Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Lilian

            Monica Newlin, Edda McKinney, and Fátima Vieira studied the Bible with Lilian last year. When asked if she wanted to be baptized, she said she wasn't ready. Whether problems of faith or family, she really wasn't ready, but continued to meet with the Manaíra church, the one meeting in Irene's beauty salon.
          This year, Lilian asked me what lacked for her to be baptized, an Acts 8:36-37 moment. Her husband and son came to her baptism. We were so happy for they had never shown interest before.

          They also came to the following Sunday meeting. God is in control. He knows whether her delay in decision has a purpose in reaching the whole family. I don't know, but He knows. Please pray for Lilian and her family.





Mission Camp 2016



          One of our Adventurers in Evangelistic Missions' (AME) projects is organizing a mission camp. About 40 participants from several churches in the Northeast, not including the organizers and workers. The camp worked on personal relationships,  emphasizing evangelism in our daily lives, including activities like, door-knocking, handing our pamphlets, visiting old folk's homes, feeding the homeless, Bible study on the beach, putting up a health stand, calling people to consider their spiritual health. 

          During the event, one of the participants was baptized, Jessica, from greater Recife. Each year this is a great opportunity for the young people to see the wonderful things God can do through those who take initiative to share Him with the world. 


Ups and Downs of Family

         There is a family that meets with the church in the Mangabeira neighborhood, that has had its share of ups and down. The parents were baptized several years ago, but haven't been constant in their faith, a case of the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

          Lately they have been showing more dedication, because their family is reaping the consequences of not putting Christ first, the enemy attacking what is most precious, their teenage daughters.

          I received this week a prayer request from the grandmother. She said that one of the daughters has been so rebellious that her father hit her. She packed her stuff and left with some friends, showing up four days later all dirty and scratched at her grandmother's house, disappearing again until the writing of the article.

          This same week the father called up Raniere Vieira and said that his other daughter wanted to be baptized. It took a couple of days for Raniere to arrive from a trip, and when he did, one had turned into two, her friend also deciding to give her life to Jesus. Tragedy and great victory wrapped up in the same family      Putting Christ first in our families is not a guarantee that Satan will not attack, but Jesus is stronger than anything that he can do. The worst thing we can do is put our guard down, stop praying, leave the Word closed on the shelf, while we and our kids are being fed internet, social media rubbish. No wonder so many families are being destroyed. Please pray for this family and their two girls, and the friend also born again.






Monday, October 3, 2016

Last Mission, by Jeremy Newlin



          Traveling, Traveling, Traveling.  I have been there and done that.  I have traveled at least once a month, every month for the past five years.  A lot of months, I traveled two or three times a month.  I slowed down after Dylan asked if I could set up a time in my agenda for me and him to play together.  I felt my eyes swell with water.
          I traveled once more to the interior, along with Raniere Vieira, Júnior and Roberto.  For three of us, it would be our last PORMISSOES meeting.  The state-wide meeting to encourage, plan and care for one another.  Raniere, Júnior and myself will be moving at the end of the year. 
          I was encouraged by the group and their vision as they discussed future meetings and began to dream together.  Sure, they seemed to still be waiting on instructions from someone to tell them what to do from now until the next meeting but that is all part of the growing process. 
          The last meeting I may ever attend.  I saw God, working, helping others dream and begin to plan.  This is God’s mission.  It is His plan to save the World.  He is still active in and through His church.  In God we trust, not in nations, presidents or business models.  In God.
          Please pray that God will bless these men as they give their lives to Him, bless the plans and give vision to His church in Paraíba, and spread His gospel throughout the state of Paraíba.

Please Study With Me

As I arrived at the apartment building where we live a couple of weeks ago, a neighbor started a conversation with me.  She asked if we were really going to move back to the States for good.  I said yes, in December.  She then asked if I could recommend someone to teach her and her family the Bible and spend some time in prayer.  Her family has two apartments in our building.  Some years ago, I studied the Bible with her father and mother but not with her.  I asked her to give me a couple of days and I would get back to her with a name.  I am kidding!!!  Of course, I said yes, I would love to give a Bible study to your family. 
            We had our first Bible study last Tuesday night.  There were 10 present, counting Monica and myself.  At the end of the study they asked if we could come again next week.  I said, sure. 
 
Please pray:
·         That the Gospel may penetrate the hearts of those who are studying so that they might give their lives to Christ.

Who Do You Worship?

           The church in João Pessoa began a sermon series on the book of Romans.  I began by teaching and preaching on the context of the book.  It took a little bit longer than I expected but was well worth the time.
            God's Word is awesome.  Just to give you a little taste of what was taught.  Romans is a book in which the apostle Paul expounds on the Gospel (Chapter 1:3-4).  Jesus, born in the flesh, died and risen from the dead through the power of the Holy Spirit, proving that He is the Son of God.  This gospel is God's power to save all those who believe (Chapter 1:16-17).  Save us from what?  Our sins, right!  Yes, but it is not a salvation experienced only at the end of time, this salvation is present all around us.  God's wrath is being poured out all around us, today!! (Chapter 1:18-25).  We have traded our worship.  Before being saved through the gospel, we worshiped the creation, in many ways, instead of the Creator (Chapter 1:25).  The gospel saves us from this and its consequences by renewing the focus of our worship.  The gospel turns us to worship God and this worship saves us from a way of life that we see all around us every day, destroying families and leaving every worshiper of creation, hopeless.     
            How marvelous and wonderful is the Gospel.  We are saved.  Live out your salvation with joy.  You are experiencing things that others, who are not Christians, cannot fathom until they see you living in Christ, worshipping the God and creator of heaven and earth.
 
            Please pray:
·         That the church in João Pessoa may worship God and Him alone

Monday, September 12, 2016

Planning Anyone?

            Planning seems like something that everyone knows how to do.  I mean we all buy houses, cars, eat three meals a day, etc…, right?  Well, a couple of weekends ago I was helping a congregation learn how to plan.  I explained the steps of planning; vision, why, where we are now, how to get to our vision from where we are and how to constantly evaluate if we are still on track.
            I also taught and preached from the book of Ephesians.  I explained the context, the confusion a lot of people have about predestination and what God's wrath is, how it is all around us and how the Gospel saves us from His wrath here and now.  I spoke on listening to our conscience and studying God's Word to train our conscience.  


            It was a quick trip but a very good one.  On the way back to João Pessoa, I came a different way.  There was almost no traffic on this road for about 50 miles.  I went a very slow 35 to 50 mph as I gazed at the mountainous landscape.  Almost no plant life, for lack of water it could have been very ugly but I saw beauty.  As I was driving and observing, I thought about this trip being one of my last.  This world is not our home, we are just passing through.  I can't wait to get home.
God bless you all