Revive Our Hearts Podcast

For Such a Time as This in Brazil, Day 1

Leslie Basham: Cindy Rast sensed God calling her to an ambitious task. But she didn't feel up to the job.

Cindy Rast: At the beginning of 2012, one of my friends said, "Cindy, let's do a study together." The four of us began studying True Woman 101. I thought, The women in Brazil, they need to hear this. And they don't have this accessible to them. So I had said to my husband over the course of several months, "Oh, this needs to be in Portuguese." But I thought, Who am I?

Leslie: This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth for Thursday, December 10, 2015.

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth: When you think about the assignments God has called you to, do you ever start to feel inadequate? I have to tell you, I have that feeling regularly and even more so now as a new wife. But I believe that's probably a good place to be, because when we feel inadequate, we can watch the Lord fill in the gaps of our weakness.

Today we're going to hear the story about a woman who felt very much aware of her weakness. But she trusted a big God. And He put a big burden on her heart. As you listen to Cindy Rast's story, would you ask the Lord, "What would You have me do to help build Your kingdom 'for such a time as this'?"

The Lord helped Cindy take on a big challenge. He's helping me take on a big new challenge, and He can help you too. Let's listen and find out some of what God has been doing in Brazil, through Cindy Rast, a woman who's willing to say, "Yes, Lord."

Cindy: My name is Cindy Rast, and I'm from São Paulo, Brazil. In 2000 the Lord called my husband and I to serve in Brazil. So we've been there for fifteen years. My husband teaches at Pan American Christian Academy. It's a school that was originally developed for missionary children, and it has grown into an international school. I was a stay-at-home mom. I was a teacher, originally, and then when our daughter was born, the Lord really placed on my heart to stay home with her.

In 2011, the Lord called me to a sabbatical—something I've never done. We'd come back from a furlough, and that September it was just like He said, "I want you to separate thirty days for Me. Silence all outside voices. Minister to your family, but spend time with Me."

Interesting, it was at that time that I came to know about Moody Radio through the Internet. I felt that it was okay to listen to some teaching and things online. That's where I first heard Nancy Leigh DeMoss. She was doing a study on Deborah, I believe, and it really was the first time that I had heard solid teaching on biblical womanhood. It just seemed to be answering so many of the question that I had had. I had grown up in the church. I was a pastor's daughter. I went to Bible college, went overseas to serve the Lord. But the things that she was saying I had never heard before.

It just began to minister such deep truth from the Word. And I think that's something that drew me to it, because Nancy is amazing and she is a wonderful teacher. But it wasn't something that was necessarily drawing me to her. It was that she led me right to the Word. It was just creating within me a deeper hunger for the Word and a deeper study and to study for myself, "What does the Word say?"

That was what it started doing for me. I was listening to these different programs and just felt like this sponge that was taking in all this information. Then I became this very annoying woman in everyone's life because I have the gift of exhortation. I have women, a lot of women that I mentor and that I disciple, that come to me.

My husband always says, "If Cindy finds something that she likes or that's good, whether it's a bargain at the store or anything, she's going to let people know about it." So women would come, and I would just start directing them to Revive Our Hearts—to the ministry online. I think some were getting kind of tired of hearing it. But I kept saying, "You need to hear. You need to listen to this."

At the beginning of 2012, one of my friends, Prisca, came and said, "Cindy, please lead us in another study. It's been too long. Let's do a study together." I was really busy, and I thought, Oh Lord, I really don't have time for this. What would You want us to do?

I think it was right then that True Woman 101 was coming out. I said, "Well, listen. I don't know anything about this study, but everything that I've heard Nancy from her speaking, it's solid. It's rich in the Word. Look! John Piper puts his seal of approval on it. Let's try it."

So the four of us began studying True Woman. After the first week, we'd done our lesson, we'd watched the video. We got onto our knees. No one said a word at the end of the study. We got onto our knees and just started confessing. The Holy Spirit was so present. He showed us, "You've got this all wrong. You have bought into the lies of this world and the culture. You have been deceived. You are women who know the Word. You are women who are serving. But you have been deceived. Confess."

