IT NEVER FAILS!

Seems like every time I sit down to write an update the Lord brings someone over to share the gospel with. For the last couple hours I’ve been talking with a Muslim boy who lives around the corner from me. His parents run a little shop where I buy my milk and eggs at. This was his first time to come over to our house. He asked some of the best questions regarding the truth and the nature of God that I’ve heard anyone ask in a while. It was a blessing to be able to take him through the scriptures showing him God’s character and nature. Due to the recent Muslim attacks in Mumbai India he also had many questions about the Quran. So we spent some time online looking at different verses in the Quran he had never seen before. I ended up giving him Telegu New Testament and exhorted him to seek the Lord. It was a GREAT time of sowing the seed of God’s word into his heart. Lord-willing he’ll start coming to the children’s/young men’s meeting we have at our house.

GOD’S PROVISION

As some of you know for the last couple weeks we had the “Special Investigations Bureau” questioning us and some of the believers here that we fellowship with. We came here on a visa that’s pretty restricted. But the Lord provided a way for us to get residency papers which gives us more favor with the authorities and the permission to reside in the country for up to five years without leaving the country. Without these papers we would have to leave the country every 6 months to renew our visa’s. The main thing they do though is help us with the local authorities. It was pretty amazing how we found out about it and were able to receive them. I had no knowledge of the residence papers until one day when I was in a Christian book store in one of the larger cities. As I was looking at the bibles a white guy walks in and starts talking to the clerk. Not only was he white but he was talking in a southern Texas accent. I asked him where he was from and he tells me he’s from a city which happens to be about 20 minutes from where my house was in Texas. Pretty amazing. He has been in India for almost 10 years. I asked him how he was able to stay here without leaving every 6 months. He told me he was able to receive residency papers about 7 years ago. He said wasn’t sure if they still issued them but said I should check it out. Since being here I’d also made another contact. A friend of mine in the U.S. works for a company that has a branch here in India. When he knew I was going to India he wanted me to meet a friend of his from the India branch who is a believer in Christ. So I contact this man and he got on a train and came to our house. It was good to get to know him and we stayed in contact through email and phone. Well, when the situation with the authorities came about I told him about it. Come to find out his uncle is the Chief of Police over the entire state that we live in. He tells me to come to his city and he’ll help me get the residency papers! So I took a 6 hour train to Hyderabad and we went and met with his uncle. We walked into the head police station and into his uncles office. I was a little nervous not knowing what questions he would ask me. Well he just briefly looks at me and writes a note for us and sends us on our way. I couldn’t believe we were in and out of his office without any questions! We then went to the foreign registrations office. It was already past hours but since we had a note from the Chief of Police they let us in. It was still a long seven day process to get the paperwork filled out but we got it all completed. While I was there I saw other foreigners trying to get the same paperwork and they were all being denied. It truly was a Sovereign work of the Lord in the whole matter. When I took a step back and just look at the hand of God in all the details it made me just more amazed at the care and provision of our God. Nothing is too hard for Him! And having the paperwork is helpful. It doesn’t give us complete freedom in the Governments eyes but it does help!

PREACHING TO GYPSIES

A couple weeks ago one of our night meetings was canceled. I went to pick up brother Vali and noticed a whole bunch of blue tents across the field from him. We decided to go talk with them and found out they were Gypsies that travel around India putting on drama shows. It was a whole community of people from one of the lowest cast in India. They put on drama’s and dress up like all the demonic Hindu God’s. They showed me some pictures. It’s pretty sick. We scheduled a meeting to come back in the evening to preach since most of the men were not there. We came back at dark and set up a light under a tree. About 15 or so people came. I started preaching and about 5 minutes into it a guy interrupts me and says him and 5 other guys are Christians. He told me that they became Christians a few days ago by going to one of the churches not too far from there. I’m just looking at this guy telling me this and he’s decked out with about every Hindu trinket you could think of and he’s getting ready to leave in a couple days and put on more of these plays. Since these five were “saved “I asked them to share the gospel with me. They all just looked at me with blank faces. Then I asked them to share anything about Jesus and they just continued to look at me with a puzzled look on their face. So I told them I would tell them about Christ and began to preach again. They interrupted me again and said “we’ve hear this before”. So I asked them why they had not obeyed the Gospel and they replied that they had! I asked them about all their Idolatry. They then told me they still worship all their god’s but now they worship Jesus too. Apparently they somehow went to a church where the pastor just got them to all say a “sinners prayer” and then pronounced them all saved. The only problem was none of them were saved and now they were in a worse condition than before. Now they’ve been led to believe they already worship Jesus along with their other God’s. So we spent some time preaching Christ as the only way, that there is only ONE God, and that they would have to forsake their Idol worshipping and drama’s to follow Jesus. A couple guys got angry and said they couldn’t do that because they would lose their income. It reminded me of what Demetrius said in Acts 19. Most of the guys began to lose interest and even got angry once we started talking about the god of “money” and the call of Christ to leave all and follow Him. There were a couple guys though (there usually always are! ) who did listen intently and it seemed as if the Word of God was sinking deep into their hearts. Those couple guys took bibles from us and then we left. It was a pretty frustraighting night! While we were leaving one of the guys who had been against what we were saying began to sing at the top of his lungs. It seemed really odd. I asked Vali what he was singing. He said he was singing how they all need to follow Christ, forsake their God’s, how there is only One true God, how their friends who were preventing them from following Christ were worthless and they needed to forsake them! It was pretty amazing. I couldn’t believe this guy was singing these things… and it wasn’t in a sarcastic way at all. It reminded me of when Saul was chasing David and the Lord made Saul prophesy all day and he was unable to get David. (1 Sam 19:23,24) The Lord can even make an unregenerate Idolater declare the truth if He wills to do so! I did go back the next day but they had packed up and were on their way to another state.

