Lessons Learned from Indian Christians
I just got back from my third trip to India, which is exactly three more than I ever thought I’d make. God had different plans. India is a vast and diverse country of over 1.3 billion people in an area roughly the size of the Midwest. It would take a lifetime to get to know it well. I want to share with you five things that this trip taught me. The lessons weren’t exactly new to me and probably won’t be to you either. It was how I was reminded of these that is still etched in my mind.
5 Lessons From Indian Christians
- We can get by with less. We were honored to have lunch in a village pastor’s home. They have no running water and electricity for only 8 hours a day. No computer, no TV or even radio. Do all of our many possessions and comforts make us happier than these Indian Christians? I think not. Matthew 6:28-33
- Walking by faith works. The custom among Indian Christians is pastors get paid only what comes in the offering after the church bills are paid, often less than $100 per month. Somehow it is enough to buy food, pay for housing, clothes and school expenses for their children. The Lord provides. Hebrews 11:6
- Caring for widows and orphans isn’t optional. The estimates as to the number of orphans in India range from 25 to 30 million. There are approximately 120,000 orphans in the USA. Widows are treated as social outcasts by even the higher castes. There are approximately 40 million widows in India, rejected by their society. James 1:27 prompts those who are Christ followers to do something about this and Indian Christians are.
- India is officially a secular country while being pro-Hindu and anti-Christian. The Indian hostility to Christianity can be traced to the brutality India suffered from the English Christians who ruled them. The hypocrisy of those in power continues to negatively influence the work of the true Indian Christians over 50 years later. Galatians 6:7-8
- The western Church can still impact India. I was there to teach and equip pastors in the area of spiritual warfare. In the areas where we met this was the first pastors conference of its kind ever held there. Some pastors traveled 4 to 6 hours for the Stand Firm Conference. Some had Bible College training. However a large number of pastors had no formal Bible training at all. As the pastors take what they learned back to their churches 10 to 20 thousand Indian Christians will benefit from this training. Ephesians 4:11-16
I have returned feeling greatly blessed for all I have and thankful that God has given me the opportunity to rethink how I use all He has entrusted to me. I pray that you also may see how blessed you are and determine to use what God has given you in the best way for Him.
What has God taught you or reminded you about the great blessings you have? Please leave a question or comment below.