I had a few trades yesterday. Readers who have signed up for free email alerts received notice of the trades shortly after they were made. The full Value Focus portfolio, as of yesterday afternoon, is included at the bottom of the page. Here is a copy of the email that went out yesterday:
I sold my position in GEOS just now, realizing a significant loss (22% from my average purchase price). It was an entirely faith-based decision. I wrestled with this decision over the last couple of weeks, but came to believe that God gave me clear direction on it yesterday and again today. Where I always get confused with God's direction is in regard to timing. I believe God was clearly telling me that I should make this move, but he doesn't tell me exactly when. Should I have waited until after earnings are reported tomorrow? I never really know about the exact timing. So, in the end, I just have to go with what I believe God is telling me. I have no idea what to expect in their earnings report tomorrow. Could be great. Could be terrible. Again, I have no idea. My personal view, according to human wisdom, was that anyone who buys and holds that stock through the downturn and subsequent recovery will do really well. But God has now led me away from it. I took the proceeds and split them equally between two other oil related stocks, GLF and MDR.
Fortunately, I was able to purchase more GLF at a much lower price than where I had purchased previously. I highly recommend reading that company's earnings call transcripts on Seeking Alpha, including the most recent one. Things are really tough for that industry. But this particular company is doing everything right, in my view. One of their first steps was to cut executive compensation. They also seem to be cutting costs everywhere possible and fighting for survival with all of their power.
The remaining funds were put into MDR. I've mentioned that company in my last few posts. The stock has dropped back down (along with all other energy names) not long at all after the recent earnings rally. I've actually had some decent trades in that name, including this one. I'm buying back at $5.15 after my recent sell at $5.57. Of course, I had to realize a loss in GEOS in order to do it, so overall it's tough to view as a positive thus far.
Even if I could somehow look at these trades positively, things are going absolutely terrible for the Value Focus portfolio right now. It sure seems to me like a great situation for God to display his power and his glory! I trust him to do it! He has repeatedly assured me that he will.
May God pour out his salvation, joy, peace, love and blessings of every kind into your lives today! Amen!
MDR continued to fall yesterday after I bought it, ending the day at $4.85 per share. Beyond the falling price of oil and the general beatdown of all things energy, MDR also gave lower than expected earnings guidance at an Investor Day presentation yesterday. That's the only explanation I could find, anyway. I still really like the company and the stock. I would love the opportunity to buy more at these prices, but when you're holding no cash and everything else is down, opportunities for more buying are extremely limited.
As for things looking terrible, check the prices below and that will be obvious. The market is betting that many of the companies in the Value Focus portfolio won't survive. BEBE stores is the latest stock to enter "priced for certain doom" territory after its latest earnings report. There is a good article about BEBE on Seeking Alpha here. It's a Pro article, which means it's only available for a limited time. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in that stock. The author argues, according to human wisdom, that BEBE looks like a zero in the near future. I don't disagree with him. I'm just no longer relying on human wisdom. God has me doing something different.
As I have mentioned many times now, this is a journey of faith for me. No matter what happens, I am thankful for the growth he has produced in me throughout this time of trial and testing. Jesus has walked with me through the entire journey. He has brought me to a place where I can truly appreciate the difficulties because I can see the good results in my walk with him. I'm starting to see good fruit (peace, patience, steadfastness, endurance, trust, devotion, faithfulness, etc.) in my life that is a direct result of walking with him through these difficulties.
I'm going to keep hanging on to his many promises and following where he leads. What else is there for a child of God to do? God expects his children to walk by faith, not by sight.
Speaking of that, I thought it would be good to leave readers with a few of the scriptures God has given me throughout this time of difficulty. He has given me many. Sometimes, they are general promises for his children. Sometimes they are eternal truths about his character and his nature. Sometimes, there are scriptures that the Holy Spirit makes clear to me as being specific answers or applications to my current situation, such as Isaiah 44 and 45. No matter what we are going through, good times or bad, a child of the King must read, meditate upon, and apply the word of God. He has given us his word to instruct us, teach us, and guide us. He has given us his word to light our way! His words give us life! They are food for the soul! I pray that these scriptures will be a blessing to everyone reading!
“Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord.” – Proverbs 16:20
“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.” – Psalm 32:8, ESV
“The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.” – Psalm 37:23-24, NIV
“But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’” – James 4:6, ESV
“The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.” – Lamentations 3:25, ESV
“Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame; they shall be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.” – Psalm 25:3, ESV
“For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.” – Habakkuk 2:3, ESV
“Therefore the Lord waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the Lord is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him.” – Isaiah 30:18, ESV
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” – Galatians 6:9, NIV
“Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.” – Psalm 37:3-7, NIV
“O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption.” – Psalm 130:7, ESV
“Do I bring to the moment of birth and not give delivery?” says the Lord. “Do I close up the womb when I bring to delivery?” says your God. – Isaiah 66:9, NIV
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me.” – Isaiah 49:15-16, NIV
For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” – Romans 10:11, ESV
May Jesus bless each and every one of you today from the riches of his grace!
In Christ's Name,