Three parts – Health, Coronavirus, Work (revised, 3/20/2020)
I began experiencing a sort of stabilization last year (some would call it remission), after three years of surprise and repeated physical attacks that worked havoc in my body and has been trying my mind. My quiet time with God in 2019 carried a huge theme of facing death, “The day of death is better than the day of birth…everyone should take this to heart” (Ecc. 7:1-6, as one example). The repeated physical attacks tapered off last year, apparently culminating with chest pain and shortness of breath from January through November. Now days, we’re doing all we have learned to do to keep me moving in physical stability. When I overstep a boundary, and there are many (of various types), I experience injury. For instance, a half-cookie once a week or every other week is okay but too much and I endure days of terrible hangover-type suffering. Go figure. Love the boundaries, eh.
Every single day our surroundings minister God’s Mercy & Faithfulness to our deepest places through Jesus Christ. Here’s my favorite winter picture, I think, from our front porch as winter fades and spring breaks forth:
Greenhorn Mountain in distance, partially obscured by clouds. See Bambi in foreground?
We began seeing American Bald Eagles in December and thrill at sight of them, every time.
We’re praying for your protected health and productivity, as flu and virus spread far and wide. I saw a horse running, in the Spirit, in January (before corona left China, supposedly). When I sought the Lord I was utterly arrested by reading of the horses in Zech. 6 & Rev. 6, war out of the celestial realms. Don’t know if this is the end of time…but Peter said, “The end of all things is near” (1 Pet. 4:7) so I don’t need a whole bunch of expounding or exegesis on the matter. Jesus said that people can tell when it’s going to rain but He expressed frustration that so many had no idea what “day” they live within. I commend Nehemiah 4 to you.
In 2004, I had a most alarming dream – the Bible (“The Word of God”) closed in front of my eyes, from back to front with a thunderous boom. A voice then snapped me awake, “Jesus is coming!” Startled, I reached over to Susan, waking her to tell her of the fervent Word. She quickly drifted off to sleep, experiencing the same urgent message in a dream as well. We had each touched with Eternity (timelessness); it’s all “now,” unfolding before us.
R-i-g-h-t before the Arab Spring (2011), I saw them ALL crowded together with their arms lifted high, angry fists tightly clasped. I heard, “The end is near and they do not know it.”
And now this, a horse on the loose (“Sent” by God?), doing its thing.
When I think of “End Times,” I think of no movie’s assertion that’s currently (or previously) on the market. Instead, I think of passages like Peter wrote (1 Pet. 4:7) and I look around. It’s not difficult for me to believe. However, it surely gets out of balance with many-a-nut telling others of the “Biblical End Times.” My heart’s been broken more than once, having seen children suffer because of their fruitcake parent’s whacky idea of “getting ready for when the End Times come.”
Right about now, I’m thinking I saw the virus running unrestrained – like a strong horse. Just yesterday the various experts on the news channels (conservative and liberal alike) have been saying, “The horse is out of the barn!” (meaning there is no containing Coronavirus)
I’ve been hearing in the Spirit for numerous days, “Miracles happen when we fix our eyes on Jesus Christ.” It’s a lyric from a version of the Song, “Take Courage,” which asserts, “He’s in the waiting. Take courage, my heart. Be steadfast, my soul…” and it continues, “You will fulfill Your promise to me that I will rise in Your victory.” May His Spirit lift you thru breathing upon these words – in Jesus’ Name.
There are times when lotty-dotty-every-body suffers while God is working Redemption throughout all time and creation, Isaiah 24:2, “And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the slave, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the creditor, so with the debtor.” Eze. 21:1-7 is another example, in my estimation.
This doesn’t mean EVERYone will/must contract Coronavirus … but that everyone WILL be impacted. Be comforted in the understanding that no virus or its complications will ever void God’s Word and the promises He has made to you, personally. Your belief in what He has told you, Personally, catches others up in Him bringing the Promise to fruition (i.e., Genesis 15:1-6), if that means sparing them of Coronavirus to help bring His promise to pass in your life or whatever it takes.
Now is a GREAT TIME to share the Good News of unchanging, STABLE-love from God that’s available to all mankind through Jesus Christ. The Word of God is the most secure security anyone could ask for!
“Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest?’ Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are ripe for harvest now!” Jesus Christ (John 4:35)
(Written to a supporter in DEC 2019 & shared with you here, now)
Some current, private, overt and active ministries of our charity…Today is the church’s birthday in Michigan, ND! Nine years ago today we began services in that town, one year after moving to ND. You may recall that the church building was gifted to us on Bethesda’s 5th or 6th birthday…from people who weren’t aware of the date’s significance to us.
