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June 2008

When the Tomato Plants Fed The Whole Family

The tough times America is going through remind me of tougher times that few today remember. When Wall Street collapsed, some businessmen who had lost all jumped out of hotel windows to their deaths. That time went down in history as the Great Depression. My mum and dad used to talk about it. They had a grocery store in a little seaside town in Australia, and the day came when all they had left was a pumpkin in the window and a set of scales in the shop. Oh, they also had each other, two little girls, and a few sticks of furniture. They would have been glad to have had the tough times we are experiencing today.



Savings ebbed away, and the government gave out the "dole." Dad had to walk ten-miles (each way) to pick up his seventeen shillings and six-pence. (In today's language, that was one dollar and seventy-five cents. Mind you, that was almost enough to buy bread and potatoes for a week. It wasn't enough to buy milk for the girls.)

My dad was a Catholic, but didn't know much about faith in God. He had been brought up by strict parents to trust in the Church that was now nowhere when he needed it. Mum, while not a churchgoer, had faith in God, and set about supplementing the dole, the government handout.

She had shown kindness to a poor "Chinaman," and he later brought her a quantity of Ponderosa tomato seeds. She soon had a garden going, and the Ponderosa plants took on the challenge of keeping the little girls in powdered milk. They (the tomatoes and girls!) blossomed and boomed. Mum sold tomatoes for five shilling per crate, and those tomato bushes, like the Ever Ready Bunny, kept going, and going, and going. When the dark days passed, the Ponderosa plants died. They had done their job, in answer to a young mother's prayer.

I tell you this story because I learned to have faith in God at my mother's knee. She taught me to "say my prayers" and read my Bible. She taught me that God will take care of us and supply our needs. So here, dear friend, are two texts for you at this time:

"I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. They are always generous and lend freely; their children will be blessed." -- Psalms 37: 25, 26.

"My God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus." -- Philippians 4:19.

Don't, dear friend, be afraid of tough times. Our God is bigger, stronger, and tougher than anything the Devil can throw at us. With God in our hearts, we will outlive tough times, and like those Ponderosa plants, keep going, and going, and going. This is not a time to talk doom and gloom (like the radio and T.V. commentators), and pull back. It is a time to let our faith expand and accomplish great things. Remember the words carved over the doorway of the little church in Calcutta, "EXPECT GREAT THINGS FROM GOD, ATTEMPT GREAT THINGS FOR GOD." Now is the time to shine for Jesus. That's what The Carter Report team, in partnership with God and you, is planning to do:

  1. This month we plan to conduct evangelistic, Christ-centered meetings in Los Angeles. This outreach will be directed especially to the Spanish-speaking residents of that great, frantic, fast-paced metropolis. The Spanish people desperately need the light of Christ's true Gospel.
  2. We plan to continue to broadcast the truths of the Bible on T.V. stations in India. We are now on six Indian stations with a viewing audience of 50,000,000 souls. The response has been tremendous.
  3. Next year, we are planning to evangelize Mexico. Yes, difficulties are great, but God's grace is greater. We want with all our hearts to shake that land for Jesus, and let the light of the true Gospel shine.

We are not pulling back and going into reverse. It is full steam ahead. Please help me raise $1,000,000.00 for these vital projects especially the Spanish work. Please take the step of faith, and plant some Gospel seeds for Jesus. Every plant planted in faith for His glory will bear fruit like mum's Ponderosa plants. As you and I invest in faith, so God will supply our needs. He is waiting for us to step out in faith. Please join me in raising one million dollars for Jesus. Every seed of faith helps, and God's blessing is in proportion to our faith. "According to your faith, be it unto you."

Please shine your light. Please write today. Please plant some seeds. Thank you in Jesus' name. May God bless you with so many blessings that your house will not hold them.

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