Thank You for 20 Years - As I near my 50th birthday and celebrate 20 years of ministry, I have reflected on what I am most thankful for. I am thankful for two prayer Sisters who prayed me into ministry. I am thankful for the provision and prayers of Gods people to allow me to serve on every mission field He has chosen for me. I am thankful for a failed marriage that gifted me with Ranee. I am thankful for the very mission field where I served 14 years ago, where He placed Joel in my life and gave me three more wonderful children. I am thankful for all the souls I have had the privilege of leading to Christ and for the heart of evangelism God has given to me. I am thankful for the legacy I will leave behind in that my children all know Christ as their Savior. I am thankful for Jesus and You! -Renee Burnham Parker Zahn
2016 Angel Tree Results - This year we served 97 children with gifts and the Gospel at Christmas. WOW!! A record number for us! We are so thankful to all of you who donated gifts, gift cards, scarves for the caregivers, money for shipping and gifts, time for delivering gifts, help to Renee in sorting and preparing the shipping and so much love!
This year, Renee had five volunteers from her COSA group to prepare the gifts for shipping. Since she couldn’t lift anything, God brought the laborers, thank you, you know who you are! Our church, Century Baptist, let us use a room to put the in gifts as we sorted them. This was a tremendous blessing with 97 children! Otherwise we would have had to use the Zahn basement where space would have been an issue. To see and hear of how God moved during some of the visits is the reason we do this ministry every year.
This year a lady anonymously gave three Fisher Price Nativity sets to Rainbow Shop in Bismarck. The owner asked Joel if FPM could use them for Angel Tree, so he brought them home and gave them to Renee. After praying, she placed them with two families in Dickinson and one family in Bismarck. Here is what happened-
On my way to New England, I pass through Dickinson, so I made appointments to meet the caregivers and give the childrens gifts to them. So many were grateful for the gifts, but the gift cards for food for their Christmas dinner just put it over the top. The first delivery was to a foster/adoptive Mom with two children of her own. Her husband has been away working in Texas, where they hope to relocate soon. This particular morning found this Mom of 7 (Yes! 5 plus her two!) in a very frustrated and emotional state. One of the adopted/foster children did not want to go to school and she had to call the social worker to help her. As I shared my story of taking care of my niece, our struggles, and my own inadequacies, she started crying. As I hugged her and prayed with her, she continued to cry and release her worries to the Lord. We talked and I showed her the gift from the lady. She had voiced that she had a Fisher Price nativity when her kids were young but she had given it away. She really wanted one for her adopted kids. I shared with her the box wrapped from the lady and told her Joel wanted the kids to open it that day and enjoy before Christmas. She was so amazed at this God gift, a desire she had but hadn’t even really voiced. She shared in a letter to the Mother in DWCRC, who signed her children up for Angel Tree, that this lady who delivered the gifts was such a blessing to her in so many ways, but mainly because she prayed with her.I then went to the second delivery, a grandma taking care of three younger children. As we unloaded the gifts at her workplace into her car, she began to cry. She never explained what the tears were about, but as I began to tell her about the Nativity gift, she began to sob. I explained who gave it and that the kids were welcomed to open it early and enjoy it until Christmas. She hugged me so tight it took my breath. She turned to walk away but turned back and hugged me again telling me to thank Joel, too. Sometimes there are just no words, nor does there need to be. God knows. The rest of the local gifts were delivered by Joel and our three children. The third family was so grateful for the Nativity anonymously donated. The gospel went into each home with the results left up to God. Thank you so much!
From the Heart of the President: - Three weeks ago, I was asked to co-lead a Celebrate Recovery Group in Jamestown, ND. This is a 12-step Biblically based support group for people in recovery, from any and all addictions. We have 16 people in our group every Monday night. Celebrate Recovery has been in existence for over 20 years, and is nationwide. I myself, am working on overcoming my own addiction to food. As I teach each week, I am in awe of the ministry God is doing in my own heart, through these men and His Word. It does not help that my wife cooks so good! LOL! I cannot blame her though, I am responsible for my own body and choices. It is beneficial for my overall health to weigh less and teach my children self- control by example. I was bought at A VERY HIGH PRICE, I want to honor our Lord Jesus, by taking care of my temple. Please keep this group in your prayers and myself as I lead them each week. Blessings to You-Joel
PS. I covet your prayers as Renee travels to Texas and I manage our home and ministry.
Praises 2017 - We were given a 2003 Silver Chrysler Town and Country van to drive for our ministry! This was a huge blessing as Joel had run over a dead deer on the Interstate during a return trip from Jamestown in the old Cadillac.
We are praising the Lord for Jennifer Thorson who God has brought to us to be the Treasurer on the FPM Board of Directors. She is an accounting graduate of NDSU and has her Masters Degree in Accounting from UMary. She will soon be taking her CPA Licensing Exam and we are blessed to have her say YES to Gods will for her serving at FPM. She will handle the bookkeeping for the General/Zahn accounts for FPM. We continue to have an accountant as well.
Thank you Mary Kay for answering His call to serve, resign and remain on the Board of Directors as a Director. We appreciate all that you have done and continue to do for the Kingdom. Go Gods Girls!
Praise the Lord for 50 years of life for Renee Zahn. Life truly is like a vapor. Renee will be traveling to Texas Feb 13-23 for a 50th birthday celebration and much needed vacation. Joel and Ranee have given her this trip to let her have a nice rest! If you are interested in attending the celebration in Houston, please call Joan Burnham 281-821-5523.
TO GOD BE THE GLORY! THANK YOU LORD!