Update and Personal Note 2015-3
By Fred Pruitt
Well, I keep saying John and I are going to start on a trip pretty soon, but for over a year we have not ventured out together to share the Word God has given us. So what’s up with that?
Am I wishy-washy, saying one thing but doing another? Before I knew the Lord when I read Paul I thought he was a braggart among other things. But over the years he has become my best buddy in the Scriptures, and I like what he said to the Corinthians about his failure to drop in after he said he would do so:
“Therefore, I was not vacillating when I intended to do this, was I? Or what I purpose, do I purpose according to the flesh, so that with me there will be yes, yes and no, no at the same time? But as God is faithful, our word to you is not yes and no. For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us. Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge or down payment.” (2 Cor 1:17-22).
So I’ll just leave it like that, as far as an explanation is concerned, and go on from where we are now. As I said in my last, what else can we say but that we have received a lifelong and indisputable exigency by virtue of Who we are: “For the zeal of Thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached Thee are fallen upon me.” (Ps 69:9). As Paul said, “the love of Christ constrains us,” i.e., we are DRIVEN people! HOLY GHOST DRIVEN! We cannot help ourselves.
So of course John and I will be on the road again in due time, and as we are seeing it now, that “due time” will probably be early this Fall, back to our northeast route that we have taken in years before. We are already making plans to be with some of the people we have always visited on that route, and maybe some new ones by the time we are ready to depart. In the meantime, we continue in our writing primarily, though hopefully while home I will be able to also get some audio files done, since I have neglected that for quite some time. Our new apartment in Louisville has given me a better setting where it is easier to write and even record audios or videos.
I do apologize to the people in the southeast, Gulf Coast and middle southwest that we did not make it there this year. But I believe it will be all that much better when we do get to go there next winter and spring! At least the Lord sent the A-team to Arlington, Texas, for some good sessions at Gary and Dee Dee Winter’s house. The “A=-team” is our rock and foundation, John’s wife, Linda, who really has been the instigator of all this from the beginning, starting in the early 70s when she first asked a group of Norman Grubb’s friends to come for a weekend at their home in Louisville. From that first weekend get-together in 1974, what became known as the “Louisville Conference” or “Weekend” (it has been called many things) came into being. Over the years it spawned countless outreaches from individuals and groups. From that initial meeting eventually things came like Union Life Magazine, the Hixton summer camp that ran for a decade or so, a bevy of “teacher/sharers” who went around in the 80s for Union Life conferences all over the United States, some even in Canada and England. With their next-door neighbors Wade and Harriet Wearren, the Weekend had a 37 year run before they finally decided it was the Spirit’s time to lay it down in 2011. It has been Linda always in the center stirring us all to action and bold words of faith. I am one of those who was so stirred, and only one of a multitude. We will only know in the Eternal all the effects these days and outreaches have had. It is certainly worldwide and spans generations and I am absolutely convinced we are reaching millions!
There have been numerous people over the years who came to Louisville for the weekend, too many for me to remember, but Luli probably still remembers them all. We were amazed every opening night of those weekends, when Linda would call every person’s name by sight and memory, many that she had only met a few minutes before, and she would not miss a single one. I couldn’t do that even if I DID know all the names! But her love is so genuine, I think it did more to draw folks to Louisville and to keep them coming back year after year than almost anything else.
The “teachings” and “sharings” were great, some of them really tremendous and very memorable, but for me and I think for most, the friendship and true fellowship in a non-judgmental loving environment was the most potent message of Christ there – because it was not written down or forced politeness or pretended enthusiasm, but simply the Word made Flesh – Christ in human bodies, souls and spirits manifested IN THE FLESH! Nothing could take the place of that.
I think it was the last meeting in 2011, that I said when I spoke, “We had no idea in September of 1981, when Janis and I walked up that hill to the big tent at the top with 300 people in it – the only one we knew was Norman Grubb who had invited us – that a large number of the folks in the tent that morning would become our lifelong friends and intimate lovers in Christ. As far as we knew we were just going to a conference to hear what we thought would be liberating news about our union with Christ, as we were just discovering, and we did get that – but we came home with a FAMILY! So many people, so many years, such a faithful and loving God, Who fulfills All His promises!
