Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
Isaiah 6:8 (NIV)
It’s been a very varied and interesting few months for us both. John was taken ill with a heart attack in November and has been out of circulation (sorry no pun intended), even though the initial attack was treated so wonderfully by the staff at the Royal Berkshire Hospital here in Reading. When released, John still had problems due to a very irregular heartbeat which could not be treated locally and he would have to wait to go to one of the top teaching hospitals in London. Anyway, at the end of June, the misfire was corrected at St Barts and he is well on the way to recovery.
We would like to say a true thank you to all who supported us in prayer, especially for Barbara who weathered the storm through her faith in God. A thank you to also to Canal Ministries, Abbey Baptist Church, Stoke Row Baptist Church and an anonymous individual who provided financial support all the time John was unable to work. John’s health has now improved to such an extent that he has had his medical certificate re-instated so he can return to skippering for Salter’s Steamers - a very well known and respected trip boat company on the River Thames.
We are moored at Caversham in Reading and it’s likely that we will be able to be there for the winter. Both of us continue to have engagements, with John preaching and doing canal history talks, and Barbara talking and helping with a wide range of groups.
We were saddened earlier in the year when our friend and sister in Christ, Lin Atwill, died. We cannot imagine how those close to her feel, except that through God's grace we can perhaps feel a little of it when John was taken ill.
Our boat, Ichthus, continues to behave well and we still feel very blessed to have such a lovely lifestyle. We by chance met a couple on one of John’s boat trips who we hadn’t met for nearly twenty years. It was lovely to see them and go over when we first started this boating lark. It also made us think what plans for the future?
The above passage came to mind, not the least in that it's one of Barbara’s favourite hymns: I the Lord of sea and sky.
We are flexible and willing to go wherever He wishes to send us. It does, however, seem that it will continue in a nautical and boating flavour.
We are safe in His promise: "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11). If you would like to help support us, either with a one-off gift, or a small monthly offering, please contact our treasurer via our contact page.
With all our love and thanks and may He continue to bless and care for you all.
In His Name
John and Barbara Froggatt
Canal Ministries - sharing God's Love on the Inland Waterways.