Monday, August 31, 2015

God's Compassion for the Nepali

Last January, God made it clear that Andreas and I were to share His love in Nepal this last June and then early August, so we did. For the August expedition, He provided a team of 30 Americans, ages 12-61, for us to train in sharing His truth and how to gather new believers and seekers to start what will become house churches. Because God knew that there would be earthquakes and then political challenges before He called us, we had peace about the challenges we faced. While we were prevented from going out to our seven villages on Thursday, God used that time to send out on their own the nationals we had been training all week. This opportunity provided them with great confidence that they could continue this work once we left. God's mission went forth, even amidst obstacles, and He was glorified through our team and through your partnership in prayer and finances. 

Here's a Big-Picture Glimpse of What God Did By the Numbers
21 Small Groups/House Churches Started
42 Discipleship Meetings Held
1,037 Heard God's Story from Creation to Christ
79 Chose to Follow Jesus
60 New Followers Trained to Share God's Story!
293 People Discipled

While 79 are committed to follow Christ and be discipled, approximately 200 more want to continue to meet to learn more about Jesus, so they can make a decision to follow Him or not! The door may be closing in Nepal soon, so thank you for being a part of this strategic work there. Read below about how God showed off in Nepal!

Never Too Old
Jason shares how he was impacted by God's goodness: "A group of six men and women sat in the courtyard of Bhikini's house. At 105 years old, Bhikini had decided to follow Jesus! Bhikini's daughter, herself in her 80s, had experienced torment and multiple times had interrupted Gospel conversations in the village. After prayer and displaying God's love, Bhikin's daughter also came to know Christ after Bhikini (at 105 years old!) shared the gospel with her using the evangecard and with assistance from our local Nepali brother, Rajkumar. The beauty of Christ's church was on full display. The old and the young. Men and women. As we headed out of the village for the last time on Friday afternoon, Rajkumar promised to return the next day 'to have the new babies in Christ gather to worship their Father." With those words, pray a movement is ignited." Jason already has plans to return to Nepal next July with e3 Legacy.

God's Healing Power Displayed
"The last day in our village, God directed us to soil ready for harvest. At this particular house, God healed a man suffering six days with stomach pain. Then He healed a boy with foggy eyes, and when we prayed, he saw white two times and could clearly feel God's presence. He was smiling non-stop, and although he didn't confess faith in God yet, he clearly was beginning to understand God's love and care for him. The first man healed, however, asked Jesus to forgive his sins, was trained to share the gospel, was discipled by the national with us, and was given a Bible. More than 20 people gathered and also witnessed healing, heard the gospel presented, and many are seeking God because of God showing His presence!" Lauren effectively trained her national to continue the work with these 20+ people and the others in the village.

Yes, It is Good News!
Caitlin was able to encourage a new family in Christ with the truth of God's word: "On Friday, I met with a 40-year-old man and his 15-year-old daughter and learned that his wife had died 13 years earlier, and this beautiful young girl had taken on the role of mother for the family. My national shared God's story from Creation to Christ, and the man said, 'This is good news and I want to follow Jesus!' We prayed a salvation prayer and the daughter said she also wanted to follow Jesus. The Lord pressed on my heart to read Proverbs 31 and pray it over her. This beautiful child of God now has another Father who loves her unconditionally and is always there for her. She had a cold, but God healed that as well as healing her spiritually." 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

God's Kingdom Comes in Nepal

"For God so loved the world..."
Kendall saw the power of that love first-hand in Nepal just two weeks ago: "This week, I left a part of my heart on the steps of the bright blue the hands of Kashi Harayan Kukhiya, the retired 67-year-old professor who had lost both of his legs to cancer. After sharing the Creation to Christ story, Kashi and I talked for hours about his life, as well as the many different groups that had come to tell him many 'good things' about their gods. He told how his head is full of knowledge and how he has tried worshiping many idols and then asked me, 'But why should I believe in your Jesus above all the other gods?' I closed my eyes, and in that moment, the truth of the gospel became so real in my own life. I opened my eyes and released the stream of sweet tears that now streaked my cheeks. With eyes locked on Kashi's, the rest of the world melted away and all I could muster was 'because I know in my heart that Jesus loves me...' When God had said everything He needed to say, Kashi scooted closer to me and took my hands into his, fresh tears glossing his own eyes as he whispered, 'This is what all the others were' I was overwhelmed by the sweetness of the moment as he spoke the words that changed eternity forever, 'I saw Jesus in your eyes today and you have shown me how bright my life can be. I, too, want to follow Jesus as the one true God of my life.'"

