2023 newsletters

January 2023

Dear Friends,

In reading a book by Warren Wiersbe, he paraphrased a quote by Oswald Chambers saying, “soul-winning is not something we do, it is something we are twenty-four hours a day, and we live for souls because we love Christ.” Mr. Wiersbe went on to quote Mr. Chambers saying, “It is the work that God does through us that counts, not what we do for Him.”

Though Salt and Light Ministries is not presently going, in person, into the prisons right now; correspondence with some inmates still continue. In corresponding with those inmates, these were a few of the responses…..

“The ministry gave us hope in this dark hole of despair & taught us to recognize God and He is always there.”

“You always have a good word of encouragement that’s very, very timely.”

“Received your welcomed letter of expository Scripture that are reminders we are built upon a foundation brick by brick forged from the cross of Calvary. We take up the cross and carry it as our joy…”

A former inmate who we ministered to for many years (especially Jay) has been talking with me on a pretty regular basis. He said, “Since Brother Jay is not here for me to talk to about Scripture, I’m depending on you, and a couple others, to help guide me, as I try to minister to others out here.” One night we talked for almost 5 hours – mostly Bible study. While he was on probation, he was not allowed to go to church; but now that he is released from that he started going with his elderly mother to her church. He was so upset the night he called me and we talked for so long, because of what the Sunday school teacher was teaching. He told me what the man had said versus what he knew the Bible said, and wanted to know which view was right. I was able to confirm to him that he was interpreting the Scripture correctly.

He did 25 years in prison and is shocked at how many churches out here don’t believe the Bible, teaching that sin is ok – all in the name of tolerance, and putting people under bondage to keep the law like the Jews. He is very concerned about the young believers in this class, who do not know what the Bible says and are falling for the false teaching that is being taught. He has been speaking up in the class and telling them what the Bible says, with the Scripture to back it up. Several of them are secretly thanking him for explaining the truth. Even his mother, who has been in church for a very long time, is asking him if what he is sharing really is what the Bible says. He has been able to open up the Word and show her.

Other than the inmates who are still writing, the Lord has used me quite a bit with one of my elderly neighbors. We have gone out to lunch multiple times and have sat in the restaurant for hours talking about the Lord. Through the sharing of God’s Word my neighbor was given peace in a couple of decisions that needed to be made. He has thanked me multiple times for sharing God’s Word with him and I am seeing the Lord working in his life.

For those of you who have asked about me personally, I ended up with Covid in January and was very sick for a couple of weeks. I had a hard time breathing and lost my voice from all the coughing. But thankfully, it did not get into my lungs. My speaking voice is back to normal but my singing voice is not quite back yet, though it is getting closer. Though it knocked me flat for a while, it did not stop the Lord from using me to share Him with others. I was able to share the goodness of the Lord with the nurse practitioner who saw me and I was still able to text with several others – sharing Jesus with them.

Once I was feeling better and able to get back out into the community, the Lord allowed me to be a light and/or an encouragement to several others.

I have another neighbor, whom I have been earnestly praying for, for salvation. She continues to walk down the road to destruction. She disregards the law and lets her dog run loose in the neighborhood. Many of neighbors complain, but still she lets it run. One morning I woke up to find that her dog had dug up my flowers and someone had tried to siphon gas out of the truck. I was upset to say the least. But after spending time with the Lord that morning, He calmed me down and I was able to say that I truly cared more for her soul than for dug up flowers. A few days later, the Lord led me to make a cake for her and her dad. With the simple gesture of taking the cake over to her; I was able to talk to her some about the Lord. So far, since then, the dog has not run loose either.

My mom’s Alzheimer’s continues to progress and I am still overseeing her care. And yes, I am still going through the boxes and boxes of stuff.

I was asked about helping another ministry with female inmates that have been writing them. I prayed about it, but the Lord told me no for now – that I needed to finish the work He has given me at the moment. He has given me glimpses of future ministry, but the timing is not right yet.

Jay and I’s ministry focus has always been on souls – whether sharing the Gospel with the lost, or encouraging the brethren. That work – the Lord’s work – still continues. 1 Corinthians 3:9 “For we are fellow workmen (laborers together) with and for God…” (Amp) Through your prayers and/or financial support, you are still having a part in what He is doing. Thank you and may God’s grace and peace continue to grow and flourish in you, as you too walk in fellowship with Jesus.

For God’s Glory Alone!


2022 newsletters

December 2022

Dear Friends,

It has been a busy 2 months since my last update. But first, I wish to say “thank you” to all of you who sent Christmas cards and/or gifts, as well as regular support. Your demonstration of love, through your encouraging words, gifts, and prayers over the holidays was a blessing and I overflowed with tears of gratitude. For those of you who have redirected your giving to other ministries, I wish to say thank you for all that you did in the past. Your support of Jay and me over the last 25 years of ministry was a true blessing and much fruit has been accredited to your account in heaven. I also wish to say thank you to those of you have let me know that the Lord has put it on your hearts to continue your support this year or “for a while yet”.

As a matter of answered prayer, let me inform you that I will be keeping Salt & Light Ministries up for the time being. Based on the feedback that I was receiving, I asked the Lord what He would have me do. I have peace that He wants me to leave it up until He tells me otherwise. Though He has not revealed anything further, as of yet, He must still have a purpose for it.

Over the holidays, I was determined not to let grief hinder me from celebrating the Light of the World coming into our darkness, to bring us into His marvelous Light. Nor would I let depression try to come in by focusing on what I did not have, but to instead, focus on all the blessings that I did have – most of all – Jesus! I was grateful and thankful for the Lord’s presence and the way He gently talks with me; a house to protect me from the weather; electricity to keep me warm; food in the pantry, refrigerator, and freezer; water at the turn of a knob; clothes to wear; my health; family and friends; reliable transportation; my bills are still getting paid; though I may get stiff and sore I still have the use of all my limbs; the strength to oversee and care for mom as her Alzheimer’s progresses; I have my Bible and the ability to read and understand it; the list goes on and on and on. Because the peace and joy of the Lord was present, He allowed me the opportunity to share Jesus with many others – from a couple of employees at my local Walmart, to my chiropractor and his wife, to a couple of my neighbors, to other family members who were experiencing hard times, to the inmates through letters, as well as other people in the community. Though my tears still fall from missing Jay these opportunities and blessings give me plenty of reasons to be thankful.

I received several letters from inmates. One letter I received was as follows….

“Dear Elizabeth, I wanted to thank you for your letter. You and Jay were part of our family here at ___, so his loss was our loss too. I always looked forward to when you both came…. You complemented each other so well in the music ministry and the messages you brought us. Everyone can take encouragement and hope from the way Jay faced his illness, and the way you were with him every step of the journey…..No one is promised tomorrow, so it’s important to be thankful for today – and to tell people that really matter to us how much they mean to us. You and Jay were more than just once – monthly guests here to me and many others. You had lives outside of here, but you made us genuinely feel like you cared about us and had us in prayer. In a place like this that can often feel desolate and devoid of “light”, you and Jay blessed us with your ministry and brought happiness to us each time you came. God used you both lovingly and effectively….the memories of all the years you and Jay shared God’s love with us won’t ever be forgotten. Thank you for the time you spent visiting us, caring about us, and praying for us. I know you still care and pray – and so do I…..You are warmly remembered. In Christ, ____ “

You, our ministry partners, had a part in this man’s life. Because you, through your prayers and / or financial support, we were able to go to the “least of these”. Another inmate, from the same facility, also wrote asking me to please come back sometime with the ones who have taken our slot. The letters from inmates have slowed down, but there are still some who are writing and the Lord is still allowing me to minister to them through letters. Because the ministry opportunity is still there, I will be keeping the PO Box as well.

Per my last update, you know that right now, it is still taking me a lot of time and energy to finish going through ours and our parent’s things. In this process, the Lord has shown me other ministries that I am able to help. One ministry takes used books (any kind) to sell and use the proceeds to buy Bibles. They are sending them all over the world as well as into the prisons. Another ministry takes all kinds of household goods and clothing to help the poor and needy in our area, as well as areas that have been devastated from natural disasters. So even in going thru the boxes and boxes of stuff, the Lord’s work continues to move forward and I am able to have a part in it.

Though it is on a smaller scale from what it was, ministry does continue to inmates and people in the community. When Jay was here, he was more the spokesperson when sharing Jesus with others. Now, I am finding myself speaking up more and being bolder when talking to others. My prayers for unsaved friends and family have intensified. I am hearing and reading more and more reports of the Lord working and moving in miraculous and powerful ways all over the world, and I believe He longs to do the same kind of things right here in the States. So I am also praying, fervently, for Christians to be awakened out of their slumber and following the status quo, to live holy lives, be bolder in sharing Jesus with others, and believe for His Spirit to move in miraculous ways.

Reading my Bible, praying, and listening to various pastors, on the radio, the Lord keeps encouraging my heart to keep holding on to the vision He gave to Jay and me. I don’t know how He is going to work it all out, but He does and I know there is more He wants to accomplish through this situation and temporary parting. So, however He does it, it will all be…..

For God’s Glory Alone!

Elizabeth (& Jay)

Tax-Deductible gifts can still be made out TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Elizabeth Roberts

October / November 2022

Dear Friends,

First, let me say “thank you”. Thank you to the numerous people, who sent cards, texts, e-mails, gifts, continued support, and prayers. It is hard to believe that it has already been 3 months since Jay passed. It still “feels” like he has gone on a mission’s trip and I’m waiting for him to call me.

I am also grateful to all of you who are praying for the Lord to guide and direct my steps. The Lord has given me 3 things to focus on right now.

1. Caregiving takes a lot out of a person physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. We cared for Jay’s dad for 9 years (he passed last year); my mom’s husband for 3 years (he passed earlier this year); and my mom the last 4 years (which I am still overseeing her care). Jay started having health issues the beginning of last year. So I was caring for him for the last year and half. With giving out so much, to so many, for so long, the first thing the Lord wants me to do is to take the time to get “regrounded and refreshed” by drawing closer to Him. Basically, be “a Mary” for a while. As much as I enjoy and miss ministry (as I knew it), I have to take the time for the Lord to refresh and refill my spirit, so I can go back out in service with renewed strength.

2. Finish the process / job of purging. Cleaning out 2 houses so quickly (my mom’s and Jay’s dad’s – just months apart) to get them sold, plus 32 years of marriage, things got really piled up, and with caregiving I did not have the time to stay on top of it all. This will take time, but I am making progress. The Lord has let me know that this is an important step to work on and finish, so that I am free to move on to what He has next for me.

3. The last thing that He specifically told me was to continue to “Trust Me”. He knows what is ahead and the plans / ministry He has in store for the future.

