It’s time for a quick summary of our trip.
THE GOOD: It’s been the easiest trip for me yet. Having Nancy makes all the difference, plus we are learning each year how to be more effective while better pacing ourselves. The topics covered have been the most effective so far and the response has been overwhelming. The books are so very, very important and minister in thousands of places all year long. None of us have had any long, serious illness – little stuff on and off but nothing big.
THE BAD: The worst part is that there are so very many pastors who want us to come to their area for a conference, and we can only go to a small percent of them. Every place we go they beg us to come back again, but we can’t do that if we want to reach new pastors. Perhaps one day I can go twice a year, and God will send some other experienced pastors who are willing to come and lead conferences as well. Also it was a disappointment we didn’t have the Bible Overview books to give out. Eventually a copy will find its way into the hands of many of the pastors who came.
THE UGLY: Persecution increases in India, faster than anywhere else in the world (Chuck Colson Ministries statement). It is noticeably evident. We must be ever more careful, so must pastors and Christians. They still boldly proclaim the message. It is harder for our organization to get money to India and harder for those here who receive it. All indications are it will continue to get worse for the next 5 years at least. I must renew my Visa this year, pray that goes smoothly! Sometimes USA pastors are denied Visas, or if they have one, denied entrance into the country.
THE FUTURE: Books are a great way to spread the word here, even if we can no longer come. All year long they minister. For most pastors they are the only ministry books they have besides a Bible. I have written “How to Study the Bible” and will soon complete “How to Prepare and Deliver Sermons.” We hope to have them read for next year. I have been asked to prepare a book on apologetics (how we know God exists, the Bible is true and Jesus is God). I have taught that often but it isn’t in a format for pastors here. Also books on discipleship, counseling, and more detailed book on spiritual warfare are requested. I’ll have more time to prepare these as I retire but we need the money to translate, type set, print, ship and store these books. The new books will be $15,000 each, more if they take long for prices are rising quickly here. My main prayer request is for money for these books. The amount of material they contain for pastors is way beyond what I can teach in a conference. I think they are the greatest ministry we have here, and they will continue producing until Jesus comes! Many US Christians are now giving money for water wells in India ($1000 each) and, while that is definitely a worthy project, providing spiritual water for their eternal souls is the greatest gift we can give them. (February 7, 2016 Vijayawada, India)
John 4:13-14 Jesus answered and said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”
It’s not only India where this living water is needed. Jesus said to start in Jerusalem, in our own neighborhood. Ask God to show you how you can share His water with thirsty souls today, then be alert to opportunities to do so.