Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thank You for Your Prayers

     I want to thank everyone for their prayers during carnaval (Mardi Gras).  As far as I know, everyone had a safe and peaceful trip to their respective retreats around Brazil.  
     In Patos we had a wonderful time of fellowship (staying up till 2 or 3 a.m. with the young people) talking about love, salvation and evangelism.  The food was plentiful and very good.  The lessons we heard made us reflect on our decisions, their consequences and opened our eyes to see God at work in the World.  
     I asked some people what was their favorite part of the retreat; Dylan said, "the offering" (collection).  What a surprising and wonderful answer.  Another person was lamenting that they did not spend a lot of time with most of the people at the retreat.  She spent most of her time getting to know one of the members from another congregation.  Nicholas said, "sometimes it is time better spent getting to know one person more intimately than talking with a lot of people and speaking on a superficial level."   
     God is maturing His Church. The retreat was a great way to start off the year in fellowship.

     Thank you once again for your prayers. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Church Retreat

Hello brothers and sisters,

     I ask that you please pray for the church in Brazil.  Many will be traveling to four day church camps to get away from the "carnavalistic" atmosphere.  Many people travel during this time, some to see family and friends, others just to be as wild as they think they can be and a lot are drinking and driving.  Please pray for the safety of everyone.  I will tell you, next week, how the camp went, Lord permitting.

God bless and thank you for your prayers,

The church in Brazil

Monday, February 9, 2015

Faith and Perseverance

     For over a year, Dylan has told me he wants to be baptized.  He would wake up on some days and say, "I am going to be baptized today".  When we were near a pool he would threaten me, saying, "I am going to baptize myself" and when in a pool, he would yell out "Daddy" and then proceed to put the baptism hold on himself (one hand, holding his nose and the other hand holding the wrist of the other arm) and fall backwards.  For more than a year, Dylan asked for prayers to be baptized at the church prayer meeting.  One night, after praying, I told them that I would see them tomorrow, if we were still alive or if Jesus did not come back.  Dylan broke out into tears and bawling, "If Jesus comes back, I am going to hell." After that, I began to take him a little more seriously.  You see Dylan is now only 11 ½ years old, and he seems too young to have the faith needed to make a lifelong commitment. 
     After several months of studying the Bible with me and even his Granddaddy and praying, we finally concluded that if this were someone older with the knowledge and understanding that Dylan has, we would not hesitate in baptizing that person.  When he asked me, "Can I be baptized, Daddy?" I said, "Why are you asking me?"  He said, "To see if it is o.k."  I said, "What if I say it is not, who are you going to obey, me or God?"  He said, "I will obey God."  "So, why are you asking me if you can be baptized?"  He said, "I don't know. Daddy, I'm going to be baptized."  I said "O.K."  And so, his Granddaddy baptized him on February 1, 2015.
  Please pray:
·         Dylan will remain faithful until death;
·         That while alive, Dylan will be salt and light in this world.

This Was Not A Reporting Visit But A Renewal Visit

     After two months in the States, we just arrived back in Brazil.  The McKinney families and my family want to thank everyone. Your hospitality in receiving us was great. We visited churches, gave mission reports, preached, and visited a lot of people. We hope we gave as much encouragement as you gave us.  Thank you all so much for your love, prayers and the joy you showed in hearing about the work in ParaĆ­ba, Brazil. Too many to name, you all were so nice, and I will say that we do feel renewed after being with you and seeing so many examples of dedication, love, and joy in sharing God's word with others.

    Please pray with us this year that God will let His Kingdom grow in maturity and numbers, and that He will send forth workers for the great harvest.