Go, Rather Than Invite

*John was excited about his first-ever international trip.  He was going from his homeland in India, over the border into Nepal. He was eager to share with the 30 local pastors and leaders who gathered to learn. One of his primary goals was to share the vision of what could happen if God began a disciple-making movement in Nepal.

During the training, the men and women read and learned from Matthew 28, Luke 10, and Acts 2. They began to grasp a new understanding of God’s commissioning of all of His followers, the authority Jesus gave them, and what a church could look like according to a simple biblical model. 

When John shared his own experiences about following God toward a disciple-making movement, the participants felt encouraged and excited. God could use them to do something similar in Nepal!

A couple of weeks later, BEYOND’s Nepal team met with some of the attendees to follow up and review what they had learned. The team asked how the participants had obeyed and applied what they had learned from the training. 

One leader explained that she now knew she was called to “go,” rather than “invite.” She said, “When I used to invite people to my church, maybe one person would come. But when I went to share the gospel in their homes, I was able to share it with seven families!” Another had prayed for a paralyzed man who had returned from the Middle East, and God had healed him! As a result, two people from his family came to faith and were baptized. 

We have seen the first steps of obedience in this group and some first fruit. Pray for them as they continue to learn and apply God’s word, seeking Him for steps of obedience.


“You Can’t Say You’re a Christian”

A Tazig* believer recently shared with Joel* a problem that many new Tazig believers face.

Five of his family members had come down from their mountain village to spend the winter with him in the big city. The six of them passed the months in his 300 square foot apartment. They were unhappy to learn that he had become a follower of Jesus and rejected the Buddhist way. 

The young man, however, loved and cared for his family and used the opportunity to tell them about Christ. He shared Scripture with them, prayed for them, and shared his life day by day. They could see the positive changes in his life. 

Before they left to return to their village, his sister pulled him aside. “It’s okay for you to be a Christian here in the city. We think it’s good for you. We can see your life is different now. But you can’t say you’re a Christian when you are in our village. You will bring shame on our family.

“While we celebrate the progress this brother had with his family,” Joel says, “community shame is a powerful force among the Tazig people.Our hearts long to see whole families and villages turn to Christ together. When whole families choose to follow Christ together, it mitigates the power of shame. When a person responds favorably to a gospel presentation, the next question to ask is ‘would your family and friends also like to hear this Good News?’ We are asking God for whole families and communities to turn to Him.” 


An Aha Moment

Most of us are familiar with the Great Commission, but taking a closer look could be life-changing — for ourselves and the lost.

Matt* recently led his Christian language teacher through Matthew 28:16-20. When he asked who Jesus was commanding to make disciples, she thought for a long time. 

Finally, she responded. “I have always been told that only some disciples make disciples, but it is clear that all of us are to do this. Jesus was commanding us all to make followers by teaching them to observe all of His commands, and of course, this is one of His commands.”

“She had one of those ‘ah-ha’ moments,” Matt said. “It thrilled my wife and me and gave us hope that more of Jesus’ followers here would understand His principles for making disciples.”

Matt and his wife live in an East Asian city of about 100,000 people. There are some Christians, but, according to their local language teacher, only a handful are truly trying to follow Jesus’ commands. Ask the Father to open the hearts of His children to the teaching of the Spirit. For Jesus came and told his disciples, ‘I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’” (Matthew 28:18-20)


“It Must Be Jesus Who Did This!”

Your generosity brings healing as broken people encounter God’s demonstrated love for the first time.

*Uhn was the town drunk and the senior patriarch of his large extended family. Over a year ago, *Scott’s local partner, a capable movement catalyst, led Uhn to faith in Jesus. After prayer, he was able to stop all drinking and has taken deliberate steps to walk in obedience to Christ. After completing a short set of lessons with his discipleship group, they dug into the book of Mark using an obedience-oriented discovery process. Uhn even took upon himself the task of memorizing the Gospel of Mark. Scott was very moved when he followed along as Uhn recited Mark chapter 10, word for word.

