Ruben Videra serves the Lord as a missionary in Leon, Spain. This is his report from the month of April.
A few weeks ago, I read an article that was published in Spain entitled: “Christianity Offers No Answers About the Coronavirus.” Christianity, however, does indeed offer answers about the Coronavirus and everything else. On the one hand, the Scriptures declare that God is always good (Psalm 106:1) and there is no evil in Him (Psalm 92:15). On the other hand, the Scriptures also declare that God rules over good and evil (Amos 3:6; Isaiah 31:2; 45:7). His absolute sovereignty not only requires that He rules over everything, but also that only that which He has decreed comes to pass. This claim often makes some people, even believers, uncomfortable, but it is the very foundation upon which the promise rests that God causes all things, whether good or evil, to work together for good for those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
An Encouraging Testimony
Last September, I had the privilege to preach in prison in Leon. There, I met a woman who was incarcerated because she set a house on fire with people inside just to seek revenge. After her incarceration, God graciously saved her, and she has grown spiritually during her time in prison. Now, due to good behavior, she enjoys four hours of freedom per week. Do you know how she was using those hours outside of the prison walls before the Coronavirus? She walked for one hour to come to our church, she sat through our two-hour service, and then, walked another hour back to jail. She had decided to spend her brief freedom in church! She longed to gather with believers. What an amazing illustration of the power of the gospel! As the Apostle Paul writes:
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” —Romans 1:16
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” —II Corinthians 5:17
In His providence, God has orchestrated that we may not gather physically at the present time, but thanks to technology (also a result of God’s providence) we are able to meet online to pray for one another, read the Scriptures together, and listen to sermons. Our small YouTube channel is thriving. Before the COVID-19 crisis we had on average about 2,500 views per month, but last month alone, we average over 9,000 visits. It is exciting to see the Word of God being spread all over the Spanish-speaking world.
Although it is not a perfect scenario, I have been able to continue discipling church members via Zoom. It is always so encouraging to see their spiritual growth and their love for Christ in spite of these present obstacles.
Even though we are still quarantined, we look for different ways to proclaim Christ to a dying world. A young man from our church just finished a wonderful short video entitled: “The Gospel in Thirty Verses.” What message could be more powerful than the gospel narrated with the very words of Scripture? Some of our people have distributed facemasks with gospel tracts. We, as a family, have prepared cookies to give to our neighbors with gospel tracts. We are also sending evangelistic sermons to our friends and trying every possible way to reach out to unbelievers from a distance.
Please continue to pray that God will use this virus to bring a true awareness of the reality of death to a society that falsely believes it can overcome any obstacle without God. Pray that new doors will open to proclaim Christ—the only one who has conquered death!