“And what you have learned from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” 2 Timothy 2:2
In a land full of darkness and resistance to Christianity, a new light is shining! During a recent training meeting, more than 50 local believers were trained in a new approach to sharing Jesus. From the very beginning, they are thinking of how to multiply themselves and those who respond to their offer of Jesus Christ as Savior. Not only will they share the Good News of Christ with the lost. Not only will they disciple those who pray to receive Christ as Savior. From the beginning, they will instill the importance and expectation of sharing all the learn with others who need Jesus and discipling them too!
This group shared the Gospel 83 times. 53 were not interested. 29 people want to hear more. 1 prayed to receive Jesus as Savior!
This newly trained group will meet again in two weeks to go over the homework, which is sharing their personal salvation stories and Jesus’ story. As they continue to share with the lost, they will attempt to form house groups from those who make decision to accept Jesus as their Savior.
Pray for faithfulness, encouragement and safety of all those trained. Pray for many to know new life in Jesus, to grow strong, share and disciple with others… who will share and disciple others… who will share and disciple others…
Our language tutor is a retired teacher. We had prayed for the Lord to guide and we feel strongly that He lead us to her. She is Hindu and her husband is Muslim, which is a very unusual combination. She was telling us about her school days as a student here, recalling a song she learned. “All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small, all things wise and wonderful, the Lord God made them all…” We also knew it, so we all began to sing together around her table.
Will you pray for this dear woman with us? She is helping us learn language, but maybe we can help her know Jesus, the One, True, and Living God.
New Year is celebrated several times by the various island cultures. One is called Cavadee, when many from the Tamil group try to obtain favor from the god Muruga (god of war). Through elaborate ceremonies the people engage in acts of devotion including carrying a Kavidi (burdens), piercing their bodies, and walking on shoes of nails or hot coals. All of this is done to gain the attention of their god.
In another festival, ~600,000 people walked from their homes up to a lake. Men, women and children, all dressed in white, from every nook and corner of the island, travel to the lake on foot, in a slow procession. On this journey of 20-30 miles, they carry on their shoulders, structures made of bamboo and decorated with paper streamers and tinkling bells. Upon reaching the lake they offer prayers to Shiva and then take some of the holy water home to use in celebrations and spiritual rituals, and to pour on the emblem of Shiva at the temple when they finish the long journey home.
As you can see, there is a great need for the Spirit of God to move in this place. We’re grateful for your efforts in prayer as these masses are our friends and neighbors who desperately need to know the true and living God.
Though there is so much spiritual darkness, we have seen God moving. Working with the young people, we have witnessed God raising up some men and women who love him and are committed to seeing God’s glory changing the lives of their generation.
Just before Christmas we were able to participate in a live performance with one goal, to proclaim the mighty love of God that came to us at Christmas so long ago. Over 500 people came to hear the message!
Don’t you love the propensity of little kids to voice that little three-letter word with voracious curiosity? I’m sure it has wearied many a diligent mother and well-meaning teacher, but I can’t help but respect the curious mind – especially when it open doors for me to share about Jesus.
Recently, I was eating dinner with a Muslim family and received the following question. “WHY is it that God answers your prayers and my prayers and the prayers of my Hindu friends, and the prayers of my Buddhist friends? WHY would He do that if only one of us is following the true path?” God was gracious to give me a response. I answered with my own WHY question, “Let me throw another wrench into the problem – WHY does it appear that God is kind to the wicked person – the person who does not pray?” S’s eyebrows arched and he simply nodded his head at me as if to say, “Go on; you have my attention.”
I then summarized Psalm 73 for him. In this song, the Psalmist labors with God over his discouragement at watching the wicked prosper and live seemingly blessed lives; yet ultimately he comes to peace with God when he remembers the end of the wicked and how disastrous it will be. “The end of a life tells the true story of a person’s faith more than the journey,” I explained. “God is kind and merciful to all people, but in the end, He will judge those who did not follow His way.” Then God laid part of Matthew 5:45 on my heart where Jesus says, “[God] sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” I reiterated God’s desire to be kind to every person but how he will eventually have to punish sin.
S considered my response, and then we were able to have a good discussion on our differing views of eternal life – he believing that every one will work off their sin after they die and eventually go to heaven; me stating that we must receive a clean heart via Jesus before we die in order to go to heaven. The conversation ended with him stating that we would just have to agree to disagree on the issue of how to gain eternal life.
Oh, how God desires for all men to come to repentance and pours out his kindness day after day in order to draw them to Himself!
Pray for me that I’ll always have an answer for the WHY questions in such a way that the gospel is proclaimed among my people. Also pray for S – I’ve printed off the above Scriptures and am hoping for an opportunity to give them to him letting his know that I’ve taken his question seriously.
We’ve settled once again into a new home and already met many of our neighbors. One is a Jewish family, another is Hindu and 2 others unsaved. There are Muslim families as well. Our neighborhood is a field for harvesting!
*Please pray God will use us as we interact with our neighbors to share with them the Good News.
*Pray for us to have favor with them and open doors.
*Pray for new cell groups/discipleship for U– in 2012. Pray For at least 25 to 30 new people to be involved in these groups.