Newsletter – May-July 2020
May-July 2020 Newsletter
Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from Him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. Psa. 127:3-4
Photo: The Blomberg Family in the Middle East Jonathan holding Isaiah; Lisa with Solomon and Evelyne and baby twins Aaron and Noah
Dr. Ross Jutsum State of the Heart Ministries P.O. Box 56, Sierra Madre, CA 91025
Dear treasured friends, precious family and valued ministry partners:
We hope this finds you and yours staying safe and keeping healthy. For the first time in almost 23 years, I am not including a schedule with this quarterly newsletter! Needless to say, all planned ministry trips have been canceled or postponed for the foreseeable future.
Over the past eighteen months, I have also been giving programs regularly at about ten different nursing homes/assisted living retirement communities, but those opportunities have come to a grinding holt, at least for now. The last program I did was on March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day, at Royal Oaks/Bradbury Oaks not too far from our home – I was alone in their chapel with a grand piano, a microphone and a camera which streamed my one-hour program to all 250 of the residents’ rooms. In addition to the Irish folk song repertoire, I also included several hymns and some words of comfort and encouragement. I have gotten to know many of our dear senior citizens there and many of them are quite lonely with no family close by to visit them. Apparently, this, my last program for now was very much appreciated – the Activity Director texted the next morning to say that her voice-mail box was filled with messages of appreciation with some saying it was the “best St. Patrick’s Day ever!”
One of my ministry projects during this “hunkering down” time is developing ways that I might serve from a distance via video streaming and recordings. Also, for the past 3 Saturday evenings I have given a “Driveway Concert,” setting up my portable keyboard, amp and microphone, joined by most all of our neighbors on the block singing along on their favorite songs and also a few hymns. I plan to continue these on a regular basis – obviously with everyone, including Tammy and me, “socially distancing!”
If I have your e-mail address, some of you will have received the daily “musical offerings” of videos of my original compositions, so far 21 of them, accompanied by short messages of the biblical passages on which the songs are based. There has been a lot of wonderful feedback to this project as well. A dear 90-year-old friend who lives alone in Milwaukee wrote that she hasn’t been able to leave her assisted-living apartment in over 6 weeks and cannot see family, and that my daily musical offerings were the highlight of her day! If you have not been receiving these via e-mail, please drop me a note and I will add you to the list, and even catch you up!
One other exciting project recently completed is a recording of piano arrangements of 100 Best-Loved Hymns and another recording of piano arrangements of A Variety of 100 Popular Songs (including Broadway songs, jazz, folk, classical and more!) Just like the “musical offering” project, I am making these available through a Dropbox link and can e-mail that to you as well. I would love to be able to give these away also, like I did with the 21 musical offerings, but, needless to say, these two recording projects cost quite a bit to produce and I am offering them each at a reduced price of $45. (Each of the 2 sets is the equivalent of 7-8 CDs of music, so I think it’s a pretty good deal!) You can order via e-mail or, if you prefer, call me on my cell phone with your credit card information.
Last, but by no means least, please keep Lisa and her beautiful family (pictured above at her baby shower, right before the lock-down) in your prayers. Lisa is 37 weeks pregnant with another set of twins (boys!) She is in great spirits and has a wonderful doctor. A dear Christian couple, refugees from Iran, are staying with them and helping out with the children at their home there in the Middle East. However, their country is on lock-down 4 days a week right now. Please pray for God’s protection and blessing on the arrival of 2 more precious grand-children, and for the family’s safety.
Finally, thank you so very much for your heartfelt prayers and your kind and generous support. Tammy and I are praying for you and yours… it is so true that we are “all in this together” – please know that our loving God is FOR us, WITH us and IN us (“Christ in you, the Hope of Glory!”)
With love and prayers and blessings, warmest regards and virtual hugs,
Ross and Tammy