We Bought a Missionary in India
India is purple on the wall map in my office, and as of this morning, I am now tangibly invested in that giant diamond that is home to over a billion souls. Kristin and I are sponsoring Lalit Bardhan, an Indian preacher who has been called to reach his own people with the gospel.
We originally met Lalit at a beachside curry stand when I was doing some snorkeling in the Bay of Bengal. This would be a great story, but sadly, it’s totally false. I’ve never been to India. However, Evergreen partners with an organization called Gospelink (gospelink.org) that serves to connect national preachers with sponsors in the west. For the past several years Kristin and I have sponsored a missionary in Vietnam. Sadly, we just learned that the Vietnamese government just told Gospelink they could no longer serve there. We considered a number of options and decided to invest in east India, in a region where Gospelink is beginning a new work.
Sending missionaries to foreign countries with the gospel will always be a major part our effort to fulfill the Great Commission. But sponsoring national preachers is great supplemental approach with lots of specific advantages.
- Language: National preachers, like Lalit, already know the language, with no awkward American accent.
- Culture: They know the culture, naturally understanding how to contextualize the gospel message and avoid unnecessary offenses.
- Relationships: They have a built in network of connections to aid them in their mission work.
- Location: They are already living in the field they are called to work in.
- Simplicity: Simply put, national preachers normally live on a fraction of what we Westerners consider bare minimum. In gospel economy, these are bargain investments!
This is the time of year many make a shopping list for Christmas. Have you considered spending the most on the one whose birth we are actually celebrating? Investing in missions is high on Christ’s wish list.