After graduating from Grace Bible College, Sunder primarily worked as a church planter in Gujarat, India. After planting a church, he moved back to his native state in South India in 2004. Since moving, God has graciously used him to plant another church.
Greetings to you all. We are grateful for your prayers, and we appreciate you all for holding the rope so that we might go to the front lines to labor for the Kingdom of God. I would like to share with you some of what God is doing through us.
Sustained Through Sleepless Nights
We want to be careful about the reports we share and avoid self-exaltation. It is not that we are satisfied with all our accomplishments; most of these good results come in the midst of tears, discouragements, sleepless nights, fears, and threats from those who oppose the Gospel (Hindutva militants – RSS, VH, Bajrang Dal, etc.). They have often tried their best to discourage me and drive me out of this place where I am planting a church. They do not want to see any Christian work or church established in this area. Because of this, my wife and I have gone through many sleepless nights and much mental stress and loneliness. Often, we are perplexed and despairing. But as the Apostle Paul writes of his experience in II Corinthians 1:3-4, we also thank God:
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our afflictions so that we may be able to comfort those who are in all affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”
In verse 9, Paul goes on to say that such trials are designed “to make us rely not on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.” And in verse 10, he writes: “On Him we set our hope.” That is how God is helping, comforting, and sustaining us in His mission work.
Difficulties from all Sides
It is difficult to do pioneer evangelism and plant a new church where there is no other church or any Christian witness. As Paul stated, we are not building on another’s foundation (Romans 15:20).
It has only been a few years since my wife and I moved here from Gujarat state (where we had planted a church). But we praise God that by His mercy He has enabled us (earthen jars) to plant a new church in this large and densely populated area. According to a recent survey, our city population is approximately twelve million (larger than both Bangalore and Chennai).
Please pray. We now have another challenge to the Gospel in our city and state. It is the rapid growth of the prosperity gospel movement, the mega-church culture with easy-believism, and the manipulation of souls. For this reason, we desperately desire to make greater effort in providing sound literature, training classes, and conferences for teaching sound doctrine to pastors.
Baptism – An Answer to Prayer
It is an answer to our prayers that God has converted our brother Prasad, who was from an Anglican Church background. I had visited his home for a long time, but he was always closed to the true Gospel and believed that regeneration was a strange doctrine. He never allowed anyone to talk to him in his home about the Gospel; but by God’s grace, I prayed and waited upon God to do a work of salvation in his life. Finally, God gave new life to him! He submitted to Christ and believed upon His work on the cross. He is now a new person in Christ. Recently, I baptized him, and he is faithfully coming to church. Please pray for this brother.
Points for Prayer
Recently, one of our church members was attending a training seminar for her job, and she attempted to share the Gospel with the lady who was the owner of the training center. This lady, who is a Hindu, had never heard about Christ. Later, my wife and I went and shared the Gospel again with her and gave her some literature. However, when her husband saw the book, he tore it into pieces and shouted at her. After some time, she became sick, and now she is also suffering from severe depression. She is almost nine months pregnant.
Having reached this point of near despair, she called us and asked us to pray for her and to teach her about God. Last week, we visited her two times and prayed for her. We could not teach much to her due to her poor health, but we trust God to work in her life. For the first time, she came to church last Sunday. Please pray for her and her husband. Her name is Padma.
We also met two more ladies who are attending the same training center, and we shared the Gospel with them. They are interested to know more about Christ, but they have opposition from their family. Another lady came secretly to church last Sunday without her family’s knowledge. Pray for these three ladies. They are from high-caste families that think that Christianity is only for low-caste people.
Thank you once again for standing with us in this ministry. I appreciate your precious prayers for us.
Your brother and sister in His mission,
Sunder and Glory