There was such sweet repentance that day. The Lord began to work in our hearts over the next few weeks. I think what the Lord was doing in my life was bringing me to a place of humility. Here I was telling women, "God is good. He is faithful. He provides. Being a godly wife and a godly mother are so important." Yet, I didn't understand exactly all of that meant. So the Lord used the True Woman study to show me that I thought I was a submissive, wife but I was not.

My husband always said, "You know, if someone else wants to make the effort and to do it, I'll just let them." And for sixteen, seventeen, eighteen years of our marriage I led. I was very capable. I could do all these different things. And if he wasn't going to do it . . . He did lead. It wasn't that he was not leading at all, but I was very vocal and very verbal. The Lord used this study to really break me and to show me I was not being a submissive wife. He brought about transformation. That was four years ago. Transformation that's produced amazing fruit. He has humbled us. He has broken us. And then it began replicating. We just saw the Holy Spirit work in ways that I've never seen Him work before. He'd just bring women.

So over the course of the next couple of years, I don't know how many studies I led, but it was quite a few. It was never me going and seeking these women. The Lord brought these women to me. I can say in every situation the woman's life has been transformed and renewed by the power of the Word through this study and through understanding who they were created and designed to be as women.

These were all English speaking women. We had people from Switzerland and the United States and Brazilians that spoke English and Portuguese. But I thought, The women of Brazil, they need to hear this. They don't have this accessible to them. I said to my husband over the course of several months, "Oh, this needs to be in Portuguese." But I thought, Who am I? What can I do? My Portuguese isn't even that good. How can I do this?

I just kind of pushed it aside and left it there. But I prayed. And then in December of 2013, it was a typical busy day, and I thought, You know what? I am going to sit down today and eat my lunch. I don't normally sit down to eat my lunch. I'm going to listen to Revive Our Hearts. I'm just going to kind of pamper myself today. I sat down, had my lunch, and I turned it on.

Leslie: It's Revive Our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss for Monday, December 2.

Cindy: It was the women from the Dominican Republic.

Laura Gonzales de Chavez (on radio): When we started this dream, we were thinking the radio programs.

Cindy: And they started to share about what God had done.

Laura (on radio): God had more in mind.

Cindy: . . . in starting the work of Aviva Nuestros Corazones in the Dominican Republic. I was listening, and my heart was just resonating with everything they were saying. I remember putting my fork down and walking back to my room. I have to confess there was just a little bit of frustration there.

I got down onto my knees, and I really cried out to the Lord and I said, "What do You want? What do You want from me?" And I thought, Who am I? What do You want me to do? But I knew that there was such a burning desire. And He said, "I want obedience. I want obedience."

Then I argued with Him. I said, "But who am I? I'm Cindy Rast. I don't speak very well. I don't even speak this language very well. How can I do such a great thing? How can I do this?" And then, it was so interesting. I had a piece of paper there and a pen. He just started bringing to my mind three different publishers that I know personally.

My father-in-law is the CEO, the director of COMEV which is a evangelical film maker—they produce films and audio visuals in Portuguese in Brazil. I have a connection at Trans World Radio. And all of a sudden, as I started to list these things, He said, "Okay!"

So I said, "Okay. Yes, Lord!"

So I made a call to Revive Our Hearts. You know when you leave a recording sometimes it doesn't come out the way you want it to. I remember thinking this woman is going to think I'm this crazy woman from Brazil. I just said, "I really believe the Lord wants True Woman 101 translated into Portuguese. Can you contact me?"

And Debbie's a woman of great faith, and I think she could see. She contacted me, and that began my relationship with Revive Our Hearts. I began talking with publishers in Brazil. That was in December. I didn't necessarily receive "no's" from them, but I wasn't receiving a "yes."

And in June or a little bit before June, Debbie wrote to me and she said, "Is there any chance that you're going to be in the area of Niles, Michigan, in June? Mary Kassian will be here, and we're going to do a recording. I would just love for you to be here."

It just so happened that it was our month to be on furlough. It also happened to be the first day of the World Cup. The World Cup was in Brazil that year and my husband loves soccer. He was so on board with what God was doing that he said, "You know what? I don't need to watch this game. I'll drive you to Niles."

