In Maysville, Alabama this Sunday

Sunday, Aug. 25, at 9 a.m., I’ll be speaking, for the last time this trip, at the Maysville, Ala., congregation, outside Huntsville.

Subject: “I just want to go to heaven.” We’ll include some perspectives from our work in São José dos Campos, Brazil.

If you’re in the area, come be with us. Our son Micah and his family meet here.

Sunday afternoon, Vicki and I will travel to Mount Juliet, Tenn., to visit son Joel and family before our return to Brazil Aug. 28.

We thank friends and family for all your kindnesses. It has been a memorable trip in every way, beginning with daughter Leila’s wedding Aug. 10.

More to come in our monthly newsletter next week, Lord willing.

#alabama, #brazil, #missions

Brazil church information updated

Wikipedia is getting a big-time competitor in Everipedia.org. I checked their entry on the church, and the information for Brazil was pulled from the former, with a Christian Church missionary giving information for their people as if it were us. I’ve contacted the Everipedia folk and gotten a nice reply. At the moment, they’re not allowing editing, but it will be available soon.

I took the opportunity to update the information on the church in our city, region, and in the country as well. I’ve also moved it from my email account’s space to our ministry site. Much remains to be done still, but you can check the progress here: http://gospeak.org/sjc/.

#Brazil #Wikipedia #Everipedia #church

A whole congregation is moving

Here in SJCampos, the Esplanada congregation, with which we worked for several years before beginning an effort in our home, is leaving the rented quarters that they have used for years. Because of losses due to moves and some falling away, with evangelism not keeping up, they can no longer afford the meeting room at that location. They have decided to meet in a brother’s home.

I’m going this morning to speak during the Bible class time, to help them in this transition. My first point will be to look at it in a positive light, as a new opportunity that presents many advantages. Since 2014, we’ve seen the advantages first-hand. Please pray for them during their move.

#house-churches #Brazil #progress

Amazing smartphone statistic

Since it concerns me personally in our location, I found this to be an amazing statistic as far as global comparisons. And I don’t even have a smartphone.

About the time the state phone company got their public phones on just about every street corner in Brazil a few years back, mobile started growing and taking over. (It threw away millions because it couldn’t see the trend coming.) Now it’s hard to find a Brazilian without a smartphone.

And now it’s hard to have a conversation (or a worship meeting) without a smartphone turning up to interrupt.

There are downsides but advantages, too. See the link above for more.

#brazil, #ministry, #technology

Are moderns worse than primitive peoples?

The history of contact in Brazil with the indigenous populations tells a convoluted story. One organization recently reported that two Amazon Indians decided to return to their forest homes after a time among so-called civilized folk. Continue reading

#brazil, #evangelism, #indigenous-peoples

Beauty all around us in many forms

When man doesn’t destroy it, beauty is to be found all around us. And beauty comes in all forms, such as sound. This morning, as I sat quietly in the living room feeling the arrival of the dawn, suddenly a bird warbled loudly not far outside the window. I arose and went to the window hoping to see it, but there was no sign of it. It came, let loose its short song, and was off again. Continue reading

#beauty, #brazil, #corollaries, #daylight-savings-time, #opportunity

The outsider feels his status — and wants in

In our Bible reading group Wednesday night, we had one non-Christian who has been attending sporadically for a year. He married a fairly new Christian. During the reading, I asked each person how long they had been baptized. He, of course, had no reply.

Afterwards, he asked to meet with me privately. He came to the house Friday night to ask for a study in preparation for baptism. Continue reading

#baptism, #brazil, #evangelism, #in-christ

Convenience and connectivity cost too much

Convenience comes at a price. It may seem paradoxical, but usually that price is measured in the loss of health. Convenience purports to save time, but we don’t seem to be better off in that area, do we? Often, too, we pay dearly in monetary cost. Continue reading

#bible-study, #brazil, #corollaries, #missions

Son baptizes mother in Brazil

An evangelist in Bahia state wrote that Gilmar taught and baptized his own mother. Now there are eight members of the same family in Christ. Click below for photos.