At this point, these 3 things are all the instructions He has given me. I will also be starting the process of looking for a church home. As mentioned in the last update, Salt and Light Ministries was set up as a mobile church, with Jay being the pastor. The inmates and the people we ministered to were our church family, but it is not appropriate for me to go back into men’s prisons alone. I do hope (if it is the Lord’s will) to go back to a couple of the prisons from time to time, but now is not that time. The Lord has given me opportunities to minister to others on a small scale. One lady, who is overwhelmed with circumstances in her life, is dealing with anger towards God and fear of the future. The Lord gave me the opportunity to share Scripture with her, pray with her, and encourage her to press in closer to Him, not run from Him. She thanked me, saying that she felt closer to God after our 2 conversations and was encouraged to turn around and start taking steps back to Him. I praise the Lord for letting me be the vessel that He could flow through to her.

I am still getting letters from inmates, but they are slowing down. I have quite a few to respond to and pray that the Lord will use me to minister to them as I write back. Many letters that I have received have been a blessing in that I see how much the inmates have grown in the Lord, and how the Lord used both Jay & I to minister to them.

There are many I could choose from, but I will limit it to this one….

“…I felt compelled to write you a letter celebrating Mr. Jay & the monumental impact he’s had on me, though I only ever met him once. It was in the fall of last year that he came to _______. It was our 1st service back together post-Covid & my first service ever (as an adult) identifying as a Christian, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect (especially factoring in the prison element). Imagine my suspicion when this unassuming guy wearing a guitar & oversized clothes walks up to the pulpit. Now imagine my surprise that from the moment he opened his mouth to speak, all I saw was light & all I felt was love. I was completely drawn in. Completely mesmerized & joyful. I didn’t fully understand until later the magnitude of God’s ability to use others to exemplify His loving-kindness until that day. I also didn’t know the magnitude of the impact Mr. Jay would have on me. Looking back, I am fully convinced that I have never seen God’s love, light, compassion, & kindness more exemplified in anyone than I did in your husband. It is my pleasure & honor to have known him. It has also brought me great joy to have prayed for him, you, & your ministry nearly every day since. He is an amazing man & an incredible man of God……Thank you for sharing your angel with me & with so many others.”

Through your love, prayers, and giving, countless lives have been touched for Jesus. For this, I (we) say, “thank you”. There is much increase accredited to your account in heaven, as we are co-laborers together with the Lord.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Elizabeth (& Jay)

P.S. I have been asked by several (including inmates) about keeping Salt & Light Ministries open. I had planned on closing it down after the first of next year, but with so many requests, I am praying the Lord will give me a clear answer on this matter. Until then, Tax-Deductible gifts can still be made out TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Elizabeth Roberts

2022 newsletters

August / September 2022

Dear Friends,

It has been since the end of May and the first part of June since a “normal” newsletter went out. (Jay’s condition kept changing too quickly to get any updates to you.) In that last update, we shared how the Lord uses trials to mature us, mold more into the image of Jesus, and causes us to produce more fruit which honors and glorifies the Father. Based on the verses we quoted in that previous letter, there are a few stories I would like to share with you.

At the hospital here, the doctors and nurses were in awe of the peace that Jay displayed throughout his multiple stays. Knowing that his prognosis was terminal and just a matter of time, Jay spoke with peace and confidence in the Lord. They would look at him dumbfounded, were a a loss for words, and could not understand this peace that he had. Many of them told him they would never forget him, thanked him for helping them with his roommates, and said he was the best patient they had ever had. Seeds of the gospel were sown multiple times with staff and other patients. We do not know how each life was affected, but we do know that we can leave the results in the Lord’s hands. Prayerfully, we hope to see some of them in heaven one day.

At Oasis of Hope hospital, in Mexico, more seeds of the gospel were sown. One lady (I would guess in her 70’s) was very standoffish with us when she found out we were Christians. Our talking about the Lord made her uncomfortable and she would avoid us at meal time. On Friday nights, the hospital shows a wholesome movie in the “treatment” room. Jay was too weak to go, but the next morning, this same lady made a beeline for us at breakfast. The movie that was shown made her think and question some things and she wanted to talk with us about it. We shared a lot of Scripture with her and answered her questions. Before she left to go home, to Oklahoma, she told us she had been in various churches for many years, but she learned more from us in the couple of hours we sat and talked with her, than she had in all the churches she had been in, and it gave her a lot to think about.

Another couple, who arrived the day before we left, sat with us after supper and talked for a long time. The woman was there with a recurring cancer and she knew she had to give up her alcohol for her health sake. She told us that all the bad things that had happened in her life and all the stress she had been under with family relationships, she had gotten to the point that all she did was drink. She had pretty much stopped eating and stayed inebriated all the time just to cope and escape reality. Jay shared some of his testimony and many Scriptures with her and her companion. The companion said that he had a Bible somewhere at home and because of what Jay had shared, he wanted to find it and start reading it again.

At Jay’s memorial service, my brother-in-law shared that because of Jay and Pastor Ernesto (the pastor on staff at Oasis), a man who was disinterested and antagonistic towards God had prayed to receive Christ while he was there. After receiving Christ, this man’s face was glowing and he was so excited that he said, “I feel so different that I feel like I need a new name!” That man entered heaven 2 weeks later.

I went back and figured up an estimated cost between the 3 trips to Mexico. Between all 3 stays, the cost was over $55,000. Yet, the Lord, by His leading so many of you as well as many of the inmates, covered every penny of it. Your generosity and obedience to what He laid on your heart was a blessing beyond words. Please know that your giving was not in vain. Jay going to Oasis gave him hope; it gave him the opportunity to minister to countless people; it gave him longer and better quality of life; we saw the body of Christ come together in an amazing supportive way; we both grew in our walk with the Lord; and we know of (at least) one person who has come to Christ from him going there.

I have been asked what I am going to do now. At this point I am not sure. I still have much on my “plate”. Jay and I were married for 32 years and “everything” I have known is now gone. I have a big list of things that I need to make changes to now that Jay is not here. Jay and I were court appointed guardians for my mom and her husband (who passed in January). I am still my mom’s guardian and will continue to oversee her personal and financial care, as her Alzheimer’s is progressing. I have much to go through and process of their things, as well as Jay’s dad’s things from his passing last year, that are stacked up here from cleaning out both houses. So, I still have much to do on the home front.

As far as Salt and Light Ministries goes…..it was set up as a mobile church with Jay and I taking church to shut-in’s and inmates, as well as ministering to people in the community, with prison ministry (all over the state) being the focal point. With Jay’s passing, that has come to an end. It is not appropriate and would be awkward for me, and the men, for me to go back into men’s prisons alone. We did have a few people go with us at one time, but the Lord has led them on to other ministry, and I am waiting upon the Lord to show me the path He has next for me. I am keeping my state wide volunteer service active with the Department of Corrections, so that I can return (with others) as the Lord leads. At one facility the men have asked me “not to forget them” and to please come back from time to time.

For those who gave through Salt and Light, I will leave it up through the end of the year. I am truly grateful for those who have told me they will continue to support me through this transitioning time and beyond, making their checks payable to me instead of Salt and Light. I have also been asked if I was going to keep the post office box open. The news of Jay’s passing is spreading quickly in the prisons but there are some who are still writing. I will see how that goes through the end of the year and decide from there. I anticipate the letters will continue to taper off to the point that I will most likely be closing that as well.

I will continue to send out newsletters, letting you know what the Lord is doing. I am still here, so I know my work is not done. As an old song says, “Many things about tomorrow, I don’t seem to understand. But I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand.” Some verses that I am clinging to right now are: Psalm 143:8; Isaiah 30:19-21; and Jeremiah 29:11. I (we) thank you for the outpouring of your love, cards, gifts, support, and prayers the last two years, especially these last 10 months. This certainly was not the path we would have chosen, but our Shepherd walked with us and ministry to multitudes of people took place. Scores of people said they were praying, with us, for a miracle. Though I do not know what that miracle is supposed to look like, I am (as well as others) are still praying for a miracle. The Lord knows what that miracle is, and I am continuing to ask Him for it.

Thank you again. And always, it is…..

For God’s Glory Alone!

Elizabeth (& Jay)

Though I personally do not have Face Book, I have been told that Jay’s memorial service can be watched on Face Book. Go to: “Temple Baptist Church Madison Heights” to view it.

Through the end of the year: Tax-deductible gifts can still be made payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. Otherwise, please make checks payable directly To: Elizabeth Roberts

May 2022

Dear Friends,

This month’s update is being written from my (Elizabeth’s) standpoint and is longer than normal. Please bear with me, as much has happened since our last letter.

In a devotional recently we read, “The very things that the enemy has planned to destroy us are the very things God will use to prepare, purify, strengthen, and establish us.” (Kay Arthur)

Isaiah 8:12-14 “….neither be in fear of what they fear, nor (make others afraid and) in dread. The Lord of hosts – regard Him as holy and honor His holy name (by regarding Him as your only hope of safety), and let Him be your fear and let Him be your dread (lest you offend Him by your fear of man and distrust of Him). And He shall be a sanctuary (a sacred and indestructible asylum to those who reverently fear and trust in Him)…” (Amplified)

After our last month’s update, Jay took a downward turn. He began feeling more tired, his voice would come and go, his feet and ankles began swelling, he went back to having no appetite, and was having a harder time breathing. Jay ended up back in the hospital for 3 ½ days. He had an appointment for nerve testing in his lower back and below his knee, but because of the swelling, the doctor said they could not do the test and he needed to go to the ER right away. When I left Jay at the hospital, I told him, “Well, I guess the Lord has someone for you to minister to.” Sure enough, the man in the room they put him in was suicidal. Jay talked with him and his mother about the Lord. The mother said that Jay was a God send. The man quieted down a couple of times while Jay talked with him. The man was still bursting out in tears talking suicide, cursed and threatened the nurses; but Jay was able to plant some seeds with both of them. The Lord will take it from there. He was also able to share the Lord with several staff.

While there, they pulled 13 pounds of fluid off of him and MRI’s show that a tumor has invaded the vein that goes from the lower extremities back up to the heart. The doctors had considered putting a stent in the vein to help keep it open, but they decided since the blood thinner and fluid pill were working well, they did not want to put him through a procedure unnecessarily and sent him home.

With all the tests they ran, the doctors here have said there is nothing more that can be done and have called in “palliative” care, which is comfort care. It’s not hospice, but it is 1 step below that. They said the liver is full of tumors, and you can’t live without a liver. With his condition, a liver transplant is not an option either.

We long to be back in our place of service in the prisons, but the Lord has us in a different arena for the time being. The Lord has and still is using us to minister to all kinds of people – from insurance agents, to doctors, nurses, pharmacy workers, people in the community we have never met before, other patients here in the States and Mexico, family, friends, long time acquaintances, and (as we have heard from many of you) – you, our ministry supporters and prayer partners are telling us that the Lord has used what is happening in our lives, to minister to you too. For all this, we thank and praise the Lord!

In our February/March update, when I shared about the couple in Mexico we talked so long to, I said, “Do I understand why? No.” But I do know why. James 1:2-4 “Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations. Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience. But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be people perfectly and fully developed (mature, with no defects), lacking in nothing.” (Amplified)

Endurance: the ability to last, continue or remain; the ability to stand pain, distress, fatigue; endure hardship – to bear without flinching

Steadfastness: to be firm, fixed, settled, or establish, not changing, fickle or wavering

Patience: the will or ability to wait or endure without complaint; steadiness, endurance, perseverance; implies the bearing of suffering, provocation, delay, tediousness, etc. with calmness and self-control.

