Modern Day Paul

Recently, I was privileged to go to Asia on a Vision Tour with the School of Discipleship students. One of the most impacting parts of the trip was spending a day in a remote village where a Tribal Church had been established.

I sat in a tiny cement Church building worshipping with the local believers. As I watched the believers worship the Lord with such intensity I became focused on one man. He stood in the front and had such an obvious passion for the Lord. He seemed to have leadership all over him. I wanted so badly to find out his story. A few minutes later, I was humbled hearing how God transformed his life.

“My name is Pradeep. For over 20 years I was part of an anti-Christian group that terrorized Pastors and Believers. I was known throughout the region as a fierce man who would beat Christians, burn Bibles and destroy Gospel literature.Often, at the sound of my name believers would prepare to run for their lives.

After 20 years of serving my gods and fighting Christians I found my family more desperate than ever. For two years my family fell sick. We sought relief in our gods and goddesses as well as medicine. The more we tried the worse our situation became. There seemed to be no hope.

Finally, a pastor visited my home and told me, “If you believe in Jesus and pray to Him, Jesus will heal your family.” After sharing about the Lord Jesus, the pastor asked if he could pray. After sitting and watching this man pray I felt the first glimmer of hope for my family in two years.

Over the next few weeks my family was completely healed from our sicknesses. As a result we gave our lives to Jesus.

We have now been serving our Christ for five years. Even today, many believers who have not seen the drastic change in my life are afraid and prepare to flee when they hear that I’m entering a village. I’m so thankful for how Jesus saved us.”

I sat in awe of how God transformed this Saul into a modern Paul. In my heart, I said, ‘O Jesus, I love you so much you are so good, please take us and completely.’

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Urgency in Reaching the Lost World

Hello y’all

Some of you that have been keeping up with this blog from the beginning, might remember the story I told when I got back from Asia about the children in the river? About the urgency of “there is such a thing as too late”?

Well, while I was out support raising, I  was a part of a homeless ministry with my church. I really felt like I was a part of that ministry, and I fell in love with the people in Philly that were lost, and knew they were lost, but didn’t want to accept it or accept the hope that Jesus provides.

One of my homeless buddies was named Black. He was about 54-55 years old.  And he was determined to believe in the another faith, but was really curious about Christianity because he grew up in the church, but had turned away later on in his life.  We talked to him every week and brought him to church almost every week as well. He really enjoyed it and felt like people were loving on him even though they didn’t know him very well.  Which was awesome! He was experiencing Jesus’ love through us! He started talking about the possibility of  coming to Christ, which made us all really happy. We were finally getting through to him! So we kept encouraging him and encouraging him, week after week. Answering all the questions he had, and loving on him.

Sometime last week, however, Black passed away. My mom just told me of this sad news. It was shocking. To think… I knew this guy, I loved this guy, and I was praying for him every day that he would somehow turn to Jesus as his Lord and Savior. And now he’s gone…

Just like that… he’s gone. One more lost soul plunged into eternity.  I can only pray that before he died, he finally accepted the Lord. But really, I don’t know. No one does except the Lord.

Anyway, I’m writing this post as an encouragement to you all, and also as a request. Please pray for the rest of those homeless people, both in Philadelphia, and also in Asia.  There are so many people that still have yet to hear!  And there’s no telling when they might be gone, forever.  We need to reach these people.

And it took one of my friends dying to remind me of that urgency we need to have to reach the lost world.

Some of you might be thinking that this is tragic news, but remember Romans 8:28. EVERYTHING works for the good.  Black’s death will be used by God, and is being used to impact many lives. Praise God for that.

Thanks for reading, and I’m so thankful that God has put us in an position where we can reach the lost world each day.

Let’s not forget our callings.

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I Need a Time Out Please!

I don’t have the time.  These are words that I have lived by.  I don’t have time to read my Bible, I don’t have time to get alone and pray, I don’t have time to read that biography.  After all, I work and then I have to get home to facebook and calling my family.  I have to take a nap, I have to take a shower, In have to do my laundry… The list goes on and on.

