I’m taking a small break from the usual “emergent” emails to pause and thank God for the many new friends I have gained in the past year. In a recent comment on one of my blog posts, I listed just a few of the names of the new friends throughout the country and even around the world, who have been a great blessing to me and my family in the midst of all this “emergent madness” going on in the evangelical world. I have been telling my fellow Christians, that deciding to stand for truth in response to what Christ commands, rather than keeping silent, has brought some of the greatest blessings in our lives.
My wife Monica and I have grown in our faith, and have been strengthened and sustained by the encouragement and prayers of our new friends, many who have gone through more difficulties than we ever have. So to those who think, or are worried that we might be falling apart from all this “emergent madness”, don’t worry; that’s not possible when you place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. But to those who have ministered to me and my wife in the past year, I pray for God’s richest blessings on you. You know who you are and what you have meant to me, and I look forward to meeting many of you in person someday.
Which leads me to one of our most recent friends that we have found, and that I want to thank also because they are investing in their own time to help me. I want to introduce you to Helena and David Russel. Please go to their website when you have a chance, especially if you have friends who like to read in Spanish or Portuguese. The following is from their About page: “Our mission is to lead people worldwide to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and to help strengthen the local church.”
Their ministry is called Mission Venture Ministries, and as I said, there is also a Portuguese and Spanish version of the website. So that means of course that they are very busy trying to get their posts online in three languages! And that’s on top of their duties as missionaries, leading in Bible studies, and ministering to others in various other ways.
Here are their links:
How did I meet them? Sometime in March, Helena contacted me and said she had been on my Portuguese Reformed Nazarene blog. After reading one of the articles, in which I asked if anyone might be interested in helping me translate some articles into Portuguese, she felt led by the Lord to contact me and volunteer to do what she can for me. Needless to say, she has been translating several posts already for me, in between lots of other things.
Helena and her husband, David, are independent missionaries who are ministering to the Hispanic population in Arizona (where my favorite vacation spot is, Sedona). David is American born and grew up in the Nazarene denomination. Helena was born in Brazil, and they have many friends who are Nazarene. I think I can summarize their testimony a little bit in this way: they are two Christians who will allow God to use their talents in any way that God desires to use them.
I thank them both for their kindness and encouragement, and certainly for Helena’s willingness to translate my blogs into Portuguese. This is very important, as we want to reach out and give information to our Portuguese brothers and sisters. May God bless them richly in their ministry. Please take the time if you can to drop them a note of encouragement on their website.
For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men?
for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.