For months we prayed that prayer and asked you to as well, as we knew we had just days to find the Teli, the unengaged people group we were trying to engage in Nepal with the gospel. "The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." The truth of  James 5:16 was evident through you! Dhani and Dilip, both Teli men, were the FIRST two acquaintances that Cathy and her team made Monday morning in Tanaman village. God was at work because these two Hindu menimmediately upon hearing the gospel professed Christ as their Lord and Savoir and invited Cathy to return the next day for Bible study! Daily, they gathered people to join them in their homes for discipleship and several had come to Christ, including Dilip's wife. By Friday, the men joined their home groups into one gathering at Dilip's home where his brother and two nephews received Christ and as they did, Cathy shared that "Dilip clapped his hands and tears streamed down his face" as the seeds were planted for the first Teli house church in Nepal!

Healing for the Spirit, Heart and Body
Terrance shares how God showed off in Nepal: "On Wednesday, 26-year-old Sumyo walked into our discipleship meeting on her hands--yes, her hands, because her legs didn't work and she had no wheelchair. I saw her from afar and remembered a word from the Lord--'Look for the lowest of the low.' She sat at the back of the group on the tarp, but then we called her to the the front. We found out she was run over by a motorcycle 14 years earlier, and because of it she had a lot of unforgiveness in her heart. After she forgave the man who hurt her, she accepted Jesus into her life! Then I watched the Holy Spirit heal her legs. It was thought-shifting excitement. To know that I have the power of the Holy Spirit within me makes me more determined to live it out. Sumyo's countenance was the most beautiful countenance I've seen in my life. God changed her heart...and mine." 

Counting by Numbers 
Next month, we plan to share more stories of the Nepalese impacted by your partnership, but in the meantime, here's the big picture:26 discipleship groups/house churches started heard God's story from creation to Christ      
127 professions of faith     
106 new believers trained to share their faith

To God be the glory! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Ilchamus--No Longer Unreached

God used our team of 25 people--high school students, some of their parents, a few Bible teachers, and several individuals--to share their story, God's story, pray for healing, and start house churches throughout nine Ilchamus villages. Many days we were met with the same phrase: "I have heard about God, but I know nothing about this Jesus." As we would share Jesus' great love story with them, He often used us to heal people, demonstrating that He is the one, true, living God.

Byron witnessed this healing power in Ruben's life: "On Monday, Ruben became a follower of Jesus, and then told me (Byron) he had been sick for over a year. He was scheduled to have surgery on Tuesday. We prayed for healing and he said he was feeling better. On Tuesday, Ruben went to his doctor appointment and the doctor confirmed that he was healed! No surgery was needed and Ruben was sent home. Ruben's wife, children, and mother all became followers of Jesus and rejoiced that Ruben was healed!"

Everyone serving in the field, even our translators, are impacted; we all grow as we serve God. Jeannette ministered to her translator all week and saw the fruit of her labor: "Jane, my translator, was a 19-year-old young lady, who lives near the village we worked in. She was really changed this week as God began to work on her heart. The training really inspired her. She said she was my student this week and learned so much. On Wednesday, my Kenyan co-worker and Jane worked in the village without me, and God used them mightily to start several discipleship groups! That night, Jane went home and shared Christ with her neighbors for the first time and is in the process of starting her own discipleship group with them! She has committed to continue the work in our village for one year, returning weekly to disciple and encourage the new followers of Jesus. Yeah, God!"

Not only did our translators and Christian co-workers become adept at sharing their faith, but also our American team members. Brody shares how God grew him powerfully: "Tuesday is when God revealed to me something that is so simple, but yet it was so clear that my life now needed to be lived in this way. Including Monday and Tuesday, I led close to 30 people into a relationship with Christ! By the end of Tuesday, I realized how many people desperately need Jesus and telling them about Him is SO MUCH EASIER than I would have ever thought. If you choose to step out of your comfort zone, and ask the Holy Spirit to fill you, God will give you the perfect opportunities to share about Him. The Ilchamus just needed to feel loved and valued by me and sharing the Gospel became so much easier to share. I learned that I shouldn't keep believing the lies that sharing with others about Christ is so difficult! Because it's not! It's just a matter of me being completely open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. It was an amazing trip, and I know God will continue to reveal to me the things he taught me throughout the week."

Yes, Brody and the rest of the team shared with everyone they met in nine villages and God faithfully drew hundreds to Himself: 51 discipleship groups/house churches started

76 discipleship group/house church meetings  

898 heard God's story from creation to Christ      
657 professions of faith     
580 new believers trained to share their faith

To God be the glory! 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What? Not ONE Bairagi Knows Jesus!

