But that is not the way you learned Christ!—assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. – Ephesians 4:20-24
Every Sunday morning, I teach a Sunday school class, to the staff of our church, on Christian Counseling. It has been a great blessing to see the work of the Lord in our lives through the exposition of the Word on this topic. We are becoming much more intentional in our fight with sin; and the accountability to each other is helping us face struggles that were very deep in our hearts. I pray that the Lord will allow us to be a church where the life of Christ would be evident to the watching world and that our lives would conform more and more to His holy character. There have been many challenges, but the Lord is always faithful and continues the work in our lives. Thank you so much for your constant prayers.
On the first Sunday of each month, we stay after the church service and have lunch at our church building. It is always a fun and fruitful time where the life of the body is strengthened. It has been our prayer that the Lord would allow us to live the life of genuine unity and love. Our sin is always pushing us to selfishness, but by the grace of God, we have seen beautiful signs of growth in this area over the past years. We still have much to learn. Please continue to pray for our church.
It has been a joy to see some of the youth make a profession of faith a few months ago in Ciudad Evita, and that they have been attending our youth program every Saturday night. There is a group of seven teenagers that express a great hunger for the Word of God. Every Thursday evening, my sister and the youth leader of our church, hold a small group meeting in one of the homes in Ciudad Evita, where they disciple these young kids. We pray that they would continue to grow in the Lord and that they would become a light that would impact that entire neighborhood.
Calos and Samanta (one of the couples that are leading the work in Ciudad Evita) had a baby last month. They came to the Pastoral Training Center from Ecuador last April and are now part of our church. They have been living in our church building and serving in Ciudad Evita as part of the leadership there. It has been a great blessing to see them grow and mature in the Lord. The women at our church planned a baby shower and they had a great time encouraging Samanta and praying for her. Along with Nerina, we have taken on the responsibility to care for one family that Calos and Samanta disciple, until they are able to go out to do visitation again. Their names are Martin and Nilda. The Lord gave me the privilege of leading Nilda to the Lord a couple of months ago, and now we are very excited to spend time with them teaching them to follow Christ.
We recently had a missionary from Venezuela at our church sharing about the ministry they are doing in Caracas and in the jungles. His name is Giovanni. There is a young man from Venezuela who finished his studies at the Pastoral Training Center last year and is now praying to start a future ministry in the jungles. He has been visiting the jungles for five years and is helping Giovanni with his work in that area, mainly doing evangelism and discipleship. God has opened many doors in many regions and we are excited to become involved by taking some tools that would help the churches in that area grow stronger and deeper, so they can have a wider impact. Much missionary work has been done in the last few years, but sadly, the local pastors have not receive much training, and they are struggling with the spiritual depth of their flock. We pray that in the next few years the Lord would allow us to serve them so they can continue to grow to be able to reach every tribe in Venezuela, Colombia, and Brazil.
We thank the Lord for every opportunity that he gives us to reach out to our neighbors and family members with the gospel. This past month, we had a group of friends from Florida who came to serve in our churches and work in two of our neighborhoods: Merlo and Villa Luzuriaga. In Merlo, our team invited the women to a special meeting and many came to hear the gospel. It was a beautiful night. Then, the team went out to witness in Villa Luzuriaga, and God also opened many doors there. That night, they invited the women to a special event at my parent´s house. Only one lady with her daughters showed up for the event, but the Lord worked mightily in her heart that night and we believe that she accepted Christ. Since then, she has been coming on Sundays to our meetings and she is always talking about her joy in being in God´s family.
- Please continue to pray for wisdom and for God´s provision to send Samuel and Chayo to Peru next January.
- Please pray for wisdom and provision for our church-planting project in Venezuela. We have two families that are praying to come to the Pastoral Training Center next year. Please pray that the Lord would provide for them.
- Please pray for wisdom as we counsel difficult cases in our church.
Thank you so much for your friendship and partnership in ministry. God is answering your prayers and using you to sustain our lives and ministry as we serve Him in this country.
“To the praise of His glory.” Ephesians 1:6
Matias and Nerina Buldain