Ed & Jo Duenas
Go Make Disciples...
Baptism is an integral part of the Christian faith. Even before Christ has preached, healed, and taught, John the Baptist was declaring, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near”, and baptizing people in the Jordan River.
Baptism is not just a command Jesus Christ have given the believers, it is also a gift He graciously gives for our benefit and blessing. Baptism is the church’s affirmation act and union portrayal with Christ by immersion in water; a public act of commitment of one self to Christ and His people. It is a separation from the world and uniting a believer to the Church.
There may be more reasons to get baptized but here are the three good reasons to get baptized:
(1) to obey Christ’s command,
(2) to publicly profess faith in Christ, and
(3) to formally commit yourself to Christ and His people.
1 Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the
work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
In following Christ's command to make disciples, we cannot stop sharing the good news of salvation to those who have not heard it. Many may have heard it but they just do not have the time to listen due to what they are facing in life. The various needs they have such as food, livelihood and lack of education are simply occupying their time and attention. When we dedicate our time and resources in meeting these needs, we can get their attention and even win their hearts for the Lord.
Baptism is the culmination of various steps we have to take to get fourteen individuals to proclaim their faith publicly. Even before going to the main important step of getting these individual to believe and have their faith in Christ, there are many things we had to do. The first and foremost step we take is meeting their physical, material, emotional, and even financial needs. As we believe:
“A genuine need, when met with a genuine love, will result in a genuine faith.”
You might have heard this before that, “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
When those we reached out experience God’s love through our various relief outreaches, development programs (scholarship, livelihood, educate2elevate), and various free services at the Dream Center, they will know that CinA Pinagbobong cares. We care because God cares for them. So when we share the gospel with them, it will be well received and they put their faith in Christ as in the case of the fourteen individuals we baptized.
You can watch a shortened video of our baptism HERE. And you can see pictures here.
We are so excited this month because school will start in a couple of weeks including our very own Mission Bible School. We will be reaching out to many students through the Dream Center where high school and college students in our community will be coming to use our computers, printers and the internet to do their school works.
But this also means that we need to have school supplies, inks for the printers, bond paper, and snacks for these students. Our youth are ready to serve and are equipped to share the Gospel with the students. Let’s all pray for a great harvest!
We are also looking into starting to put up the fence for the Dream Center Laoac, Pangasinan. We are praying for guidance and direction on which we need to start building first at our new lots in Laoac. We have two lots there for the church building and the Dream Center. Our plan is to erect a building that will house our student center and our livelihood project. So pray with us on these.
We are also currently in negotiation with a landowner to purchase 3 hectares of land for the farm in Palawan. We are now ready to teach organic farming to a Palaweno tribe and perhaps even livestock raising. The next three years are very critical for the Mission House and the Organic Farming and Livestock Raising Training Center.
The 30,000 square meter land will provide enough area to teach indigenous people organic farming and livestock raising. At the same time, we can grow fruits and vegetables to sell in order for the training center and mission house to be self-sustain.
We do all these in hope and believing by faith that all these works will not be in vain and we will be baptizing more souls for the kingdom of God!
Please prayerfully consider supporting GEM as we continue to follow Christ's command to make disciples through Disaster Relief, Development Programs, and Church Planting works.
Pastor Ed & Jo Duenas
Gospel Empowerment Ministry
Do Justice, Love Mercy, Walk Humbly