The Lord wants us to be fully developed / spiritually mature. We also know that His desire, what He has foreordained for us, is to become more like Jesus. Romans 8:28-29 “We are assured and know that (God being a partner in their labor) all things work together and are (fitting into a plan) for good to and for those who love God and are called according to His design and purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also destined from the beginning (foreordaining them) to be molded into the image of His Son (and share inwardly His likeness)…”

He also wants us to glorify Him. John 15:8 “When you bear (produce) much fruit, My Father is honored and glorified, and you show and prove yourselves to be true followers of Mine.”

Bottom line as to why this trial: He wants to mold us more into the image of Jesus; to mature us; and for us to honor and glorify Him.

On the prison side of things, we did go back to the prison we went to last month. The men were once again, overjoyed to see us, and once again, the Lord strengthened us for service. By special request, many of the men asked us to do the song, “Seasons of the Soul”. The bridge in that song has a line that says, “…the dark is just the middle, not the end”. I got that line out, and started crying. Several of the men began crying too, with one of them speaking up saying, “We feel you!” Once we were able to, we all sang the last chorus together. The men in prison are not devoid of emotions or feelings. They feel deeply. I am reminded of Romans 12:15, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.” After the service, a group of the men surrounded Jay to pray for him, asking the Lord again to please bring healing.

The Lord is using this situation in ways we cannot see, but He certainly does. We trust Him and will continue to walk through the doors He opens. We thank you for your continued prayers and/or financial support. We still work together, with the Lord, as a team to reach others for Him.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

April 2022

Dear Friends,

How is Jay?.....Overall, Jay is feeling fine. The slapping of his foot, the doctors seem to think it is nerve damage below the knee, from a fall he had back in February. He will go for nerve testing late in May. In the meantime, the chiropractor we see has been doing adjustments on his lower back and the knee area. We are seeing results. Though he still has to be careful when he walks, he is able to lift his toes and foot a little now.

With the cancer, Jay was referred to another oncologist in the hopes that this doctor would work hand in hand with the doctors in Mexico. Unfortunately, the doctor that he saw was very rude, obnoxious, argumentative, and refused to work with any other doctors. Needless to say, that was a closed door. Though the bloodwork is up and down, we have noticed several positive changes since our last update. The swelling in his thyroid has come down significantly; his voice has gone from a raspy whisper to (for the most part) strong and normal; his appetite is improving; he has gone from losing 5 to 7 pounds a week to maintaining his weight for the last 4 weeks; as well as his since of taste and smell getting back to normal. We are praising the Lord for these improvements.

We are also excited to tell you that we were able to do a prison service April 21st. Jay still does not have much stamina, so the chaplain met us at front entry with a wheelchair. The service had been moved to the opposite side of the prison and he wanted Jay to save his strength for the service. The men were overjoyed to see us, just as much as we were seeing them. Several were choking back tears, telling us how much they have missed us and have been praying for us. Jay was able to sing and preach with the Lord’s divine strength. The service from beginning to end was a true blessing from the Lord. It was so wonderful to be back in our place of service.

Lord willing, we will be returning again May 12th. Plus, another chaplain wanted to know how Jay did so he can schedule us at the prison he is at for 2 services (on the same day). We are waiting for him to get back with us with what he has available, as the men there are also praying for Jay’s healing and our soon return.

We are looking at going back to the hospital in Mexico the first part of June for Jay’s 6 month follow up. Though the doctor’s reports are still not good, by faith we are taking steps forward, back into the ministry the Lord has called us to, relying on the Lord to strengthen Jay’s body for service.

We thank you for standing with us with your prayers and/or financial support.

Always… For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

February / March 2022

Dear Friends,

We apologize for missing our February monthly newsletter. February was very, very full with Elizabeth cleaning out the rest of her mom's house and getting it ready for the buyer by the 18th, so we could leave for Jay’s 2nd treatment in Mexico, on the 19th. During that time, Jay was really struggling physically (getting weaker) as well as getting food poisoning from a takeout meal. It took him a week to recover from the food poisoning. We returned home on March 1st to a very full schedule with lots of doctor's appointments for Jay, as well as tending to Elizabeth’s mom.

A quick update for the many who have asked how Elizabeth's mom, Rosa, is doing since her husband, Paul, passed away in January….She is doing well. The Alzheimer's continues to progress – she thinks she is back in school or helping out at church. Every once in a while she wants us to take her “home” but she does not know where home is. Thankfully however, she is happy and content. Many times we can hear her singing softly to herself, which is a blessing. We are (guessing) that we are about 85% done with everything we need to do in settling her / their affairs.

With Jay, the report was not good. The doctor described the cancer as a semi-truck that had slammed on brakes but still moving forward. However, we did find out that the home treatment plan was not being taken correctly (a breakdown in communication). The hospital was in the process of doing a clinical trial on a new type of inferred light therapy they had been testing for many years. They had one more slot open and were pressuring Jay (with fear) to take that slot. To do so, he would have to extend his stay for another 10 days. We agreed to it (because they needed an answer quickly) and he received 2 of the 10 treatments while we were there. However, as we tried to figure out how to arrange things to make it work, the more stressed and lack of peace we had. As we talked and prayed, the only decision that brought us peace was for Jay to decline completing the clinical trial and us come back home together.

Once back home, Jay continued to decline. He began turning jaundice. The blood tests indicated he was in liver failure. We prayed and Jay sent out an urgent prayer request to those who are following him on Facebook, along with some others via text. In a few days, we began noticing a change for the better. His eyes were becoming less yellow and the pink in his skin began to slowly return. He had his bloodwork done again and found that his liver cancer markers were still high, but all the other numbers had come back down to normal. We are very grateful and praise the Lord for such a quick answer to prayer.

While this was happening, Jay’s left foot began “smacking”, he could not lift his foot or his toes up, and the left side of his left calf went numb. He ended up going to an Ortho Walk-In clinic. An MRI was done of his lower back and they found spinal stenosis at his L5 and S1 vertebrae. The doctor wants him to see the spine team to see what they would suggest. In the meantime, our chiropractor wants to look at the MRI to see if it is something he can help with, so that Jay can avoid possible surgery.

Jay was asked many years ago, “How can God receive glory from sickness?” His response was, “That’s just it. He gets the glory when we give Him the glory.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10) With that in mind, we want to relay a couple of stories of how the Lord has used this situation to share Him and His Word with others…..

In Mexico…..

When Jay told the staff of our decision to return home, the doctor wanted to see him immediately. The doctor began pressuring him again to stay saying, “We are really concerned about you. We know your cancer can be healed. We’ve healed it before.” Jay, with calm resolve said, “Satan does not have the power of death. Jesus took that from him. (Hebrews 2:14 & Revelation 1:18) I am not going to go one second before or after my appointed time.” With that the doctor’s shoulders relaxed; he smiled from ear to ear, and said, “You are right”; and said nothing more. Standing upon the Word of God, God’s peace spoke volumes to this doctor.

For meals, all the cancer patients (if they are able) along with their companion come down to the dining room and everyone eats together. It is interesting all the people you meet from all over the world. We met others from several places across the United States, as well as London, Italy, Albania, Egypt, and Hong Kong. One night, as we sat at the dinner table, a couple who had just arrived the day before sat with us. As we talked about what each of us were facing, the husband, holding back tears, said he (he and their 2 children) are not ready to let her go. We shared many verses from the Bible. Elizabeth shared with them about her dad, Rex. His life verses were Proverbs 3:5&6. When he was married to his first wife, she was pregnant with their 3rd child when they found she had cancer (this was back in the 1960’s). She refused treatment to protect the baby. She carried the baby as long as possible and died 6 weeks after they took the baby by C-section. A lady who had gone to church with them back then, when she found out who Elizabeth’s dad was, said that in all the years she had been in church, she had never seen anyone live out those verses like her dad. Elizabeth told this couple that her dad, even through the pain of watching his wife suffer and die; not understanding why; and being left a widower with 3 children, he just kept trusting the Lord. Three years later, he remarried and two years after that, Elizabeth was born. Elizabeth went on to tell them that she had heard an illustration years ago that stuck with her. “We don’t see the whole picture but God does. It’s like watching a parade through the knothole in a fence. We can only see what’s directly in front of us. But with God, it is like He is in the blimp overhead and He sees the whole thing, from the beginning to the end. It may not be the best illustration, but it gives our situations a word picture to remind us how much we need to trust the Lord because we don’t see the big picture. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” Is it hard? Yes. Do I cry? Yes. Do I understand why? No. But what I do know is that God is good and I can trust Him.” The couple both cried and thanked us for spending so much time with them.

We are still praying to Jehovah Rapha, “the God who heals”, for a miracle. In 2 Kings 20:1-3, King Hezekiah prayed for healing and God gave him 15 more years. For the last two months, unless He returns before then, we have been praying for the Lord to grant this healing and give Jay 20+ more years for us to continue serving Him together.

On the prison front, the Department of Corrections has a shortage of over 4,000 employees. Because of this big shortage in staff, many of the prisons are not having services. We miss ministering to the men in person. However, we are pleased to hear from those who write letting us know how the Lord is using them to minister to their fellow inmates.

A couple of the inmates wrote to tell us they just cried and immediately started praying the moment they found out about Jay’s cancer. One of them said, “I don’t know what to say.” Jay responded, “Say Hallelujah! The name of the Lord is to be praised.”

One of our favorite passages is Habakkuk 3:17-19. Though the fig tree does not blossom, and there is no fruit on the vines, though the yield of the olive fails and the fields produce no food, though the flock is cut off from the fold and there are no cattle in the stalls, Yet I will [choose to] rejoice in the LORD; I will [choose to] shout in exultation in the [victorious] God of my salvation! The Lord GOD is my strength [my source of courage, my invincible army]; He has made my feet [steady and sure] like hinds’ feet and makes me walk [not stand still in terror, but walk forward with spiritual confidence] on my high places [of challenge and responsibility].

Since we missed February and this is going on the end of March, we will plan on sending out our next update at the end of April. We thank you for your love, prayers, and / or financial support. All that is accomplished together as a team and as a family is….

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

January 2022

Dear Friends,

January proved to be another very busy month. Many have asked us for updates on Jay and Elizabeth’s mom.

Jay has had more “bad” days with the chemo treatments this month. He is experiencing what they call “chemo brain”. Elizabeth refers to it as almost like a “zombie” state, where he struggles to function with normal daily activities, is easily confused, and has to be constantly reminded of simple things. Yet, he also has some good days too, where he has more energy and clarity of mind to help Elizabeth with the care of her mom’s affairs. Jay continues to share the goodness of the Lord with many as he talks about the cancer. With those who either have cancer or family dealing with cancer, he is able to talk to them from experience and how the Lord ministers to him in the midst of it. And for those asking, Jay will return to the Oasis of Hope hospital for another week of treatment and see what progress he has made, the end of February.

