In the month of November, James Lee, a trusted brother and partner with HeartCry, conducted a family conference in the shadows of the foothills of the Himalayan mountains. He preached 19 messages over a period of 3 days to as many as 120 men and women. Many walked as much 7 hours, while one sister walked 10 hours in order to attend. For those three days, they slept on the floor of the church. Their commitment and desire for God's Word greatly encourages our souls, and at the same time, challenges our faith. The following is an account of that conference from James Lee:
I was blessed to go to Nepal and teach a biblical view on the subject of singleness, courtship, and marriage. As a younger man, I have always been concerned about having a biblical view of marriage in the church. Most view marriage as being more romantic than Gospel-centered, and there are many pitfalls when teaching a conference like this one. Some can make an idol out of marriage, while others can be discouraged, knowing the difficulties of their own marriage. Thus, I opened the conference speaking about what the Bible has to say about the goodness of singleness, and ended the conference with several sessions on how the Gospel and God’s grace helps us with difficulties in marriage. My aim was to show how the truth of the Gospel makes marriage meaningful, yet at the same time, marriage points us to the reality of Christ and the Church. For those who are not yet married, I desired to show how the gospel impacts our lives, and how we should approach courtship in a godly and wise manner. In light of the reality of Jesus Christ, every believer should desire to become a godly husband and wife, to work through personal sins in marriage, and to testify of this glorious gospel through our marriages. It was such a blessing to be with God’s people in Nepal. They hunger to learn about God’s Word.
The conference lasted for three days. I began teaching in the morning, and we would end just before dinner. I was blessed to see so many of God’s people paying attention to the preaching, taking notes on what was taught, and discussing. They would sit on the floor of the church for hours. I also appreciated brothers Sarvajit and Dul, and their labors in translating the messages into Nepali. They did a good job. After dinner, these two men continued to teach the other pastors, by fielding questions and answering them based upon the Bible, and what was taught earlier that day. I was not present for these question and answer sessions, but I heard that they lasted to over 9pm.
Proverbs 23:23 states, “Buy truth, and do not sell it, get wisdom and instruction and understanding.” I witnessed the believers in Nepal do just that. You could feel it. You could hear it. Many testified of how valuable the truth of God’s Word is. Each day, there were more people who showed up for the conference. I was touched to hear of how far some traveled, and the difficulties some of the believers went through in order to attend this conference. Those in attendance stayed overnight at the church. This is not as comfortable as many in the West might expect, yet, these believers considered the truth of God’s Word more valuable than comfort. I was truly humbled to be a servant to teach God’s Word.
Would you please pray that this conference would strengthen every family in attendance? Pray that those who are single would not despise their singleness, but rather, with great patience, continue seek the face of the Lord, to walk in a disciplined manner, and to prepare them selves for marriage.