Tamires Flores, 29, is a native of an indigenous community in Sorocaima, Roraima, Brazil. A university student, married, and mother of one child, she is also the director of women's ministries in the community's Adventist church. As she began planning the 2022 evangelism program, she was surprised with a challenge that changed her life forever.
"I was present at the Women's Ministry training for evangelism … when the praise began, it was at that moment that God spoke to me. I thought, 'Lord, I am here singing, asking [You] to use me,' and I felt called to preach for the first time," says Flores, with great emotion.
From that moment on, Flores began to pray more intensely that the Holy Spirit would enable her for mission. "My first challenge was to think about how to do a 14-day evangelism initiative in a very rainy period in the region. Our community suffers a lot during this period because it floods a lot, and everything is full of mud, which could harm us during the services," she recalls.
It was during this prayer that Flores sought guidance on what to do to overcome the obstacle of the weather. "Then, a group of women and I thought about forming missionary teams to visit and share Bible studies to the people in the community." she details.
As a result, 19 pairs of women missionaries were formed who went out and gave Bible studies for seven days. Afterwards, these families participated in the program at the church on the following seven nights.
Nevertheless, another challenge lay before the university student: what would she talk about in her sermons?
It was Flores’ first time as a preacher, and once again, prayer made the difference. "I fasted; I prayed hard to hear what God wanted me to bring to those families, until He showed me: 'Talk about the water. ' It was enough for me to start studying that I was able to put together the seven nights of studies on water and its benefits, and how Jesus is our water, the source of life."
Flores had traumas to overcome. In 2021, her first year as Women's Ministries director, even with so many invitations and visits made, only two women participated in the evangelism program. "I was crying with sadness and despair. I wondered why more people were not coming. But on the last day, seeing those two women giving themselves to Christ, I see that it was worth it to do everything just for those two women. Today, they help me in the women's ministry," says Flores.
Answering the Call
In 2022, she faced many challenges. However, another difficult arose regarding language. Besides preaching in Portuguese and Taurepang, her native language, Flores had to speak Spanish, since there were Venezuelans in the study group. Notwithstanding, her dedication, prayer, and faithfulness—putting God first in her life—meant the week of evangelism ended with 45 people baptized.
Flores says two parables moved her during this period of challenges: the ten virgins and the great supper. "When I read these passages while preparing the sermons, I understood that I need to be prepared for when Jesus returns, and this is only possible with faithfulness, prayer, and love for my neighbor. And that, without a doubt, was the secret to the success of the women's evangelism in Sorocaima.”