One of the great aims of the Christian life is to please God. “We make it our aim to please him,” the apostle Paul told the Corinthian church (2 Corinthians 5:9). To Timothy, he paralleled a minister of Christ to a “soldier” whose “aim is to please the one who enlisted him” (2 Timothy 2:4). In the same way, I hope you are striving by faith to “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him” (Colossians 1:10). Likewise, I hope and pray that the work we are doing in Asia is pleasing to the Lord and that this brief report will encourage you about what is happening in Asia.
Over the past several months, we have had a series of training conferences for our missionaries in South Asia. These began in September 2012, occurred again in February 2013, and happened a third time in May and June. One of HeartCry’s primary goals is to provide the training that indigenous missionaries need to establish biblical churches in their countries. Second Timothy 3:16-17 says, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” Our desire is to help our missionaries become “complete, equipped for every good work.” We want them to be mature and equipped to pastor their churches and minister the Gospel biblically and effectively. Therefore, we teach them from the Scriptures on several key topics critical for someone in the ministry.
These conferences have focused on four areas: the preacher’s life, the preacher’s doctrine, the preacher’s preaching, and the preacher’s church. In the first area, we have covered the topics of practical holiness and communion with God in prayer. So far, in the second area, we have taught almost exclusively on the doctrine of salvation. Sadly, this critical doctrine is often poorly understood. With regard to preaching, missionaries have been trained in the calling, gift, and power of preaching; and with regard to the church, we have covered the basic definition of the church and the leaders of the church—their identity, qualifications, and responsibilities. We hope to continue this much-needed training as the Lord enables, so that each of our missionaries would be “as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).
The second development I would like to report on is the recent growth of our ministry in South India. It used to be that we only worked with two missionaries in South India: Sundar R. and Vijay S. However, after a trip in February, God opened the door for a much more significant work in this region. We are now supporting an additional twenty-one missionaries in South India, and possibly more in the months to come.
Sixteen of the twenty-one missionaries are working with Vijay S. and the church-planting ministry that he leads. Among these ministers, ten of them are working in a very remote part of South India where a tribal language known as “Kuvi” is spoken. This language is yet to have a full translation of the Bible. Please pray for these men and the other missionaries as they take the Gospel to the unreached peoples of India.
The other five missionaries came from a new group that HeartCry began working with in February. The leader of this group, Samuel B., studied at London Theological Seminary, and he now pastors a church and leads a ministry that provides theological training for a small group of pastors. Samuel has a powerful testimony that was included in the previous edition of HeartCry’s magazine.
I praise God for the open doors of fruitful ministry that He has provided, and I pray that our work in Asia would be pleasing to Him. By His grace, let us press on in faith and godliness as we labor for Him who loved us “while we were still sinners” and “gave [His Son] up for us all” (Romans 5:8, 8:32).