“But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” (1 Timothy 4:5)
India is a country where sharing the gospel publicly is prohibited in most places. Although technically, they call India a secular country, you don’t have the freedom to exercise your rights to express your religious views publicly. The moment you do it, you will quickly be met with trouble. The town in which we live gives us a reasonable amount of freedom to go to different places and preach the gospel publicly, and we praise God from the bottom of our hearts for this privilege. We certainly want to take advantage of this privilege. As a church, we do not see that proclaiming the gospel publicly is the only method of evangelism. There are many other methods of evangelism, such as sharing the gospel on one on one and distribution of the tracts as well. We as Christians must also be mindful of the fact that our actions speak louder than our words. If we do not live holy lives, what we preach will not be effective and the Holy Spirit will not bless it. So, we have been encouraging our church to participate in the weekly evangelistic outreach that we do every Saturday evening. Apart from that, we have also been encouraging the church to be effective witnesses where they live and work by leading quiet, diligent, and peaceable lives so that others would be attracted and drawn to them, asking that inevitable question, ‘why are you so different from the rest?’ Please pray for our church to be effective evangelists in our day to day lives.
When we share the gospel publicly, many are not interested to listen to our message. But there are a few of them who stay back to have us pray for them. Many of them want to have their physical ailments healed. We take the opportunity to tell them about the fact that there is a worse disease than the physical ailment they have, for they have a ‘sinful heart.’ We tell them that only God can change the sinful heart into the heart of flesh by the power of the Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 36:26). Although what we do is counter-cultural, we believe that the message of Christ that God has commanded us to preach in the Scriptures is the only hope for people to be reconciled to God.
We are also extremely thankful to God for the new ‘Pastoral Assistant’ the church appointed. It is our hope that he will become an elder in the years to come. We are so thankful to HeartCry for the help and support of him. Please pray that he would mature and grow in Christlikeness, both in wisdom and grace.
I am also excited to report that the church has agreed to help me with a bit of money to help me pay my rent. This is a new development, and I have been humbled by God’s grace towards me in this fashion. It is our desire and hope that we would become a self-supportive indigenous local church that exists for the glory of God. Please pray towards that end and that his Name may be exalted in all (Habakkuk 2:14)!
In His Grace,