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A Plan Comes Together

Your gifts and prayers have helped lay the foundation for teamwork of national and Western missionaries.
Tags: Partner to Partner, Training, Training Nationals,
POSTED ON Jul 25, 2016 by Ian Fallis

Training national missionaries is an important part of NTM’s strategy to spread effective, lasting church planting methods throughout the regions where unreached people live.

That’s why, at the end of 2015, we presented to you the opportunity to fund training for four couples at NTM’s Missionary Training Center in Missouri. Your response was outstanding     all the needed funds have come in. Thank you! Let’s praise God together for His provision.

The Training Focuses on Relationships Leading to Disciple-Making

Jonathan and Ruth ministered in South Asia, but experienced many challenges. They trained with NTM in Missouri and are now back working in South Asia.

“The training really changed our thinking and approach to ministry,” Jonathan said. “What we were doing beforewas not based on relationship.”

They work among a people group that numbers 15 million in three adjoining countries. Previously they would jump from village to village, but now “we are concentrating on one village, learning culture and language.”

Hukkeri Family

They’re right at the beginning of the process, but already “we see hope, people trusting us, people asking us questions like where we are from, why are we here and stuff like that. This, we pray, will build their confidence in us when we actually present the gospel.”

Jonathan and Ruth’s command of English opened doors. “Since they heard that we were fluent in English, they literally begged us to come teach their children English in the village school.” English is a necessity for anyone pursuing further education. “So we are using this to become part of the community and to build relations,” Jonathan said.

Jonathan and Ruth also keep their training and methodologies in perspective. These are simply tools, but it’s God who does the work. “It is a task that only God can complete in reaching out to them, but then God uses insignificant creatures like us, who grumble and complain, to do His will,” Jonathan said.

Training Nationals is Not the End of the Plan

Training nationals is too often seen as the sole answer to the problem of access.

“Entering into many of the countries where most of the unreached peoples are presents some huge challenges for Westerners,” said Larry Brown, president of New Tribes Mission USA. The whole process is like a minefield, with visa restrictions, prejudices against Westerners and Christians and political tensions.

There is a serious need to understand how to disciple the church so that it can in turn reproduce”
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These things continue to be problems even for those who are able to enter areas like South Asia and Southeast Asia.

However, Larry noted, “We can get in.”

And that’s important because the same people who are asking for training are asking for Western missionaries to help with other aspects of the work.

“They are asking for Western team members who can help them … do Bible translation, develop and write Bible lessons and give guidance in the development of the fledgling church.”

As those who are trained in Missouri take those lessons back to their own contexts, they will hold on to the biblical values while adapting the methods to their ministries. That will equip them to develop a church planting model that withstands false doctrine and other pressures.

“There is a serious need to understand how to disciple the church so that it can in turn reproduce,” Larry said. “With the foundational training that Jonathan and Ruth received, they believe they can go much deeper with the development of the church.”

And this shared foundation of training, Larry said, “allows for a much more seamless teamwork and keeps everyone standing on the same ministry values and strategies.”

The Plan Is the Body of Christ Working Together

At its roots, the idea is that we’re all part of one Body and should be working side by side to make disciples of all nations, to establish thriving churches for every people.

Your gifts and prayers for training national missionaries in Missouri have helped lay the foundation for that plan. Thank you. Let’s keep praying that God continue to unite hearts and use all of us together to proclaim His name.