Uhn’s change in behavior is captured in the words of his Buddhist brother-in-law: “It is miraculous how he has changed. We used to be afraid of him, [but not now]. How can I explain it? It must be Jesus who did this!”

Since November 2021, Uhn and the leader working with him have actively gathered his extended family and shared God’s word with them. Some have already come to faith and obeyed in baptism. Even more encouraging is the weekly Discovery Bible Study group with his extended family. Pray they grow into maturity as a church and function as one among their extended community to the glory of God.

Thank you for impacting the lives of unreached peoples and spreading God’s glory among the nations. 


True Discipleship

On Monday mornings, Joel* meets with Tazig* church leaders for debriefing and coaching. For several weeks, the church has been studying the book of Romans. On the week they studied Romans 7, several questions arose. One verse, however, was easy for everyone to understand: Paul’s confession in Romans 7:19, “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.” 

One of the church leaders shared a member’s response to this verse. The man had spoken up saying, “This verse is my experience. I have been doing something that I know is wrong, but I keep doing it.” 

The leader asked him to share more, and the man confessed to asking for inflated receipts from hardware stores, which he then submitted to clients for reimbursement – a widespread practice. But the Spirit had convicted him as they read from Romans. After his confession, the church made a plan to help him get free from that sin. 

Joel was so proud of the church leaders when he heard how they helped this man walk the path of Christ. “This is true discipleship in the Body of Christ,” Joel says. “Jesus commanded his disciples to make other disciples and teach them to obey everything he commanded them (Matthew 28:19). I praise God for the wisdom he is giving the Tazig church leaders.”


Modeling Reproducible Leadership

Not long after arriving in Nepal, Brian* and Ellie* advertised for a language helper through a social media site. God, in His goodness, led them to Hom*. 

 The couple soon learned that Hom came from a traditional church background and that his father pastored a local church. As the relationship grew, they began sharing about God’s calling on their lives for Nepal and how they obey that calling. Hom began reading Scripture with Brian and obeying what God spoke to him. 

After a small disciple-making training, Hom converted his traditional, leader-led home group into a Discovery Bible Study (DBS) group. Additionally, though he had always actively shared the gospel with people, he began asking if he could share more with them and their families in their homes.

Two Hindu families agreed to read God’s stories with him. They now meet weekly for a DBS. The families have recently received Bibles so they can read and grow on their own. 

Hom has grown too. At first, it was a challenge for him to allow an unbeliever to facilitate the DBS group, but God directed him to invite the daughter of one family to lead the most recent meeting. “He’s clearly listening to the Lord,” Ellie reports. “He did a great job of modeling leadership, and now he is shifting into growing other new leaders. He is really catching on to the fact that God’s word and the Holy Spirit are the teachers.” 

“Hom is doing incredible work for the Lord,” Brian declares. “He has expressed his desire to see all the peoples of Nepal come to know the Lord. We are so thankful for the partnership the Lord has given us, and we are proud to call Hom our brother.”


Because They Stayed

When they arrived in their country of service, Joel and Becky knew that most church planting movements began with local followers of Jesus who caught God’s vision to reach all peoples. So they started looking for people who would set aside tradition and focus on God’s Word as their guide for church planting. 

In the beginning, very few people were interested to hear what they had to say about God’s vision for his church. During the first four or five years, only one local believer joined them in pursuing a church planting movement. 

Then, suddenly, more and more believers joined their team. Their influence grew among local believers who were pursuing evangelism and church planting. Consequently, they were able to train in increasingly larger spheres. Those local believers said they noticed that Joel and Becky stuck around. “Expat (foreign) workers come in and out of our country all the time,” Joel says. “Unsurprisingly, it seems many locals prefer to wait and see who sticks.” 