Elizabeth’s mom’s husband passed on January 21st. There was a lot going on leading up to his passing, and now there is another whole set of issues to deal with because he had refused to give us the necessary information we asked him for, over 2 years ago, to help us handle his affairs. (Though he said he trusted us, he did not want to admit that he needed help.) So, while we continue to search through lots of paperwork to find what we need, we have spent hours and hours on the phone and in-person trying to tie up all the loose ends. Elizabeth’s mom, with her Alzheimer’s, is unable to help with this process.

One of Elizabeth’s sisters did come from Florida, to help us the first week to help their mom process the reality of his passing. It was heartbreaking to see her the first few days, keep forgetting that he had passed, and watching her feel the shock and grief over and over again, like it was the first time hearing the news. Then, through tears and feeling guilty, wishing she had been with him, and us having to remind her that she was with him and she had nothing to feel guilty about. With much prayer for her, she finally remembered that he was dead and she was able to start moving forward. After those first couple of days, we were able to redo her room at the facility to make it feel more homey and comfortable for her. The staff has told us that they have noticed the biggest change in her and they all simply love her. Even with the Alzheimer’s, God’s love within her, is shining out as a light for them to see.

We do have a couple of inmate stories to share as well. The first one… Jay posted on Facebook that we needed some help to move mom’s old, worn out furniture out of her room, so we could get her a new bed. He got a response from a lady whose son is in one of the prisons we were ministering in. She has custody of his teenage son, has been home schooling him, and trying to teach him many life skills. The young man wanted to help us, as a thank you, because we had helped his dad. His dad had become a Christian in prison and is now preaching to the other inmates.

The second story is an inmate who we have had a part in his life for many, many years. He writes us every month. In his last letter, he shared his concerns about another inmate who claims to be a Christian but does not live like one. He shared verses with us and wanted to know our thoughts on the matter. This blesses us because we see growth in him in that he is using the Bible to help him discern the real from the counterfeit. For Jesus plainly tells us in Matthew 7 that by their fruit you will know them and this is echoed throughout the New Testament.

We thank you for your concern, your prayers, and / or your financial support. We as fellow workers, with God and for God, are seeing the ripple effect of the years of ministry the Lord has called us to.

A couple of verses that we recently read in our quiet time are,

Psalm 46:1&5, “God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present (and well proved) help in trouble…..God in the midst…God will help…”

Isaiah 43:18-19, “Do not remember the former things; neither consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing!.....I will even make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”

With the many changes that has happened in our lives this last year and the beginning of this year, we can rest assured that the Lord is continuing to lead us on new paths…..

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

Year End 2021

Dear Friends,

We wish to thank each of you for your prayers, words of encouragement, gifts, and continued financial support. In all honesty, 2021 was a difficult year. Caring for Jay’s dad, Elizabeth’s mom and her mom’s husband; Jay’s dad passing; Elizabeth’s mom and her husband declining to the point we had to go to court for guardianship to make them move into a facility for their care and safety; cleaning out both houses; taking over the financial responsibilities for Elizabeth’s mom; Jay being sick the whole year with 3 hospital stays (29 days total); him having multiple procedures; getting the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, and trying to keep up with ministry obligations. Many times we felt very overwhelmed. The poem, Footprints in the Sand, describes how we have felt much of last year….that we are walking through the hard times alone. But we are not. The Lord is carrying us, even when it “feels” like He is distant. Moses, in Deuteronomy 1:31 reminded Israel, “…in the wilderness….the Lord your God carried you, as a man carry’s his son, all the way you went.…” The Lord told Israel in Isaiah 46:4 “Even to your old age I am He (I am the same); even to your gray hairs will I carry you: I have made and I will bear; even I will carry you, (I will sustain you) I will deliver you.” When we step back, we can see how the timing of all these events was not just random circumstances and happenings, but God’s loving intervention to keep us trusting in Him and not in ourselves (2 Corinthians 1:9).

Some of the prisons did reopen to volunteers back in September. One of the ones we were going to twice a month still has not reopened. We were blessed, however, to be able to have 3 services before Jay went into the hospital for cancer treatments. With the chemo regime that he is on right now, he has been told to stay away from gatherings. So, ministering in the prisons or churches is on hold. We still correspond with and disciple inmates through the mail. Each one of them are also praying for Jay’s healing and our quick return to them. Jay will return to Oasis of Hope hospital late February or early March, for another round (8 days) of in hospital treatment, as well as, get an update on how the in-home treatment is going. (The exact date is uncertain at the moment because we are in the process of trying to sell Elizabeth’s mom’s house.) Again, we thank you for your prayers and the many different ways you support.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

Nov/Dec 2021

Our Dear Family in Christ,

What a whirlwind these past few months have been! We are grateful to each one of you, for your prayers, words of encouragement and/or financial gifts towards Jay’s cancer treatments. We feel very blessed to have so many caring friends.

Jay’s trip to Oasis of Hope Hospital, in Mexico, was like a missions trip with treatments included. Many of the other patients and their family members professed faith in Christ. This made conversations with them spiritually refreshing. The hospital has a pastor, on staff who provides worship/devotional services Sunday through Friday. Though Jay was unable to attend many of them due to treatment schedules, the ones he did attend were very moving times of worship. During one service, one of the patients became a follower of Christ! In his excitement of his new birth he proclaimed, “I’ve never felt this way before! I feel like a whole new person and need a new name!” At another service, a man told Jay that he had come to be supportive of the person he was with for their healing, but said, “I’m the one being healed”.

After the pastor got to know Jay, he was asked to lead one of the services. The Lord led Jay to sing a few songs and speak on being real with God. The Lord used the short message and testimonial to touch many. Almost everyone told him afterwards of how the Lord blessed them through the message. One young woman told Jay, “I never cry, but the things you shared made me cry…...in a good way.” Jay was also asked to lead music for 2 impromptu fellowship times, singing hymns and older praise and worship songs. Again, the Lord used him to minister to many. Before, during, and after meal time, Jay also had multiple opportunities to sit and talk with other patients and their loved ones, answering their questions with God’s Word. The Lord flowed through Jay in many wonderful ways while he was there.

Jay will be doing in-home therapy, which includes a low dose chemo regimen, for the next couple of months. He will return to Mexico, in February, for one week of in-hospital therapy and assessment. Lord willing, Elizabeth will be able to go with him for this.

We are thankful that the Chaplains are covering services, temporarily, for us. We, as well as the inmates, look forward to when we will be able to return.

Merry Christmas and God bless you!

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

October 2021

Our Dear Family in Christ,

Thank you for the outpouring of love, concern, prayers, visits and gifts. After much research, counsel, and prayer, the Lord directed us to Oasis of Hope in Tijuana, Mexico, for alternative cancer treatment. We believe the Lord has a better plan than what the doctors have to say and we trust Him with the results. Though we don’t know what the Lord has in store, we do know it is for our good and His glory. Jay will leave November 3rd, for their 20 day treatment plan, and return home the 23rd. Elizabeth will remain here to take care of things for her mom and step-dad.

We know the Lord has more work for us to do, so are believing for great things! Jay was able to go to a prison to conduct 2 services. The men were overjoyed to see him. After such a long time of being apart because of Covid, the chaplain asked the volunteers to speak on healing and restoration. With many examples to pull from in the Bible, Jay was led to pull from two of them. The first one was on Job. The Lord allowed Job to be tried and tested with great affliction, but after the testing He healed and restored him. Job responded, “I know that thou canst do everything…” Job knew the Lord even better after his testing. The second illustration was from Galatians 5:26-6:1, regarding sin, repentance, healing, and restoration within the body of Christ. The men responded very well to the Word. After both services, the men wanted to pray over Jay for God’s healing, so he can continue in the ministry God has called us to.

We know our Lord is a prayer answering God and nothing is impossible for Him. As James 1:2-4 says, we are counting it all joy because we know the Lord will use this to grow us in patience, endurance, and steadfastness. He is molding us more into His likeness and we will know Him better because of it.

Thank you for your prayers and partnering with us. As we already said, we are looking for the Lord to do great things, and you continue to have a part in His plan to reach others for Jesus.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

September 2021

Dear Friends,

Our Dear Family in Christ, We do not wish for our update to be a heavy one, but we are in need of much prayer. For most of the month of September as well as the first week of October, Jay has been sick. The medication for his diabetes quit working and the medication the doctor tried caused a very bad reaction. He ended up back in the emergency room October 2nd. After having a couple of CT scans, the problem was found. Jay has stage 4 pancreatic cancer with multiple lesions on his liver. Oncology could only offer aggressive treatment of 4 chemo drugs with horrible side effects and a prognosis of 11 months.

While all of this was going on, Elizabeth’s stepfather, Paul, continued to get worse with his Parkinson’s and ended up in the hospital from a really bad fall. The doctor’s told us they would not let him return home since he has had multiple falls within the last month, and that he must move into an assisted living facility. While he was in the hospital, we were caring for Elizabeth’s mom, Rosa, (with Alzheimer’s) in our home. After a week, the hospital said he was stable enough to be released to a facility. The Lord, quickly, opened the door for us to get them placed together in the Memory Care Unit of a local facility just a few days ago. This now leaves us the huge task of cleaning out their house & handling all their affairs.

When we first learned of Jay’s condition, his response was, “I am at peace. IF this is meant to be my portal to eternity, I will embrace it. IF meant to be so I have the opportunity to show the strength is from God, I will glory in the infirmity. Otherwise, I will do what I have to keep on task.”

In praying, we do not have a peace about going with the aggressive chemo treatment plan that was proposed. We did seek help from a Christian nutritionist and licensed herbologist, who gave us several supplements to start with. We also have reached out to an alternative cancer treatment center in Mexico (which has a 65% – 75% success rate) for more information on what they have to offer. We know that whether through the Lord’s supernatural touch or through the aid of others, He is the One who does the healing. We are seeking His guidance for which direction. The Lord has given us vision for the future and we cannot imagine Him giving us this vison for it not to come to pass. So, we rest in His sovereignty, knowing He has a plan. We will stay on task in that we will continue to proclaim Him to all we come in contact with, in the days ahead.

And for those of you who are wondering what is going to happen to prison ministry…… we have no plans to stop. We plan on continuing to go through the doors that are open to us to minister to the men in prison, in person and through the mail. The Lord told Jay a few years ago, “Feed My sheep”, and that part of his assignment has not changed. We thank you for your fervent prayers on our behalf. Your love, your prayers, and your support are such a blessing.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

August 2021

Dear Friends,

August was a very busy month for us. Jay was able to correspond with many inmates via regular mail; we were able to help some elderly people in our community; and we also got our updated training, which was a requirement for us to go back into the prisons.

Because of the delay in getting our newsletter done, we can report to you that we have already been back into one of the prisons. It was a joyful reunion! There were about 15 men. (The number of men allowed in the service is limited until more men are fully vaccinated.) We all had to wear masks, which made it a little difficult to sing because we kept sucking in our masks when taking a breath, but we had a good time. We did get to meet two new men, who had been transferred in during the shut-down. One of them had given his heart to the Lord since being sent to prison. He told Elizabeth, “It was a wakeup call.” And now he is so excited to have his feet on the right path for the first time in his life.

