The Bigger Picture

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

October 12, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We would like to encourage you today as we review a speck of what God is doing. The bigger picture is beyond our ability to comprehend in the present and the future. “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9) Who, a year ago, would have predicted that we would now be in a Covid pandemic? But, God knew and is greater than all.

The Tournefeuille church meeting yesterday was a blessing. We have been examining the encounters of of Jesus with individuals. This Sunday we looked at the seaside interchange between Jesus and Simon Peter concluding with “Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men.” (Luke 5:1-11). Early in the morning, in the middle of his net washing after a tiring night of failed fishing, Peter obeyed in pushing back the boat from the edge and later by casting once more the nets. Awed by the miraculous power of Jesus, Peter “fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord”. Jesus, instead, took Simon Peter with Him.

Do you, like Peter, feel tired and overwhelmed by the circumstances? Jesus, our friend, Savior, almighty God, has entered our boat. He is still telling us to “Fear not.” He is in control. He will never leave you or forsake you and along the way you will experience His joy as He touches others through you.

One of the Tournefeuille church members (and our second oldest granddaughter) is beginning her last month of serving God by serving refugees who are being held in Austria. Among these are followers of Jesus who have been persecuted for their faith and others who need to know Christ who overcame everything that is against them. What a delight to see how God is using Nathalie and working in her life as she follows Him. Your prayers for her are much appreciated.

You may remember the August letter about Suzie (which I wrongly spelled Susie). Judy and I thought you might like to see the latest sign that surprised us a few days ago. So, here it is.

May the Lord bless each of you,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Worldwide Worship

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

September 13, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Praise the Lord with me. My heart overflows. During our walks the last couple of days Judy and I have chatted about the Beatitudes. We are blessed!

Our church meetings during the past month have been quite a blessing. The church is able to meet again in person with masks. The Sunday before last there was a houseful including four or five visitors. One lady, a relative of one of the church families, was there for the first time. Judy and I have known her for many years.

Today the house was full and the attendance was from Indiana to Austria. Besides the group meeting in Tournefeuille, there were members in 5 other locations in three countries participating. These are young people from our congregation who are working or studying elsewhere. Two of them could not be around others because of their contact with people who have tested positive with the Covid virus. What a joy to sing, study God’s Word and fellowship with the folks from our church family in France.

We thank God for your faithful support and partnership with us in the Kingdom of God. We thank God for the ability to fellowship with our home church. We thank God for the way He is working in the lives of the young adults who have come to Christ and grown up in our fellowship of believers. We thank God for many opportunities to minister (at a social distance) to folks in our temporary neighborhood. We thank God … and our hearts are overflowing.

Praising God from Whom all blessings flow,

John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.




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Grace for the Next Generation

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

August 7, 2020

Dear Fellow Disciples of Jesus,

Let me share a piece of correspondence Judy and I received.


Welcome to my first newsletter!
     Thank you again for your commitment to pray for me during my preparation time as well as during the 3 months I will be spending in Austria. The dates are set, I’m leaving in 2 weeks (!!), from Wednesday August 5th to Friday November 6th.
     The Austrian borders are currently open to France, and I should be able to enter without problem. The organization where I will be volunteering is called the “Oasis”. It is affiliated with “One Collective”, an international Christian ministry. The Oasis is located in Traiskirchen, Austria, the town with the largest asylum seekers center in the country. These refugees, of which over 90% come from an Islamic background, are welcomed by the center, which aims to “reflect the heart of God to refugees and offer them the hope, life and refuge that can be found only in Jesus”.
     As a part of the team, I will mainly be working with women and children to build relationships, help provide for their needs, accompany them in their adjustment to life in Europe and share the Gospel. This letter was intended to provide some background information; hopefully the next one will be a little less short and a little more interesting 🙂
Hope you have a nice day,
Nathalie Hatcher


Nathalie’s letter to her prayer partners explains itself. She is our second oldest granddaughter. Amanda, Philip and their family have been serving with us since 2001.  This is a picture of Philip and their daughters, taken by Amanda. Nathalie is in the center. She is not exactly sure which direction God wants her to go in her next step of training and decided to take a year before college to serve and visit her worldwide family. She began serving in this refugee camp this week.

Philip Hatcher & daughters (Nathalie, center)

I decided to include this letter after reading Josiah Tate’s letter on the BFM site. He is also seeking God’s will for his life. The greatest investment we make in this life is in the lives of our children and grandchildren (natural or adopted as the Apostle Paul’s “son” Timothy.) This investment is in teaching, example, attitude, prayer, sustenance …

We continue to worship with our church family in France via Skype. They are now able to meet as a group, but those who are on vacation also join us. We receive encouraging news from other disciples outside the Toulouse region that we have served during the years of ministry in France.

