Andy and Lisa sat at the dinner table with their very good friend Kenj and listened to him passionately share the teachings of his Hindu Guru. “You should love your neighbor as yourself”, Kenj explained. “This is one of the most important things in life”. Andy reached over to Lisa to steady himself so he wouldn’t fall out of his chair. He couldn’t believe that God had opened up the door in this way for them to continue to share the gospel with Kenj.
Andy smiled and asked, “Kenj do you know where this teaching comes from”? And for the next few minutes, Andy shared with Kenj the Luke 10 story about Christ’s teaching to love your neighbor as yourself and the example of the Good Samaritan. Andy asked Kenj, “Why do you think your Guru left out the beginning of this teaching where Christ says to love the Lord God with all of your heart, soul, strength, and mind?” Kenj didn’t know why, but he liked the story and wanted to know more.
Andy and Lisa were sent out from our faith family 2 years ago as Church Planters to the New York City metro area. They currently live in Edison, New Jersey among one of the largest populations of Gujarati Indians in the United States. Their vision is to see a healthy, multiplying church established among the Gujarati peoples living in the greater metro NYC area.
God has opened up many doors for their family and team to integrate into the community and find a home among locals. They are building relationships and are in a stage of ministry where they are anticipating God’s timing to bear fruit.
Relationships like the one they have with Kenj have been encouraging. “Kenj is like a Hindu evangelists around here. People know him, respect him, and he is enthusiastic about what he believes”, says Andy. “I know that God has placed him in our path as a man of peace and that God is drawing him close. I know that when God saves Kenj, he will be a key person to reaching this community”.
Their days look pretty normal for a family living in Edison. Lisa goes to work at her company where many of her co-workers are Gujarati peoples. Andy helps get the kids to school every morning then goes to work on his CPE certification at the local hospital where he counsels and cares for those in the community who are sick. In between work, school, kids, and homework at night, they are learning Hindi and helping teach ESL classes as part of their outreach strategy in their neighborhood.
Needless to say, they are busy.
And God continues to bring people into their path who are interested in the good news of Christ. Andy and Lisa are praying that as they shift into a new phase of ministry, pressing farther into language and culture, that their Hindu friends will be saved and a church will be established in a community where there are only a handful of Christians.
Ways to Pray for the Church Planting Team:
- Pray for Andy as he continues to regularly meet and share with Kenj. Pray for Kenj to believe in Christ.
- Pray for Mary, a student at their ESL class. She has asked many questions about what it means to have your sins atoned for and the way to salvation through Christ. Pray for her salvation.
- Pray for the ESL classes. Pray for more students to join.
- Pray for Andy, Lisa, and their children to find a healthy pattern of ministry as a family. Pray for more people from The Church at Brook Hills to come and join their team.