These last several years, we have (sadly to say) seen more and more people claiming to be Christians (followers of Jesus) but have absolutely no evidence of being His follower or conforming into His image. So, Jay preached a message of self-examination…..

Simply: Make sure you are truly in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5 & Matthew 7:13-27)

Have you given up your ways to follow His ways? Have you died to what you want to embrace and follow what He wants? It is not traditional or religious activities but the ways of Christ. (Mark 8:34 & John 12:26)

Are you bearing the proper fruit as evidence of that commitment to Him? (Galatians 5:22-23)

Afterwards, several men told him, “Good message!” We know it is not our message but the Lord’s. As our world gets more and more wicked, He is calling out, “Follow Me.” “Choose Me over yourself and everyone else.” (Mark 8:34; Luke 14:26) He gave up His life to save us because He loved us. We give up our lives to serve Him because we love Him back. We have more services coming up and are looking forward to being with the men and back in our place of service.

Thank you for standing with us. Your encouragement, prayers, and support are a blessing as we work together, with the Lord, to be fishers of men.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

July 2021

Dear Friends,

Shortly after we sent out our last letter, it was announced that the prisons were going to reopen to religious volunteers August 1st. We had heard from two chaplains, asking if we were interested in coming back when they did reopen, which we of course said “yes”. However, with so many rules and logistics that the prisons have to work out, they are struggling to find the best way to comply with all the new mandates. They are still debating on the numbers. We have been told 2 different scenarios: 1. they were only going to allow 10 people total (including us); and 2. We have been told they were going to allow 15 inmates plus volunteers. Either way, we have had one chaplain confirm our coming back and that is supposed to start in September.

In the meantime, we have heard from several of the inmates and want to share a portion of one of their letters with you.

“I write….in the name of Jesus my Lord and Savior in life now….because He truly saved my life from going to hell….Thanks to you and your friendship and all of your tuff love for me over the past 5 long hard years in prison, and your letters of love and suggestions and positive advice….I am 100% now truly saved….Thank you so very much for never giving up on me in life because without you I would already have committed suicide years ago….”

There was much more to his letter, but this was the highlight we wanted to share with you because you had a part in this. Since we are co-laborers together with God in this ministry, you our prayer partners and / or supporters, have a share in this lost soul coming to faith in Jesus Christ. Proverbs 11:30 says, “He that winneth souls is wise.” And Jesus says in Matthew 4:19 & Mark 1:17, “I will make you fishers of men.” This is what we are all called to do – go fishing and making disciples. We thank you for your partnership with us in this ministry. We are so looking forward to being back in the prisons, the field to which God has called us to.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

June 2021

Dear Friends,

According to the latest reports being told to us, the prison chaplains are “scheduled” to return no earlier than August 15th; the inmates are being told that they will not get back to normal (or to the “new normal”) till 75% of the inmate population (here in Virginia) have been vaccinated; and the proposed return for volunteers does not look to be until October at the earliest. So, we continue to wait for the Lord’s timing to go back in.

In the meantime, as many of you know from experience, we are busy with all that needs to be done in helping Jay’s brother take care of settling their dad’s affairs. As you are also aware of, we have been involved in caring for Elizabeth’s mom and her husband for the last 2 ½ years. As of this last month, his condition has declined significantly. We are now in the process of having to completely take over handling their affairs, as their doctors have told us that they both need to go into an assisted living facility that has a memory care unit; as they, most likely, will need that in the “near future”. We have days that we feel overwhelmed, but so thankful the Lord’s strength is made perfect in our weakness.

Jay is still corresponding with the inmates who write. It is such a blessing to read how the Lord is working in their lives.

We wanted to share 2 stories with you.

The first one works in the prison library. With the shutdown, he has been able to keep his job. He would wheel the book cart around through the halls so men could still check out books to read while being confined in their cells. Though jobs are very hard to get and the pay is very little, he is so thankful for it. He excitedly wrote to tell us what God did and what he learned. This is what happened…..He did not receive his pay for 3 months and everyone he talked to about it said they could not help him. One administrator, who said this, asked if he would help her by doing some volunteer work for her. Keeping a positive attitude, as a representative of Jesus, he said yes. He was still frustrated and discouraged about not getting his pay, but one night, he realized that he had not asked the Lord for help. So, he got down on his knees and prayed. He said that he gave the situation over to the Lord and said he was taking his hands off…..that he would not say anything more to anyone about it and trust Him to take care of it. The Lord answered! Within a week, the one administrator who said she could not help him, got all the information needed, and he got his pay. He was so excited to share with us how the Lord taught him to let go, to trust Him, and watch Him answer.

The second one works in housekeeping. He pushes food carts around to the housing units as well as huge containers of coffee. Though the carts are available, he would carry these heavy coffee containers from location to location. He called it foolish….doing this in his own strength. But the Lord showed him something very special through this. He said,

“….Many brethren would probably agree and rush to judge me; but could it be that a great number are as hard headed as I??? How many struggle with things they don’t have to and carry burdens they were never designed to carry? Countless believers engage in battles that our heavenly Father longs to fight on our behalf. We are guilty of operating in limited and insufficient human strength. Life tends to be a perpetual wrestling match with temptation, fear, and doubt. Before the rising of the sun, many rise to battle with dark thoughts, depression and anger. Most make it through the days as surely as I make it to each unit….but just like me, they struggle! Yet, in love, Christ exhorts us to take all anxieties, cares and burdens and cast them all on Him!!! Guilt about things we cannot change –We don’t have to bear it! Shame over a past we can’t erase – We don’t have to bear it! A mind and heart damaged by deep betrayal – We don’t have to bear it! Internal scars from abuse suffered in youth – We don’t have to bear it! Let us cast every weight and care on Him!!! Jesus knew that our guilt and sin was too much for us – That’s why He bore it for us! He knew that the debt was too high for us – That’s why He paid it for us! His life blood was the ransom which brought release – He joyfully gave it for us! Sheep are not designed to carry burdens! Let us give them to our Shepherd!!!”

It is so wonderful to see how the Lord is working in the lives of our incarcerated brothers. Though their numbers may be few, locked away behind cinderblock walls and razor wire, the Lord is ministering to them, teaching them, and using them to be lights to the many who sit in darkness around them. We are humbled and blessed that the Lord chooses to use us to be an encouragement to them to keep their eyes on Him. They say we are a blessing to them, but they are just as much of a blessing to us.

Though we are busy with parental care, the Lord has also allowed us the opportunity to explain various Scriptures to inmates, friends and neighbors seeking answers. We thank you for your continued prayers and/or financial support. The Lord is still moving in many lives and in many ways.

Thank you for partnering with us, to keep us available for the Master’s use.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

May 2021

We apologize for the delay in this month’s update. We have been very busy with the passing of Jay’s dad. We know you have been praying for us these many, many months.

We cared for Charles for 9 years, with around the clock care for the last 9 months. As you are aware, we (as a family) had to place him an assisted living facility the 1st of March. Towards the end of April, as he was eating, he aspirated on his saliva and ended up with pneumonia (this happened while Jay was in the hospital an hour away). Two days after being admitted into the hospital, dad was diagnosed with Covid and as a result he lost his ability to swallow. After several weeks with up and down days, the doctor finally told us that this was basically the beginning of the end, and once his quarantine was over, he was sent back to the facility under hospice care. Jay took his guitar over almost every day to play and sing the old hymns (that he loved) to him. The last two things Jay heard his dad say to him, a week before he became nonresponsive was, “I love you too.” And “That’s good”.

We had been praying the last several months that the Lord would take him home. Dad had told Elizabeth back in 2006, “I’m ready to go and I’m looking forward to going.” He did not want to linger here. There were 3 passages (that mean a lot to us) that we prayed back to the Lord in asking Him to take dad home. The 1st one was Isaiah 57:1-2, “The righteous perisheth (dies) and no man layeth it to heart….none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come. He (in death) shall enter into peace; they shall rest in their beds…” The 2nd passage was Psalm 116:15, “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.” When a believer dies, it is precious to the Lord because of the 3rd passage, John 17:24 (Jesus praying), “Father, I will (or desire) that they also, whom thou hast given Me (entrusted to Me), be with me where I am, that they may behold (see) My glory, which Thou hast given Me…” Jesus longs for us (all of us who love Him) to see His glory and to be with Him. So, on May 22nd, God the Father, who has continued to answer the prayer of Jesus all these years (and centuries later), answered again. Charles laid aside his earthly broken down body and went home. We can confidently say it was the happiest day of dad’s life, because it was the day he saw his Lord face to face. He simply moved without having to pack.

Not only has the Lord taken dad home, but He has also taken several of the inmates home too. We were told, by an inmate, in his latest letter, that several of the men who came to our services have died from Covid. Though the news is sad, we are so thankful that through your partnership with us, they were either reached with the gospel for salvation or they were taught the Word of the Lord to help them grow. Though you never got to meet them here, you will one day meet them in heaven. For, we are partners and fellow workmen together with the Lord

(1st Corinthians 3:9 and 2nd Corinthians 6:1) in reaching souls for Jesus.

There still is no word as to, if or when, we will be allowed back into the prisons. We are told that if they allow us back in, they will never allow the large groups for church services again. It would be 10 to 12 men at the most and services would be back in their pods (their housing units). If this happens, Elizabeth would not be able to go in anymore, because it simply would not be appropriate for her to go back to the men’s housing units. We continue to wait for the Lord to open the door as He sees fit and for His timing.

In the meantime, we are corresponding with the inmates who do continue to write; as well as minister to all whom the Lord brings across our path. We gratefully thank you for your prayers and/or support. We know the Lord is in control and as a famous evangelist from the 1700’s (Jonathan Edwards) once said, “God does what He wills with His own”. We are here for our Master’s use and appreciate your encouragement and partnership with us.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

Jay’s dad wrote a song that he called his testimony song. This spoke what was in his heart……

At Jesus’ Feet © 1988 – Charles E. Roberts

A sinner was I down here below

When Jesus said come unto me.

I trusted Him and he saved my soul

I’ll praise His name eternally.

Oh friend of mine won’t you go with me

Where all is peace and joy and love?

When the chilling hand of death o’r takes me

I’ll live forever in a mansion above.

The Savior is knocking at your hearts door

If you let Him in, your friend He’ll be.

Then you won’t have to fear the judgment

Won’t you come now to Calvary?

I’ll fly away one day to Heaven

Where all my loved ones I shall meet.

We’ll gather round God’s throne in glory

And we’ll all bow down at Jesus’ Feet.

April 2021

What can we say other than, “Wow, what a month!” As we go through life and grow more in our faith, we experience the grace of God in new ways. Jay began having some health issues back in February. The doctors could not find anything at the time. Around April 15th, the problem showed itself even more. He went back to the doctor, on the 19th, to see if they could find something this time. By the 21st, he was in the Emergency Room. After being given 3 units of blood and multiple procedures, over a 9 day period, they found the bleeding coming from his stomach. Thankfully, they were able to cut out and cauterize the spot.