So, may all of us keep on investing in the natural and spiritual offspring God has placed in our lives. To Him be the glory for the grace He allows us to pass on to them!

Your brother and sister in Christ,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Connecting with God’s Children and Those He is Seeking

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

July 9, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Isn’t it great to know that Jesus, the King of Kings, will one day retake and re-create the earth as the New Adam, head of a reborn humanity made twice in His image? Meanwhile, I find myself, a child of the King, in a world that is broken, still under the influence of the old man. All too often, I too, find myself living the old Adam instead of the new Adam.

One of the many daily delights I enjoy is watching the amazing birds, squirrels, rabbits and other creatures that testify to the creative genius, outstanding power and love of our Creator. It is a source of thanksgiving from my heart to God in my conversation with Him. The question arises in my heart, “Do I represent the Redeemer’s beauty and voice as well as the beautiful birds and that little one, about the size of a thimble, whose melodious song I can hear a good block away, represent their Creator?”

I am including a picture of the past Sunday meeting of the church in Tournefeuille with whom we are worshiping using Skype. It is a delight to be able to participate actively with our church from across the Ocean. We do not always understand what God is doing, but it is wonderful to know that even as He restrains the activities He has placed in the hands of humanity, He has allowed them to discover and build in His creation things that can be used for the movement of His kingdom in a fallen world.

The Hatchers this past Sunday joining the meeting of the church in Tournefeuille with whom they are worshiping using Skype.

 

So, we are able to shepherd, encourage, pray with, counsel, witness to, teach, learn from, and commune with God’s children and those He is seeking on three different continents. This week like the entire past month has already included several meetings with God’s children and those He is seeking using internet, social distancing and masks. The circumstances of our world may discourage us, but our Father is all powerful and uses for good what is meant for evil.

Thank you for your participation with us in what God is doing. May God use you in the present circumstances to be His witness to people with whom you can connect.

Seeking to connect for Jesus,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Wonderful Divine Interactions

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

June 11, 2020

Dear Fellow Disciples of Jesus,

Walking with Jesus is fruitful, instructive and corrective. It is also delightful. This is God’s will. He wants us to rejoice in Him. Your present circumstances are probably quite different from what you would have imagined a year ago, but the illnesses, crises and wrongs of the world in which we live to not limit our Heavenly Father one iota. Furthermore, He has made you and me “the light of the world.” What a privilege!

As you read about some of the wonderful divine interactions in our lives this month, think about God’s interventions in your life and let us give thanks together. Feel free to send us an email telling us about the delightful moments God has given you.

A couple of weeks ago, Judy and I were trekking along the walk in front of the local grade school. The lower corner of the Stars and Stripes were caught on the top of the flag pole and the flag was in danger of ripping. My fix-it personality drove me to attempt a salvage procedure. As I was working at it, a teen aged young man rode up on his bike and asked if he could help. I readily accepted the offer. We were determined, but our efforts were unsuccessful. As we were parting I introduced Judy and myself and he informed me that his name was Adam.

“In Hebrew that means Man.” I volunteered. “You’re the man!” “He was the first man.” Adam answered. “Very good, do you know the name of Adam’s wife?” “Eve.” By now a conversation was taking place with this slim young man that we had seen from time to time on his bike as we trekked. “Adam, you seem to know a lot about the Bible.” Adam, with great passion and enthusiasm, then launched in to his story. This young man of 15, who I had initially guessed to be about 13 told about being born in Beijing where he lived at the age of 8 or 9 in an orphanage. He got to go to some activities carried out by volunteers of an NGO. “You know, you are not allowed to talk about God in China. They told about Creation and Noah. When it was time to eat, they said, ‘now we are going to thank God for our food’. That’s crazy, I said to myself. But, that night when I got back to the orphanage, I got down beside my bed and prayed – God, if you exist, I want to be adopted. The next morning, my nanny came to me and said, ‘you are going to be adopted.’ They adopted my brother and sister too. The next months were really hard because the other guys beat up on me.”

