Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Life for India, Inc. Newsletter - June 2008

Thank you very much for your continued support and prayers for the work of LFI. Sorry that I have not been able to communicate with you as much as I should have. Due to my wife’s physical problems, we had to spend a lot of time with different doctors. Thanks for your prayers; she is much better now. Please continue to pray for both of us for strength to carry on.

The work in India – (Karnataka state) is going wonderfully. As some of you know, the work area is divided into three areas now (very soon it may be further split into four) for efficiency and close fellowship. I have reports only from two leaders now. Each of the group leaders are responsibile for seven or eight evangelists who work with them. Each of the Evangelists work in 12 to 20 villages around their station.

Long ago we bought a plot of one and a quarter acre land near the church in SIDLAGHATTA. Recently we have built a building there to house the evangelist, an orphanage and a boys home for single parent boys, and a house for widows who have no livelihood. They are taught some kind of trade to create self-esteem. The buildings were donated by generous Christian people, but now we have to find the sponsors for the would-be residents. You could invest $15/ per month, that is 50 cents a day, to make some one happy.

At CHINTAMONY, being the government administration center and silk trade area, many young women come for jobs and cannot find a proper place to live. We are in the process of completing a boarding home (hostel) for young women. This will be a great opportunity to witness to them and influence their future. We already have a girl’s home for the children who come to school there from faraway villages. We also sponsor bright girls from the locality who do not have other means of going to school. There are 45 girls who are enrolled there now.

We have just completed another building for industrial training for the young people of the villages. Welding, Carpentry, masonry work, etc., are some of the training they get.

At GOWNAPPALLY we had a lot of opposition. By loving our enemies, we have overcome the problem and have completed a church building for the local believers.

With the help of Compassion International, we are providing two meals a day and educational tutoring for about 500 School-going children at RAYALPAD AND SIDLAGHATTA. This greatly relieves the burden of the parents. The public greatly appreciates this project.

At DIBOORAHALLI we use the church building as a school also during week days. There are no good schools in the town. About 60 children are studying in our school. We are working for building another building so that we can accommodate more children. Wherever we are helping in the education of the children, the public is very supportive for the work.

VBS, conducted in two centers, were attended by about 1000 children.

Baptism. We have been very careful in this matter in the face of opposition to conversion both from fanatical Hindus as well as from the politicians who want to please the majority. In spite of that, we have baptized 65 people in the reported places and an equal number in the other centers also. So many are coming forward for baptism, but we train and test them for at least a year.

As our board feels that we should enlarge our boundaries, recently we have expanded to the next state, a place called MADANAPPALLY in Andhra Pradesh state. It is only 12 kilometers from RAYALPAD, the border town, where we have established a church already. Mr. Prasad is well versed in the Telegue language and custom. Please pray for this new field.

With anniversary celebration of the mission, we conducted a two day convention for all believers to attend.

We had conducted special lay evangelism classes for the church members to train them in the word. From time to time we conducted refresher courses for the evangelists also.

One of the great joys I have- thanks to God- is that He gave me the idea of “operation Andrew”, an emphasis on the miracle of multiplication by personal evangelism by the believers. We taught them that every Christian is a missionary, obligated to the Lord and their brothers to tell about this wonderful gospel. TODAY WE HAVE 46 YOUNG PEOPLE FROM OUR FIRST AND SECOND GENERATION CHRISTIANS WHO ARE WORKING AS MISSIONARIES IN THE CHURCH AND VARIOUS ORGANIZATIONS. I PRAISE GOD FOR THEM AND REQUEST YOUR PRAYERS FOR THEM THAT THIS WORK THE LORD HAS STARTED MAY BLESS HIS HOLY NAME throughout India.

I am aware of the fact that wherever God is working, Satan will try to destroy it. Please pray earnestly that He will provide victory and take glory for Himself.

God bless you.

Dr. Abraham Thomas, General Director
Email: lfikns@yahoo.com

Monday, June 02, 2008

Peterson's Prayer Guide - June 2008

For all the world is mine and everything in it. I don’t need the bulls you sacrifice…What I want instead is your true thanks to God… giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors Me.
Ps. 50:12-14, 23

Esther made it safely to Melbourne, Australia on May 27th our time, (28th there). Thanks so much for your prayers for her! We had such a precious time with her in the last few weeks.