We knew something was wrong and had prayed for the Lord’s supernatural, healing touch since February. However, that was not the Lord’s will in this case. In 2 Corinthians 12, the apostle Paul also had prayed for the Lord to remove his “thorn in the flesh”, but the Lord’s response was, “My grace (My gratifying favor; My influence upon your heart causing you gratitude) is sufficient (exactly enough).” With this statement from the Lord, Paul responds with, “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory (boast or rejoice) in my infirmities (frailty, feebleness, disease, sickness, or weakness) that the power of Christ my rest upon me.”

This is exactly what happened. With all the restrictions in place, there would have been no way for Jay to just walk into the hospital, pick out a floor, and try to minister to doctors, nurses, cleaning and cafeteria staff, or pick out a random room to talk to the person there. It was through this frailty that Jay was able to share little nuggets of Truth with everyone who came into the room and his roommate. Some of the comments were, “We need this!” “God sent you here!” “I’ve never heard that before! Can you text me that passage?” “This is the happy room!” “I’m going to cry when you leave.” “This is like an oasis.” “Thank you for being so pleasant.” Etc.

Jay has been told that it is going to take 2 to 3 months for him to fully recover. But we praise the Lord that His grace was truly sufficient, for the Lord opened doors to minister to a whole host of people that in “normal” circumstances, Jay never would have met.

In our last update, we thanked you for your partnership with us, so that we could be available for the Master’s use. What a blessing it is to be ambassadors for the Lord in so many unexpected ways. Thank you for lifting us up to the Lord in prayer. We are grateful.

In closing, without knowing what was happening in our lives, we had an outpouring of letters from inmates telling us they were praying for us and missed us. We have included a copy of a poem, to us, from one of them. We pray it will bless you as it blessed us and Jay’s roommate.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

MAR 2021

Dear Friends,

In our last update, we shared with you that after much prayer the decision had been made to move Jay’s dad into an assisted living facility. It has been a month now, and we are so happy to report to you that his dad loves it! He went from just existing and actually declining at home to being active and engaging with others his own age. Though Jay and Larry were doing their best to care for the physical needs of their dad, they could not meet the mental, emotional, and social needs he had. We say thank you for all the prayers. There were literally hundreds of people (from dad’s church, Larry’s church, our church, and you on our newsletter list) who were praying for the Lord’s guidance. The Lord answered all these prayers in directing our steps and opening wide this door. What a blessing to see dad doing so well.

There is still no word on when the prisons will reopen. However, the Lord is opening other doors for us to minister. Three churches have had us in to minister either in preaching, music, or both. We personally know at least 6 people who have passed away in the last 2 months – 5 of which were Christians and 1 we are not sure about. We were able to share Jesus and His Word with the grieving friends and families – either by phone, mail, or in person. We also have spent hours by phone talking with others who were asking all kinds of questions about the Bible; seeking to know the Lord better; to understand His Word more; or just needing encouragement.

There are many God stories we would like to share with you from this last month, but we will narrow it down to one for now. One of the people, who passed away this month, was a retired police officer. Many years ago, when we were giving an update to a supporting church, this man refused to come hear us talk about prison ministry. As a former police officer, he witnessed countless atrocities and horrible things done to people over the years. His mindset (we were told by the pastor) was, “They deserve to be in prison. They don’t deserve to hear about God.” Two years ago, when we were back at that church to give our yearly update, he was there. When the service was over he came to speak to us as he was exiting. Elizabeth thanked him for his many years of public service to his community. He looked at her, with tears in his eyes, and said, “Thank you for what you do.” God had worked in this man’s heart to release his bitterness and anger, and then turn it into compassion for lost souls and gratitude that there were those who are called to go to tell them of Jesus. What an awesome God we serve!

We thank you; our partners together with the Lord, for helping us reach out to the lost souls all around us. As we have said many times, we miss being with the men, but are grateful for the other opportunities to be ambassadors for Jesus in our community. Your partnership is much appreciated as we continue to be available for the Master’s use.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

FEB 2021

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your continued prayers. Circumstances this month necessitated a family meeting regarding Jay’s dad. As of March 1st, Jay’s dad was moved into an assisted living facility. As of the writing of this update, the worker that has helped walk all of us through the process called to say that Jay’s dad is doing well. She said that he and his roommate (who is just 1 week older) are like 2 peas in a pod, where you see one you see the other. We are so thankful! Elizabeth’s mom and her husband have good days and bad days, as their health continues to decline. With Jay’s dad in a facility now, we will be more available in caring for them.

On the prison ministry front, an inmate wrote that Covid is still bad and it did not look like there was any end in sight. Yet, we have had heard from a couple of others, from different facilities, write and tell us that they are being told they need to sign up for programs as they will be starting up soon. However, we have not been given any official word on this. The Lord continues to be faithful to His children, whether “free” or “bound”. The inmate, who wrote and told us that Covid was still bad, also told us that where he is at, he gets with about 8 other men each week for Bible study. He, excitedly, said they each take a turn doing the teaching and his was coming up. He is one we have watched grow in his walk with the Lord over the years. It’s exciting to see him taking what he has learned and is learning, and ministering to his fellow inmates.

We praise the Lord for the fruit that continues to blossom and grow, even when we are not there. Thank you for your partnership with us. It is like dropping a stone in a lake; the ripple effect just keeps going and going.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

JAN 2021

Dear Friends,

You all are so special to us. We know you are praying, for we have felt the Lord’s extra measure of grace and strength this last month. Thank you for all the notes of encouragement in this ministry of caring for parents. It is no mistake in the timing of the closure of the prisons, for it has allowed us the needed time to devote to their care, especially Jay’s dad.

As you know, the only contact we have with inmates right now is through the mail. Jay was able to write many of them this last month to encourage them in the Word. A couple letters we received stated, “We don’t know what you are being told out there, but it’s bad in here.” Yet, what blessed us so much was reading their letters, still proclaiming the goodness of the Lord. One wrote, “The Father & doctor here saved my life” Then went on to say, “You all have always lite my life up & made prison much easier for me….Will always love you all.”

The Lord also gave us the opportunity to minister to several in our community. Opportunities such as taking different “shut-in’s” out to run errands; spending hours on the phone sharing Scripture to encourage others; Jay was able to go to the bedside of a dying man and share the Gospel with him (whether he responded before he died or not we do not know) as well as sharing the Lord and His Word with people in the stores. Though there are many verses we could choose, one that comes to mind to sum up our mindset and heart’s desire is 2 Corinthians 4:5, “For what we preach is not ourselves but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.” Whether we are in a prison service, talking with people in the community, or caring for parents, we are humbled and privileged to be servants for Jesus sake. Thank you for partnering with us to fulfill God’s call on our lives in simply sharing Him with others, wherever they may be.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

2020 newsletters

DEC 2020

Dear Friends,

To write you and say all is “hunky-dory” (or fine) would not be true. Life is tough right now. We are being bombarded from every side, it would seem. This is the case not only with us, but many people we have talked with. Many people are struggling. In talking with a friend recently, the Lord reminded me of Psalm 73. The writer, Asaph, starts out with, “Truly God is good…” (vs. 1) Then says, “But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well near slipped.”(vs. 2) He goes on to describe how the wicked continually prosper and seem to be getting by with their corruption and blasphemy. (vs. 3-12) He felt like he had cleansed his heart in vain. (vs 13) But, he went into the sanctuary of God and understood. (vs.17-20) After his eyes were opened to the truth, he repented. (vs. 22) As a result, he breaks out in praise once more (with some of our favorite verses) ”I am continually with You; You have held me by my right hand. You shall guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire beside You. My flesh and my heart fails; but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.” (vs. 23-26) And finally, he makes this declaration, “But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all Your works.” (vs. 28)

As we look back over 2020, it was filled with challenges. Yet, when we take the time to look past the circumstances and hardships, we see the blessings of our Lord like beautiful hidden treasures along the way. Through you, our supporters and prayer partners, He provided us with a reliable car; He continued to pay our bills plus sent us extra so we could replace our washer and dryer that were on their last leg; He gave (and still gives) us strength to continue caring for aging parents, whose health is failing; He gave us opportunities to share Jesus with others (believers and unbelievers) in the community; before the shutdown He gave us time with the men in prison to preach and teach His Word; He still gives us opportunity to share encouragement with some of them through the US postal service; and just recently, He has opened the door for Jay to help guide a baby Christian (an inmate) in God’s Word.

As with many places of business and schools, the prisons remain closed. We look forward to when we are allowed to return. In the meantime, we will walk through the doors of ministry the Lord opens to us. We thank you for your continued prayers and/or financial support.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

2020 newsletters

NOV 2020

Dear Friends,

Cases of Covid continue to fluctuate in the prison facilities, so the doors remain closed. In the meantime, the door of ministry that is wide open to us right now is still caring for aging parents. For the last couple of months, Jay and his brother have been alternating with each other, in 72 hour shifts, in caring for their dad, as he cannot be left alone. In the 72 hour shift that Jay is not with his dad, we have a day (or more depending on what is happening) caring for Elizabeth’s mom and step-father. With all that is required for their care right now, we (in all honesty) have a hard time imagining having the energy to do the prison services even if they were open. Jay’s dad continues to decline and we (both couples) are doing what we can to keep him at home.

We still hear from some of the men through regular mail. They have had several facility lockdowns due to Covid. What does a lockdown look like? The closest simplistic illustration we could give you is…. Imagine being locked in your bedroom, not allowed to go to any other room in your house, for weeks at a time, and only allowed out of your bedroom for 30 minutes a day. Plus, most cells house two people. So, imagine being locked in your bedroom with another person for 23 ½ hours a day (and hopefully you and your cellmate get along). It is not easy for multitudes of people right now. Our hearts go out to our brothers and sisters in the prison facilities as well as seniors who are basically locked in nursing homes too.

Yet, in the midst of all this, God is still working and moving. Several men, at one facility in particular, have been released to go home. We are so glad for them. A wonderful God story we want to share with you…..one of the men we have ministered to for many years was released. He was released to an area where he knew no one. The Department of Corrections put him up in a cheap motel for 3 weeks, with the requirements that he had to get his driver’s license, a job, and a place to live within those 3 weeks, or he would have to go back to prison. He was beside himself, praying that the Lord would somehow intervene and help. Since he did not have any restrictions upon his release, he found us on the internet and contacted us to see if we knew anyone in that area that might be able to help steer him in a direction. If any of you have had to get in the DMV during this time of closure, you know the wait list was very long and he only had 3 weeks. In talking with our local DMV, we found that they did have openings for hardship cases. So, Jay told him to check with the local DMV there. He did and got in right away. We also knew a former inmate, who lived close to that area, who had been out of prison a good 10 years. After getting permission, we were able to get them connected. With this connection between Christian brothers, he was given some direction for housing and a job. Praise God, all 3 requirements were met. Though he only has a bicycle to go back and forth to work, he is so happy for the way the Lord answered prayer on his behalf.

