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November 2004
Dear Friends in Christ,
What a great and loving God we serve, He alone is worthy of our honor and glory!! Despite the trials that have come our way throughout the last year we are still grateful to Him for His everlasting love and kindness that has and is carrying us through them.
We were very happy to be able to have Shelby home from Houston and with the family for Thanksgiving. Because Thanksgiving is our family’s favorite holiday of the year it always means a lot to have as much family together as possible.
Please continue to be in prayer for Shelby, as you are reading this she will be just finishing her second round of chemo. There was a problem in the middle of her first round with pain medications and we were able to quickly alleviate the problem so we are hopeful the second round will go a little more smoothly. The doctors have told us that each set of treatments will be harder on her than the last because her body is going through so much, so we are really praying the Lord will give Shelby grace to withstand the rough weeks that lie ahead. After this second round of treatments we will be able to have more of an idea how much the chemo is affecting the cancer as lots of scans as well as x-rays have been ordered. The doctors seem however to be pleased with her progress so far.
Another praise report is we should be able to start coming home from Houston in between treatments. Shelby is very pleased about this. She, of course, is much happier at home where she can be close to family and friends. We really appreciate our dear friends, the Greenlaws, who have been so gracious to allow us to use their home during our visits in Houston.
The generosity of our friends in Christ has been overwhelming. Shelby’s medical expenses have been totally covered to this date through God’s people. However, it has been brought to our attention that it is inappropriate for Only a Servant Ministries, Inc. to continue accepting funds for Shelby’s medical bills. Being our family founded the Ministry it makes sense we cannot receive funds in this manner and distribute them to ourselves. If you would like to make a contribution on behalf of Shelby the check needs to be made out directly to the Kennedy family or Shelby. If you would like the tax deduction you can make your check out to Vision Forum Ministries, Inc. 4719 Blanco Rd. * San Antonio, TX 78212 who has set up a fund for Shelby. Please be sure to include a note that clarifies the gift is for Shelby’s medical fund and they will send you a receipt.
After months of trying to get back "active Navy" instead of Navy Reserve, our son John has left the San Antonio area for Army indoctrination at Ft. Knox in Kentucky. The Army took him quickly and allowed him to retain the job he is trained for, and his full rank and benefits he attained in the Navy. At this time he is being told he will be heading back to Iraq where he will continue operating heavy equipment which he was trained to do in the Navy. Being this is his second tour there it doesn’t seem to worry him very much... wish we could say the same thing. Please keep John in your prayers, we will let you know where he is as we know.
During the hurricane season that hit Haiti, we received quite a few calls and e-mails asking how the schools sponsored by O.S.M. had faired through the storms. We are sorry we are responding to those inquiries so late. Haiti was hit hard with over 1000 deaths in the northern region, however the schools we support only received slight rain and wind with relatively no damage and no loss of life, praise the Lord. A few of the children in the schools did lose relatives in that region and our prayers are with them.
Please be in prayer with us that the Lord would continue providing the necessary funds to help these schools in 2005. As of now, we have full sponsorship through the end of this year. The two schools require a total of $850 a month. This cost covers, renting a building for one school and providing a meal a day for the children and teachers of both schools and a salary for Lussade who oversees the work that is done in Haiti.
We were excited to have the opportunity to host Norm Wakefield of Elijah Ministries in Mexico this month. Micah and Holly went down with the Wakefield family for the annual Pastor’s and men’s conference held at the John 3:16 Church. Norm taught a message called "Run to Win". The following is a summary written by Norm of "Run to Win".
"Most people don’t think about their actions in light of a day of judgment. Many Christians mistakenly think that because they are "saved by grace" they won’t have to give an account for their words or actions. The Bible teaches we all have a race to run and a finish line to cross in life. How are we to run these laps in the race so that we can win the prize at the end? What dangers lie in the way threatening to disqualify us? The "Run to Win" message will encourage young people and parents to run the race with purpose and hope."
Approximately 100 men came to hear Norm share this challenging message. Norm and Micah gave out many other messages on CD and cassette in Spanish to each one attending the seminar. We pray that the lives of these men were touched to change for eternity!
If you would like to know more about this message, or Elijah Ministries, you can look them up on the web at:
A Sweet Field Report
Dear Friends,
Our God reigns! And as He reigns in our lives, He also sends rain. Wow! He has watered Nava in November. With the rain, comes mud, and with the mud, comes slippery colonia streets. For a few days, O.S.M. added towing and taxi service to their "to do" list.
Abe and I were happy to get Pacho and his family moved into a temporary vacant, but dry house located on some church property. He, his wife, two children, and nephew, were in a small dirt-floor hut constructed with bits of lumber, tin, and cardboard. They were sleeping on rain-soaked mattresses during the rainy weather. As they are young Christians, we hope to encourage them in their walk with the Lord.
Ramiro and his sister, Erica, spent some time in the carpenter shop finishing a small log cabin that someone had left unfinished. After putting on a roof, making a fence, and decorating it, they proudly took it to their school to show their friends. Please pray for the Lord’s work in these two children.
During this Thanksgiving season, we especially want to thank all of you who continue to support us with your prayers and finances. May God richly bless you.
In His Service,
The Sweets
Please send all donations to the O.S.M. San Antonio mailing address
Once again another month has come and gone and we have so much to be grateful for. One great blessing in our lives has been each of you. We hope you all realize what an encouragement you have been to us through Christ. Please continue to keep us in your prayers in the upcoming month as we continue to pray for you.
Because of Christ,
The Kennedy Family