December

Dec 1, 2021 by

 

The Current Situation and the Lord’s Move in India

 

The Pandemic

 
According to the statistics of the health department in India, over 1 billion people have received at least the first dose of Covid-19 vaccination. As the vaccines have been administered widely, although there are still about 10,000-20,000 cases daily, the overall situation of the pandemic has shown signs of slowing down. The lockdown restrictions are being lifted in different stages in various parts of the country due to constrains socially and economically. Taking the capital New Delhi for example, only a few cases are discovered daily and the situation overall has gotten much better and more stable. The public transportation, offices, businesses, colleges and schools and even general gatherings are open mostly. However, in some places where the pandemic has not stabilized, there are still many restrictions.
The lasting economic and social disruption caused by the pandemic has affected the livelihood of Indian society. Many people are at risk of falling into job layoffs and thus poverty. Many smaller businesses are facing economical threat and some were already forced to close. The situation is also true among a few saints in the church life. Although the economy in India is struggling to go up again from decline, it may take a considerable period of time before the economic situation can become stable again.

 

The Present Church Life Situation

 

There are currently 193 churches in India, with 4,929 saints attending the Lord’s Table Meeting regularly and 8,248 saints in the church life.

 

As far as the practice of the church life is concerned, as the pandemic relaxes, the saints meet both online and offline to recover and strengthen the church life gradually. On the one hand, through the bigger gatherings online, the Lord’s present speaking has been brought among the saints more commonly. For the past July Semiannual Video Training, 2,113 saints registered. For the national Serving Ones’ Training held in early November, around 1000 saints participated. As the situation allows, the saints also meet physically to contact people, to visit one another and to recover the small group gatherings among the saints. By encouraging the saints to exercise their spirit and have mutual concern for one another, we hope to recover many believers and new ones whom we couldn’t visit or take care of during the lockdown.
 

The Lord’s Move and Blessing

 

The Furtherance of the Gospel

 

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, because of the outward change of the environment, which stimulated anxiety among men, the attitude of the people toward the gospel has been quite open. Hence, we encourage the saints to contact their acquaintances by various means and invite them to join the online gospel meetings. Quite a number of saints were able to establish regular contacts, thus entering into the practice of the God-ordained way.

 

Propagation on College Campuses

 

The College Students’ Trainings were held in various states in September. There were 382 students that attended these training sessions. Taking a turn in the campus work, we continue to encourage the students to take up the burden of preaching the gospel and shepherding themselves. At the same time we encourage the working saints to participate in the service with the students, promote weekly service fellowship of the campus serving ones and the students, and collect statistics to help the students be steadfast in their practice of contacting people.

 

Promotion of the Ministry Books

 

We also coordinated with “Rhema Free Mass Distribution” by advertising free Rhema literature on Facebook. As result, we received a number of positive responses from many open and seeking believers. On average we received hundreds of new contacts each month. We then invited these seeking ones to attend our monthly Rhema seminars online in various states. So far 3,435 seeking ones have attended these Rhema seminars at least once. Meanwhile, we encouraged the saints to establish weekly home meetings with some of these open ones to get into the ministry materials with them. Through such an exercise, the saints gradually established the habit of shepherding, and at the same time the seeking believers were helped to know the Lord’s recovery little by little.

 

The Full Time Training in New Delhi (FTTND)

 

In the present term of training there are 40 trainees. Through online College Students Trainings in various parts of the country, many young ones received the calling from the Lord to join the training. This term there are 19 new trainees, more than the past terms. As the government lifted the pandemic-related restrictions at the beginning of this term, all the trainees were able to gather together in the training facility for a more uplifted quality of the training. During the weekends the trainees go out physically to preach the gospel. There was also a 10-day intensified propagation. The trainees all seized the opportunity to preach the gospel and gained a number of open contacts.

 

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Laos―A Testimony of Migration

 

When I joined the full-time training in Taiwan in 2004, the flow of consecration was at its peak. In the various conferences and trainings, the messages and testimonies all strengthened my resolve to participate in migration overseas. Thus, carried along by the flow of consecration, I, together with many other saints, declared to God: “Lord, when You sound Your call, here we are.” The love of the Lord constrained me to consecrate myself and my entire life to the Lord.

 

I got married in 2016. My husband and I had a busy church life. In 2017, a Taiwanese businessman returned from Laos and invited my husband to go work with him. Initially, my husband was not interested. But because of this businessman’s persistent invitation, we agreed to go and see. At the time both of our jobs were quite stable, and the church life in Taiwan was sweet and joyful. Such a sudden move never occurred to me. “Lord! Is this Your calling?” Many concerns and questions popped up in my mind: “My English is so bad! And where exactly is Laos?”2 Getting information about Laos on the internet was not as easy as popular tourist destinations. In fact, when one of my relatives heard that we might move to Laos, she was so apprehensive that she even googled to see if Laos really existed!

 

In July 2018, my husband went first for work. Within two months, he asked me to quit my job in Taiwan to join him there. Recalling my earlier consecration, I did not hesitate to pack up and move in early 2019. At the start, I found it difficult to blend into the local church life because of the language barrier and the cultural differences. Gradually I picked up some Laotian words and forced myself to speak English with hand and body gestures to communicate with saints who could speak English. Now, I am enjoying the church life here more and more.

 

Eighty-five percent of the saints in the churches in Laos come from the denominations. The church that I meet in is very young. The brothers and sisters are fully attracted by the words of this ministry. Once they have enjoyed the rich provision in the pasture, they cannot go back to the sheepfold. A sister close to me told me that before she came into the Lord’s recovery, she never touched the real life, light, and joy. The saints are attracted by the Lord’s love and touched by God’s word in the recovery. I am also drawn to run after the Lord by their eagerness and enthusiasm. My husband blends himself into various services in coordination. There are saints from different countries in the church life―Korean-speaking, Filipino-speaking, and Chinese-speaking. Before the pandemic, Thai-speaking saints often came for blending. Sometimes the brothers’ meetings are held in our house. I can testify those meetings are truly a blending of different cultures and languages.

 

The more we get into the church life here, the more I realize that the Lord’s need here is great. The brothers and sisters are very eager to practice the genuine church life. My husband and I cannot do much; we simply go on living here and do our part. Although we do not know how long we will be staying in Laos, but we are willing to renew our consecration and ask the Lord to put us in the most suitable position in Laos that we may go on strongly together with the brothers and sisters. (Sister L)

 

December

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