This is the place to find the most updated information concerning Missionary John Leonard. Most recent post are written by the family themselves.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Prayer Letter from Jim Leonard

Dear Prayer Partners,

It is in the midst of the storms of life that God's peace shines through, along with the accompanying joy.

John and Bev have certainly been examples of God's grace as they've demonstrated God's peace during this storm in their lives.

All of John's communication is done through a spelling board, where he uses eye movements and blinks looking up at an acrylic spelling board. It is very slow and sometimes frustrating for both he as well as the "reader", but we're getting better at it.

One of the churches John organized in MaceiĆ³ just received a new pastor this past week. This morning John asked me to call Pastor Lelo and have him go to the two city newspapers with a word of forgiveness to those who tried to take his life. He also smiled for a picture which we sent by e-mail to accompany this news. When I spoke with
Pastor Lelo he was all excited. Wednesday night he had gone to the prayer meeting at the church in Coqueiro Seco where John had been shot, and found that many visitors were there. Some of these were people who had been witnessed to many times but had never responded or even come to a service. Following the Spirit's lead Pastor Lelo preached a gospel message and eight people received Jesus Christ as Savior. I wrote down their names because these are people the Leonards know by name. When I shared this report with John and Bev and read the names of those who were saved we all wept openly. This was the first time either Bev or I can ever remember John shedding a tear for any reason; tears of joy. Please continue to pray for this new church which is in need of a shepherd to lead it through their present storm. There is still much fear in the community.

John continues to battle the two infections, but today his lungs sounded a bit clearer. During a three hour surgery yesterday a plate was put into his chin, which we trust will help the healing process there. This morning a doctor confirmed once again that they didn't expect him to ever move his arms or legs again. Then this afternoon he was able to raise his right arm and move his hand. You cannot imagine the look of shock on the therapist's face who was working with him -- and the rejoicing among the family members who were present.

We could mention other blessings, but we just wanted to keep you posted with some of God's great responses to your prayers today.

Please continue to pray for:
- Victory over the MRSA staff and pseudomonas infections
- That John would be able to breath without the aid of the respirator
- For John to regain the use of his arms and legs
- For Joshua's health to be strong for his trip to Des Moines next Friday (he arrives on Saturday morning)
- For Beverly to have the physical, emotional, and spiritual strength needed for all she's facing
- For plans for family needs in the near future, including schooling for the children this Fall

Thank you so much for joining us before God's throne.

Jim & Julie Leonard

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Thanks so much for your good letter about John. We've copied it to use as a bulletin insert this morning (Sunday) so that all our people can be updated and know better how to pray. We've not met you folks yet but John is one of our missionaries, and we want to assure you and them of our continued love and prayer that all of God's purposes will be realized in this whole situation and that John and everyone close to him will know the sweetness of His comfort and encouragement every day.
We're thankful that "God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear..."
From Pastor Jim Douglass and our Bondurant Baptist Church Family

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Saturday, July 16, 2005 11:20:00 PM  

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