Dear brothers and sisters,
"...you were not redeemed with corruptible things like silver or gold, ...but with the precious blood of Christ, as a lamb without blemish and without spot." 1 Peter 1:18,19. Our Lord Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, by the will of His Father, in the eternity past, determined to humble Himself to become a human being to save sinners (Eph. 1:7-9, Phil. 2;7,8) when sinners deserved nothing but God's wrath and judgment (Rom. 3:23). He, by His voluntary submission, endured rejection, pain, and suffering (Isaiah 53:5,7). Ultimately, God demonstrated His love for us by showing forth His precious Son on the cross for the sins of His children (Rom. 3:21, 1 John 3:1). He, instead of punishing us, punished His beloved Son, by pouring His wrath upon Him. The Lord Jesus rose from the dead, and for the last 2000 years, the tomb in which He was buried is empty! And now, we are commanded to preach and expound this glorious message, not only from the pulpits, but also from the street corners.
The Local Church:
The church attendance was pretty sparse during the summer months (April, May, and June), which was pretty disappointing. But the Lord knows what is best for us. Now that the schools are reopened, people have started coming again to hear the Word. We will soon be finishing our study from the book of 1 John. I have been preaching through it in an expository manner. It has been a great blessing for both the preacher, and to the church, to study this epistle. We have gleaned many lessons from it. Please continue to pray for the conversions of those who come to the church.
There are a few in the church who are afraid to submit themselves completely to the Lord. They confess their faith in the Lord, but they are hesitant to be baptized. Please pray that the Lord may convince those who do not completely trust Him. Mid-week prayer meetings are not well attended. Please pray that all the members may be convicted of this sin, repent of it, and come to the prayer meetings. Please continue to pray that the Lord may raise leaders in the church. We have a couple of young men in view at the moment, but it is taking a little longer than anticipated to train them to serve the church.
We also praise God for opening the doors to do evangelism on Saturday evenings. We have published our own Gospel tract in Telugu entitled, 'Where Will You be After You Die?' This tract has raises a few eyebrows each time we distribute it. We have been able to make quite a few contacts over the past few months. Some have even promised to come to church, but never came. Please pray that all our efforts in trying to reach out to the people in our town will be blessed.
Brother Duke joined our church, and has been a part of it for the last one and a half years. He loves the Word and seeks to glorify God in every aspect of life. Although, he has a desire to serve the Lord fulltime, owing to various circumstances, he is currently working Noida, North India. His mother was diagnosed with breast cancer a couple of months ago. Please pray that the Lord would heal her completely. She will have a surgery on July 14th 2015.
Brother Ajay, who heard about our church on the internet, began attending because of his convictions in Reformed Theology. He would shuttle from his town to Vinukonda every weekend. His father contracted 'gangrene' a couple of months ago. He is not a believer. Ajay has been taking care of his father the past two months. He feels that it has been the toughest thing he has ever done in his life. Please pray that the Lord will heal his father, and also save his soul.
We praise God for what He is doing in our children's ministry. We had several children (60 to 70) attend our Vacation Bible School on June 8th- 10th. Smaller children were taught action songs, which they certainly liked. For three days, sisters from 'Way to Life' church (An Evangelical Church in Vinukonda) helped us with teaching the Gospel to the kids. Last Sunday, we had more than 100 kids gathered for the Sunday school. Please pray for my wife Vijaya and Bramhi (a church member) as they labor to teach the children each week about the good news of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Bible Training Institute:
There are about 30 pastors who are attending the course. This course will be finished by the end of this year. Please pray that all these pastors may continue to serve the Lord faithfully in the midst of a perverse and crooked generation, without neglecting their own fight against sin. Please pray that the Lord will continue to work in their hearts to draw many people in the villages to
Village Outreach Ministry:
I was able to go to the surrounding villages and visit at least four pastors in the recent months. I
preached the on the topic 'What is the True Biblical Church?' I was also able preach the Gospel to the unbelievers during this time. Please pray for the village outreach ministry.
We are very excited to complete the English and Telugu version of the gospel booklet entitled True Conversion, by Paul Washer. This booklet contains three chapters from his books in the Recovering the Gospel Series. Please pray as we begin to distribute these booklets to various church pastors, and place them in different bookstores across Andhra Pradesh. Pray that the Lord will use these resources to awaken this land, and strengthen His church.
My wife Vijaya and our children Shane and Shireen are doing great. Thank you so much for your prayers. We are doing well as a family.
In His Grace,