February 15, 2016
Chilean Baptismal Candidates Testify to God’s Transforming
From the Superintendent's DESK
As the camp meeting in Chile continued on Thursday, two of the highlights were the heartfelt music and the testimonies from recent converts. Sister Carrie sent this report of the services:
This morning’s Bible teaching opened with a time of prayer followed by the now familiar blended tones of guitars, mandolins, and singers. And as the prayer time had been blessed, so was the opening music.
The sermon topic was restitution, and Brother Sam took his primary text from Exodus 22:1-14. Building on the definition of restitution, he said God does not want Christians to violate the rights of others or cause another person grief. Though He forgave our wrongdoings at salvation, He wants us to repair, inasmuch as possible, any damage we have caused to others. He also said that because God takes our treatment of each other very seriously, being right with Him is inseparable from doing right toward others.
After an agreeable afternoon of crafts, fellowship, singing, and ping pong, the evening service began with a beautiful ensemble. It has been a blessing to see the musicians so enjoying praising God. As they are moved in their songs to tears of worship, His Spirit descends and touches us all.
In anticipation of Saturday’s baptismal service, Brother Sam asked the candidates to share their testimonies. One sister testified that she was diagnosed with cancer and sent to San Fernando to determine its stage. After the biopsy, there was a thirty-day waiting period, during which time she gave her heart to God and continued in consecration. When she returned to the doctor to learn her status, he said, “Valentina, who did you commend your soul to? You have no cancer—you’ve been healed.”
Another baptismal candidate testified, “I may be young, but I was younger still when I realized I wasn’t interested in running in the same direction as my friends. Instead, my heart always turned to God. When I learned about salvation and prayed, He made a total change in my heart. I have given Him all my life.” This young woman also said she is looking forward to growing in the Lord and to being water baptized as a complete testimony of her commitment to Him.
Following a Chilean Country and Western Gospel song, Eladio Retamal (pastor of our Limavida church) gave the message from Luke 5:1-11, stressing Peter’s words in verse 5, “Nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.” Brother Eladio said that nothing is impossible in the Name of Jesus. In contrast, if we depend on ourselves—on our own name and works—nothing will be possible. He also brought out that when Jesus does something, He does it abundantly. Jesus did not feed fifty when He multiplied five loaves of bread; He fed five thousand! In conclusion, we were exhorted to trust God in small steps as this leads to the abundance of His blessings. The prayer service that followed was wonderful and continued until the kitchen staff reminded everyone that the facility needed to close.
Truly each service is better than the last, and our hearts are anticipating those that yet remain. What a privilege to be here, being touched by the meek faith and sincere hunger of the saints!
(Mouse over the image to click through the album.)