Over 3.6 million Bairagis reside in India, Nepal, Bhutan, and Bangladesh. Their roots date back to the 11th and 12th centuries in the days of Ramanuja, one of Hinduism's most famed teachers and philosophers. They can be distinguished by the "talik" on their foreheads, a mark that is painted to the bridge of the nose.  

While the Bairagi people number into the millions, they lack any Christian presence in their communities. Their culture is 100% Hindu and conversion from the faith is considered a threat to peace.  Ministry in the region is further complicated by a rising threat of persecution to Christians in India and Nepal.

The harsh reality is that Bairagis need Jesus.  Without any outreach, missionary, or Christian presence, they will die without ever hearing the Gospel. But you can get involved. 
Pray.  Ask God to show our e3 Nepali staff where the highest concentration of Bairagi live in Nepal. Pray for pastors and local believers in the surrounding communities. Ask God to provide new opportunities for them to share Christ and cultivate new churches in the area. The people are blessed with full Bible translations in their language but they still need believers willing to go.
Go.  You could be the answer to your own prayer. Consider joining one of our expeditions to Nepal this summer where you can partner with local believers to serve unreached and unengaged people groups with the Gospel. With just one week, you can be a part of a Gospel movement that is taking off across South Asia with the potential of reaching the Bairagi people.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Nearly 500 Begin Relationship with Jesus

459 to be exact!

“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in?  And how can they believe in the one whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?  And how can they preach unless they are sent?  As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” (Rom. 10:14-15)  

THANK YOU for being a part of furthering God's kingdom with the Ilchamus, an unreached people group in Kenya, through sending our team in prayer and finances. You under girded our team in a powerful way. It's hard to grasp, but literally 80% of those who received Christ were trained immediately to share their faith with their family, friends and co-workers. And then they shared, and because of that obedience, 27 discipleship groups that plan to be house churches were started in those five villages in one week! This type of growth is only possible through God.

Precious Esther studying during lunch break
That's some of the big picture of what God did, but here are a few experiences of individual team members. Our son Garrett and his girlfriend Mayra went to Kenya with us, and here he shares one of his experiences: "On e3 Legacy trips, you get an amazing Kenyan translator and Kenyan national with you while you are in the mission field. My whole team was truly a blessing. I had the opportunity to build an amazing relationship with my Kenyan national. Her name is Esther. It was crazy to see her grow in boldness throughout the week. At first she was not confident to witness and did not feel capable; however, as we encouraged her and witnessed alongside her it was beautiful to see her confidence grow bolder. I know that God has special plans for her and that she is going to do amazing things in her village long after we are gone. After a couple of days of work, she had us come to her home and witness to her husband (pictured below). After we explained the gospel to him, he decided to follow Christ. It was beautiful to see this family come together through Christ."

Garrett leading Esther's husband to faith
God used a father and son on the team to each lead their first person to Christ on the same day! What a great LEGACY to share with their future generations. The father shares his most inspiring moment (and there were many) took place on Friday afternoon during the closing commissioning of the new believers: "I was blessed to bring William, his sons, and their many friends to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior.  Both father and son are proud men, but exuded this air of humility and calmness. William's oldest son, Alkanson, is the generational king of the 18-28 year old age group (5000 strong). How great is our God that he unshackled me from spiritual bondage and allowed the Holy Spirit to use my body as a vessel to share his love and promise of salvation to the Ilchalmus people of the El Depe village. I thought myself the most unlikely of servants, and the voices kept saying that I was unworthy of this task. But God used my brokenness and transparency to share his story and spread his love." Yes, God wants to use each of us, and he starts right where we're at. 

Kimberly summed up our time in Kenya beautifully: "As I write this, I am listening to the song, "Beautiful Things" by Gungor and the chorus states, 'You make beautiful things out of us. You make beautiful things. You make beautiful things out of dust.' That happened this week. We all saw beautiful things come out of our villages and the dust. People's lives were changed, people accepted Christ, and people were healed. And it wasn't just the Ilchamus who felt this, but the people on our American team. This week hope sprung out of the ground. We planted seeds, and there was a bountiful harvest, and to be able to be a part of that is something that I will never forget."

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Making the Midst of Apprehension

Throughout October, e3 Legacy has daily received requests from families and individuals exploring the possibility of going on a mission trip in 2015. They are gathering information, asking questions, and making plans. While they are expressing excitement about this new adventure in their walk with God, we also are detecting a tinge of apprehension and fear. Thoughts of the financial cost, feelings of inadequacy, busy schedules for their children and themselves, health or food limitations are just the beginning of what is racing through their minds. Fortunately, we can go to God's Word for comfort and focus.  