So far our air conditioner is still working fine. We’re trusting that when the time comes for us to have to replace it, God will supply the resources. He is faithful!

We had an unexpected, expensive car repair required this past week, but the week before we had received our gift from the government (economic stimulus package), so were able to pay for it. Thank You, Lord!

Gary writes: May was a VERY busy month for me. No sooner had we sent out the schedule than more groups booked or just showed up. I’m so tired when I come home at night, but it’s a good tired. (We hope to take a few days vacation as a couple (23rd-25th). Please pray for refreshment!) I’ve made some new contacts with groups who want to start booking their students in for one of our Mission Encounter programs. As mentioned in the last prayer guide, my partner, Mike has now left. God is starting to bring in some part time volunteers to help fill his role, but please pray for others to help share the work load as the program continues to grow.

May 7th we had a large group from Macon, Georgia. They had left at 4:30 AM to get here, yet they were still a keen group. One of the parents got so excited as he heard of the many opportunities that he asked if our missionary schools around the world could use computers. He is in charge of replacing computers for the local Air Force base. I immediately got him in touch with our Children’s Education director and the head of IT. Wow!

14th I had a group from Alabama – their 3rd year in a row. Their leader told me of a young lady from a previous visit whom they had been very concerned about. She had shown little or no interest in spiritual things, yet was very touched by the stories shared of how we got our English Bible and the role and power of prayer. She was to lead devotions for the group the next day, during which she broke down as she shared how God had spoken to her. Upon arriving home she told her family what she’d experienced, and her mother asked her to share with her women’s Bible study group. The women were so touched that they wrote to Wycliffe and took on the funding of a Wycliffe project - God’s multiplying effect!

I received a call while covering at the receptionist desk from a Campus Crusade director. She had brought a group of students from Alabama and Pennsylvania for a “quick visit” that ended up being the highlight of their trip. She wanted to thank the person who gave them a special tour and spent time with them and went on to tell stories of its impact on the students. She couldn’t remember the gentleman’s name, but asked me to find out who it was and thank him for them. I told her, “You just did”. I told her that the reason I believe God made such an impact was because of those who pray for our ministry, asking God to touch the hearts of those who come through our doors. She asked me to thank you!

Our two programs (A-Z & Mission Encounter) continue to get great feedback. At the recent Home School convention where I helped staff the Wycliffe booth, we had lots of families who had been through one of the programs stop by and thank us. It made it easy for us to promote the programs to others when we had so many satisfied customers!

These are just a sample of what God is doing in people for His Kingdom and glory. What a privilege to be on mission for God!

June’s schedule:

4th I will be the WordSpring host and morning tour guide. We never know who will show up, so pray that we’ll be prepared and that God will bring people our way. I will be doing this often for the summer – sometimes on short notice.

6th Last day of 11th grade for Josiah. Praise God for a great year for our son. But his homework doesn’t stop; he has lots of school work over the summer. We are also hoping he will be able to get a part time job. From June 22-28 he’ll be involved in a special program in Tallahassee called “Boys State” at which he’ll learn how the local and state governments work. If he gets the accompanying assignments completed, he’ll earn 3 more college credits!

6th Mission Encounter program followed by a special program for 25 University interns and 10 staff from Campus Crusade for Christ.

12th – 15th National Perspectives conference in Dallas, Texas. I praise God for a special friend and supporter who paid my way to take the course 5 years ago which launched me into being a part of this incredible program. (www.perspectives.org) I was honored recently to have been put on the list of national presenters. We are trusting God to supply for the expenses associated with this conference.

19th 110-120 university student leaders from across Indiana with Campus Outreach ministries will be coming to hear about Bible Translation and missions. What a great opportunity to share with these who can go back and share it with their fellow students.

26th Mission Encounter program for a group of students here for a work project.

* We will be working to prepare a newsletter this month, and would be grateful for your prayers for that effort too.