Our ministry still pays all of the bills of the church (heat, electric, insurance, water, city taxes [that aren’t exempt], etc.) and provides the pastor there a small monthly allotment for his discretion. Since we left, he has done things like buy Gospel tracts with those monies to distribute among local streets, sharing the Gospel of Jesus and inviting others to the House of God. The church in Michigan, ND, is also hosting a mid-week Bible study for the community. Sometimes the offerings from this congregation cover all the church’s expenses and sometimes they don’t.
Just as you guys emailed us out of the blue when we e-met you, we continue to receive email prayer requests and questions. We’re still receiving marriage crisis intervention requests (even more since our June 2019 publication which shared that a marriage had been saved, & family of 6!) and a variety of other inquiries regarding God’s Word or godly counsel via the internet. Here, via private email, we continue to share God’s Word in God’s love.
The charity also serves our pastor in Africa with offerings from people in America. 100% of those designated offerings reach our pastor, with Bethesda bearing transfer fees. He is a wonderfully devoted man of God, a missionary with magnificent fruit for the Kingdom, giving much glory to God. Our pastor in Africa has a household of eight.
I remain in communication with the pastors of the orphanages where Bethesda’s support has been foundational since 2012, in Kenya & India. The number of children has fluctuated over the years going as high as 200 souls. Today, there is a total of about 95 people between the two orphanages, counting the pastors there and their live-in families. I’m sometimes overwhelmed by their real-life stories of suffering and need. I rarely share this largely private part of the ministry as I believe the needs would overwhelm and possibly put off some givers. I always try to take the needs to Jesus for direction in how to respond.
Therefore, donations through Bethesda support FOUR missionaries, their families and their labor (the Totmans, Pastor Robert in Uganda, Pastor David in Kenya and Pastor John in India). I had such a joyous highlight last summer when one of the pastors relayed an urgent need for help and, to God’s credit, our ministry (yours and mine, under Christ) was able to make a direct deposit into his bank account within 12 minutes! HalleluYah.
Bethesda provides temporal, moral and spiritual help to brothers of Jesus in maximum security prison who we also remain in contact with. You’re likely aware that of the many men I met while physically attending Kairos meetings behind bars, we retained relationships with a few. Been writing them ever since 2009, when we left FL. There numbers have grown, PTL. The state only provides them with certain medications and certain [horrible] foods. Regarding finances, we’ve been helping them with better meds, better meals and boxes of love-gifts (on the holidays that the state permits). We believe these men have just as much of a right in Christ to a peaceable and fulfilling life as you or I do.
I have 100s of sermons that were delivered in ND and I’ve been praying about completely reforming my book website or creating an altogether new website as a place where people can go for help, finding the sermons there categorized. It seems to me that this would be in harmony with our mission, although “my flesh” largely loathes any old message I’ve delivered as I feel I’ve grown so much since they were recorded. Nevertheless, it was a nearly 30-year-old video sermon from a televangelist that God used to help initiate our call and enthusiasm to leave ND. Susan and I were AMAZED how timely and relevant and helpful that 1990 video message was to us in 2015! The Word of God is timeless.
I just read the revised screen-write of Corridors in the Sky. While I’ve been told by many that the book is inspirational, in my humble opinion the movie is even better than the book! The screen-writer, a woman who recently turned 90 and also reports to a ministry board of directors, made some changes after visiting Hollywood to meet with producers in June. I don’t know what happened, exactly, with Clint Eastwood’s studio…as they told me personally that the script/movie was right up their wheelhouse. I think it has something to do with unions. Our screen-writer became a member of the Writer’s Guild specifically to do business with them. Maybe it will still happen, but I know she’s also presenting it to other studios. One studio told us that they were “very impressed” with the quality of work the script represents.
Catching you up in God’s timeless and all-powerful promises, through faith in Jesus Christ – Robert & Susan Totman
Gen 15:1 …a message came from the LORD to Abram in a vision: “Don’t be afraid, Abram. I am your shield; your reward will be very great.”
Gen 15:2 But Abram replied, “Lord GOD, what can you give me …?”
Gen 15:5 Then the LORD took him outside. “Look up at the sky and count the stars—if you can!” he said. “Your descendants will be that numerous.”
Gen 15:6 Abram believed the LORD, and it was credited to him as righteousness.
Psa 37:18 The LORD knows the day of the blameless (see Colossians 1:21-23; it’s YOU, because of Jesus), and their inheritance will last forever.
Psa 37:19 They will not experience shame in times of trouble; in times of famine they will have plenty.
Send prayer requests or love-offerings to
Bethesda / Totman
P.O Box 25
La Veta, CO 81055
Or give online at:
Part of your harvest includes receiving a tax-benefit receipt
in January 2021 for your total 2020 giving through Bethesda.