So I was able to come and that day the Lord just gave me divine appointments, divine encounters one after the other with Paula Hendricks, Mike Neises, Angela Temples. It was nothing that I was pursuing. I didn't even know these people. But God just set these appointments up one after the other, including a woman that was staying at the Lodge with me. She asked me during the break of one of the recordings, "Well, why are you here?"

I began to share with her just briefly, because you know those breaks are short. She had seen the Lord work so powerfully in her life in drawing her to the Lord through the ministry of Revive Our Hearts when she was in Uruguay. She said, "I want to be part of this." I don't think I asked for funds or anything. But she said, "I want to give." She gave the very first donation towards the production of the DVD of True Woman 101 in Portuguese.

So the next step was prayer because I had been going month after month. We'd just been crying out to the Lord asking, "Open the hearts of one of these publishers, Lord." When I got back to Brazil at the end of July, one of the publishers, the main publisher said, "No. They couldn't do the project." And the funny thing, I just wasn't discouraged. I knew the Lord was going to open the hearts of one of the publishers.

And in fact, He did just that. I think it was the very next month. Shedd Publications agreed to publish the book. I cannot tell you what joy and what excitement came in that. Over the next few weeks the Lord just opened the hearts of several women who had heard the story to give.

Samantha Lister: Cindy had expressed that she was very excited about the possibility of having the True Woman 101 study translated into Portuguese.

Leslie: Here's Samantha Lister, a friend of Cindy's.

Samantha: One lady that she had spoken with when she had come for one of the recording sessions had offered to give financially toward that effort. I spoke with my husband about it. He said, "With everything that Revive Our Hearts means to you and how I've seen it really transforming you as a person, I would love for us to be a part of that and to give financially to make that happen. How much money do they need?"

And so we were able to give. It was enough to go ahead and begin the process of publishing. Then she was able to receive the other monies that was necessary as well.

Cindy: They gave enough money that we could contract COMEV, the audio visual company to begin translation and producing the True Woman videos in to Portuguese. We were praying that God would provide a publisher, and He did. We were praying that God would provide the funds, and He did. He provided everything that we would need. The publisher made a great investment in this. And so, now a little over a year later, we have a copy of True Woman 101—Mulher Sua Verdadeira Feminilidade: Design Divino—in Portuguese. 

I'm really not super emotional. But just tears of joy. You know, one thing through this is that I know it and the Lord knows it. He has done everything. He asked me to be obedient and to take some steps and to be an instrument for Him. But He has done everything. My faith has grown as I've seen Him be so faithful to His Word. "He who begins a good work in you will be faithful to complete it." As I held that book in my hands, all I could say was, "Thank You, Lord, because You're the one who has done this."

And I want to share, too, that Kim Wagner was in Brazil in April. She had the opportunity to speak before a group of women. It was about 250 women. When she got up onto the platform, it was a large influential church in the city of São Paulo. As she began to speak and as the translator began to speak, this unemotional woman began to weep. Because for the first time, a group of women in Brazil was hearing the message of true womanhood. At the end of her talk she asked, "How many of you want to know more about what it means to be a true woman?"

And to see this group of 250 women get up to their feet and raise their hands and say, "Yes," I was overcome with emotion. In Brazil it's very typical to have a housekeeper, a maid that will clean for you once a week. Sonja is my dear, precious woman that does that for me. She sat at my counter that afternoon. I put the earphones into her ear, and I plugged it in. She was able to hear Kim's message. This poor, poor woman that doesn't get solid teaching and that loves the Lord.

She sat there hearing the message of true womanhood, and she just wept. I said, "Thank You, Lord. This woman, me, who doesn't speak so well in Portuguese, the Lord was using me to enable other women to have the opportunity to hear." So I am so excited for what God is doing through the ministry of Revive Our Hearts and True Woman—what He is beginning in Brazil.

Women are starving for this message. And so my prayer is that we'll be faithful to what God has called us to for this moment. And that is promoting and getting the message of True Woman 101 into the hearts, into the churches, into the seminaries, into the schools. You know, the message of True Woman and Revive Our Hearts has come to every country in Latin America except Brazil. But it's coming.

