Sunday, April 24, 2016

Salvation!

We are seeing God do a great work in the church in Cusco. It seems, after years of labor, we are seeing good fruit. Recently about 17 people from the church gathered for an "all night" prayer meeting. We read the book of 1 Peter, meditated on the Word, sang many songs, prayed a lot, and had great fellowship from about 8:00pm to 1:00pm.

One of the greatest joys for us personally is the salvation of our daughter Raegan. About 10 months ago, through the preaching of the Word, Raegan was convicted of her sin. She responded in faith and repentance that were both a gift from God. We, and the elders of the church, have been watching and encouraging her for the last 10 months. We really wanted to see fruits of conversion in her life. I believe God has made it clear in many ways that Raegan has been born again. She told her testimony in Spanish in front of the church last week. She was nervous, but did a great job. This is her testimony:

I grew up in a Christian home. Every Sunday I was in church, but not because I wanted to be there. I knew the Bible, having been taught it basically my whole life. I had memorized Scripture. I believed in God, and I had heard how He saves His people. But it hadn't been made effectual. The sermons and teachings I was hearing of this Sovereign Lord went in one ear and out the other. I knew them, but I didn't believe them. About ten months ago, the Lord used a sermon to awaken my spirit. It was through the Word of God that the Holy Spirit began stirring inside of me, and everything that I had been taught or learned finally clicked. It wasn't my own doing, but the Lord's. I don't know the exact moment that I was saved. Over time God slowly removed the cover over my eyes, and I could see. I could see this loving and just God, and His hatred of my sin. I began to understand how ugly and wicked of a sinner I am. I understood my need for a Savior, the Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that He died on the cross in my place for my sin. I believe this, I put my faith in Him, and I was saved. It's so humbling to know that the Lord chose me, a sinner, before the foundation of the world to become His child. It's amazing to think of the events that happened, and the circumstances He used to draw me to Him. I had heard The Gospel basically my entire life, and yet on that day, about ten months ago in a small church in Cusco, Peru, the Lord saved me. It was in His perfect timing. I don't know what the future has for me. I don't know where I will be or what I will be doing. I don't even know how much time I have left on this Earth, or if I even have a future. Regardless, my goal for my life is to seek the will of the Lord, and to glorify Him in whatever circumstances or situations I find myself in. “To Him be the glory forever and ever.”

About 40 of us took a bus to a Baptist camp outside of Cusco to have a church picnic and baptize Raegan along with another man in the church named Miguel. God has done a great work in Miguel. He also told his testimony in front of the church. He is around 60 years old and has been coming to the church faithfully for several years. He first came to the church through a member, Jair, who shared the gospel with him at his workplace. We have seen a great change in his life. He constantly reads the Bible, books at a time. He said that people all around him ask what happened to him because he is not the same man. The non-Christians in his life are stunned at his radically changed life. 

We are so happy and grateful to God that He allows us the great privilege of sharing the gospel and seeing people swept into the Kingdom. Check out the video of the baptisms below:


Thursday, March 17, 2016

Growth in the Church

I wanted to give a short update on the church in Cusco. God seems to be doing a great work in the people. We have all our documents in order and we operate by our constitution. We have established membership and the congregation really understands it and takes it serious. We have everything in place to train future leaders, and we have several men that will potentially be trained. The culture of the church is changing as well. The members are more active in and outside of the church. Our prayer meeting has doubled in size this year.

We are introducing a new member on Easter.  His name is Bernabe.  He is a young man, sound in doctrine, filled with great zeal for God and holiness, and he is active in evangelism and the church. We have several others who have been regularly attending the church from 4 months to 2 years. They are faithful, but earlier it did not seem like God had saved them yet, however, as of recently, we have seen great changes in their lives and a new love for God, the Scriptures, and the church. We will continue to teach and watch them, but it seems God is working in them in a big way.  

There are so many exciting things happening in the church this year. We started three home groups, where Joe, Werner, and I each lead one in our homes. The church loves the home groups and they are very dedicated to them. We are studying the book of John and having super good fellowship. 

We will be doing a lot of street evangelism on the two days before Easter to invite people to the church for Easter service. Please be in prayer of this, that God would make His Word effectual in the hearts of His people.

Another thing to start praying for is the May conference in the jungle. We will be doing the leadership training conference in Satipo again from May 23-27th. I will give more details as we get closer. 

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Why Missions?

Why Missions?  Here is a video I put together of our work in Peru for the last four years. I explain what our motivation is behind missions.  Hope it is encouraging.