We live in a culture where we are taught that we can do what we want to do – and we live by that.  Not that we want to follow the worlds example but we want to be comfortable within God’s commands.  We don’t realize that God calls us to be just as radical as Jesus Christ was.  Paul says to “follow me as I follow Christ”.  This is a pretty huge deal.  I don’t want to live like Paul!  Man, that guy was shipwrecked, he was beaten, he barely escaped from so many murder plots.  Oh, wait, yeah, I remember now… he was that guy that got beheaded.  But… he knew Christ.

My point is that being a Christian means more than just going to church and praying when people are sick.  Those are good things but they are definately not what defines us as Christians.  “They were first called Christians at Antioch.”  Little Christs is what the word Christian means.  So, as a “little Christ” what must we do?  We must follow His example.  We must love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and strength.

That means giving up our time to spend it with Him.  Not because we must but because we want to love Him more.  This King of the universe who came down as a man to redeem my soul… why wouldn’t I want to know Him more?

So look at my life and what do you see?  Probably someone who’s time is spent in a lot of different ways.  Some of it serving Christ, some of it wasted.  What do I want to become?  Someone who’s life is consumed with loving my King.  You spend time on the things you value.  When you say “I don’t have time”, you’re really saying that it’s not on the top of your priority list.

Let’s give Him our time… Let’s give Him our love!

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Busy Death

Some thoughts on different teachings over the past two months…

“For thus the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said, ‘In repentance and rest you will be saved, in quietness and trust is your strength.’ But you were not willing . . .” (Isaiah 30:15). “ . . . ‘Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind and makes flesh his strength, and whose heart turns away from the LORD. For he will be like a bush in the desert and will not see when prosperity comes, but will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, a land of salt without inhabitant’” (Jeremiah 17:5-6).

Monday, Thursday, and Friday morning prayer, Tuesday night prayer, and Friday night prayer, and daily we work and pray to see the lost multitudes of Asia reached. But the trap in my life is to be doing the work of God, wholehearted, and yet I miss God Himself. I can easily pray for the Dalits of India in all their depravity and be strong and bold in my words, why I’ve done it 100 times the past month, yet not do it in His strength. We can lead a Bible study, or children’s lesson, and the kids behave and the lesson was composed and we spoke clearly. But in all that fine glorious business could have MISSED GOD HIMSELF!

Jesus did not look to lead the masses of crowds to Himself but looked for individuals. He would say turn away from your selfish and evil ways, take up your cross and follow me. Jesus all to well knew and saw those people who wanted some part of Him because His ministry was attractive and had a good reputation. As Keith Green put it, Americans are the people who always pray, “Bless me, bless me,” and let the culture dictate what is righteous and “how much” God you can have. Jesus said, “ . . . unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24). Paul said he pressed on, leaving EVERYTHING behind, his successes and failures.

I must reject any notion that I have anything to offer God. God said if we repent and rest in Him we will be saved. It is so simple. He said our strength would be our quietness and trust in Him. I don’t want to be sacrificing my life for the lost but come to Heaven and find it was all fruitless work done in my own flesh. K.P. Yohannan challenged us the other night, “When was the last time you spent an hour on your face before God in quietness?” If we are just running around being busy outside the strength and rest of Christ then Satan is just waiting for the time he will yank the rug out on us (Daniel 7:25). “Self-centered Christians cannot and will not respond to Christ because they are not submitted to Him as their head” (Road to Reality, p30). I must let my self-centeredness die and realize that our strengths and weakness are not what decide what God can do in my life.

Application for me:

  • Stop running here and there for a solution that only requires quieting ourselves and waiting in prayer. SEEK GOD FIRST.
  • Stop feeding ourselves with unspiritual things (Things that may take my time away from the Lord). Isaiah 30:15.
  • Work to discipline the flesh. It isn’t by trying to be more spiritual to win over the flesh but by constantly praying and seeking God to change and convert the flesh.
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Prayers in Philly

So, right now I am raising my support so that I can come back to Gospel For Asia as a staff, and I would like to share with you the amazing day God blessed me with yesterday and from that you can see some of the reasons why I feel God is soooo amazing.

Yesterday I went with one of my friends from my church Calvary Chapel Chester Springs to go meet one of her pastor friends of Calvary Chapel Antioch in Philadelphia. When I got there, I felt like I was amongst family. Their love of Jesus was practically oozing from the walls of that small church. After the service, I was introduced to this homeless guy named Daniel (One of the guys from the Homeless ministry that I’ll share about later), the thing about Daniel is that his marriage is like that of Hosea from the Bible. He adores his wife, but she is being unfaithful. He prays for her daily, but because of this, he is out on the street. Please be praying for him, he is totally on fire for Christ though, and I praise God for that.