Lillian Pedrozo: I'm experiencing something that it's so interesting—to see this revival in the women's hearts in Brazil.

Leslie: This is Cindy's friend, Lillian Pedrozo.

Lillian: I say it is a country that originally comes from a Christian background, but we lost so much. There is so much influence of other states and other religions. People are so lost. It's so important to be there in the center of the Word of God and the will of God. And the work that has been done through the Bible studies of True Woman 101, through Revive Our Hearts. We don't have podcasts in Brazil. Hopefully, one day we'll have it in Portuguese. But we do tell the women that know how to speak in English to access and to hear the messages because they're so powerful.

Cindy: The world is a mess. Brazil is a mess. Our economy has gone off the charts crazy. People are losing their businesses, their work. Women are confused. I see it as the Lord. It's just kind of like He's putting all these puzzle pieces together. He's preparing the soil of these women's hearts "for such a time as this" to receive this message.

I believe with all of my heart that He is going to work first in the hearts of women. I believe that God is going to bring about great revival as He begins to work in the hearts of the women who have been influenced, I really believe, in a very negative way. He's going to bring about a change and transformation in them that's going to impact their families, and I believe even in our nation.

I know that the Lord is wanting a really solid foundation of women who understand what it means to be godly biblical women. My prayer and my heart's desire is that this message of True Woman 101 will spread like fire.

Leslie: We've been listening to the story of Cindy Rast here on Revive Our Hearts. As we've heard how God worked through Cindy despite her weakness, I know we've all been encouraged to look to the Lord to do great things through His power. Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth is back to reflect on what we've heard.

Nancy: One thing that excites me about this story is that it shows the True Woman Movement in action. Think about it. Around this season a couple years ago, Cindy Rast heard a program on Revive Our Hearts featuring our friends from the Dominican Republic.

These friends had felt very inadequate for ministry, but they said "Yes, Lord" to the burden that He was putting on their hearts. That burden was to launch Revive Our Hearts in Latin America. And now, God has done amazing things and Aviva Nuestros Corazones is thriving and growing throughout the Spanish-speaking world.

Well, Cindy Rast heard that program and had a similar burden on her heart for Portuguese-speaking women in Brazil. She, too, felt extremely inadequate. But that program encouraged her to say, "Yes, Lord."

And now I pray that as we are hearing Cindy's story, listeners everywhere would be inspired by what God has done through her. What would the Lord have you do "for such a time as this"? Is there some area of your life where you're being called to say, "Yes, Lord?" perhaps even to something that seems impossible.

If you're willing to surrender to God's calling, just think, someday your story could encourage countless other women to follow God's plan for their lives as well. The women in the Dominican Republic encouraged Cindy. Cindy has encouraged you. And God could use you to accelerate the True Woman Movement in your unique way.

We're seeing opportunities everywhere as surrendered women of faith are asking Revive Our Hearts to help them launch ministries in their languages and their countries. You are a crucial part of our ability to take those opportunities.

Each year, about 40% of the donations that Revive Our Hearts needs for an entire year is given at the end of the year. So as we look at huge opportunities, we're asking the Lord to lay it on the hearts of listeners to give generously.

Some listeners are all on board and they want to encourage others to give. So they've offered to match every gift up to a matching challenge amount of $820,000 this year. We're asking the Lord to work through listeners to meet and then even to exceed this challenge. That would allow us to continue funding our current ministries and enter 2016 in a healthy place. And it would allow us to be prepared to follow up in places like Brazil where the opportunities are so great for expanded ministry.

So, would you ask the Lord how He'd want you to get involved, and then make a year-end donation to Revive Our Hearts? You can call us at 1–800–569–5959, or visit us at ReviveOurHearts.com.

Thanks so much for being part of Revive Our Hearts for such a time as this!

Leslie: Thanks, Nancy. Well, tomorrow we'll hear from one of the women being discipled by Cindy in Brazil through the True Woman 101 study. Lillian appeared on the cover of a Brazilian magazine and the caption under her picture read, "Wonder Woman." But inside, this wonder woman had a lot of needs in her life. Hear the story tomorrow on Revive Our Hearts.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth is an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

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