Thank you for your many prayers on our behalf as well. We have been encouraged by so many, here lately, that our work right now in caring for parents is indeed ministry that is pleasing to our Lord. We thank you for the way you continue to stand with us (in prayer and/or financial support) in this new and temporal season of life. We do have so much to be thankful for.

As we are already in December and Christmas fast approaching, we wish to say “Merry Christmas” to you and pray the time you have with your families will be a blessed one, as we stop to ponder and meditate on the first coming our Savior, what He did for us in His great love, and the excitement of His promised return!

Our love in Christ Jesus to you all!

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

Oct 2020

Dear Friends,

We want to begin by saying thank you to all our ministry partners. Whether it is through your prayers and/or giving, we appreciate you and thank the Lord for you. We know you are lifting us up in prayer. The Lord continues to sustain us. Though we get tired, He gives us more grace as we continue caring for aging parents.

The prisons are still closed due to Covid. We miss the men and they miss us. We do continue, through letters, to minister to the men who are writing us.

One inmate wrote that they were told they would be returning to work and school in November at limited capacity, but the very next day they had news of new Covid cases. So, they do not know when things will actually open back up for them. He also said, “Thank you so much for taking the time to write. I never take a letter for granted. I have a brother…..who was planning on coming to visit me a few years ago, but he sounded so tired….So…..I told him to stay home and instead of driving down….spend that time writing me a letter. Well, that was actually a lot of years ago, and I am still waiting for the letter! LOL! I say all that to let you know your letters really are appreciated. Thank you.” This inmate writes us often telling us how much he and the others miss us and look forward to when we can return.

Another letter we received said, “Your presence is missed! Your voices are missed! Everything about the team is missed!.....your HONEST preaching is truly missed! Many are being fed crumbly bread from Gibeon, believing it to be manna which fell from heaven. Yet you set the living bread before this body, and bid us to partake. Blessed be all who dare to preach Christ in combination with upright living! And for being so bold – I thank you! Continue to trust the Lord in these trying times. Believers can stand (secure) in a hurricane, with nothing more than a small umbrella of faith! Keep fighting the good fight with the weapons of righteousness for both the left and right hand!!! And no matter if rainbows or storm clouds fill your sky, KEEP YOUR EYES (of faith) ON JESUS! (Ps 123:1-2) Tons of love, loads of respect, Your brother in Christ..…”

Again we thank you, our dear family in Christ, for the way you partner with us. God bless you!

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

Sept 2020

Growing up in church, there was a chorus we use to sing for the invitational called, “It’s Harvest Time”. The words are….“Harvest time, Harvest time, The Savior’s calling, the grain is falling. Oh do not wait, it’s growing late. Behold the field is white. It’s harvest time.” Just recently, this chorus came to mind. We were late planting our garden, so our produce these last two months have kept us busy, while still caring for Jay’s dad and Elizabeth’s mom. One day, Elizabeth was cutting what we thought were orange “snack” peppers, but turned out to be habanero peppers. The oil from them permeated her hands and they were on fire! She tried everything the internet suggested, but nothing worked. The pain was intense. After 24 hours of trying all kinds of “remedies”, she ended up going to the pharmacist for hopefully an answer and some relief. The pharmacist did give her some advice and after following that advice, she finally got the relief she desperately needed. As she waited to see him, the Lord spoke to her saying, “You are desperately looking for relief from the temporal burning pain on your hands. But people who are not saved will burn forever in hell with no relief.”

Matthew 9: 36-38, “But when He (Jesus) saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted (were distressed, dejected, and helpless), and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd. Then saith He unto His disciples, ‘The harvest truly IS plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that He will send forth (thrust and force out) laborers into His harvest.’” John 4:35, “I (Jesus) say unto you, Lift up your eyes and look on the fields, for they ARE white already to harvest.”

Our country and our communities are definitely white already to harvest. Though there are other ministries who are able to minister to the “masses” right now, we are able to minister on an individual basis. The prisons are still closed to us going to do church services with the men, but the Lord has given us opportunities to share His Word, to encourage, and to pray with several people in person, by phone, and by mail.

When we stepped out into ministry 23 years ago, we looked to see where God was working and we joined Him in His work. We continue to join in with what the Master is doing and allow Him to direct and lead us to those who have ears to hear. The harvest is truly great and souls are hanging in the balance.

Your prayers and/or support are very much appreciated and we say thank you.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

August 2020

Dear Friends,

We thank you for your prayers on behalf of Jay’s dad. He was able to come home from rehab on August 27th. In home therapy will be coming for the next 10 weeks. We along with Jay’s brother and sister-in-law will be switching back and forth, staying with him for around the clock care. For such a time as this, we embark even more into this form of ministry – more hands on with parental care.

The prisons are still having outbreaks of Covid so they remain closed. In the meantime, the men we do hear from are doing well and remain thankful for God’s many blessings.

It has been interesting this month to see the people in our communities whom the Lord has brought across our path. He used us to help several seniors with various needs. In talking with a cashier, she said she is praying to God and having faith for her and her husband to have children, but when we mentioned Abraham and Sarah she had no idea who we were talking about. We have talked with this lady on several occasions, but this last conversation we could see that it is not faith in God she has, but rather she has faith in faith (which does not work). Other customers were waiting to check out so we could not detain her any longer, but we now know better how to talk with her from this point. Another blessing of how the Lord used us this month was in sharing God’s Word, His promises, with a couple of brothers in Christ who were struggling with past shame over sins that had already been forgiven. What a blessing to see the Lord, through His Word, bring freedom from fear and the enemy’s lies. There were still others, in sharing different testimonies of what God has done in our lives, see people cry and be ministered to by the Lord.

Inmates are not the only ones in prison. So many people God brings across our path are inwardly imprisoned by so many things – doubts, fears, anger, past hurts, overwhelmed with present circumstances, and on and on and on. We don’t know the hearts of people, but God does and we are in awe of such a wonderful Lord, that He would allow us to privilege to be His ambassadors, laboring together with Him. (I Corinthians 3:9) We thank you for partnering with us.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts. If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

July 2020

Dear Friends

We are still waiting for the prisons to reopen for us to return. Yet, in the meantime God is still moving. We have had multiple opportunities to share Jesus and Scripture with many people in our community. Though there are several stories we could share, what we want to share with you this month is a couple of stories from the inside.

The first one is just simply sweet. One of the men, who come to our services on a regular basis, wrote and told us that he had been tested positive a second time with Covid. For obvious precautionary reasons, he was put in quarantine. However, reading his letter just made us smile. In our minds eye we can picture his smile and mannerisms as he says, “Hello family…..I have once again tested positive for the virus but I still feel just fine. I have been quarantined for a few weeks now. I have been having the cell to myself for almost 3 weeks now. I feel that this is all a blessing…..since I already have the virus, I don’t have to worry about getting it. They bring me all my meals…..my canteen…I have my Bible, my TV, and my radio….I have nothing to complain about…..Don’t know how much longer we have to go through this. But, it is so good to know that we will get to see you both when all is back to normal.” He is putting into practice what he has been taught from the God’s Word – Ephesians 5:20 “Giving thanks always for all things…”; and I Thessalonians 5:18, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God….” What a blessing to see this brother walking out his faith.

The second story also blesses our hearts. Hearing from another brother, we see him struggling but striving to walk out his faith in complete dependence upon the Lord. We have had the privilege to encourage and teach (in our services and through letters) this brother. As he was moved to a different facility (not a state prison but a local jail) to face alleged charges, he was struggling with being angry and questioning “Why?” Little did he know, in the beginning, that the Lord had special plans for him here. He has been a Christian for many years and has diligently studied God’s Word (while in prison) so he could rightly divide the Word of Truth and be equipped to share the Gospel with others. As he sat waiting to appear before the judge, he found that this jail had no chaplain. The other men were struggling in their attempts to understand and study the Bible. The Lord opened wide the door for this brother to teach and disciple the receptive men who had no guidance. The day arrived for him to stand before the judge and face his accuser. As dates, facts and testimonies were presented, his lawyer looked at the accuser and said, “Your own testimony shows that you are the one guilty of stalking. Either you both agree to a 10 year restraining order or I will put you on the stand and you will go to jail.” The accuser walked out of the courtroom. The judge turned to our brother and began asking him questions about “his ministry”. He was able to openly talk about the Lord to the judge and all those present in the courtroom. Our brother still longs for his freedom but now understand the “Why?” as he waits and rejoices that he was the Lord’s ambassador to many.

Thank you for your continued prayers and/or financial support. We are so grateful and thankful that even in this time of waiting to go back in to the prisons, so many of you have continued to be supportive and continue to partner with us. The Lord is still using us to minister to others in our community. Again, we thank you.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

PS Please pray for Jay’s dad. He fell and fractured his hip coming out of the barber shop. He has had a partial hip replacement and is currently in rehab. With the restrictions in place we have not been able to visit him. All communication is done by phone. We got word that the facility he is in now has 3 Covid cases. His dad has been put in another section of the facility but the facility only has 4 employees to care for all the patients. With the pain he is in and not making progress as the hospital thought he should, his care team is expecting him to be in rehab for quite a while.

For Tax-Deductible gifts make checks payable TO: Salt and Light Ministries FOR: Roberts.

If you do not need a tax receipt you can make checks payable directly To: Jay Roberts

June 2020

Dear Friends

As you know from our monthly updates, with the Covid-19 pandemic we have not been able to go into the prisons since the one service we did in the beginning of March. On June 27th, the Department of Corrections updated their website with the following numbers. Statewide, (state prisons – not including regional jails) the total number of positive cases has reached 1,508 with 11 deaths. Currently there are 184 active cases being treated. Out of those totals, in the prisons we are assigned to on a regular basis, there have been 414 cases with 4 deaths, and 40 active cases. With these current numbers, it looks to be August before we will be allowed back in.

Your continued prayers for the men and women in prisons are appreciated. Our brothers and sisters in the Lord are in need of prayer for growth in their faith and strength to stand firm on God’s Word. False doctrine/teaching that has been brought in through the years has and is taking its toll. Colossians 2:8 says, “Beware lest any man spoil (rob) you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments (principals) of the world, and not after Christ.” We see this happening. There is a popular group of people who go into the prisons, under the name of “Christian”, who have point blank told us (as we waited to be processed in) that they only focus on the love of God. They do not and refuse to talk about sin or holiness. We were told later by several of the men, at one facility, the question – “What does the Bible say about homosexuality and masturbation?” This group refused to answer the question. So, one of the inmates stood up and with his Bible read several passages. He was told by this group to stop reading the Bible and be quiet or he would be kicked out of the meeting. He had men asking him later for the references so they could look them up back in their cells. At another facility, this same popular group, told the men, after reading the verse, “The just shall live by faith”, said, “You cannot live by faith in today’s world”. An inmate, who came to our services on a regular basis, responded with, “Yes you can! I know a couple who’s been doing it for 20 years!”

