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Archive for December, 2015

More from Brazil

Many of us were blessed to have grown up in churches where we heard God’s Word from the earliest days of our childhood.  However, for those of us who were so blessed, there is a great danger.  Have we heard the story of Jesus so often, His love for us, His death on the cross in our place, that it no longer moves us as it once did?

As our mission team shared the Gospel with people who were hearing it for the first time, I was greatly moved and blessed to witness their response.  We told them of the One True God.  We talked to them about what sin is and how our sin separates us from God.  We told them that we could never save ourselves or atone for our sins or work our way into Heaven.  It was when we told them of God’s Son, Jesus, and how He loved us so much that He came to earth and took our place and paid the penalty for our sins by dying on a cross; that is when I was so moved by their response.  You see, for these people, death is not a video game.  For them, death is not something they watch hundreds of times on television shows and therefore become desensitized to it.  For the people we were talking with, death is something they see up close and far too often.  The daily threat of death lurks in and around the Amazon.  They could relate to someone being in danger of dying and then someone else dying in their place so that they could be saved.

When they heard the story of God’s love and salvation through Jesus, they wept, they were humbled, they were amazed.  Does the cross still move you?  Are we as affected by the story of Jesus as we should be?  Oh, that God would do a fresh work in our hearts that shakes us and moves us when we hear the Good News.  May the old, old story stay fresh on our hearts now and always.

In Christ’s service,

Allen

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Amazon Mission Trip

Two weeks ago, I was privileged to be part of a mission team that travelled to remote villages along the backwaters of the Amazon River in Brazil.  We were several hundred miles from any major city.  As we were just south of the equator, the days and nights were hot and humid.  We needed prayer for physical and emotional strength, sharp minds and spiritual anointing.  Many of you were praying for our team and God answered every prayer.

Once we arrived in Brazil, we left the port city of Manaus and began our journey.  We travelled on a riverboat that has been outfitted to accommodate mission teams.  Two jon boats were tied to the back of the main boat.  During the week, we used the jon boats to travel down smaller rivers to reach the more remote villages.  The first night on the boat our team of thirteen Americans and seven translators gathered for a time of Bible study and worship.  As we were singing, the thought began to sink in, “We’re singing praise songs while going down the Amazon!”  It is amazing to think of the doors that God has opened for us to go and share the Gospel.

We travelled over twenty hours to our destination, the village of Axinim.  For two days we did house to house evangelism, shared the Gospel in two schools and had two evangelistic meetings in the village park.  God had been preparing the hearts of the people to hear His Word.  We had great freedom to share and the people heard the story of Jesus gladly. In just two days of ministry, 283 people prayed to receive Christ!

During the week we met Pastor Lino.  Pastor Lino lives in one of the larger villages along the Amazon.  God has given him a vision and a burden to reach the remote villages for Christ.  Pastor Lino and some of his church members will conduct the follow-up with those who prayed to receive Christ.  Lord willing, churches will be planted in the villages we visited.

Only one other time have I ever seen people more ready to hear the Gospel and believe in Jesus.  Those of you who give to the AMEN Ministry and pray for us were there in the Amazon with me.  Lisa and I are so thankful for each one of you.  Also, this week I spoke with a friend who wanted to thank us and the supporters of the AMEN Ministry for a gift that purchased bicycles for pastors in Africa.  The pastors use these bikes to travel from village to village to preach the Gospel and plant churches.

We want to remind you again, the work of the AMEN Ministry is still very much a fulltime work.  Thank you for your gifts in 2015.  We pray that you will continue to partner with us in 2016 and trust the Lord for great things.  May the Lord bless each and every one of you.  Merry Christmas!

In Christ’s service,

Allen & Lisa

 

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