This week I’ve been thinking a lot about what we can bring to our partners in South Asia. As we prepare to go as a church to work with Genesis of Hope (GOH) there are always questions near in my mind. Is the cost worth it? Is the time and money worth our travel halfway around the world? Do I have anything to offer our friends, our partners in the gospel, or the lost who have never heard the gospel?
God has answered this question many times in my life. My relationship with God is always deepened as I see that His faithfulness does not just cover my tiny corner of the world and my small life. I also believe we are better partners in the Gospel with those living in difficult places when we have walked where they walk. I love the logo for missions at Mountain Christian, “Bring Change, Be changed.” I have always come away changed.
I first went to South Asia (SA) in college and I fell in love with so many things about the country I was in. What really took a hold in my heart though was the open worship of false gods and the darkness that prevailed. During this time I realized how inadequate I was for the work that needed to be done. I turned to the only place I could - I began to pray. I had learned about prayer walking during previous mission trips and every time I went I saw some answered prayers and more insight into needs. Prayer walking is just praying as you are present in the world. It’s easy to turn your thoughts towards prayer when you do not understand the local language. As you begin practicing prayer God opens your eyes to strongholds, struggles, needs and ways He is working.
Pastor Frank’s sermon last Sunday reminded me of the power of prayer for our partners in the gospel. As we are able to look in their faces and understand the environment they are living and working in, God moves us to pray. We can pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ that their “love may mature in the real knowledge of God.” We can lift up to the true God the false gods and the barriers that hinder this real knowledge.
I see God’s hand guiding what felt like a pretty rushed trip in 2019. When we were invited to participate in a huge VBS in SA our small team took a few short months to plan and fundraise. This trip laid the foundation for MCC’s partnership with GOH. We visited several Hope Centers and met many partners in the gospel. Through this we adopted Shahabhad Hope Center and were able support the work done there even through some pretty crazy times of the pandemic. Looking back and seeing that 2020 changed so much and really cut off the possibility of travel, it is even more beautiful that God put all the pieces together so easily for our team to travel to SA. Being able to pray for specific friends and the Hope Center that we support in SA has been such a blessing.
Please be praying for the team that will travel this fall to South Asia. Please pray for their families and all the details surrounding the preparation to go. The country we will be traveling to is becoming increasingly hostile to the gospel. Please pray for open doors. Pray for encouragement for our partners, some of whom have been forced out of their homes by angry mobs and threatened by the police. Pray for Ravi as he travels extensively leading teams and encouraging GOH workers. Pray for his family as they are not together during these trips. If you took notes from Pastor Frank’s sermon please pray Philippians 1:9-11 for our faithful partners in the gospel working in a country where they are the minority (less than 2% Christian).