And of course those friends for the most part did not live in Louisville, nor did we at the time. We suddenly became acquainted with like-minded and like-hearted people from all over the USA, England, Canada, and other places as well. The Lord has given me such an opportunity to be able to travel and share all over the country through the years, and the people are what makes it worthwhile. They are all precious, precious, each one a jewel in God’s crown, each one a distinct quirky original manifestation of Christ in them living AS them, and it is a privilege and honor that the Lord through grace keeps us going in this path. We cannot do anything else. It is impossible.
As I think of our next trip this fall, we’ll go see our very long-time friends Jack and Alice Corcoran, who are the best and hardest working hosts in New England bar none, as well as
others. We have made friends with a wonderful couple in State College PA, Joe and Laura Sullivan, who have a ministry with Mainland Chinese students at Penn State University. They have hosted us several times and it is better each time. The Chinese students are precious also, many of them just starting out as believers coming from China which is officially atheistic. What a wonderful outreach they have. There is Don Curtis and his Church fellowship in Waldorf, Maryland that comes to mind, as well as great hosts in Bowie, Maryland, Marian Berry and Marie Walker, and still missing our late friends Tony and Bette Ketcham with whom we visited many times. We
have visited so many over the years, I cannot think of them all nor do I have pictures of them all, but they are numerous, and in coming days those numbers will be rising. The Spirit is on the move in a BIG WAY in this up and coming generation, and I am thankful that I get to play some small part.
We finally completed our move from Rome back to Louisville two weeks ago today (May 27, 2015). It is no secret Janis and I have moved quite a number of times in our 43 year and counting together. And of course we are not in our twenties anymore, so moving tends to get harder the more mileage we have on our bodies. Our word of faith (Janis and I) was to be fully moved to Louisville before the end of May, and sooner if possible. While that was in the realm of possibility when I sent out my last Update, it became concrete reality on May 13, and one can see the joy in Janis’ face in the picture below, because we were SO RELIEVED that it was all done (except for all the unpacking and setting up which is still happening).
One advantage of being back in Louisville will be traveling with John. As I said last time it
certainly makes the trips easier on the front and back end, as we both go from and come back to the same city! There are as always still tons of things to consider, prepare, etc., but we are excited about being here in Louisville and John and I are sort of chomping at the bit to get out on another trip after summer.
As usual, Janis and I live on the Lord’s daily provisions. When we decided to make this move a few months ago, the main obstacle, as it is so many times for a lot of us, is that the money needed was outside our normal range. We had to hire people for the first time to load and unload for us, and all the other usual expenses of moving, setting things up, turning things on, etc. It was a great challenge of faith, and in my human weakness I could not see that it was possible. But once we decided and said our Word of Faith that it would happen, every need was miraculously provided for as each need came up. We are so thankful to our friends and supporters of what we are doing, whom God uses daily to love us and funnel through some of the Lord’s provisions. People have helped us keep going as they are led by the Spirit, and for this we are profoundly grateful! To participate in that manner visit the home page of the blog: https://thesingleeye.wordpress.com/.
This past Sunday, May 24th, was the Day of Pentecost in the Christian calendar. Some of us got together, the Buntings, Donna Brenzel, Paula Carlson, Bob Crawford, Harriet Wearren along with Janis and me, to celebrate the Day the Church of Christ was born around 2,000 years ago. To us, it is the most significant Day in history. It could not have happened, of course, had He not been born which we celebrate at Christmas, and Easter, when He secured our forgiveness and eternal salvation through His Death and Resurrection. But the Day when the Lord from His Ascended Seat in Heaven sent “the Promise of the Father” and “poured out His Spirit upon all flesh,” was the Day we were all born in Him, when GOD came to live not just in one human body, Jesus’, but in as many human bodies as there are stars in the sky and grains of sand on the seashore. That was the promise to Abraham, and in our day we are seeing its fulfillment.
THIS IS WONDERFUL AND THE BEST IS YET TO COME!