Disciple Makers

Live a big life. Make an eternal difference.

This Christmas, give the gift of a hug

2021-12-21 | Christmas Brazil Jesus Macumba Keisse

Look closely. Can you tell that these photos are of the same young woman?

It may be hard to see, but both portraits are of Keisse Carolina, 8 years ago, and today.

A hug made all the difference.

When the photo on the left was taken, Keisse was a follower Macumba, an African cult much like voodoo. Her training to become a Macumba witch included spending nights in cemeteries and eating raw flesh.

“I had rejected my family,” she said. “Most of my friends rejected me. They thought I was a monster.”

One day her father suggested that Keisse visit a local church. She refused at first, because she hated God.

“But then I decided a trip to church would give me a chance for a showdown with God. I would get in His face and show Him once and for all that I was tougher than Him.”

That was when the life-changing hug happened.

“As soon as I got there, a woman I had never seen before came up and, without a word, wrapped her arms around me. I felt love as never before in my life.”

Two weeks later and at another meeting of the church, Keisse trusted Jesus for salvation. The transformation began.

Dave met Keisse at the Boa Terra Theological Institute in Brazil, where she is preparing to become a missionary. Her radiant smile attests to the joy and peace she has discovered.

Keisse, and countless people like her, are the real reason for the season. When you get right down to it, Christmas is all about John 3.16. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

It could not be any plainer than that.

Doesn’t it just make you want to go out and hug somebody?

From Cochabamba, Bolivia, we wish you the very Merriest Christmas and most Happy New Year!

In the Name,
Dave and Barbara Miller