Greetings from Paraguay!
As in most of the world, February was celebrated as the ‘love month’ in Paraguay. Many of the advertisements and movies on the different TV stations had a love theme. Love is the basis of the Christian life, so having a ‘month long love celebration’ should be a good thing, right? Sounds great, but it was interesting to note how completely opposite the ‘world’s love’ was from the ‘God’s love’ that we learn of in His Word. Everywhere we turned the love emphasis was placed on the sexy, sensual and selfish side of mankind. If there was a voice promoting a godly love, it was so very weak that it went unnoticed. During the month of February, it seemed that Satan had flat out challenged the idea of a ‘pure and holy love’ with his crudeness and ugliness. He was bold and even dared to lift his ugly head in the church setting, but we had the pleasure of slamming him upside the head with the Word of God and prayer! We also had the opportunity to walk in ‘brotherly love’ as we taught, guided and corrected the ones affected by the enemy’s ‘twisted love theme’. Don’t be naïve and believe all that boasts to be ‘true love’, check it out with the Word of God and know what spirit is behind it…. the love of God is always: pure, kind and uplifting.
Jerry & Connie
WE PRAISE GOD THAT:
The Acosta Ñú Children’s Hospital: In the month of February we made four visits to the hospital and prayed for 162-children. There were 58-parents and older children who prayed the prayer of salvation!
The CEB Church:
Sunday, February 8th, there were 125-people that joined us under the trees on our new property to worship and praise God. Even the hot sun and pesky mosquitoes can’t dampen the joy that we feel as we join together on the land that God has provided for us! On the other Sundays the attendance was less, but the same joy was felt as we met on the back patio under the small roof and mango tree.
God’s favor and supply:
We received a call from the local District Attorney’s office in San Lorenzo, saying that they have monies and items of value that have been received as fines and community service payments from various law violators. By law, the office is required to donate all items and monies to charity or to non-profit organizations. They would like to place our church on their list of organizations to receive these items. The only requirement is that we give them a legal letter of receipt and spend the money within a 15-day period. So far, we have received a new HP color desk top printer and an amount of cash that was enough to buy the fencing that was needed to finish enclosing the property. Last week we receive another call, they have another amount of cash that they would like us to pick up! (There is no problem, we can spend the money in 15-days and give them the receipts!) Is that favor of God, or what?
The celebration of a beautiful wedding:
Saturday, February 21st, we celebrated the marriage of our secretary and youth director, Marta Segovia with Daniel Benitez. The ceremony was held under the stars on the church property. What a joy it was to ‘bless’ their marriage in the presence of family, friends and our Father God. Many neighbors were sitting in their yards (on their roofs) watching and listening as Jerry preformed the ceremony and spoke the Word of God. We ask that God will cause the seeds sown in this beautiful way to take root in each heart! We have included a picture of Marta and Dany at the wedding practice on Friday night.
JOIN US IN PRAYING FOR:
The persecution against the church: The persecution of the CEB Church has taken on a more formal aspect. You have been praying with us about the formal complaint that was filed against us last month and we ask that you continue doing so. The Judge of Capiatá, accompanied by two lawyers (one was our neighbor) and her secretary, made a surprise visit to our office. Jerry asked that they would wait until our lawyer could arrive before we discussed anything. Our lawyer was very surprised that such a visit would be made; normally, all sessions are held in the chambers of the Judge. Our attorney felt that it was a political act, a doing a friend a favor, and a ploy to keep the visit off of the official records. There seemed to be confusion as they talked, contradicting one another: one saying the main complaint was the noise level and the other saying it was the church doctrine that was the problem. Pray that we keep in mind that our enemy is the spirit behind the attack and not our neighbors. That we can rest assured that God is the One that goes before us and prepares the way and fights our battles. Pray that the legal actions will be settled quickly so that the monies that God has given us for the building of the first building will not be eaten up with lawyer fees. For strength, health and wisdom: sometimes the daily battles and challenges seem a bit larger than life. Pray that we keep our eyes on Jesus, our ears tuned to His guidance and our walk steady in love, peace and joy.
The New Construction Project:
We are still waiting for our architect to make the final corrections and then we will be presenting the first of the building plans to the City of Capiatá for when the building does start, it will be a quick work. Pray that we walk in wisdom and in the timing of God in all areas. Pray for the finances, as we are faithful to do our part, God will move and perform more miracles on His part. The drawings at the right are the First Phase Construction Plans.
An area of need:
Because the space in which we are now living is badly needed as more office and ministry space, we are asking God for a home to rent (rent for now, purchase later) near the office, within the same block if possible. We would like a home that is large enough to accommodate visitors, with flooring and indoor plumbing. (There is one house around the corner that we checked into to rent, but they want to sell the home instead. We feel that they are asking more for the house than the value. We ask that you join us in praying that God will change their minds about renting it to us at a reasonable price, if this is the home for us.)