By this time Judy and I were weeping (as I am now) as Adam passionately told about how the Heavenly Father gave him a home with other siblings along with his two biological siblings. And, he continued, “I need to tell everyone about Jesus because Jesus is coming back.” Awed in the presence of God, I asked Adam where he went to Church. “Faithway Baptist Church where the the pastor is Pastor Russ.” Wow, Pastor Russ was a student of mine several decades ago. Once, when we crossed paths (just before we went to France, I think) Eddie Russ told me that I was one of the most influential people in his life. I hope that was for good. It was just a reminder that the God who is at work in you is at work everywhere! You never know how the lines will cross in this beautiful picture God is drawing.

Well, I would like to tell you about time spent with Nancy and Jason, from a disastrous, lamentable background, who believe that God brought us into their lives, exchanges with Michael, who wants someone to just help him know how to walk with Jesus daily, our conversations with Russ, the self-confessed, “Deist”, the hours of conversation with the fellow in France who wants to learn English who is very open to the gospel … and … But, its time to sign off for this month. Thank you so much for your prayers and help. Please, keep on praying because without Him “we can do nothing.”

May God’s delights fill your heart today!

Your fellow trekkers for Jesus,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.




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Trekking for Jesus

Missionaries John and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

May 11, 2020

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Are you feeling shut in? Daily living has been quite different for most of us during the last couple of months. However, we are very thankful for many blessings that God has showered upon us during this time. Eternal life, the union of our spirit to God, is not affected one bit by the viral crisis other than for the good. We thoroughly enjoyed reading the letters of the lady missionaries in the Mother’s Day issue of the Mission Sheets online posting.

One of the many joyful experiences of the last month has been meeting with our church in France! Due to the danger of transmission and the governmental restrictions the congregation decided to meet live online. During the first meeting about 6 weeks ago Judy and I were moved to tears and had a hard time singing during the worship time. The online interactive fellowship has been GREAT! We are so thankful for Philip, Amanda and several other members of our church who work diligently each week to make these meetings a reality. We thank God for giving humans the technological abilities to make this kind of communication possible. Not only have we met with our church in France, we have also been able to “go to church” in America and Brazil. In ALL things God works for good!

Listen to this clip of our Tournefeuille Congregation singing in our cyber service this past Sunday. They like to sing this one in English so the first part is in English the second part in French. The Soloist is a Lea Veuillet. Her father is one of our elders.

Last week, Amanda sent me a text forwarded from a French friend of hers. Amanda has been displaying Christ to this very nice lady, who professes atheism, for several years. The lady’s son had leukemia several years ago when he was still a preschooler. God has graciously given the son physical life and he receives piano lessons from Amanda. The lady forwarded the request of a friend who was looking for someone to help him improve his English speaking. I was glad to help him and we had our first online conversation today. All of the above to ask you to pray for my communication with this young (40ish) husband and father of two sons. He had been told by his “atheist” acquaintance what we did in France. He asked questions and God opened up the door for an introduction of the Gospel. He was interested and I invited him to join us for our virtual Sunday church meeting.

Our dear Savior has also connected us to others in our physical neighborhood who need Christ. Judy and I exercise by trekking [walking with sticks… cross country skiing on dry ground in tennis shoes 🙂 ]. It is a practically unknown physical activity in Evansville. As more people are home bound, they are walking, riding bikes and working in their garages and yards. They keep social distances, but most are looking for social exchanges. This has let us to meet other believers and be able to witness to those who need Christ. It seems that we are well known in the neighborhoods. Sometimes you can be a spectacle for Christ!

On April 30th we celebrated Dad’s 95th birthday. We are so grateful that Paul and Wanda are caring for Dad (John A. Hatcher) as they did for Alta Hatcher (mom) and Willa McGary (Wanda’s mom). Their care for the senior missionaries has enabled us, the younger and aging missionaries to continue serving in the overseas fields. Paul and family set up a Zoom party and nearly all the extended family (7 time zones, 3 continents) were able to celebrate with Dad. God has blessed us beyond our imagination and ability to recount. Trekking for Jesus,
John and Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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Where is Light?

Judy Hatcher has been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France with her husband John since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Hello praying friends,

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Light in the dark…

Good morning from the land of lockdown! As the world experiences the uncharted territory (uncharted for us…the world has experienced plagues, etc., throughout history), the question arises, where is light? Can we shine the good news of Jesus while being distanced from others? Can we encourage one another to love and good works while being isolated? I would like to take a few minutes of your time and share with you how God has used what was meant for evil to do good in our corner of the world.

Since John and I are in Evansville caring for my sister, we try to be on the lookout for those God wants us to touch. We walk with trekking sticks in the neighborhood every day. Of course, that makes us an oddity! …but also opens doors to share (from a distance, of course). The COVID-19 has given an awareness to people of the frailty of life…of what is really important…and we have had opportunities to share the reason for the hope we have! Whether it’s on the street, in line to get into the grocery or the checkout lady, there are moments to point people to Christ, the only Hope.

