I praise the LORD our God for all his goodness, guidance and providence in the ministry, being always grateful for your partnership. I would like to thank you for arranging my recent trip to an Asian country to attend the Shepherd's Conference hosted by the Grace Church. It was also a good privilege to meet and to be mutually encouraged by other HC missionaries from other Asian regions. The conference covered various areas from the pastor’s personal walk with God and his family life to preparation for expository preaching and cultivating passion in preaching. Preaching guidelines for Psalms, narratives, and parables were also briefly discussed. Overall, they were very helpful and I thank God for the teachings that encouraged me a lot which in turn would enhance my ministry.
Over the past months, I have been occasionally hearing complaints from members of different churches about their pastors’ preaching quality. The lack of bible study, weakness in sermon preparation and personal devotion make many pulpits become very weak. It got worse when they tried to fill that vacuum with music, interesting worship programs and inviting eloquent speakers who brought false teachings with great persuasiveness into churches, i.e. health and wealth, claim it and name it gospels. Christians are not being fed with true spiritual food and non-Christians are not being preached the gospel with its seriousness. Many believing souls are crying out for biblical shepherds, needless to mention the lost. This is very sad but typical situation in many churches around us. I’ve just talked to a prominent local Christian for hours and he is on the search for a healthy church mentioning that he was not alone. He quite well reflected current situation of over hundreds of churches in this part of the country. This is truly heartbreaking.
Christians are not suffering from physical persecution, at least not this part, but from a famine of the Word in most possible religious forms. Will that be a judgment from God? Please remember in your prayers for the so-called Christians in this part of the world. I’m sure God would hear their cries, but please pray that God would pave a way for us to remedy this spiritual turmoil in today’s churches.
Please pray for my church that it would continue to be healthy, and to be a salt and light not only to the world but also to impact other churches by our preaching and godly testimony. Thank you very much for your support in many ways to this very end. Please continue to pray for the other HC missionaries, Y and R, as they and their families continue to stand firm in the gospel by preaching, teaching and living in most difficult areas of the region. Also, thank you very much for providing for them with their necessities to be able to live and serve the Lord with due respect and honor. Let us thank God for their ministry because we are sure of their faithfulness in preaching the Gospel, which is the power of God for those who hear and believe. Only a healthy church with strong pulpit will bring true revival and reformation within the churches today. Please pray that such would be our churches in our belief and practice so that we could stand and fight for the truth, which God has entrusted to us with, by means of preaching and translation of solid Christian books etc.… Thank you very much and God bless you.
Yours in Christ, Elijah (July 2018)