The Truth. The People. The Church.
By Kate Berkey - July 6, 2017
Posted in Adult Ministry, Partnerships, Global Impact, Stories from NMC
We are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.1
There is a battle unseen, a darkness that threatens to tear down all that is holy. Our partners in India are on the front lines of this battle. Day after day after day, they lace up their shoes, ready to fight for Truth, for people and for the Church.
The Battle for the Truth
Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you.2
Over eight years ago, a few men and women walked through an empty field in India, dreaming and praying and casting a vision of a discipleship training school. Yet, their vision wasn’t simply to construct a physical building. Their dream was to equip Kingdom-builders, people who would join in the work of spreading the Gospel. Echoing in their minds were the words of the Great Commission, the words of Jesus to His disciples.
Satyendra, leader of Little Flock Fellowship, especially felt the burden deep within his soul. For years, he had worked throughout India, touching hundreds of lives, and now his ministry had reached a tipping point. There didn’t seem to be any shortage in converts, yet there was something missing, a vital component of continued discipleship.
And so the vision of the Little Flock Discipleship Training School (DTS) was birthed and covered in prayer. In 2010, 12 students enrolled in training courses. While at DTS, students completed one year of both theoretical and practical ministry courses, all focused on disciple making. Since the first graduating class, over 100 students have completed the program and gone on to minister throughout the country or continued their education at the next level.
The story of the Little Flock Discipleship Training School is not one of ease and simplicity. It is a story of a battle, birthed out of a God-given vision. It is a story of what happens when men and women grab ahold of the Great Commission and equip other men and women to join in the fight for Truth.
The Battle for the People
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun.3
Sanjit remembers his Hindu up-bringing, the lessons he learned from his parents and family. He remembers feeling trapped in poverty, dropping out of school much earlier than he wanted. He remembers his days of addiction, of corruption, of his work in human trafficking. He remembers the darkness, its constant presence that sometimes felt touchable.
The deeper he stepped into his sin, the greater the darkness seemed to become, until he reached the end of himself in 2011. For the first time in his life, the words of the Gospel of Jesus Christ cascaded over his heart, over his mind and over his soul. With power, love and grace, the Holy Spirit convicted him. That day, Sanjit confessed his sin and accepted Jesus as his savior. In a single moment, the darkness fled, retreating far away, unable to stand in the presence of something holy.
In the weeks and months following, Sanjit found himself at the Little Flock Discipleship Training School, receiving the incredible gift of knowledge about God, His Word and the Great Commission. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, Sanjit was filled with boldness and zeal. Since finishing his schooling at DTS, he is serving the Lord with 10 other families in India. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, Sanjit has joined the fight, desiring that all be freed from darkness and experience the life and light of Jesus.
The Battle for the Church
We are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.4
Across India, persecution is becoming more and more common. Churches are being burnt to the ground, believers are being murdered and the Indian government is actively working against Christianity. There is a darkness that, at times, seems so visible. It’s not subtle in the slightest, and it threatens to shake the Church to its core. Yet, beneath the mask of this persecution is a battle: a battle for Truth, for people and for the Church.
In the words of Satyendra, the greatest need of the Indian Church is spiritual awakening. Our Indian brothers and sisters do not sit idly by as the power of darkness threatens them. They act with faith and hope in the power of Jesus Christ. They recognize that there is a battle, one that sometimes seems unnoticeable and other times burns their buildings to ash.
May we, as their partners in the Great Commission, recognize the battle that is being fought by our brothers and sisters and stand behind them with a fortitude of prayer. May we pray for boldness, for hope and for Truth. May we pray for the Holy Spirit’s presence even in the midst of the darkness. May we pray for Truth, people and the Church.
1 Ephesians 6:12; 2 Matthew 28:19; 3 2 Corinthians 5:17; 4 Ephesians 6:12