Helping a Church Leader Gain Confidence
December 22, 2014
India — Much of TWR’s programming is evangelistic, aimed at reaching out to nonbelievers to introduce them to the Gospel message and bring them into Christ’s fold. But the work doesn’t stop there. Another important aspect of the ministry involves discipling new and longtime believers and then helping to train potential leaders of growing Christian communities.
Pramod’s story, which takes place in a hilly village of the Indian state Tripura, highlights the value and importance of this discipling task. Only about 5 percent of the people in this area are Christians, and the rest mostly follow animistic practices.
At first, Pramod did not belong to the small group of believers. In fact, he was staunchly non-Christian and practiced the customs and traditions of the other religion. He was intolerant toward Christians, detesting them to the extent that he wouldn’t even sit next to them.
One day he met someone who gave him Bible tracts and urged him to read them. He took the booklets grudgingly but read them out of curiosity. His interest was piqued, and he read them whenever he got time. One day he came across a verse that said Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. He was fascinated by this message and soon accepted Christ as his Savior – but he still didn’t have a personal relationship with the Lord.
Pramod attended the small church in the village regularly and even became a deacon, but he wasn’t receiving solid spiritual food. As deacon, he was often asked to speak at church and to deliver remarks at special functions, but he felt inadequate to the task of sharing God’s word, and he became ashamed and disheartened.
One day while seeking a Scripture passage to preach in church, a fellow believer suggested he try a program broadcast by TWR, Khakchangma Panda (in English, The Discipleship Hour). It was exactly the kind of Bible study he needed to better understand the Bible, and he started tuning in every day.
Almost immediately, Pramod’s preaching and teaching changed. He was now receiving the spiritual food he was starving for, and even his presentation and delivery changed. He developed confidence because of the knowledge he gained through Bible study.
Equally important, the congregation noticed the change and was impressed with the transformation. Strong grounding in the Word, made available over the airwaves to this remote spot, had made a crucial difference in the life of this struggling Christian leader. And through him, the life of the church was affected, as well.