The following excerpts are from some recent letters of our missionaries in Bulgaria.
"And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready." Luke14:17
Greetings the name above every name. We pray this letter finds you rejoicing in the Savior: born in Bethlehem, returning to Jerusalem.
Our recent months have been productive. Although we don't always see immediate reward for our labour, looking back, the Lord's blessings are evident everywhere. There have been several saved recently. One woman has been attending church for five years. She always enjoyed the meetings, but her heart never had been opened. Although she had a form of godliness for five years, it wasn't until this month that she discovered the power thereof. When faced with throat cancer she got serious about God. In the operating room, she prayed and gave her life to Jesus. The doctors had told her she would never speak again after surgery. God delivers again. When she started talking, the doctors were amazed. Now she's testifying in church and said that wherever she goes, she's going to use her voice to tell people what the Lord has done for her.
Over here, many times when people have a great blessing like surviving a car crash, or surgery etc. they will give a supper for their family and friends in the community to celebrate. The Lord actually gave instructions for this type of meal:
"Then said he also to him that bade him, When thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor thy brethren, neither thy kinsmen, nor thy rich neighbours; lest they also bid thee again, and a recompence be made thee. But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind: And thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee: for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just."
This practice is also carried out in the churches, with the difference being that now they give glory to God in the name of Jesus for his blessings. This summer when the lady in our church regained her sight after being blind in one eye for six months, she made a supper and fed over fifty people in the village. At that gathering we sang hymns and preached the gospel to several people that would not normally come to a church service. Last week the pastor in the village made a supper. The occasion was the completion of a meeting house for the church. Alish is 72 years old and lives off of about three hundred dollars a month. Yet, he was able to build a room on the end of his house for the church to meet. He did the work himself and paid for all the materials himself. The only thing he asked help for was the door and the window, which I was able to get for them. Very quickly, the new meeting room for the church was full of people, and once they started singing, the spirit filled the room. The unbelievers that attended heard good spirit-filled singing, many good testimonies of salvation, and at the end a sermon about the resurrection. At the end, the meal, too, was excellent. These community suppers have proven to be a tremendous opportunity for evangelism.
In the summer we had started a prayer meeting in Ruse, a town about a hundred miles away. It's a long drive, but we believed that if the Lord opened the door, we should go. Now, after six months of weekly meetings we've had six good testimonies of salvation. Four people have been baptized (some will wait until next summer to get baptized in the Danube river.) Two people have given testimonies that the Lord answered our prayers in such a way that amazed the doctors. The little group of believers is beginning to love the hymns. We've seen a pattern among the new believers here. First, they love to sing the hymns, later they love to pray, and as they mature in the Lord they love the Bible. We thank God for each and every one that has given their heart to the Lord Jesus.
This month three vehicles have been purchased for the national pastors. We've been able to get these used (7 passenger) vehicles that are in great shape for a very reasonable price: between five and six thousand dollars. There are two more pastors that are in dire need of new vehicles. We're spending a couple hundred dollars every month in repairs. Please help us and pray for this situation. God bless you all.
In Christ, Zachary LeFevre and family