Growing Together

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Opportunities to learn and grow abound! Thursday night Bible Institute classes are going strong, with 10 students in the Bible Doctrines class.  After a Sunday service, a young man approached James, indicating he would like to learn how to witness more effectively. So, a few of the teen boys are going to start evangelism training every Thursday morning!

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One of the most exciting times of the week is early Sunday morning discipleship classes. James is taking the men through a discipleship workbook, and Amy is teaching the ladies an inductive Bible study on the book of Philippians.

Our goal is not only to equip the believers for their own spiritual growth, but also for them “to teach others also.”  As we ultimately “work our way out of a job” at this church plant, we want to see the church continue to thrive by reproducing themselves.

 

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What a joy to see folks saved and follow the Lord in steps of obedience! Victor and Rosa each trusted the Lord and then shortly later were convicted about their need to get married. They wanted to marry in the church so that all their friends and family would come and hear the Gospel, which they did! A few weeks later, three of those wedding guests each trusted Christ!

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Renovation Realities II

August 10 we had our first service in the new building. The Lord blessed with a full house those first two weeks! So, out came the sledgehammers again! We took out a bathroom and the office to fit 30 more chairs. We now have a little more elbow room.  (Click here for current pictures.)

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The next steps are to get plans drawn and approved, plus the foundation poured. However, we have a unique opportunity to purchase a dismantled steel building. This structure would allow us to erect a two-story-high roof over the construction site. We are currently negotiating the purchase price and are estimating a cost between $8,000 and $12,000 for the purchase and transport to our property. We currently have $5,000 to use toward this project! Please pray that the Lord would lead and provide for this next phase.

After that, we would like to host mission teams to work on the new building in early 2015. Of course, you don’t have to be on a team–we welcome help at any time and at any stage of the project!

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Yet another challenge (No ice buckets required!)

ice-bucket-challengeNo doubt you are aware of the Ice Bucket Challenge videos spreading through the internet like wildfire. The purpose of these videos is to raise awareness and funds for a disease called ALS.  Before this social media phenomenon began, many of the participants and viewers of the videos probably never even knew what this cruel disease is all about. I did, because my own sister passed away four years ago from ALS. That’s why I am glad my husband and children responded to their challenges, though they realize the momentary discomfort of being deluged with ice water is nothing compared to suffering from the disease.

As Christians, however, we need to raise awareness for another disease that is even worse than ALS. It’s an infirmity that attacks your heart, then your mind, and finally your body. It causes you to do things that hurt yourself and others. Lastly, it causes an awful, drawn-out death where you feel like you are burning with a fever you’ve never felt before. This horrific disease is called sin.  Sadly, I must tell you that I have this disease. Thankfully, when I was a teenager someone told me about the cure found in Jesus Christ and I no longer have to fear dying from this malady!  My husband and I are so grateful for what Jesus did to save us from this eternal death, that we can’t help but share His cure with others.  That is precisely why we are in Argentina.

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Those who support us on the mission field don’t need to make a video of themselves throwing ice water on their head, nor do they need to be publicly challenged on social media. They respond to the Lord’s leading in their life, praying for us and quietly write out their check and place it in the offering plate or the mail box. For you, we are grateful.

Faith Promise (1)

There may be others out there who do not give to missions and do not share the Good News of Jesus Christ with others. I challenge you, Christian, to start doing both!

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“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).

I could tell you that you have 24 hours to complete this challenge, but instead I will say that this ought to be a part of your 24/7 daily life.  Every day, ask God for a divine appointment [God bringing someone into your life who needs to hear this news] to share His cure for this disease called sin. As you begin to share Christ either through giving out a tract, sharing your personal testimony or giving the Gospel with those who are dying and going to Hell, you will begin to have a burden to do more.  You will want to give to missions and even go on mission trips because you love your Savior, Jesus Christ.

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By His grace alone,

~Amy 

Future Ministries

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2014-07-17 Silva 029In July, we had the privilege of hosting Adriano y Josi Silva, future missionaries to Argentina from Brazil. They accompanied James to the home Bible study in San Antonio de Areco (above), where there were several unsaved who heard the Gospel. When James went back the next week, two ladies trusted Christ as Savior! The Bible study hosts and church members, Raul and Lydia, are beginning new believer’s discipleship with them.

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We are very excited that another missionary couple, Seth and Lauren Champlin (with Baptist World Mission and based out of South Carolina), has begun deputation and is planning to work with us their first term.  Their goal is to finish deputation and go to language school in two years. We are praying to that end as well!

Renovation Realities

In our last update, we shared with you the huge answer to prayer regarding the property purchase. Thank you for all your replies via email and Facebook, showing your support and to let us know that you are praying. That is extremely encouraging!

Now that the waiting is over, it’s time to get to work! The church folks are putting in many hours renovating the existing structure, so we can begin holding services there on August 10.  So far, we have been able to knock down all necessary interior walls, replace the roof and do most of the landscaping. Over this next week, we hope to paint, clean and get set up for Sunday.

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Keys in hand!

Our hearts are full as we write this post, reflecting on God’s provision, protection, guidance and grace over the past few months. God provided the funds to buy the church property. In March that offer was accepted.  By God’s grace, after more negotiations and waiting for documents beyond our control, we were able to sign and take possession today, July 29!  To God be the glory!

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We already started clearing away some of the overgrowth, and have a church workday scheduled for Saturday for the real demolition to begin!  Our goal is to get the existing structure usable in order to have services starting August 10.  From there, we will begin the process of drawing up plans and pouring the foundation with the hopes of work teams helping with the permanent church building!

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Building on a solid foundation

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Praise the Lord for a great turn out for all the special anniversary services, including two salvation decisions and six people baptized! We are humbled as we step back and watch God work in mighty ways in our midst.

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We rejoice not only in salvation decisions, but in marked spiritual growth. We see major changes in quite a few members since our return from furlough (something we certainly can’t take credit for since we weren’t even here!).  A few years ago, someone wisely advised us that we should not endeavor in a building project until we had adequate male leadership. In God’s perfect timing, He has provided not only the funds, but also the spiritual leadership to begin the next phase of ministry.

 

Theme for 2014: Rooted and Grounded in Love

Theme for 2014: Rooted and Grounded in Love