Greetings from Brrrr-azil! We are wearing winter coats, even in the house! There is no central heat/air, and we do not have a dryer. The wind, rain, and cold have caused some power outages from time to time, yet we have never canceled services. God has blessed, as we have led at least 80 souls to the Saviour these past three months, despite severe bouts of illness and exhaustion.
We appreciate having visitors and recently hosted the son of a very missions-minded pastor. There are many ways of helping in the ministry and serving the Lord, even though one cannot speak Portuguese. Stamping and passing out tracts, playing an instrument, church-building maintenance, and prayer are just a few examples. Even with four days of church services, two soul-winning days, a new building project, and despite two months of severe illness for my wife and family, we somehow managed to help this young Bible college student see some amazing sights in Sao Paulo: river rafting, tree climbing, three beautiful parks, and the skydiving capital city to name a few. We had the privilege of leading someone to the Lord on these outings as well.
Our son Daniel, age 14, witnessed to a man who was washing his car, and two men who were loud nearby quieted down to hear what he was saying. Daniel asked if the two men also wanted to learn how to be saved. They eagerly agreed and listened attentively as he explained the Gospel message. Daniel was so happy to lead three men to the Lord. They said, “Not many teenagers know the Bible like you do!” We praise the Lord for a Sunday when over 1,000 tracts were placed in the hand of Brazilians who have never heard the truth of the Gospel!
Last September, we attempted to renew Caleb and Chloe’s (our 10-year-old twins) residency cards. The Federal Police online site was not allowing any scheduling for appointments. By God’s grace, almost a year later, we were successful in making an appointment and getting all the required paperwork together to renew their residency cards. Meanwhile, two of our children’s passports also need to be renewed, which means another long drive in heavy traffic, taking up most of the day. Some may not understand the hours invested and the cost involved to keep current on all the required documents to stay on the mission field.
We celebrated Brazilian Valentine’s Day in Cotia with an elegant Italian dinner, and we appreciate all of those who participated. In Sao Paulo, everyone enjoyed a delicious meal and sweet fellowship, so much so that they stayed for hours after the service! One broken family has returned to church and listened to several hours of marriage and family counsel, and we have prayed for their prodigal son to return. We prayed, and it has been a joy to see this teenager walk into church and even bring his friends! God is working miracles, and we are thankful for His mercy.
David and Esther have been witnessing to a deaf lady and inviting her to church. We have invited many more as we have prayed to meet the deaf community. Please pray for the six young people who have been training to interpret as we start a ministry for the deaf in both churches. Esther, Juan, and David have taught the children in Sunday school over 16 choruses and several verses in sign language. Please pray that we can reach the deaf in our community with the Gospel and help them grow spiritually.
It is a comfort to know that you care and you are taking our heavy burdens to the Lord in prayer! Please continue to pray for good health. Progress has been made these past few months on the third church building; funds are needed to continue to build! Thank you to those who have given to this exciting new ministry opportunity! Help us reach the lost with your prayers, giving, and personally as the Lord leads you! Labourers together! May the Lord bless you.