Dear Friends in AB, YT, NWT and NE BC
I have often thought about writing a general letter to you all since news of Dean Bruer’s tragic situation first broke a couple of weeks ago, but I hardly have known what to write. I just feel so sad as you no doubt do. I still don’t know what to write, but perhaps I’ll make an attempt at putting something together today.
These are my thoughts……
A line of a hymn comes to mind several times every day…’Art thou pained to see the kingdom suffer loss?’
I’m pained when I think of those women that Dean hurt so badly. I’m pained when I think of how much he has complicated their lives and how much they will suffer for it through the years. I pray that God can help them heal and move on again. And, I hope that you are praying for them also.
I’m pained when I think of Dean, a man who appeared to be so useful and so faithful for so many years and then let something awful into his heart that destroyed him and hurt so many others. This pain is scary for me because like many of you who will be reading this letter, I am in the same age group that Dean was in. I pray desperately that God would help me to keep my heart pure until the journey’s end. I pray that he will keep you also.
I’m pained when I think of Mark who has now been accused of acting improperly. I’m so glad that he quickly, humbly stepped back.
I’m pained when I think of my good friends who have been disappointed by workers who should have been examples to them. I pray that God will keep you all through this storm just as he has kept all of us through the past storms of life. I want to reassure you that we will do everything possible to make sure this does not happen again.
I’m pained when I think of all those wonderful, Godly workers in areas where Dean has worked, who are now suffering for his actions.
I’m pained for people who get some sad satisfaction out of spreading evil things that they find on social media and I ask, why aren’t they pained to see the kingdom suffer loss? May God have mercy on them. Our study of Prov 16 has some very good food for thought in verses 20 and 27.
I’m thankful when I remember that ‘there is nothing new under the sun’, as Solomon wrote. Jesus chose 12 disciples and one of them made a horrible error. With tens of thousands of friends and workers in the world today, it is inevitable that some will make a terrible mistake.
I’m thankful when I receive message after message from friends encouraging me and wanting me to know that they are praying for us workers and support us in these difficult days.
I’m thankful to know that most of our friends in our area are just patiently continuing. God knows His own and is taking care of His own.
I’m thankful when I remember that this too shall pass and when it does, I want to make very sure that I am still on the right side.
I’m thankful that when I pray, God brings peace into my distressed heart and I’m so grateful to remember Jesus’ promise that He would give us His peace….His peace, not as the world gives peace.
I’m thankful when I remember that God is still on the throne and has everything under HIS control. This is HIS kingdom and HE will not let it come to harm. It has stood through many a storm over the centuries and it will come out stronger and purified again like it has before.
I’m thankful when I remember that ‘This world my home could never be, for Christ is coming back for me’.
May God help us all to “Pray for the peace of the city” and to pray that God would send his Son again to take us to be with him.
Note: The reference to ‘Mark’ is to Mark Huddle
My heart goes out to every victim.
Thank you for the work you are doing. I know how hard it is. I was a CASA (court appointed special advocate) for 11 years.
If there is anyway I do, please let me know.
You speak all the right words, Mike but you have done some very vexing and trauma inducing things with a great lack of gentleness and compassion. Are there ANY overseers who have a pure heart? You cannot treat some people the way you have and say that you have a pure heart. I would say you don’t know your own heart.
I too found Mike’s letter troubling.
“I’m pained for people who get some sad satisfaction out of spreading evil things that they find on social media and I ask, why aren’t they pained to see the kingdom suffer loss? ”
REALLY??? I would say that ALL of us are very pained to see the kingdom suffer loss, but the loss is not the transparency that is happening now. The loss is the many years of abuse being hidden and covered over. The shame is for those who covered it up … not those who are speaking about it now.
“ I’m pained when I think of Mark who has now been accused of acting improperly. I’m so glad that he quickly, humbly stepped back.” Well, Michael, I am pained at you painting this wonderful picture of Mark without bothering to find out whether or not the complaints were justified. An automatic assumption of humility, rather than perhaps guilty fear. A clear indication of who you automatically side with, without knowing the facts.