Hello my dear brothers and sisters. I hope that this report finds you with your eyes fixed on Christ, resting in Him, hoping in His grace, which has been promised to us from before the foundation of the world. Nothing can separate us from His love!
During the month of July we have experienced many joys. To begin with, we celebrated five baptisms. I’m going to share briefly about each of the new believers.
I’ll begin with Hugo. He is a civil servant in the department of transportation. Before he began coming to our church, Hugo started to see that he was living a life of filth. Convicted, Hugo fell, as one who was crushed, at the feet of Christ, pleading for His mercy. When all of this happened, Hugo was in a church that doesn’t preach the gospel, one of the largest prosperity churches in our city. But a couple months later he arrived at our church. Hungry for God and full of concerns and questions with regard to the things he had seen in his church, he began to look for sermons on the internet and came across ours. He arrived one Sunday with his wife Carla, full of enthusiasm and with a very loving attitude. From that time his love for the church has been obvious.
And that leads me to tell you about the second person that was baptized: Carla, Hugo’s wife. Carla came to our church only because her husband brought her. The first meeting was overwhelming for her; the preaching, the words of our songs, the intentionality of the brothers and sisters in the church. She thought we were crazy! Nonetheless, the Lord began to work in her. Very quickly, her understanding of the doctrine of sin, which was new to her, completely changed the way she viewed the world. She saw herself as miserable, unworthy, and lost. Carla told me, “All that I had though and done was sin.” But then, against the dark sky of our sinfulness, the brilliant star of God’s love for her in Christ shone and she gave her life to the Savior! The Lord has done a wonderful work in both of them.
I continue now to the third baptism! When Lucas found our church he was so distraught by the depth of his sin that he came asking us if someone like him could be saved. For a long time he thought that he had crossed the limit of God’s patience and had been cast out for good. But that changed on the day that the light was seen and he found rest in Christ! While he spoke at his baptism, it was a delight to hear him speak of justification by faith. I remember him saying, “I couldn’t understand that I didn’t have to do anything to be saved, that Christ had already done everything.”
The fourth person is Seila. She had already been a part of our church. In fact, she had already been baptized among us! Nonetheless, despite her apparent conversion, some time ago she came to us and told us that “now” she had been converted. Essentially, the message Seila gave at her baptism was the following: “I thought that I knew Christ, but with time I realized that it wasn’t true. Little by little, sin stopped making me uncomfortable and I came to the point of having no interest in having a relationship with Christ. Still, I was afraid to say so and so I tricked everyone, until I couldn’t bear it any longer. On one occasion, several brothers and sisters offered to help me, they talked to me about the substitution of Christ for me on the cross of Calvary, and it was as if I had never heard it before. Today everything is new. I was freed from sins that I had never really given up. I began to want to read the Bible and to understand it. I began to have times of prayer and continue in prayer throughout the day— along with other similar things.” What a great demonstration Seila’s baptism is of the love and power of God!
The fifth and last person that was baptized is a young Brazilian man who came to Rosario to study. He came to our church through some common contacts. We began to get to know one another, and though he was a very moral man, it began to be obvious that he did not have a real love for Christ. After a few months of studies regarding the gospel, he reached the conclusion that he was not saved. I warned him solemnly about the wrath of God and with the same solemnity I spoke to him about the costly grace that Christ was offering him. After examining his heart and praying for the Lord's help, he was moved by the mercy of Christ and began to love Him in a new way.
I have more to share with you all, but I will leave them for the next report. I only want to tell you in advance that we have begun to record our own radio programs and the responses are arriving. Several families have come to the church as a result. The Lord is moving, but we need more workers. Please, pray for us in that way.