Monthly Archives: November 2004

Anderson Animal Shelter

Anderson Animal Shelter
Annual Christmas Dinner Banquet
November 25, 2004

We should pray for our animals, not only because we love them, but also because they are one of God’s beloved creatures. God made everything on earth, including the animals we hold so dear to our hearts. The Bible tells us that the sign of a righteous man is that he takes care of his animals. We are told in Proverbs 12:10 “The righteous care for the needs of their animals, but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.” We should lift up our pets and animal friends who are under our care, not only in their times of struggle, but also when they’re okay because they should be lifted up at all times. Remember, anything that concerns us, concerns the Lord.

Heavenly Father, in Your infinite wisdom You created the universe and blessed us with all living creatures. We especially thank you for giving us our pets who are our friends and who bring us so much joy in life. Their presence very often helps us get through trying times. How great are the variety of living animals You have put at our care. May our pets continue giving us joy and remind us of You, the Creator of all things. May we realize that as our pets trust us to take care of them, so we should trust You to take care of us, and in taking care of them we share in Your love for all creatures. Hear our humble prayer, O God, for our friends, the animals, especially for animals who are suffering, for animals that are over-worked, under-fed and cruelly treated, for all wistful creatures in captivity, for any that are hunted or lost or deserted or frightened or hungry. We ask this in the name of Jesus our Lord. Amen.  

If A Pet Could Say Farewell 

I will always remember and treasure the day you chose me to be yours. I was one of the many pets you came to see and I hoped I was making a good impression. I was so elated when you selected me to share your home and heart. I knew from that very moment on, I was so lucky to be owned by you.

While I was growing every day, maturing little by little-you fed me…you watered me…you trained me. I loved it when you shared your precious time playing with me. I eagerly anticipated each morning when I licked your face. It was my desire to awaken you before that dreadful alarm clock would rudely rouse you from sleep. I felt it my duty because I was so lucky to be owned by you.

I made my share of mistakes. There were times I erred on your carpet. There were moments when the “animal beast” buried deep in me somehow encouraged a little destruction of the furniture. I’m Sorry. You scolded me. You understood and forgave me. Could you see the devotion to our home? I was so lucky to be owned by you.

I wondered why you took me on those visits to see the veterinarian, I never fully understood those examinations, vaccinations, blood tests done to check for heart worms or fecal tests that always seemed to be necessary. You knew what was best for me and I learned to trust your judgment. I couldn’t remember much about  what occurred during my neutering surgical visit but somehow I came to realize you left me there because you respected me and wanted to ease the animal kingdom’s vast overpopulation problem. I was so lucky to be owned by you.

The days you called holidays were always such fun. Presents for everyone in our family– even me!  How did you ever guess those toys and treats were just what I wanted? After the visitors left our home, could you feel my love as I sat by your side? I was so lucky to be owned by you.

These days, I haven’t felt as well as I used to in my prior days. My bones are quite stiff and sore. The pills you gave me helped for awhile but my time here with you is drawing to an end. It’s extremely hard to walk and I long for my rest. As we ride to the vet hospital, one final time, I see your tears and oh, how deep I feel your love. It was such a wonderful life here with you. Remember me and know that when you pass your love onto another pet, you honor my memory. I want you to be as happy as you have made me. I am sending you a final message as I look up at you with my big brown eyes and lick your hand for the final time. Thank you for everything, I love you. I was so lucky to be owned by you.

Rolf & Sherri Ronstadt
Board Members
Anderson Animal Shelter

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November 2004 Update

“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, His love endures forever.” (Psalm 107:1)

We are thankful for the opportunity and extreme privilege to be able to serve our Lord in the great nation of China. The precious people there are a people that are complex and culturally rich in history. The church in China is growing at an unprecedented rate with an estimated 40 to 90 million believers. But it’s a big, big, country where hundreds of millions have never heard of Christ.

During this season of Thanksgiving we remember with gratitude and love the many gifts and blessings God has sent us and we are especially thankful for YOU. It is you that make it possible with your love, prayers and support for us to do what we do. And together we have a part in making a difference for China. We do serve an awesome God! We are grateful for His faithfulness and provision.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9)

The fall issue of the ChinaSource magazine gave a good description of the Chinese church, “it is persecuted and tolerated, hidden and open, flourishing and struggling. The political climate makes open proclamation of the gospel difficult The voices of Chinese believers are rarely heard in the international press. Their struggles are not widely known in the United States.”

Thank you for your prayers for the “China Challenge 2004 Conference” we attended the beginning of the month. The trip was so worthwhile. This gathering was referred to as a consultation rather than a conference. The time there included speakers, workshops and a time for networking and mutual learning and encouragement to partner up with each other using each others resources and gifts to be together more effective in reaching the Chinese. It, too, was such a valuable time for us to be able to gather information from veteran workers that have been there before us. It was really wonderful and encouraging to be with those that share a passion for these people that God surely must have a special place for in His heart as He created so many of them!

We are now in contact with people we met there to see how we might work together. PRAY for us to discern God’s will.

For now we are looking forward to our first Thanksgiving with our family in our new home. We give God praise for providing us with this house and for all He has done. We pray your Thanksgiving will be filled with all the peace, joy, humility and holiness that go hand in hand with realizing all that God has done for you! Blessings and HAPPY THANKSGIVING.

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Dying Gay Brother

Dear Friend,

My prayers are going with you this coming weekend as you visit your dying gay brother afflicted with HIV. A family member’s struggle with homosexuality surprises and frightens far too many Christians. Many feel shocked and afraid, and typically withdraw. At best, some recommend counseling or encourage them simply to stop. In either case, they miss the core issues of pain and sin.

Remember, Jesus was a friend of sinners. As His followers, we need to consider what it means to be involved as friends in the battle for the souls of people. If we want to be friends to those who struggle with homosexuality, we first need to be open to the fact that there are many forms of lustful struggles going on below the surface of life, including homosexuality.

Many of us are guilty of approaching homosexuality from a self-righteous attitude. We act as if this sin is greater than our own, emitting a language of hostility, mockery, and disgust, which sadly taints the appeal of the gospel. Self-righteousness is a large reason why we are not Christ like friends to those who struggle with homosexuality.

We need to have more of the attitude Jesus spoke of when He said, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye” (Luke 6:41-42).

Jesus’ words remind us that if we see others’ sin without seeing our own more deeply, then we’ve negated our right and privilege to invite them to a different kind of life. Therefore, we must base our efforts to be a better Christ like friend to those struggling with homosexuality on the confession and growing demise of our own self-righteousness.

If we open our eyes to see the pain and potential for lust in all of us, and if we allow the depth of our own sin to humble us, we can reach out with true compassion and create a context where individuals will feel open to reveal their homosexual struggles, hear the truth, and find hope.

Praying you will be led by His spirit,
Rolf Ronstadt

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