Sunday, September 18, 2005

Todd & Julie with (Left to right) Michaela, Levi, Samuel, and Lilyanne

The scene is rustic: dirt floors, clay brick and mud walls, and a red tile roof with bare rafters. Inside there are men, women and children, and a couple chickens, listening to the speaker who is using a single microphone plugged into an amp.
The speaker is a humble man, speaking in the local dialect of Portuguese. People around there know him as a farmer. But when he’s not working the fields, he is witnessing to his neighbors at the market and studying his well-worn Bible getting ready for the Sunday evening message. He also spends his evenings listening to his beloved radio on the porch very loudly so every one who walks by can hear.
You see, this man came to know Christ not through a missionary but through that radio. In fact, he’d never seen a missionary
before, until he wrote a letter to Harvest Radio station asking for someone to come and teach him more about his new-found faith. The teaching he heard on the radio helped him grow, but he wanted help knowing how to start a church in his village and how he could teach the people he had led to the Lord.
Then one day, a diesel pickup came rumbling down his road. The American missionary pulled up to his humble house and said, “I got your letter and would like to help.” Once a week, that same diesel pickup came to his home and they would study God’s Word. Within a month, they started holding meetings under the big mango tree. The people he talked to about Christ, people who listened to Harvest Radio, or people who were just curious about the “Americano” started coming to the meetings. The farmer would disciple the new converts the same lesson the missionary just taught him. If you would follow this story for a few years you would see the little church as seen at the beginning.
This is the scene of church planting in the western part of the state of CearĂ¡ in Northeast Brazil. Harvest Radio is reaching many for the Lord. Now the task is to cultivate leadership for starting these churches, then support them through the process of bringing these congregations into spiritual maturity. We are thankful to be part of this church planting movement that has been set in motion by the Lord.