To Pastors, Friends, Family and Prayer Partners,
As I sat down to write this letter, my mind was overcome with thoughts....How do I write this letter? What if no one responds? What if I am stepping on toes? I prayed that the Lord would give me the wisdom to compose my thoughts, and for the feelings of my heart to become clear on paper.
As many of you know, my Mom and Dad, Billy and Paula Speer, have been experiencing financial hardships like many Americans and families today. My parents have been in full time ministry now for over 40 years and it seems like it truly does get harder each year. This past year, my parents were hit with some obstacles that really seem overwhelming. I want to share with you my concerns first. In December, after several treatments at the Mayo Clinic, my dad was diagnosed with Cognitive Memory Impairment. This is something that quite a few people struggle with, but also is a condition that can lead to Alzheimer’s (A word I struggle with and am still trying to get used to myself). No one likes to hear of their loved one being diagnosed with this disease. Although they have not said he has it, they are treating him for moderate depression in hopes of seeing signs of improvement. Unfortunately, his symptoms seem to continuously get worse and not better. Mom and Dad have no health insurance, and so, during this time of treatment, several people made donations and contributions to help with the medical expenses, for which we are grateful!
In January, just a few short weeks after the diagnosis, they received foreclosure papers on their home. It seems like the more people I talk to, the more I hear of folks who have been affected by the foreclosure phenomenon. They have lived in their home for nearly 20 years and it seems so unfair that it can be taken away from them, but they have always put ministry first and many months the house payment just didn’t get paid so they could stay on the road. As a person who is in ministry myself, it is so hard to know what God wants from us sometimes. Do we stay in Christian service and be faithful to the call? Do we stay home and find another way to pay bills? Lord, show me the way!!! I have struggled with that for years. I do know that the Bible says to trust Him and He will supply all your needs. Due to the diagnosis, and the events leading up to it, their schedule came to a screeching halt. They were fortunate enough to have some faithful supporters who have kept their electric on, and food on the dinner table. I am thankful for the ones who have sent their support to help...very thankful!
So, now to the request. This is where I want to be careful in my asking. I know that today, so many people, ministries, missions, churches, organizations are asking for money, needing help, support, etc... It is not a good time in our economy to be asking for financial help. I know this and that is why I struggled so much. I am an only child who is very concerned for his parents and only wants to help them as much as I can. They do not know I am sending this letter but I trust they will understand and appreciate my efforts. Many have wondered and asked me if I was going to come off the road and help take care of them. In reply, I say this...I feel like God has called me to the ministry of The Dartts for a purpose and at this time I do not have the peace to leave and stay in FL with my folks. I feel like God is using me in a ministry and we are seeing souls saved and the Lord is leading us to new places and areas to which we have been praying about as a group. I feel like I can help them by continuing to be on the road, sharing their needs, and when the time comes, I will be there to help them to do what ever they need me to do.
My goal seems high, and the request big, but God is GREAT and can do anything if it’s His WILL. I would like to see my parents move to Nashville to be close to me, close to Vanderbilt Hospital, which is one of the greatest hospitals in the country, and close to people who are willing to help and oversee to their needs while I am on tour. Tennessee offers some healthcare benefits that not all states have and could be better insurance in the event of dads health declining. Due to the financial crisis they are under, they would not approve for a loan, and would have difficulty getting into something even temporary for some time. I am not in the place financially where I can help them out, as the loan companies won’t even consider me, due to my income not meeting their requirements. I know it seems like I am beating around the bush with the needs, but it’s really hard for me to ask. I would like to raise enough money to put them into some housing in TN. Seems like a huge request, but if churches would be gracious enough to take a special offering, and if folks who have known my parents for many years would make a contribution, the meeting of the need might not seem so far away. Again, please understand, I am not wanting anyone to not give to their local church, missionaries, etc.. but if you would like to donate a special gift toward Billy and Paula Speer I would greatly appreciate it. If not, I completely understand and would request strong prayer cover over all of us in the upcoming months as I know the valley seems to be getting darker. After singing Tracy Dartt’s song, “God On The Mountain” every night in concert, I must believe that God will see us through the bad times just like He sees us through the good times in life. Currently, I am trying to help my parents go through stuff to prepare for a yard sale and clear out as much as I can. The actual date that they need to be out of their house is still yet undetermined, but I feel like I need to move things along so that when the time comes, we don’t have any problems. The Dartts have been more than gracious to help me in my efforts and have assured me that they would be by my side through all of it. I couldn’t ask to travel with a more patient, loving caring family and I am so blessed!
If you would like to make a special gift or send ongoing support for Billy & Paula Speer, you can make gifts payable to:
“Billy Speer Ministries, Inc.”
And mail to:
Billy Speer Project
C/O The Dartts
P.O. Box 422
Greenbrier, TN. 37073
Or, if you prefer to send a support gift through Paypal, Paypal funds can be sent to;
If needed, you can receive a receipt for your donation for tax purposes.
Thank you for your time, your patience, and your interest in our ministries through the years. Feel free to contact me personally by e-mail at:
May God richly bless you, your church families, and your loved ones this year!
Living 4 Him,