We have had a full start to 2020, and we are looking forward to what God will continue to do! The church continues to grow, God continues to add families to the work, and we are amazed to watch it all happen and play a small role in what He is doing. This year, we have added two new Sunday school classes for adults, and we are seeing the individual growth of the teachers as they get excited to bring their lesson each week. As a church, we are going through the story of the Exodus, step by step along the journey of what God did through the children of Israel.
We celebrated Christmas this year with about 20 church members in our house. We picked families who didn’t have anyone else with whom to spend Christmas and brought them in and spoiled them a little bit. It was a fantastic time spent with friends and family—Peruvians,
Americans, and Venezuelans, all celebrating Christ’s birth together.
Thank you to each of you who prayed for our teen camp! In total, we had over 25 there between teenagers and workers, and there were multiple decisions made. We talked at length about the topic of sexual purity, both in actions and in the consumption of technology; and 15 teenagers took a vow of purity, deciding to stay pure, both in body and mind, until marriage. Additionally, there were multiple decisions made governing music, standards, service, and walking with God. Our goal each year is to reset the focus for the year, and it was amazing to watch how God used each message to work His plan.
As mentioned in the last letter, in February we took 10 church members on a missions trip to the jungle. We flew to the city of Iquitos and then traveled 18 hours in a boat to get to the last little village on the River Maratí, one of the branch-offs of the Amazon River. There, we had a mini-conference with 5-6 other villages, preaching, training, and working with them. We were able to teach them about how to go soul winning, and then we taught about eternal security. One of the men who was with us was the director of the music in a well-known church in Iquitos, but he confided in me that he had been struggling with the security of his salvation. He got the reassurance of his salvation, and watching the joy on his face was incredible. I had the privilege to baptize 6 new converts in the river, which was an unforgettable experience! While baptizing the third convert, the mud under my feet gave way, and I went in with her! I tried to count it as baptizing myself but was later informed that that is not how it works.
We ask for your prayers for our church property. We are needing to raise a considerable sum of money in the next two years to either buy the property that we are currently renting or buy another property on which to build.
Additionally, we would ask prayer for our first Family Conference that we will have in July of this year. We are looking to see God work in both the families of our church, as well as other churches here in Lima.
Ending on a personal note, Heather’s pregnancy is going great! We are nervously and excitedly expecting a boy at the end of May, and we are thrilled at the blessing it will be to have a child. Please pray for us as we transition into parenthood; pray for no complications with the birth, and pray for our son, as he will unfortunately have us as parents!
Thank you for your love and support!
Josh and Heather Hedderman