Advent: The Mission of Redemption
A dozen ladies with sewing machines.
When the photo crossed my desk and I read the story that came with it, the mission of Christmas was once again clearly visible.
Christmas is about mission, God’s mission of redemption. Jesus made it clear: “I came to seek and save the lost” (Luke 19:10), so that every person in the world “may have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10).
Pastor H believes in that mission. He leads a Global Disciples partner program in South Asia, training local believers in discipleship-mission and small business and he sent along the story
“As we were conducting our training, the Holy Spirit spoke to us to take the Gospel to the rejected and neglected people in society,” he said. “We didn’t understand, but we kept on praying, asking God to guide us to the place He wanted us to take the living Word.”
The Lord answered their prayers and directed them to a community with no witness for the Gospel. As they entered the village, they saw a group of women sitting outside their houses.
“The Lord led us to share the love of Jesus with them,” Pastor H said. “All were eager to hear the Gospel of Jesus, of His deliverance and acceptance. When we began to pray, several started crying and confessing their sins.”
The disciple-makers learned that twelve of these women were involved in prostitution, with about 14 children between them. “The Lord put a burden on us to counsel these women and help them come out from this evil experience,” Pastor H said.
For a month, the disciple-makers counseled and prayed with them, showing them how Jesus offered life and freedom. Finally, all twelve surrendered their lives to Jesus and accepted Him as Lord and Savior! A church was planted in the community and these women are now engaged with the new fellowship, growing spiritually.
As new disciples of Jesus, this group of women knew they needed a different way to support themselves and their children. With help from Pastor H’s church, each was given a sewing machine and a teacher came to teach them. “They have learned to sew,” Pastor H shared, “and they are taking care of their families with their daily earnings. Kindly pray for them, and for the entire village that we can win the lost in this area.”
This is the redemptive mission of Jesus, to seek and save the lost, to set the captives free, to bring hope, dignity and life eternal to those trapped in sin. And a dozen women, with their sewing machines, can tell you how that mission transformed their lives.
–B Gerhart, Global Disciples
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