Paul's second letter to the brethren at Thessalonica begins with this expression of gratitude, "Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians ... We are bound to thank God always for you." (2 Thessalonians 1:1a, 3a).
On this entire green earth no one is obligated more than I to give thanks. A few months ago at the kind suggestion of brothers Frank Higginbotham, Charles Pugh, and W. Terry Varner, coupled with the loving support of the Harmar Hill elders, brothers Glenn Briggs, Paul Hickerson, and Paul Wells, a letter was sent out all across the brotherhood in my behalf. It was an appeal for money, a great deal of money, $30,000.00. This appeal was made with the hope that some of my medical debt incurred since 2002 could be reduced. My family and I were not prepared for what happened next. In less than three weeks the entire amount arrived and the imposing debt was completely erased! The monies poured in from sixteen states, over seventy congregations, in addition to nearly one hundred and twenty individual donors. Some of the individuals and congregations my family and I had never heard of. Even after the money was raised, many still insisted on contributing! One thing was clear, I had under-estimated the love and generosity of the brotherhood. To say the least, my family and I were overwhelmed by the immediate, full and loving response; it was staggering.
Words simply cannot express or convey our deep sense of gratitude. But because the majority of the money came from good brethren in the Ohio Valley I wanted to use this space in the West Virginia Christian to convey our deepest thanks for "the charity of everyone of you ... " (2 Thessalonians 1:3c). Just as important, I also want to express my thanks for all of the prayers that have ascended to our Father's throne in my behalf. Without question they have been heard and answered. Since May of last year I have enjoyed good health.
My family and I are not only "bound to thank God always for you" but we are bound to never forget your generosity. May God bless each one of you as richly as you have blessed us! -102 Laramie Rd., Marietta, OH. 45750. firstname.lastname@example.org
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