“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
Dear Ones in Christ,
This year we were faced with and rose to the challenge of responding to change and uncertainty across the globe. Amidst the unanswered questions of this year, we remember the Lord’s faithfulness. We are to continue placing our trust in He who is on the throne. While 2016 is coming to a close, we look forward with hope to the New Year.
I have been reflecting on the old hymn, “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus”. The song originates from northeastern India and is sung in many Sunday worship services at the IEM Bible College. We should be encouraged by the lyrics, “The world behind me, the cross before me; No turning back, no turning back.” Those who seek the will of God will be guided and directed and given great peace, which surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
This month also marks the end of the 50th anniversary celebration year for IEM. This year, we have reflected on His provision, and we have seen His faithfulness at work in abundant ways. As our faithful partners, you have served the ministry in fundamental ways, encouraging and blessing us immeasurably. By the Lord’s power, we have been able to accomplish much together. As we move into a new year, we move forward with the same vision that has motivated us for 50 years: to obey the command to share the Good News of the Gospel with those who have not heard the message of salvation.
This Christmas season, I think of William Booth, the founder of Salvation Army. He helped the poor by first cleaning them up, giving them a cup of soup and then sharing the love of God with them. This is a vision that has shaped how we serve the people of India: providing for their physical, material and spiritual needs. In this way, we share God’s love. May the Lord grant us each the opportunity to love one another in this way.
Please pray for our upcoming trip to India. God willing, Mariamma, Dayan and I plan to depart on January 13th. In February, friends from Ohio will join us at the campus for a time of service. Please pray for health and safe travel for all of us.
We thank God for you and the goodness of His provision. We pray the Lord to bless you, guide and direct you, prosper you and protect you from all evil. May you have a very Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!
Yours in His Service,