God is clear that He has not given us a spirit of fear, but power, love and a sound mind (2 Tim. 1:7). We're encouraged that through the power of the Holy Spirit and the love of Jesus, we can think clearly and reject the lies of God's and man's enemy and walk in freedom of fear to do the good works that God has selected for us.

The following statements are from team members who served in Nepal this past August:
  • "We learned a lot about God's financial provision and blessings."
  • "I'm glad we did it (went to Nepal) in our second year of marriage; I definitely think it brought us closer together. Just seeing other families with their children on this trip made me realize how much I want that for our (future) kids because these kids were fearless about telling people about Jesus."
  • "This trip was so much more than I imagined it would be."
  • "It was more impactful and more powerful than I had imagined and am so thankful we went."
  • "This trip was the biggest blessing for our family."

Could 2015 be the year that you join God internationally to tell others about Him? If that idea overwhelms you, know that you are in good company. Truly, when we are weak, He gets to be strong. Please contact us to begin exploring what's involved in going. In the meantime, enjoy this humorous look at our fears about going on mission with God. 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Through Their Eyes

God continues to meet us and our team members as we step out in obedience. Often He is working in us on a personal level and as a vessel for what He wants to do in someone else's life. Here is just a sampling of what impacted some of our team.

Julia, a wife and mother with two children in college, shares about her encounter with a teacher:

"The Lord healed many people physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. Praise God!! In the village of Taragana, Biswanath, a junior high school teacher, accepted Christ! He then stood up and preached to his neighbor, who promptly accepted Jesus at that moment! When our team returned for a discipleship meeting, Biswanath explained that he told his principal about Jesus and that the principal was so excited to hear this Good News that he coming to Biswanath's home that afternoon to be discipled.  It is amazing to see the multiplication process in action from believer to new believer and so on!

We encountered many who had never heard the Gospel, and this experience taught me that we must continue to GO!  The Lord has so blessed us here in America that without those who give generously many would not have had the opportunity to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Thank you so much for your hearts that made room for people you haven't even met, in a country you probably won't visit, to pray faithfully for their souls."

Byron brought his family of four to serve together, and here he shares a lesson God was teaching him through this work in Nepal:
"There were so many dramatic, powerful and amazing experiences; it often felt like we were living through the book of Acts, which really helped me to settle on what impacted me the most--hearing God speak! Several months before the trip I was given a teaching series about “Hearing From God”. I started the uncomfortable process of being still, being quite and listening for God to speak.  However, with a mind that has random ideas like a bouncy ball, an unpredictable work schedule, two busy boys and a wife who has never heard of down time, I only started to scratch the surface before the trip.

While on the trip, God had an amazing habit of putting me into situations where I was outside of my comfort zone with no experience or knowledge to pull from in order to move forward. In other words, if He did not say or do something, NOTHING would happen! It is really amazing how when I allow God to place me in situations where He must show up, He does! I was recently told that the most important scale by which to measure the effectiveness of a mission trip isn’t the amount of souls saved or bodies healed. Those are God’s responsibility and that fruit is in His time. The most important measure of a mission trip is “are you closer to Jesus, do you know Him better than you did at the start”? So for me, hearing God speak was the most powerful experience of my trip and left the largest mark on my life as a follower of Jesus.  God still speaks; all I have to do is be quite and listen!"

Nathalie built a close connection with Marwin, a young mother in her village: "My team and I met Marwin on Tuesday. She was very kind and opened her home to us instantly. We noticed that her leg was wrapped and found out her leg had been fractured when an ox ran into her. We prayed for her leg and each time we did she felt the pain decreasing. She was able to get up with her cane, which she wasn’t able to do before! I proceeded to share the Gospel with her using the EvangeCube. Her eyes were locked and engaged in the story. I extended the invitation to receive Christ and there was no hesitation. We went through the salvation prayer together and immediately set up a time to meet the following day to study the Bible. At the end of the day, she made her way down from the top of the hill to attend our children’s program. As we were walking out of the village for the night, she was already sharing her testimony with her friends! I was so encouraged! Now fast-forward to Friday, our last day in the village. I went to say good-bye to Marwin and her neighbor, who also accepted Christ earlier in the week. I’ll never forget what she said to me: “Thank you for coming to Nepal to share Jesus with me. I will see you again in heaven.” I was so touched by her gratefulness that I held her and we cried together."