Dear Brothers and sisters,
After realizing that there are quite a few people in the church who have been coming to church for a couple of years and still do not want to surrender their lives to Christ, I have started a series of sermons on the ‘Importance of Regeneration (Repentance and faith) and baptism’ in the life of a believer. So I have been preaching from the book of Acts and we are specifically looking at what had happened in the lives of those who heard the gospel and were baptized later on. So far we have looked at the lives of the 3000 people who were moved to the core after hearing the message preached by the Apostle Peter (Acts 2), the Samaritans (Acts 8:12-17), The Ethiopian Eunuch (Acts 8:35-38), The Apostle Paul (Acts 9) and the household of Cornelius (Acts 10). Please pray that the Lord may help believers to appreciate the gospel so that they may love the Lord with all their heart and the unbelievers may see their brokenness and to run to Christ and embrace him sooner. As J.C. Ryle says “The saddest road to hell is that which runs under the pulpit, past the Bible, and through the midst of warnings and invitations." I just want to make sure that no one that comes to our church would spend eternity with pain and agony without God forever.
On Wednesdays, we have been doing Inductive Bible Studies on the subject preached on the previous Sunday. After that, we would pray as a church. We have been finding that through doing Inductive Bible Studies that the people are growing in their faith. On the first Sunday evening in the month, we are gathering to sing songs to praise God and open our hearts to pray which is followed by a potluck dinner. We have been doing this to encourage people to get to know each other a little better and try find out different ways to reach out to them with prayer and also with practical support. Here in Vinukonda, people work long hours and they get tired very quickly once they get home. We do not have weekends. Sunday is the only holiday that people get. So it’s been pretty challenging for us to get the balance right. Please pray that our church may grow in the knowledge of our Great God, Holiness and sacrificial love in the days to come.
We are at the initial stages (planning) of building a new facility so that we may worship the Lord without any distractions (here ‘quietness’ is a luxury, there are too many disturbing noises from outside!). Please pray that the Lord may help us build a new building in the coming few months to worship Him in Spirt and Truth (current building is in pretty bad shape).
Keep praying for ‘Ramu’. He has been coming to Sunday Evening Bible Studies for the last couple of month. He has been coming to church as a result of our evangelism on Saturday evenings. Please continue to pray for him that he may be saved. It looks like he is not standing not too far from the kingdom.
It’s been our privilege to translate Brother Paul Washer’s book (The Gospel Power and True Conversion) (2nd edition) in Telugu and publish in the month of July. This was translated by Brother Duke. Please pray that the Lord might use it to draw many to Himself and that His name may be glorified. I just want to share how the Lord is using these booklets to cause ‘true conversion’ in the words of a Indian brother who lives in Virginia. He wrote the following words describing how the Lord used his aunt who lives in Guntur (near Vinukonda) to bring her to Christ:
“I had given the telugu version of the book "True Conversion" to my mom's sister in Guntur (near Vinukonda) during my trip in July. I got to talk to her today and she was full of Praise to God for the book. She was overflowing with joy, describing how the book was an answer to her prayer and provided answers to some of the nagging questions on her mind. She repeatedly kept mentioning that it felt like she was looking into a mirror while reading the book. She said God used that book to really help her see what true conversion really means, she testified about how her life has been transformed after reading the book. She mentioned that she really enjoyed the translation and that it was done very well. I'm thankful to God for you all and for your efforts. Praise the Lord !!! I've tried multiple times to try and encourage my Aunt to seek the Lord, explaining the Gospel couple of times, and finally through this book I believe God has helped her begin a new relationship with our God through our Savior. Thank You brothers!!"
One last thing, I want to share a very important news with regard to these booklets we have now published in Telugu. We visited one mega church (about hundred thousand people worship there) bookshop last week in Hyderabad. I just inquired the guy at the teller if he would be willing to take our booklets. He said “ he wanted to read those booklets first and see if they could have them in their bookshop.” Please pray that these book would be taken by this particular bookshop. This would give access to thousands of people who have a very shallow understanding of the gospel.
In His Service,
Samuel B. and the Church Members.