 

I’M NOT SAVED!

We’ve been having regular house meetings with a group of people who live around our house. About every other week they come over and say they want to have another meeting. There will be about 10 or 15 of them that gather together to hear the word of God. This last meeting was a real break through for some of them. After finishing preaching a few of them came up to me and said they knew they were not saved and wanted to be. It was a real joy to hear! I didn’t have them pray a sinners prayer (which is unscriptural) because when the Spirit of God does a thorough work in their heart they will have saving faith and pray on their OWN to the Lord to be saved. I did exhorted them though with what the scriptures says about salvation, how we can be saved, the freeness of God’s gift of Salvation (Grace), and the assurance that GOD gives us when we are saved by faith. We’re praying for their souls and believing we’ll see them born-again soon! We’ll be having another meeting with them soon.

 

VILLAGE OUTREACH

We’ve been focusing a lot on one particular village. We actually do less open air preaching there and spend most of our time with home visits and personal bible studies. Each time we go we try to go new homes and personally teach them about Jesus Christ. Then one night a week, in this village, we hold an open meeting and invite the families we’ve been preaching to along with the rest of the village, or anyone who will come. Seems like we’re just starting to see people open up to the gospel there. Today me and Ishmail went to the village to go door to door. When we got there we found a group of people all with big metal rods in their hands. They were trying to kill a 5-6 foot poisonous snake that was making it’s way through the village. It was a great opportunity to talk to them about their Idol worship. I asked them how many of them go to the snake temple to worship the snake god. Most of them said yes. So we asked them why they would kill the snake which is one of the object of their worship. It was a great opportunity to help expose the foolishness of what they were doing and worshiping. We were then able to sit down with a new family, answer many questions, and preach the gospel to them for almost two hours. It was great. One of the ladies in particular was really antagonistic and against the gospel at first but by the end of our time her heart had been completely softened. She even said she’d like to start attending our weekly meetings. While we were preaching to the family a Hindu temple priest/beggar came and asked for money. They go house to house saying that if you give them food they will pray to the gods and their families will be blessed. When he saw us preaching the word of God he asked us for prayer for his sickness. We told him to sit down and listen for a while and we’d pray for him when we were finished. Surprisingly he sat down and listen to the end. Since he was there I took the opportunity to go over to Acts 17 and expound on what Paul preached to those in Athens. He listened the whole time and you could see him just processing it all in his mind. When we were finished he said he really didn’t impart blessing to the people but it was all a ploy and a way to just get food. And he said this in front of everyone there. He took a Telegu new Testament from us and thanked us. We prayed for him and the family and finished our time there. Lord-willing we’ll see them at our night meeting.

 

TWO BROTHERS

One of my greatest joys and where I see the Lord really using us is in discipleship and teaching of two brothers here. We spend a lot of time with these brothers in fellowship and preaching. It’s encouraging because I see the Lord using us to confirm a lot of things that He was already showing them. One of the brothers, who's become a good friend, in particular seems to have a real hunger and zeal for the Lord. He’s always concerned about the church and preaching to the lost. He was involved in a church and saw all the disunity inside it. So he wrote a tract using all the scriptures that deal with “loving our brother” and “loving one another” and passed it out to the believers. Well.. he was kicked out of the church for sharing the scriptures! Unfortunately this is the case of so many so called churches today. They desire you to grow until a certain point but any further than that and you become a threat to them. (Especially when you begin to question unbiblical practices with the Word of God) He didn’t realize it at first but getting thrown out of the church was the BEST thing to happen to him. He’s actually taking the word of God, DOING IT, and grow by leaps and bounds. He’s always telling me “God didn’t save me to just hear the word.. but to DO the word!” We’ve been able to help him through a lot of this, exhort him with the scriptures, and see so much fruit in his life. It was truly the Lords will for us to be here at the exact time that we came.

 

 

PRAYER

We’re continuing to do village outreaches, home visits, children/youth meetings and preaching at a few churches. I preached at a couple churches in Hyderabad and have a couple here locally this week that I’ll be preaching at. (In the churches I spend my time preaching on True and False conversion and what regeneration is and isn’t. Understanding these truths seem to Universally be the GREATEST need in the Church during this hour of ever growing apostasy.) Please keep us and these outreaches in your prayer. And especially the children/youth meeting. Our last meeting packed out our house and there are more and more Muslim youth coming. The Lord has really blessed these meetings .

Thank you for praying for us. It’s always our greatest need!

May the Lord Jesus Be Glorified!

IN Christ,

Sean & Lisa

 


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