http://alcanceweb.com/2014/11/11/filho-batiza-mae/

#baptisms, #brazil, #conversions

Brazil loss in World Cup called ‘historic humiliation’

brazil-loses

It’s a good thing that Paulistas have a state holiday today, so we can hide ourselves in shame over last night’s unbelievable defeat by Germany in the World Cup semifinals. Early in the game, Germany’s first goal dismantled their opponent, as they went on to score four goals in short succession. With a final score of 7 to 1, the loss even more shocking on home turf, in our beloved Mineirão stadium in Belo Horizonte, we came away wanting to hear how our star team could come so close yet lose so dramatically. How to explain the inexplicable, as two players said? Continue reading

#brazil, #corollaries, #gifts-of-ministry, #incarnational-ministry

Pray: a new church start?

This just in from our good brother José Antonio in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil (my translation):

My student from the city of Itaberaba, Bahia state, requested we go there and said that he has many people interested in the truth. He also said that he has been a city councilman for a long time and the people there respect him a lot, since he never mixes politics with his religion where he serves as a deacon. I am planning a trip there next week, where we will teach them, and since he asked for the true baptism, with others there, I will try to start a church there also, and plan several trips there to teach them. The distance is almost 300 km, I will leave material there. Pray for this trip also.

#brazil, #church-growth, #evangelism

Our year in a few photos

Our city park, part of it

Our city park, part of it

Since I have at least one friend who hangs out here, I thought I’d mention it on TFR. See this short slideshow of some important moments for us in 2012. There were obviously other moments as well, but I didn’t have the pics or couldn’t find them or my old-age memory failed me. It was a momentous and memorable year.

#brazil, #slideshow

Of fools, time, and atheism

April Fool’s Day has been picked up in Brazil as Liar’s Day, apparently because to fool someone you have to lie to them. One brother wrote that he didn’t know the origin of Liar’s Day, but he did know who the Father of Lies was, so he wasn’t celebrating the day. Is he taking the idea of pranks too seriously? Or are we not serious enough?

• In “Two Days in One,” Carl Hanson does a take-off about it being April Fool’s Day and Palm Sunday on the same date.

• An atheist—many have made April 1st into the atheist’s day—may be a fool, but he’s not stupid. Richard Dawkins knows there can be no peace between atheism and Christianity. So a few days ago, just before that special day some assign to him, he told 20,000 people in Washington to “ridicule and show contempt” for religious people and their practices. Maybe Christians might want to give a blessing rather than a curse in return. Didn’t Peter say as much?

• Carl, at link above, says Fool’s Day spawned from the change to the Gregorian Calendar. Time and foolishness seem to be related, if the recent hoopla about the Mayan calendar and the end of time are any indication.

• As has been mentioned across the web, the real fool’s day is the day of judgment, for those who failed to prepare. Those who live as if they have all the time in the world are the greatest fools of all. And we do not laugh at them, but cry over their souls and plead with them to put oil in their lamps.

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#april-fools-day, #atheism, #brazil, #foolishness, #richard-dawkins, #time

God is good

From today’s QBT: God has room for all. He wants all to enter. “Go out … and urge people to come in, so that my house will be filled.” Lk 14.23 NET

Luke 14 is today’s Bible reading from the New Testament plan, one chapter per weekday.

See also United Prayer today. And how about the story and some photos of yesterday’s baptisms here in SJCampos? God is good.

May your day be blessed.

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#baptisms, #brazil, #evangelism, #god, #prayer

Sobering: The torch has passed, &c.

In the past months quite a few missionaries, former missionaries and Brazilian Christians have passed away among the first generation of saints in the country. Another entered eternity yesterday. It’s sobering to realize that the torch has passed. The responsibility is great. The pressures grow by the day to abandon the good news they brought. Who will stay the course?

• Rick Kelley, Michael Carter, and I have been posting some poetry lately on the Christian Poets website. Check it out and join up. If you’re interested in writing, let me know below, and I’ll add you to the writing side of the group. It’s as easy as sending an email.

• If you’re not a Twitter fan, you still have several options to get Quick Bible Truths by email, RSS, or on Facebook. The new site is functioning marvelously. Today, a new blurb about the service got aired: “Quick Bible Truths shares the powerful reality of God in short bursts.” A good description, that.

#brazil, #christian-poetry, #internet-bible, #spiritual-pioneers