Additionally, while Joel and Becky were proving themselves to be invested long-term, they also gained experience working in local cultures and languages. “We can now serve our local brothers and sisters as trusted servants of God and help them catalyze movements in their own country,” Joel says. “We commonly ask, ‘What’s it going to take to see God’s Kingdom come to these people that God loves?’ Many times the answer is commitment and perseverance.” 


How Was Jesus Sent?

Part of our culture at BEYOND is to be lifelong learners so that we may do whatever God asks of us.

Recently, Joel* was working on a disciple-making lesson he would share with Tazig* followers of Jesus. It covered two main Scripture passages: John 20:19-23 and Philippians 2:1-11.

Joel commented: “These two passages are so theologically rich, and so much could be said, debated, and fought over. But if we take that approach, we can easily miss the simple message. In John 20, Jesus appears to his disciples, gives His peace, then says, “as the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 

Jesus sends out his disciples in the same way He was sent to earth by His Father. We must therefore ask, “How was Jesus sent?” Philippians 2 tells us of Christ’s attitude in His obedience to His Father, and the Apostle Paul tells us to have the same “mindset” or “attitude.” Jesus’ attitude was a servant’s mindset, willing to forsake all His rights, being completely obedient – even unto death on a cross. 

“These passages always challenge me,” Joel says. “Compared to what God asked Jesus to do, my task is rather easy, and my burden is light. Yet I struggle to have the same mindset and attitude as Christ. It has been particularly difficult with the challenges COVID has introduced. But as so often happens, in preparing to train others, I find myself being trained. Perhaps that is why Jesus’ statement in John 20:21 and Great Commission in Matthew 28 is for all believers. In making disciples, we become better disciples. I invite you to look at these two passages today and ask, ‘God, what do you want me to do?’ Then take the challenging and more critical step: be obedient to what He tells you.” 


Trading Tradition for Multiplication

Samir* liked to talk with people about Jesus. So, noticing Frank’s* social media account, he left a message and hoped this stranger would reply.  

Frank did. After several conversations, he discovered that Samir and his father, Nuh*, have planted several churches and want to reach many more people. Since spring, Frank has been casting vision with Samir about what it would look like to see their whole nation reached with the gospel. They have had many discussions about the importance of being disciples who make disciples, who make disciples.  

A few weeks ago, Samir and Nuh led a man to faith in Jesus. Samir remembered conversations with Frank about reaching whole families and helping people become disciple-makers. So instead of inviting this man to join their traditional church, they told him to gather his family and friends to learn about God together. 

When Samir and Nuh entered his village, they were surprised to see that he had gathered around 50 people! They immediately began to share the good news. Fifteen people became followers of Jesus, while others wanted to keep studying the Word. That day a new church was established in the village!

Shortly thereafter, Samir asked Frank to coach him on using multiplication principles in his ministry. Frank agreed to coach Samir if he first found others who would commit to be trained and apply the principles that Samir would pass on to them. Samir gathered some people, and he and Frank have already had their first “official” coaching session! 


The Cross in the Store

A large cross is displayed in Mr. Li’s* store. It’s a bold move in a country where following Jesus can bring persecution. In suitable moments, he shares his faith with customers. 

Matt* wanted to know Mr. Li better, to encourage him, and to impart some tools that would help Mr. Li become a multiplying disciple-maker, so he invited Mr. Li to his home.

Matt gave him a series of Bible stories chosen to help people learn who Christ Jesus is and what he has done for them. He showed Mr. Li how to read over the stories and then ask questions designed to lead seekers into a relationship with Christ and help them immediately share the truths they learn with others. 

Matt warned Mr. Li of the potential restrictions and persecution that could occur if he pursued this approach. But when asked if he wanted to learn how Jesus made followers that made more followers, Mr. Li agreed eagerly and without hesitation.

“I was so encouraged to hear his story,” Matt says.  “and to know his desire to understand and apply Jesus’ principles to make followers, no matter the suffering he might have to endure.” When they meet again, Matt plans to take Mr. Li through a simple training on making disciples that multiply.