer letters and praying for us. Thank you so much for making our work for the Lord possible. This time of furlough has been the greatest time of refreshing our family has ever experienced. Please pray for Elijah who needs dental work, and pray for traveling safety. -The Byers Family

January/February 2017

Dear Praying Churches,

Oh how the Lord has been good to us in the past two months! The family is in good health, high spirits, and feeling refreshed. We praise the Lord for helping us to be completely debt free as of this month. Thank you Lord! We praise God for his mercy and grace as well as his Spirit of refreshing.

We are very pleased with Josiah as he not only passed his driving test with flying colors, but also made a very high score on his “High Set” test, securing a high school diploma for himself. While we are confident in the quality education he received at home, we wanted him to obtain a diploma so that he could apply for college. The great test scores re-affirmed our resolve to continue training our children at home. Josiah is considering a career in the medical field and possibly beginning as a surgical assistant. How exciting to see him progress!

A few weeks ago, we had the privilege to visit the county Jail again.  Pastor Copeland allowed me to go into the minimum and maximum wards of the Jail and preach. It was there in “max” that a man named Adam shared with me his desire to be born again. He bowed his head before the Lord even in the presence of the other inmates, admitted his guilt before God, and professed Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. We thank God for this decision! The Lady that Stacy had won for Jesus in the Jail last month was later baptized by the false “Church of Christ.” Of course, these people teach that baptism has saving power. We pray that Satan’s kingdom be defeated and true doctrine will prevail even in the county Jail!

Last week, Stacy and I were invited to the Clark Fork Baptist Church in Idaho. Pastor Carr very graciously extended the invitation for me to preach at their revival services. It was a great joy to be in the Northwest and to preach whatever the Lord put on my heart from the scripture. I must say, there was great liberty and the Word of God went forth and fell upon obedient hearts. Folks walked the isles each night to do personal business with God. We renewed friendship with some people we had forgotten, and enjoyed forging new friendships with folks we came to love. Pastor John and Mrs. Patti made us feel welcome, along with their entire family of 6 children.

Many have asked about Bella’s health, and we are pleased to announce that she has  been very healthy and her allergies have been under control. There have been a few days where she started with the sniffles, but her allergy medication has been able to keep that from developing into asthma attacks.

Please keep praying for our family during this time of furlough. We are seeking the Lord’s guidance and trusting him for an open door of ministry. God has opened many doors for us in the past and has given us great victories. We have truly experienced marvelous manifestations of grace and provision during the last 12 years of service as missionaries. Many souls have come to know Christ, be baptized, and many have received discipleship training as a result of your investment in our ministry. Some of you have prayed us through the entire time and we appreciate your standing with us now. We are very anxious to see how the Lord will guide and continue to provide. Experience teaches that relocating our missionary endeavors will certainly be costly; therefore, we are saving in anticipation. Will you continue in prayer with us? -The Byers Family

November/December 2016 Prayer Letter

Dear Praying Churches,
Three months of our furlough are already past and we feel as though we just got here. Snow fell yesterday here in Tennessee and the kids found a neighbor to loan them a sled, which they promptly broke. I don’t even know if they sell sleds here, it doesn’t snow much. We were truly blessed by the hospitality and generosity of Grace Baptist Church here in Alpine, and also by many other churches who thought of us during the Christmas season. Thank you all for being a blessing to us!
Josiah has been driving on a permit now for about two months. He seems to be more confident behind the wheel, and Stacy doesn’t grip the dashboard now quite so firmly when he takes the corners. We hope he can pass the drive next week, and graduate High School very soon. These are just the kinds of things that make us feel old. Brother Gregg, I know you read these letters and remember when I started driving. I can only imagine how you must feel to see these kids grow up.
Since our arrival in the States, we have enjoyed several meetings with supporting churches, and have also joined in ministries with Grace Baptist Church in Alpine, TN. Pastor and Mrs. Copeland and the whole church have encouraged my family, providing housing for us during our stay, friends for our kids, and ministry opportunities. We visit the nursing home every other week with our children, and the jail each week with Pastor Copeland.  I am so pleased to see our children appreciated and welcomed as they serve. They have needed this sort of encouragement for a long time!
This week, Stacy and I went to the jail with Brother Copeland to minister to the incarcerated. The pastor went to preach to them men, and I accompanied Stacy to visit the ladies. She began one week ago teaching about women in the Bible. Her first lesson started in Genesis and explained the Biblical place and purpose for a woman and how starkly this is contrasted by the world’s view. This week, she began to look at specific women in the Bible and began with Eve. She pointed out that Eve was alone when the serpent came to her, and she was not with her husband. She was designed to be a help to her husband, but she did the exact opposite of that by bringing him down. As she read the curse that God placed upon Eve in particular, and mankind in general; one lady began to pay special attention. Before we left the jail that day, this lady spoke up in front of all the ladies and said, “I want to be saved right now!” We were so thrilled to listen as this lady bowed her head and confessed she was a sinner, and asked Jesus to save her. What a joy it was!
Some have asked how they can pray for us more specifically. We are seeking the Lord’s will in opening the next door of opportunity in mission work. I believe the Lord knows exactly where he wants us, and we are trusting him to guide our steps. Please pray with us that the Lord’s will be done in our lives. We are also working to pay off some debt that was acquired on the mission field. I am embarrassed to mention this, but it is something we need prayer about. We have made great strides over the last few months, and are on schedule to be debt free in a few short months. Concerning Bella, she has not suffered one major asthma attack in several months. The change in climate has proven crucial for her. Praise the LORD!  We ask you to continue in prayer for her health. Thank you for allowing us to represent you as missionaries!
-The Byers FamilyNOV_DEC2016