After talking with Daniel, I met the pastor of this Calvary chapel, Aaron Campbell. This brother is dedicated to spreading the Gospel of Christ. His message was practically dripping with how all of us are called to spread the Truth, even if we all aren’t called overseas, we are called to our families, our work place, and our community. It was neat talking to this brother and about Gospel for Asia.  He wasn’t opposed to me sharing with him and the elders about the need for me to raise support.

After Church, Dana (my friend from church), Jonah (the leader of the homeless ministry) and I took Daniel out for lunch at a Chipotle. It was a great time of fellowship. After eating, we headed over to the park area where a whole bunch of the homeless people in Philly live. Before I share more about what we did there, let me say that this is an answer in prayer. I had been praying about getting involved in a ministry at my church here while I was support raising so that I can still be actively serving God, and evangelizing, while I’m not in the office. My mom then mentioned this Homeless ministry that had started a few years ago by a group of the 20’s-30’s in our congregation. I had always been interested in getting involved, but then God called me to Gospel For Asia and so I left. So when my mom presented to me this opportunity, I prayed about it and decided to try it out. And boy was it an answer to prayer! I was there and I was so blessed by these Homeless guys and God spoke through me, there was no fear because God placed this overwhelming love for these guys that could have only come from Him. And God’s perfect love casts out all fear, and boy is that a true statement!

So we are at this part talking to these guys, three of them Drew, Johnny, and Angel are believers, and mr. Black and Ali were not. So it was an interesting mix. After a few hours talking with them (they gave me the nickname “green-eyes”) we headed over to another church (Tenth Presbyterian Church) with Drew and Johnny (I think that’s his name… I’m really bad with names, but I’m trying to memorize them for the next time I see them).  We met up with this guy named John. I got talking to him and then one of his friends Josh, came up and talked with us too. We somehow got on the topic of the south and I brought up that I live in Texas now, and they asked why, so I told them about Gospel For Asia. Well, John knows all about Gospel For Asia and pretty much freaked out he was so excited that I actually worked there! He has read the Revolution in World Missions and the The Road to Reality and loves Bro. KP tremendously! Then he asked about which church I go to down there and I mentioned the Village Church, and he knew about Matt Chandler! How crazy is that?! I’m in the middle of Philly, talking to these two college guys, and they know about Gospel For Asia, and the Village church! So John asked what I was doing up in PA, and I mentioned that I was in the School of Discipleship and that I’m now on staff and then he asked if I was support raising, I of course said yes, and I gave him and Josh my prayer cards.

We chatted for a bit longer, and then Jonah, Paul, Drew, Johnny, and I went out to dinner. During dinner, I was asked about art, and I mentioned that I was studying in Highschool to do something with graphic arts or video stuff, and then Paul and Jonah asked if I would work on illustrating Paul’s children’s book he was working on. I said I’d work on it if I have time before I get back to Gospel For Asia. But I was completely blown out of the water of how providing God is. Seriously.

After dinner, we walked back to the park where Drew and Johnny sleep. We talked for a bit more, and I got to share with Jonah about my trip to India, which was awesome. Then we headed home and got back to my house. But that whole entire time I was so comforted to know that in this season when I am support raising, I am where I need to be. And God’s got my back!

Thanks for bearing with me through this long post! Just wanted to share with you all how amazing God is, and how’s He’s moving all over the world! 😀


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Great Expectation

I have been at home for almost two weeks and seeing how truly important my time at the School of Discipleship was. Even though I may have not realized it at the time I have been equipped with so many things

For about a week now my mom, sisters and I have started praying every morning. I feel like Gideon and the 300 men going into battle. We are few but by and for God will accomplish great things. While reading ‘Stoked’ by Danny Lehmann God put this desire on my heart. At the time it was but a dream , but now I am a part of the sweet and precious reality!

This world is truly in shambles but we have a big GOD and as I go out on the front lines in prayer I wait in great expectation to see all God will do through this Mighty Minority.

I would definitely encourage you to get together with friends or family and start your own prayer times.


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