As we await the day the prison doors will be open once more, the Lord continues to provide ministry opportunities. Two people have confided that they are so overwhelmed with circumstances in their lives right now that they were suicidal. God’s Word shared with them helped them get past the “critical” spot. We don’t have all the answers for the situations they are in, but we know the One who does. He alone has the Words of Life.

Thank you for your prayers and/or financial support.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

May 2020

Dear Friends,

In way of an update on the prisons, there is still no word of when we will be able to return. According to the Department of Corrections website, two of the facilities that we go to, have had reported cases of Covid-19. One of them to date has had 149 cases with 3 deaths and the other one has had 202 cases with zero deaths. We are thankful for the Lord’s protection of the many facilities that have had no cases, and we pray for those who have. In the meantime, as we look back over our calendar this month, we are reminded of the many people in our community the Lord gave us the opportunity to minister to. One elderly couple (the husband is under hospice care and the wife is pretty much wheelchair bound) we were able to visit and encourage them in the Lord with Scripture and hymns. Another elderly couple, the husband’s wheelchair broke a bearing and was difficult to maneuver. The Lord allowed us the wonderful privilege of finding him another one, which was nicer than the one he had, for only $10…...a sweet reminder that the Lord sees and provides. Bible study with our neighbor has slowed down since the churches in our area have re-opened, a few weeks ago, but we still get with him from time to time to encourage him in the Lord. There are many others we could mention, all divine appointments, in Lowes, grocery stores, garages, in our neighborhood, etc. There have been many opportunities to share Jesus with others. We thank you for standing with us, during this time, through your prayers and / or financial support. We are reminded of Matthew 28:18–20 “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations……Teaching them to observe (maintain, fulfill, hold fast, keep) all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

April 2020

Dear Friends,

There has been and still is much in the news about the Covid19 virus. The whole world has been affected. Many ministries have made adjustments to the new “norm” by going digital. For us this is not an option. Inmates do not have internet access. They do have limited supervised email. However, volunteers are not allowed to use this form of communication. As of a few days ago, the Department of Corrections has decided to temporarily lift this ban until they reopen the doors for us to come back in. The projected date for us returning to the prisons looks to be late June or early July and this is subject to our state’s stay home order. After talking with the director of Hope Aglow (the ministry we work in cooperation with) the requirements and cost involved in emailing inmates would not be advantageous for us. So, we continue to use regular mail to correspond with the men.

In the meantime, we have received letters from a couple of inmates. They too are affected by the executive stay home order. The facilities are on lock down and their normal daily routine has been altered as well. But, what a blessing to hear that even though they are not allowed to have church services, the few Christians in their individual pods are getting together for Bible study. It may only be 4 or 5 of them, but they are meeting together to study God’s Word.

For us, we continue “snail mail” with inmates. We are still busy caring for 3 parental figures. We are helping elderly supporters and neighbors who are in need of assistance. We continue to work on building relationships with unsaved neighbors. And we also started doing Bible study with one of our older neighbors.

This particular neighbor’s comprehension level is that of an 8th grader. He dropped out of school in junior high, was repeatedly told he was stupid, and he did manual labor all his life. He told us he remembers the day he got saved and has been going to church since (over 40 years). However, he also told us that he cannot understand the Bible (he has tried a couple of easy reading versions) and the sermons at church are over his head. We have started out simple with him. Since he does not know much of the Bible, we started using a children’s Bible story devotional (by Billy Graham). Honestly, we were amazed that he did not know the story of Noah or of Danial in the Lion’s Den or other Bible stories that we thought he would have heard at some point in his 40+ years of going to church. One day he asked us, “Why did God put these stories in the Bible?” We were able to share with him 2 Timothy 3:16, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and IS profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” As well as Romans 15:4, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning….” We told him that when the apostle Paul wrote these, he was referring to the Old Testament. So, we can learn much from these stories and we shared several ways of how these stories are profitable for us today.

Our neighbor was told by someone else that there was a children’s Bible written on the child’s level, but he did not know what to look for or where to find one. (He does not have internet and does not know how to use it.) God is so amazing……the day he told us this, we received a phone call from a man cleaning out his den. This man asked if we could use Bibles for the inmates. He had many of them and just wanted them to be used. He went on to tell us that he even had one that was a children’s Bible. It was the very one our neighbor had been told about and was hoping for. We asked this man if we could give the children’s Bible to a man in the community. He was thrilled to do so. God knew our neighbor’s heart’s desire and answered it. Though he has only had it a few days, he is now enjoying reading his Bible because he can actually understand what it says. As we continue to have Bible study with him, we can see the Lord ever so slowly and gently working in his life.

Yes, God is amazing! Our world may be in standstill mode (compared to what it usually is), but God is still on the move and continues working in wonderful ways. To you, our ministry partners, we say thank you for your continued prayers and/or support. God’s Word and His work are still going forth.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

March 2020

Each month, we along with one to four other people, go to a little restaurant to eat supper just before going in to one of our prison services. Unless, she is not there we have the same waitress. It’s always a blessing to see her. She knows when she sees us that we are heading for the prison just a mile or two away afterwards. When she brings the bill she says she is praying for us and the service and then says, “If just one will listen!” Our going into this prison means a lot to her because she worked in that very prison for over 20 years. She has firsthand knowledge of what goes on there on a daily basis. Yet, even after all she has seen, she prays that even just one will listen and take the message to heart. We know the Lord has and continues to answer her prayers, for we know of several men who have done just that – listened, taken the message to heart, and has allowed the Lord to change their lives.

From this very prison comes our next story. We have been going to this prison since around 2002 and we have seen men come and go. It is interesting that just in the last several months; we have seen an influx of new men coming to the service. One of these new men, with a sparkle in his eyes, approached Jay after this last service excitedly asking if he could get all the verses that Jay referenced in his message. He is go hungry for the Word of God that he wanted to go back to his cell and look up all the references to study for himself. What a blessing to see someone so enthusiastic and excited to know the Lord more and study His Word! Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.” (Matt. 5:6) This last story was told to us by one of our prayer partners. This gentleman went around to different people in his church that he knew were prayer warriors, asking them to specifically be praying for us as we would be going in to a group of men who were all registered sex offenders. One lady that he asked came back to him the next week to tell him that she had argued with God all week over this, telling the Lord she could not pray for them. This dear lady was in her 60’s but could not pray for these men because she had been raped as a teenager. She said that after arguing with the Lord over this all week, the Lord set her free to forgive the man who had raped her and was able to freely pray for us and this group of men. The Lord set her free from nearly 50 years of imprisonment to unforgiveness. She was praising the Lord for setting her free and thanking this man for the entrusting this wonderful privilege of praying for these men.

A quick update.…The Department of Corrections alerted us that because of the Coronavirus, it has cancelled all services until further notice. We pray this will not last long so we can get back to our ministry field. We thank you for your prayers and/or support to help us continue to go.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

Feb 2020

Dear Friends,

Recently, there has been interest expressed in how we became involved in prison ministry. We stepped out into full time ministry January 1, 1998 traveling the country as music evangelist. Our hearts were burdened with the number of people who go to church but had no interest in following Jesus. After the first year and half, we had a lull in our schedule but did not want to sit idle. We wanted to be about our Lord’s work. As Elizabeth was looking through some books that her late father had had, she ran across one by Richard Wumbrand who had been a prisoner under the Communist regime in Romania. On the back cover, there was a picture of a man’s hands shackled together with the inscription, “If that were Christ, would you give Him your blanket?” This struck a deep cord within her heart and she questioned herself, “Would I?” Then she remembered that her dad had been supportive of Hope Aglow Prison Ministry and its late founder Ed Martin (back in the 1960’s). Elizabeth wrote the current director, Garry Sims, telling him who we were and asked if they could use us in any way. He called and talked with Jay a long time, then asked us to join them for a service to see if prison ministry was a good fit for us. From our very first time going (October 1999), we fell in love (with God’s love) the ministry of sharing the gospel (the good news) with prisoners.

What we found was a hunger for Jesus that many in the outside/free churches did not have. We cast our net on the other side of the boat (John 21:6) and the Lord filled our net. To this day, He continues to fill our net with men who are searching for Truth as well as finding brothers in Christ who hunger for the Word of God.

With now having a reliable vehicle, we are once again able to return to one of our long distance prisons. One of the men told us he was so glad that we were “home” again! Another one made a bee-line for Jay after the service to tell him, “We needed that! There are some in here who say it doesn’t matter what comes out of their mouths.” He said he is so excited about the upcoming study Jay is starting with them from 1 John.

We recently received a letter from an inmate who said he finds it so amazing that there are people like us who love coming into prison to show them, in a real way, the love of God. We were able to tell him that he may only see us, but there are a number of others (you, our supporters and prayer partners) who care about them too and show they do by helping us continue to go to them.

We and the inmates thank you!

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth

2019 Newsletters are below

Jan 2020

We are excited to report to you that our Father has heard and answered your prayers!

As you know, many months ago, we requested prayer for our vehicle situation. The Lord has answered yours (as well as ours and the inmates) prayers by providing us with a reliable, fuel efficient car. Admittedly, there were many times we kept asking the Lord to give us direction on this matter. Each time, He answered with, “Wait.” Weeks would go by with no change and we would ask Him again. Over and over He would gently answer, “Wait. Just wait.” After months, in fact a couple of years, of praying and waiting, the Lord answered way beyond our expectations. As a result, we have given testimony to the inmates and many others of the Lord teaching us patient endurance. 2 Peter 1:5-8 tells us to give all diligence to add 7 things to our faith. Patience and temperance (endurance) are two of them. James 1:4 says to let patience have her perfect work. Not that we have this down pat, but we are learning and growing while in the process of being conformed into the image of Jesus. We again say, “thank you” for your prayers. We also want to thank those who gave financially to help with the need.

The Lord is so good!

As excited as we were with the answered prayer, what is more exciting is seeing the Lord work in our lives and being able in turn to minister to others. Starting this month, the Lord opened another prison door for us to go into on a regular basis. It is a small group of men, who are seeking to know the Lord more and wanting to grow in their knowledge and understanding of Him and His Word. Instead of a regular church service, this will be more like a small group Bible study. We are looking forward to what the Lord has in store for us and the inmates.

At a couple of facilities, the Lord led Jay to preach from 2 Timothy 4:2, explaining to the men what his assigned job from the Lord was. He told them he was not out to win a popularity contest with anyone but rather, his job was to preach the pure Word of God. Church is not a social club, it is not rec time, nor is it a place to get “feel good” messages to pacify them. Church is where we come together to be taught doctrine (God’s ways), to be reproved (convicted), to be corrected (to be set right again), and to be instructed in righteousness (how to live holy in conformity to God’s will). The purpose is for us to grow more and more into the likeness of Jesus. (2 Tim. 3:16-17 & 2 Cor. 3:18) There were several men who responded “I needed that!” “The Lord is good, His mercy is everlasting and His truth endures to all generations.” (Psalm 100:5)

God is still working today; showing love, mercy, and forgiveness to all who will turn to Him.

For God’s Glory Alone!

Jay & Elizabeth