Distance separates from our French friends who don’t know Christ, but we have internet connections and are able to say, “Hey, how are you doing? We are praying for you”. We want those we love to know that even though we are far away, our hearts and prayers are with them.

As a result of the virus, our church in France is not able to meet together as usual. They decided to get together online. They decided to meet in the afternoon for them, so John, Abigail (our granddaughter) and I could attend. Oh, the tears of joy that John and I shed as we sang, prayed and shared with our brothers and sisters on the other side of the world!

Our Christian friends in the Ariège keep connected and we can share with each other our needs and blessings…in short, be an encouragement to one another.

I would like to leave you with a verse God gave me through my reading this week: “Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD!” Psalm 27:14 NKJV

As we wait, we can be the light, knowing that the LORD is with us.

Yours together for the sake of Jesus,
Judy

Contact Info:
John & Judy Hatcher
4, rue d’Aspin
31170 Tournefeuille, France
JMHatcher@aol.com
Present USA phone 1-812-416-1033

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.


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An Example of Love & Good Works

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

Missionaries John Mark and Judy Hatcher have been serving the Lord in Tournefeuille, France since 1999. They define their ministry as “disciple-making.”

March 9, 2020

Dear Fellow Disciples of Jesus,

This morning Judy and I received a very welcome call from Jean-Luc and his wife Rose. They are members of the church at Tournefeuille and were calling to see how we were doing and to let us know how much they missed us. We are truly blessed to serve with them and others like them in France.

Last week we had a great time of fellowship with the folks of New Life Baptist Church in Lexington. God has blessed them with an excellent building from which to minister and we enjoyed getting acquainted with new members in this body of Christ. The previous weekend we spent three days with Emmanuel Baptist Church of Bellbrook, OH discussing how to follow Jesus making disciples. Judy and I were very encouraged by the interaction with the followers of Jesus there.

Though the word “missionary” does not appear in most translations of the New Testament, it is clear that all of us who are disciples of Jesus are His light on earth and we are instructed “to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called”. At the meetings in Bellbrook we became acquainted with Mike and Marci. They along with others shared how God had opened doors to communicate about their faith in Christ. I asked permission to share with you what they told us, and here is a bit from Mike and Marci in her words.

How it started –

Mike and I felt the need a few months ago to “reach out” where we can and thought home was the best, and, to be frank, easiest way to widen our comfort zone. I had been giving treats from baking to the neighbors in our condo so it seemed natural to have “Muffins and Prayer in the Stairwell”. Notes on doors for time and date and here we are. *It’s important to note that our first effort was ignored. But…God’s timing, not ours!

And… more recent news –

Thought I’d update on the “Muffins in the stairwell” happening. Monday before last we had three show up for what actually became coffee and brownies and prayers. Since there were only the five of us, we invited them in and it went great.

We met again last night and had two more! (Again, no muffins but great cookies from Kroger-God has given me grace on the scales!)

Last night it was decided that we would try to meet every other Monday. Prayer has been wonderful and the one couple that is moving has promised to keep meeting with us.

We ask special prayers for our young single neighbor upstairs. She is quite shy but seems to enjoy our “God talk”. We are hoping for God to lead us into a conversation on salvation soon.

We have what is a single gentleman downstairs who is an alcoholic and is basically walker bound. I leave goodies and encouraging notes for him as he seldom comes out or answers the door. Praying for him and patiently “wooing” him and trusting our God.

There is one other family downstairs that are polite and enjoy the goodies but show no interest. I’m sure God has His own plan and we’ll remain available.

Our current plan is to put chalkboard adhesive paper on our front door with a bag of chalk. We will put daily Bible verses on it and leave room for prayer requests when we aren’t home. We are learning to be hospitable, (I still tidy more than usual but I’m a work in progress.) And we are learning to REST in Him, not just SUBMIT!

That’s it for now. Just wanted you to know God used you to make an impact in our and other’s lives. Praying for you faithfully. God bless you!

Mike and Marci Walker

Well, I hope their words encourage you “to love and good works” as they have encouraged me. And… let others in your church and fellowship know how God is opening doors around you. In fact, I would be delighted to hear from you. I will not put it in my newsletter without your permission!

With you following the call of Jesus,
John and Judy

John Mark & Judy Hatcher
JMHatcher[at]aol.com

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280
Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online


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