In the small classroom in Guwahati, the temperature is almost 35 degrees and the humidity is high. It’s the first day of our training of pastors in Assam, north-east India. 10 pastors who also lead other pastors in their networks. Together they regularly train 850 pastors in this part of India. All with the vision of planting new churches in unreached villages. We hear stories of how new groups are being started and how the vision of seeing movements of disciples and congregations is growing. Despite India’s enormous challenges, my belief that we can actually make a difference is growing.
When Jesus said that we should make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20), it was not meant to be an impossible task. Something for us to tinker with forever. No, his confidence in us is that we, with the help of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8), will finish the job. While the statistics on the least reached are overwhelming and the needs enormous, we can see that in many places the Gospel is reaching people. New people are being saved every day, people are being baptised and churches are being started. The help reaches. We make a difference. People without Jesus discover Jesus.
The Mwani people are a disenfranchised community in northeastern Mozambique to whom we broadcast. This work has been going on for a long time, but we are now starting to see results. It is reported that at least 400 Mwanis are now studying in Bible discovery groups. From Turkey we hear that the response is increasing from our social media campaign and the first two have been saved. Our staff in Bhutan testify that 6 new house churches have been started recently and people are experiencing transformation and miracles in their lives. Across our work, 179 new churches have been started in the period January to April this year and we count some 2,400 active Bible discovery groups. So it happens. We reach the least reached.
Together with churches, we are now mobilising to go further and reach more people who today are without the knowledge of Jesus. People who live without the privilege of even hearing the message once. They live without a church and often without a Bible in their own language. These people are also among the most vulnerable, living without hope in difficult circumstances. We reach far and do much, but love for God and people motivates us to go a little further and try to do a little more.
We want to encourage you and your congregation to take new steps to get involved. We have identified a number of unreached communities that we can reach together. A first step is to engage the congregation in prayer. To find out more about the people and see what concrete steps you can take. Maybe it’s possible to make a bean trip. Contact us for more information about these peoples or if God has placed another people group on your heart. We would also like to say a big thank you to those of you who regularly give to IBRA. What you are doing is actually reaching the least reached.