Joel & Joanie Troester – July, 2014

 

Acts 2:41 “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”
Our First Baptismal: On Sunday, June 15 we held our first baptismal service. It has taken a while to get to this point but this was a major step in the formation of Hope Baptist Church. At the beginning of the service I took some time to explain what believer’s baptism is all about. There is a lot of confusion. Then each candidate shared his testimony of salvation and of how God has worked in his life. From there we moved outsideto where we had prepared our baptismal tank. ( It’s a tank formerly used to haul varnish for floors.) We now have four officially baptized members. A few others are already considering taking this step of obedience. Several backed off from being baptized because they realized the seriousness of publically declaring their faith in Christ as Savior and their commitment to live to please Him. They need our prayers to move forward.
The Bloom’s survey trip
We thoroughly enjoyed the visit of the Bloom family. They are considering working here in Mozambique. We just kept on doing ministry together giving them the experience of
missionary life. They were a great help in all of the preparations for the baptismal service. Now they need God’s leading for their future plans.
Land Situation
The decision was handed down. YES! PTL! We have been awarded the use of the two plots that we had originally been designated, plus the use of some open street space. They told us up front that the lady who had wanted our properties had “convinced” someone on the inside of the city officials to create another lot number so that the land would be divided in fourths rather than thirds. Lord willing a bulldozer will be coming soon to begin work. Our next step is the design of our facilities and its approval. We covet your prayers for each step along the way.
Missions Trip to the “ends of the earth”
Two months ago Vivaldo, a member of a sister church, made a visit back to the little village where he had grown up. While there he handed out tracts with his phone number on the back. As a result, two men, Jordão and Laurenço, gave him a call, wanting to learn more. The short version of the story: Fourteen folks came together from four churches to make a survey trip to the homes of these two families and the surrounding communities. These folks live where the gospel has never been heard. They have Bibles but it is the fear of the spirits of their dead ancestor that dominates their lives. Anyone who would choose to abandon these practices would therefore be considered a rebel and the cause of all and any problems that might occur. We were well received but with obvious suspicion. So where do you start in explaining the gospel to these folks? I was asked to speak the first night with the only light being that of the stars and the fire in the middle of the circle of family, neighbors and the chief of this particular location. With a clear sky and no lights we could see the stars in all their majesty. For those who know nothing about God we need to start with “Who is the Creator?” The next morning, with the area in the middle of our circle as a drawing board, I briefly explained the trinity, the creation of angels, the fall of the angels, the creation of Adam and Eve, their sin and the promise of a Liberator/Messiah to resolve the problem of sin for all of mankind. These folks had never heard these truths. At our next stop, which was Lourenço’s house, Hélio presented the same story in Shangana and could do it without a translator. How necessary! Please pray for wisdom to know the best way to give continuation to the seeds that have been sown. Mr. Vivaldo already has some plans for land and a building. We, for our part, need to do the Bible teaching and training which he does not have. The body of Christ is amazing. Those from our church who went have had their lives changed with an experience that they will never forget.
Joel and Joanie Troester