Prayers answered: Ephesians 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.”
It is little over 1 ½ months since Flory and I left the US with many people praying for us. If it is not for a reason the return to India wouldn’t have been possible. We are so grateful for different groups lifting us up in prayer. God has been abundantly answering prayers on our behalf. The prayer of Paul Brown flashes thru my mind over and again when we see several surprises coming our way.
- Found a house to live: Meeting a couple (who happened to be the US citizens) within two hours of our search for a house and then this couple offering their house that is unoccupied for six months for a price which is less than half the price at other parts of the city is a surprise. The owner has air conditioners in each room and good curtains for the doors – all for the same rent!
- Gas connection to cook food: When I went to book cooking gas connection, the manager who was opening his lunch box to eat stopped and took my work to process and give a permit within half hour is a surprise.
- Room for storing luggage: Ravi and Shanti whose church premises is now in their possession allowed us to keep our 10 suitcases for several days as we couldn’t keep them all in our hotel room. No charges and everything was safe. Surprise!
- Big purchases were made: Immediate purchases for household needs, getting to know lot of new systems (never existed while we lived here), and encountering challenges in day-to-day life such as finding helpers for cleaning the house, taxis and volunteers to drive us around for errands have become part of life.
- Ministry in the midst of all that is going on: Except for one Sunday when I was sick with high fever all other Sundays, I have been preaching and Flory has had a Sunday school ministry. The church had 1st time youth retreat with 200 youth gathering for 5 days; I was one of the speakers for the 5 days, Flory, too, was involved in counseling sessions and interaction groups. Talking to our graduates in the North and West Bengal has been very encouraging. Everyone appears to be waiting for our visit to their regions. All of them are aggressively involved in the ministry. Conversions and baptisms are taking place.
- STN India: Board meeting and Annual general meeting that were essential were held. The board was able to discuss logistics, legal aspects and FCRA matters at length. Two significant meetings were held with a renowned CPA (handling the work of Bill Gates in India). I have also started talking with Suresh; he is officially retired from Every Home Crusade.
- Abraham’s office and home: This continues to be a blessing as I am getting some work done through this office and stay at home and get the help of transportation in Delhi.
Pilgrims: Psalm 119:54 “Your statutes are my songs In the house of my pilgrimage.”
- Both Flory and I aren’t feeling at home yet, though Flory has made the home beautiful to live in over just a couple of weeks. We do feel like pilgrims. Flory is battling with the language. Tears have been flowing as she misses worship in English/Hindi.
- On November 8th we had some pastors with their spouses and Christian leaders with their spouses come for a house warming and to introduce them to STN India. We were able to combine our 10th marriage anniversary with this event.
- Opening bank accounts and operating ATM has been quite an experience. At Lucknow my cards didn’t work.
- We had made a special devise for getting water purified for daily use at home, with monthly servicing.
Expenses incurring in such new systems/adventures never occurred prior to making budget. But blessing in disguise, we can put some of these expenses into house rent and it will still be much low than what we have budgeted.
Program: 1 Corinthians 16:9 “For a wide door for effective service has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.”
In the midst of growing hostility towards the Gospel there is a tremendous open door for evangelism, and planting churches. STN India has a significant role in training and equipping. The past nine years of work has become a model.
- There is a need to identify a large number of people who need support and training.
- Making proposals, policies and budgets, visits to regions, sending out newsletters and making a prayer partner lists are tasks to be undertaken in next weeks.
Pray: There are specific requests.
- Visits to regions such as North (two areas), West Bengal and Nepal. The Lord to give us directions as we make plans starting in January 2016 to meet with our graduates, pray with them and work with them. There are requests to start BTCP programs. What is God showing us?
- Suresh Mathews to be led by God as Suresh desires to be associated with STN India. We do need help in teaching in North India and Nepal. He can be asset. We also need help in STN India administration.
- I see a need to mentor, train several graduates such as Jose, Dinesh, Laxman and WB brothers. There is a need to hold TTWs in different parts. Both Flory and I have made ourselves available for helping Ravi and Shanti. Also there would be openings in local churches. We need God’s leading to know what to accept and what to reject.
- There is a significant meeting coming up in the 1st week of December @ Lucknow to discuss on problems at Unnao Church, Suresh’s future involvement, probing into CPA’s work, Dinesh’ requests for naming their churches. This trip will also enable me to bring luggage that is left at our son’s home in Gurgaon.
- This time coming to India is a return for a reason that persuades and motivates us to press on. We are very thankful to the STN International board for being a great support in our commitment to serve the living God.