When is a wedding more than a wedding?

When is a wedding more than a wedding?  When it is in the jungles of Peru.

Weddings in Peru are different than here.  Most people only have a civil marriage ceremony performed by the local magistrate.  If you live in the jungle, the local magistrate may only be there a few times a year.  A religious wedding in the jungle is almost unheard of.  Several years ago the Amazon River pastors brought up the subject of weddings and marriages.  After some Bible study, several lessons on what a Christian marriage is, and lots of prayer, 10 couples in the village of Nueve de Octubre decided they wanted to express their faith by having a religious wedding ceremony.  The village had never seen this before.

When you start teaching and preaching the truth of the gospel, then things begin to change.  These couples moved way past what the village had deemed acceptable and wanted to do what is acceptable to God.  So earlier this year, 10 couples stepped out in front of their friends and families, made vows before God, and were married in a religious ceremony where Jesus was lifted up, the gospel was preached, and God was invited to be part of each marriage and family.  It always amazes me how God’s Word changes people’s hearts, many times in unexpected but jubilant ways.

Who knew that when we started teaching God’s Word to Amazon River pastors that it would lead to weddings, and that it would lead people to want to express their faith in a new and fresh way to their neighbors?  Who knew?  God did.

That is why we go, in obedience to the One who said, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you.”   Thank you, God, for allowing us to be part of your work among the Amazon River people.  Your Word is changing lives.

Pastor John