Friday, February 01, 2008

India – Breakfast – 1 February 2008

Breakfast this morning is as it was yesterday: porridge, tea, toast, butter, jelly, eggs, but with the addition of some small bread fried in donut shape one then dips into a sauce. Frank and Leena and I sat and talked over tea about effective ways of helping spread the Gospel in foreign fields.

Frank said a former leader had told him that we often hear that “you should work yourself out of a job.” This means of course that we should develop leaders that come up behind us. For westerners working in evangelism overseas however, it should be instead that “you should never take on the job on yourself to begin with.” The point is that unless national workers are not raised up immediately and take on the work themselves all could be lost if one is required to leave within 24 hours.

I asked what they thought was the most effective way of spreading the Gospel in foreign lands. Without hesitation Frank replied that would be Gospel literature. He is, of course, a publisher, but he also speaks from experience as a missionary in India, and from working with many missions organizations over nearly four decades.

He said that bringing promising leaders to the West often backfires because their lives are unsettled by the differences in standards of living, and it can be that their direction turns to moving to the West rather than ministering at home.

Buildings can be useful, but the Kingdom is made up of people, not bricks nor timbers. Buildings can be constructed by local believers as they are needed. Furthermore, buildings can be a point of attack in countries where there is organized opposition to Christianity.

Gospel literature on the other hand can impact multiple lives at low cost. Bibles or New Testaments have obvious value over many years. Other introductory or faith-building materials are also useful in developing a life of faith.

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