Happy New Year!!!
These last couple of months have been full of blessings, and we have seen the hand of God so obviously! After enjoying a beautiful honeymoon together and then spending Thanksgiving with family, we were eager to get home! Thank you to each of you who sent notes, gifts, thoughts, and prayers for our wedding. To each of you who showed up, who came to a reception, who sent a card, making our day extra special, thank you so much. We love having so many friends celebrate what God has been doing in our lives.
Upon arriving home at the end of November, our church immediately hosted its first wedding in our new building. The wedding party was kind enough to postpone their wedding so we would be able to make it, and it was a huge blessing to be there with them for their special day! To watch what God has done in their lives has been a huge encouragement.
Throughout the month of December, various ministries had their Christmas parties, so we were plenty busy planning, helping, serving, and—of course—eating at various gatherings all month long! Heather had a special night for the ladies of the church. She planned and pulled off a tea party for all the girls and ladies. It was a special night for each of them, and while she had a room full of over 40 ladies, I was watching the 15 kids who showed up too!!
Our church did a big evangelistic push this Christmas through a children’s program. We had a cantata for two nights, the kids put on a play with a Gospel theme, and the salvation message was clearly presented at the end. Throughout the 2 nights, we had over 30 visitors and over 20 saved! We were both personally able to see several visitors come and receive Him into their hearts!
For Christmas, we decided to invite several friends and couples, who do not have local family with which to celebrate, to our home on the night of the 24th. Here it is customary to celebrate Christmas with a big dinner around midnight! Our celebration ended about 2 a.m. While we did invite several people from the church, they also invited friends, and I got to share the Gospel with 5 men who had never come to church! It was the perfect opportunity. One family pitched in and bought us a slaughtered pig. We found a recipe online on how to cook it, and after five hours of baking it, we served the entire thing to our guests!
On New Year’s Eve, I was able to lead our Watch-Night Service. We were expecting about 70, but we were pleasantly surprised when we had over 130 attend! We played games, had preaching, and ate food; but the most special moment was standing in a large circle around the auditorium praying together as a church family.
God keeps blessing our church as we focus ourselves more on proclaiming Him! We have been blessed to see new families start to go out soul winning with us. For the last two weeks, both Heather and I have been able to take a new person out and show them on the spot how to win souls. Watching the excitement that comes from sharing their faith is incredible. We´ve been blessed by 3 baptisms in just these past 2 weeks.
Last week as a team, we went to a Pastors’ Conference in Northern Peru in the city of Paita. It was a blessing watching over 50 pastors gathered together there, listening to their stories, teaching them how to win souls, and watching them put the teaching into action. We spent about 2 hours out practicing by doing, and we had about 58 people saved in the process! God is still at work!
Pray for us. God has big things on the horizon for us here! We are launching new studies for the teens, as well as revamping the soul-winning and visitation program. Also this year, we are looking to start various Bible studies, with the long-term goal of future churches. We desperately need God. He is the only hope for the country here. Thank you for every prayer. We love serving Him here but wouldn’t want to do it without the army of you lifting us up.
To Him be the glory,
Josh and Heather Hedderman