Laura and I took our brood to Pakistan in September 1967. I say brood, because we had two foster children at the time besides the three boys. We also brought a little girl home with us, Ruth. She was 19 months when we got her and on Dec. 1st this year she turned 44. Laura turned 72 last July, and I turned 76 in November.
The work in India began in Feb., 1986. As I have written often, the work is obeying Two Timothy Two Two, that is, training preachers to proclaim the unsearchable riches of Christ, which means to preach the whole counsel of God; but the bottom line is to plant strong local churches of Christ that will perpetuate the spread of the gospel even after we are dead.
This work of training evangelists advances by God’s grace and through the enormous efforts of co-laborers who give full-time to the work, like Don Iverson, Garry Jones and Scott Richards; and to another dozen or more brothers who come for a month each year to assist in the Northeast Bible Institute which uses English as the medium of instruction.
Yet, the backbone of teaching work has and is being done by faithful native gospel preachers. In Tamil Nadu alone, where Don concentrates his labors, there are more than 1,600 servants of Christ doing the work of evangelists and supporting themselves. To God be the glory, world without end, for it is He who gives the increase.
One thing I have given some considerable thought to since the world population passed 7,000,000,000 on Oct. 31, is why are there so few among the preachers in the churches of Christ who are willing to serve in foreign lands to get the gospel to the 6,688,000,000 who live outside the borders of the USA.
If you divide the population of the United States, 312,000,000, by 7 billion you will know what percent of the people of the world live outside the U. S. If you send me the correct answer I will send you a copy of the book, Is There a Universal Code of Ethics? You might want to use it in a class. We have a new shipment of these books, thanks to brother Eddie Payne of Port Allen, LA. Let me encourage you, if you do order one, please make a personal commitment to read it and pass it on to someone else who will also read it.
Can you imagine being a lost sinner in a third world country and no one ever coming into your life to tell you about Jesus? Paul quoted the prophet Joel saying, “Whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?” (Rom. 10:13-14).
Some will say we can use radio, TV or send tracts; but what do people who use those methods do when they get a contact? They write to someone on the field.
That is why I make it my work to train foot soldiers, and I praise God and thank Him that you share in this work of faith and labor of love; beloved, it takes boots on the ground.
Please pray with me for more workers in His vineyard and more souls being added to His Kingdom.
May the God of all comfort fill you with joy in the New Year.
Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three married children and six grandchildren. He sometimes writes “7 Points.” http://randal.us