For six years, Eliéde Rodrigues devoted her first hours of the day to messaging over 200 people on various mailing lists she created to share hope and faith. “My routine starts before 5 am because first I have my moment with God. Then I share the messages with people. Everything is calculated. After I am done, I will do physical activity and go to work with a happy heart, ”she explains.
The way Eliéde started the day changed not only his life, but that of many others too.
With just over half a decade of ministry, Eliéde collects stories. “I met a lady at the fair. I used to buy him fruit pulp until I got his phone number and started texting him everyday. Through this form of Bible study, she began paying tithing. I was so happy when she told me,” says the teacher, who is also the director of a school in Macujaí, Roraima.
The first transmission list, created in 2017, included children, sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, brothers and acquaintances. It quickly grew to a total of 60 people. Today, one of the lists has 180 people.
In addition to the messages of “Hello, Woman,” “Revived,” and “Today’s Meditation,” Eliéde also has a special group of brethren who have recently come to the Adventist Church and are receiving the Sabbath school the lesson of her on a daily basis.
“Some people don’t even see the messages. Others see but do not respond. When I started, I was sad about it, but later I understood that it was not for me that I was doing this, but for Jesus. It was then that I understood that what I was doing was my ministry,” says the teacher, moved.
Another group receives different messages every day—a powerful little phrase: “’I pray for you!’ This one, I am sending it to 40 people, who are brothers that Jesus gave me: they are pastors, leaders, friends who have agreed to pray for each other until eternity”, explains Eliéde.
Not all days are flowers and sunshine for the missionary woman. “I once spelled someone’s number wrong, and they responded upset, saying not to text them again because they didn’t know me. I was sad, but I prayed for her even without knowing her,” says Eliéde.
However, there are people Eliéde texted by mistake who thanked her. “I sent it to the wrong number, and the person thanked me and even said if it wasn’t for that message, they would have made a [bad choice] That day. To date, I have messaged and prayed for her almost two months in a special way after she separated from her husband,” she says.
A mother of six and grandmother of three grandchildren, Eliéde is proud of the education she has given her children, who are now involved in church efforts. Currently, she works as a principal and is divided between school activities, home, church and family, which has now grown to include sons-in-law, daughters-in-law and grandchildren.
Eliéde always seeks to innovate the messages. During the pandemic, she read two books and shared it all with friends via social media posts. “I’m sure someone read it with me,” she believes. Eliéde summarizes all his work in one sentence: “I have a mission that Jesus entrusted to me: to bring the gospel. And that’s how I found it, and I’m very happy with every thank you message I get.”
Eliéde points out that it’s not easy, especially on weekends, but when she thinks about giving up, she remembers how many people she was able to help and how many she still has to reach with her messages.