Finishing 2017, A December Report

A Report on the Revival Ministry of Dr. Rick Flanders, for Those Who Pray

It was a great year of blessing, the one we are just concluding.  The last month of 2017, December, the Lord had me preach and teach for revival in these places as you prayed for me:

  • BAPTIST COLLEGE OF MINISTRY, December 6-15. This year I taught again the block-class on First Corinthians to a class of young men preparing for ministry.  They were good men, and it was a very good class.
  • FALLS BAPTIST CHURCH, Menomonee Falls, December 10. While I was in town to teach the class, the church that operates the College had me preach on this Sunday morning, and God had me deal with family issues, based on the account of the ministry and life of John the Baptist found in a pre-Christmas passage in Luke 1.  It was an unusual topic and an unusual sermon for the holiday season, but it became obvious that it was the right one.  Many were led by God to deal with serious family problems, and a good number stayed after church to pray.  Thank you so much for praying for me.  In answer to prayer, I was given wisdom, direction, insight, and power from on high.
  • BELIEVERS’ BAPTIST CHURCH, Winona Lake, December 17-21. The plans were out of the ordinary when we made them, but God directed Pastor Don Williams and I to prepare for revival meetings at their great church in Indiana very late in December, quite close to Christmas Day.  We saw folks saved, and many Christians make revival decisions that clearly put them on a higher plane of living.  No kidding.  The theme of much of the preaching at Believers’ (home of Hephzibah House) this year has been “Abide in Me” from John 15, and we in a way picked up on that theme.  Sunday we learned how to avoid temptation from the book of Matthew and about the life of friendship with Jesus Christ, emphasizing Sunday night how that life makes a believer a reproducer.  In the next four days we looked more closely at the abundant life, seeing, as God opened our eyes, the prayer privileges we have on this higher plane, the way that peace and love are a part of it, the duty of disciples to stay focused, and the Christ-like quality of “lowliness of mind,” with the importance of going lower.  It was truly a tremendous week, and we thank you for praying for revival at BBC and Hephzibah House.  Keep praying for them!
  • LANDMARK BAPTIST CHURCH, Clio, December 24. On Christmas Eve day, I preached for Pastor John Flanders (our son) Sunday morning on God’s Providence and His salvation, both from the story of Simeon in Luke 2.  Our daughter Susanna was up from the Bill Rice Ranch for the holidays, and we spent a wonderful Christmas Day with the whole gang.  We also did a little face-time with our daughter’s family in Florida, and also with our friend Pastor Cranston Knowles in Nassau.  Wish we could have gotten some warm air from them.  This has been the coldest holiday we can remember in Michigan.
  • WILLIS BAPTIST CHURCH, December 31. On the last day of the year, I went down to preach for our friends at this great church in Michigan just over a hundred miles away from our home.  We looked back at the past and looked forward to the future, trusting the Lord to revive us.  Some important things happened in the services.  We saw several make commitments in the morning to praying for wisdom and the power of the Spirit every day in the New Year.  We saw folks in the evening service deal with the issue of fear.  These things, as I said, were really important.  We also got the Gospel to some lost folks who came to church.  Pray for Willis Baptist Church and their pastor, Jim McKinnies, in the 2018.

One special blessing of this year’s holiday season for me was seeing very unusual evangelistic success (souls saved in great numbers) at several good churches.  I was at Falls Baptist Church the weekend when three performances of their musical version of “A Christmas Carol”, with a powerful Gospel twist, brought thousands of people out.  Many, many publicly (by raising their hands) indicated that they were receiving Christ.  I attended two of the performances and got to witness to two men from the area who do not yet know Jesus.  Ironically, both of them (met at two different times) were Jewish! Imagine: I spoke with two Jewish men about the gospel of Christ at a Christmas program they attended!  The other church connected with me that saw a real harvest at Christmas musicals was First Baptist Church of Bridgeport (Michigan, where we are members).  Perhaps other churches reaped a plenteous spiritual harvest at special programs this month.  I’d be interested in what you saw along this line.  Looking over the year, it appears that in 2017, the Lord had me preach in more than fifty churches in fourteen states and in three foreign countries!  Praise God!  What a great year!  Again, thank you for praying.

In January (this coming month, the first of 2018), I am to teach the class on “Baptists and Revival” to seminary students at Baptist College of Ministry, the ninth through the nineteenth.  On the fourteenth I am set to preach at North Love Baptist Church in Rockford, Illinois, in the morning, and at Grace Baptist Church of Appleton, Wisconsin, in their evening service.  I will preach in revival meetings at the Gatewood Baptist Church in Garland, Texas, January 21-26, and at Faith Baptist Church in Temple, Texas, January 28-31.  Pray for me as I prepare for these assignments, and preach in these places.

Let me as I conclude this report suggest and urge you to make plans to get to a special revival gathering in the New Year.  Here are some I will be attending:

  • The Pensacola Christian College Bible Conference, February 19-21. I will be one of the speakers, and hope to preach on revival;
  • The Victory Conference at Falls Baptist Church, February 26-March 1;
  • The Western (Canada) Revival Conference at Prince Albert Baptist Church in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, April 1-4;
  • The Revival Conference at Hopkinsville, Kentucky, April 11-13. This happens annually at the Greater Cumberland Baptist Church; and
  • Regional revival conferences in Michigan in June (at Victory Baptist in Marysville, the third through the sixth, and at Landmark Baptist in Clio, 7th – 10th; I will let you know the details about the others later!).

So keep on praying for revival, and keep on praying for us!


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