The Samaritan woman, after she heard and recognized that Jesus was the Mesiah, ran to tell the people about her personal experience with Him. The reality of her testimony aroused curiosity in others who came, heard, and understood the message. Whenever someone hears and accepts the Gospel, this leads to the desire to share with others the experience of knowing who Jesus truly is. Upon hearing, people have the opportunity to say with the Samaritans: “we have heard for ourselves and know that this One is indeed the Savior”. Our goal, as a ministry, is to make sure that many all over the Spanish speaking countries hear the Gospel and trust in Christ. We praise Him for allowing us to pursue and fulfill this goal through our radio program production and distribution, but we also rejoice in the personal opportunities that He gives each us to lead others to Him.
In Guatemala, our missionary Pedro Ramos has traveled through different regions to visit radio stations. He also seeks out believers to encourage them in their spiritual lives and tries to share the Gospel with those that do not know Christ. Last year he traveled a couple of times to El Rosario. In his first visit he met Sharin. She is only seventeen years old, but at her young age has been heavily involved with alcohol and drugs. At that time, she was not interested in hearing about Christ. The gospel, she said, was “only for elderly people”. Pedro went for a second time to El Rosario and visited Sharin again. This time her attitude had changed. Then he gave her several CD’s with our programs, and she accepted them. In the course of the conversation she acknowledged that she had understood what Christ did on the cross for her and that she had accepted Him as her savior. She expressed a desire to grow in her spiritual life, thus she highly appreciatted the Cd’s that Pedro gave her. Several months after that visit, Pedro went back to El Rosario and Sharin told him that the programs have helped her to grow in her spiritual life. She has now begun to teach a Sunday school class. She expressed that her greatest desire is to teach other what she has learned from the Scriptures. For now, she enjoys to tell the children at church stories from the Bible.
Carmen and her husband Anibal leave in a poor neighborhood outside Trujillo, Peru. With six children, life has never been easy for her. The small bussines that she and her husband own, barely provides the resources to meet their needs. Another burden has been a rich man that bought several acres nearby; he has tried to force them out of their home in order to have easier access to his own property.
With no education and without the resources to hire a lawyer things have been hard on them. To make matters worse for Carmen, her husband has had problems with alcohol and affairs with other women. Dealing with all of this and having to raise six children, the future seemed hopeless to her. But one day, while working in her small workshop, she heard our program. After several days of hearing that Jesus is the answer to the main human problem, which is sin, and that she needed to open her heart to Christ, she surrendered and trusted Him as her personal Savior. Not knowing what church to attend she continued to hear our programs daily. After several months, the need to attend a church grew greater within her and she contacted our missionary, René Hurtado, who pastors a local church in Trujillo. Visiting the church gave a sense of knowing that she was part of God’s family. Her inmediate desire was to expose her children to the message of the Gospel, thus she takes them to church with the hope that they will hear God’s Word, and that one day they will open their hearts to Jesus. She also made sure to tune in to our programs everyday so that her husband would listen while they worked in their small shop. Four months ago, Rene’s church had an evangelistic service and Carmen invited her husband to hear the message. What a joy for Rene to see Carmen not only with her children, but with her husband seated by her side! After months of praying, she continued to trust that her husband would listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit as the Word of God was preached. When the preacher asked if someone needed to have a personal encounter with Christ, Anibal lifted up his hand. After a personal explanation and some counseling Anibal received Christ as his savior. He had noticed the change in his wife’s life, but now he has found out for himself the truth and the certainty that Christ is the only Savior.
It is a great joy to hear stories of lives transformed, and that through them the message is made known to others. Yet, millions all over Latin America are still walking in the darkness of dead and false traditions. Much has been heard about Argentina in the last few weeks. In this large country, the “Gauchito Gil” is part of the traditional religion. This is an image taken out of a legend that says that San Antonio Gil was a worshiper of the “Santa Muerte” (The Holy Death). The legend says that as he was dying, his
executioner had a son who was very ill, and Gauchito Gil predicted that he was not going to die, and apparently the mirale took place. Very grateful, the policeman gave Gil’s body a proper burial, and built a tiny shrine for “Gauchito”. Every year, hundreds of worshipers visit his tomb, especially on January the 8th. Along the roads, all over the countryside, one finds niches with an image recognizeable by its red cape and cross. People approach these niches asking for favors from the idol. Our missionaries Fernando and Vanina Fiordelli travel through different provinces of Argentina, supplying stations with our programs, and introducing them to new radio stations. As they travel, they find hundreds of small towns without any presence of Christan churches. Places where traditions, like that of “Gauchito Gil”, hold sway over the hearts of many. They also need to hear about the true meaning of the cross and of the one who died on one to save them.
We should not delay our responsibilty of taking this message to those that have never heard that Christ shed his blood on the cross, and that He is the true and only Savior. As it was with Sharin, Carmen, the samaritan woman, and the other Samaritans that heard about Christ through their testimonies, we know that those that hear and accept the Gospel through our programs, will be used by Him to tell others the news of salvation. Please continue to pray for and support our ministry. Pray that He would continue to bless the efforts of each one of our missionaries, as they seek to expand the distribution and broadcasting of the radio programs, as well as personally share the message of hope in Christ.
Thankful to the Lord for you, and with our hope fixed on the living God (I Tim. 4:10)