The following update is from HeartCry Missionary Rema S.*, who is working in North India. Rema oversees a church-planting movement that supports and trains Indian pastors to preach the Gospel and establish healthy churches.
*For security reasons, we cannot provide photos or real names for our protected missionaries; pen names are provided.
Over the last three months, our local church has been learning from the books of Haggai and Ephesians on Sundays. Our weekly Bible study, where we are working through Romans, was on a break for the winter, but resumed in March. In the weeks leading up to Good Friday and Easter, we had meetings in the houses of people who attend our church. We hope that the seeds planted during this time will bring fruit in the days to come.
In the past few months, we conducted three different training conferences for pastors and field workers who are working in rural parts of North India.
On the 18th of January, a half-day training meeting was conducted by a pastor from Scotland on the topic, “Preparing to Preach.” Recognizing that there is a divine as well as a human dimension to preaching, the seminar focused on what the preacher needs to do in preparing the sermon. He pointed out that authorial intent is what the preacher should be after and that application should be based on a clear understanding of the text. Regarding the components of the sermon, he spoke of the title, introduction, structure, and conclusion. He explained how each part should be. It was a blessing to all who attended, and we hope that the lessons learned will be put into practice by those working with us.
On the 5th and 6th of February, a two-day seminar was organized for our ministry staff on the topic, “Loving Muslims.” A convert from the Muslim faith, who is now a pastor, taught the seminar. He talked about the origin of Islam and its major beliefs. He also gave us some practical advice on how to engage Muslims with the intention of sharing the Gospel. Muslims worldwide are one of the most unreached people groups in the world, but there is only a small percentage of missionaries working among them. We hope that, as a result of this seminar, some Muslims can be reached through our workers’ efforts so that they can also worship the one true God!
From the 18th to the 21st of February, a four-day training conference was conducted in partnership with the HeartCry Missionary Society. The teaching was based on the life and doctrine of the Apostle Paul. This conference was crucial to understanding the Christian’s life and ministry, because Paul himself repeatedly urged believers to follow him as he followed Jesus. The topics covered were:
- Paul’s background and conversion.
- Paul’s life – characterized by holiness, love, sacrifice, faithfulness, humility, and boldness.
- Paul’s motives – the glory of God, the fear of God, the love of Christ, and Paul’s desire to please God.
- Paul’s goals – the salvation of sinners and the purity and unity of Christ’s church.
- Paul’s doctrine – God, sin, Jesus, the cross, union with Christ, the new creation, the Church, the kingdom of God, and the coming of Christ.
The teaching was very meaningful and powerful. We hope that it will bring forth great fruit in our ministry.
Three building projects are now under way in surrounding areas for church buildings. In A***** the walls have already been raised and the roof has also been constructed. All that remains is the finishing work. In M***** and U***** the buildings’ foundations are being laid. Work is in progress, and it will go on for the next few months. The new building in M***** will also be used for ministry to the village children through the Compassion project.
Speaking Outside Our City
Our leaders had opportunities to minister in different places outside our city in the last few months. One brother spoke at Cross Conference at the end of December on ministry in India. Another brother taught from the 21st to 24th of January in North India at a seminar on the Gospel and discipleship. Still another brother was invited to preach at the evangelistic meetings that were held during the centenary celebrations of a Baptist convention on the 31st of January and the 1st and 2nd of February. More than one hundred thousand people gathered for these meetings.
- The building projects in A*****, M*****, and U***** are continuing. Please pray that work will go on smoothly and will be completed very soon.
- We are hoping to purchase a plot of land adjacent to our church to expand our facilities. Please pray for the owner to be favorably disposed toward us.
- We will be following up on our efforts to reach out to surrounding colleges. Please pray that we would be able to form good relationships that lead to open doors for the Gospel.
- The Lord blessed HeartCry missionary Rekem K.* with a baby daughter last month. Please pray for the mother and the baby.
- India has recently conducted general elections. Please pray that the government will not be a hindrance for Gospel work.
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” – Ephesians 3:20-21