A Ripening Harvest
"By the grace of God Reach the Nations Ministrires is sowing seed of God’s word in Khairpur," Shakeel Rhemat says. This past weekend, he visited five villages and reports the following:
Here Shakeel preached from Matthew 13:18-23, the “Harvest Story.” Here's a little of his message:
"When anyone hears news of the kingdom and doesn’t take it in, it just remains on the surface, and so the Evil One comes along and plucks it right out of that person’s heart. This is the seed the farmer scatters on the road.
The seed cast in the gravel represents the person who hears and instantly responds with enthusiasm. But there is no soil of character, and so when the emotions wear off and some difficulty arrives, there is nothing to show for it.
The seed cast in the weeds is the person, who hears the kingdom news, but weeds of worry and illusions about getting more and wanting everything under the sun strangle what was heard, and nothing comes of it.
The seed cast on good earth is the person who hears and takes in the Good News, and then produces a harvest beyond his wildest dreams.
Again, from Shakeel, "There was a warm welcome in this new village where the Hindu Bhagat (Leader) invited me last time to come and share the word of God. The listeners received the Word of God, and have given the invitation for us to come again. They had musical instruments and I joined by playing Dholak with them. Some of those attending the meeting were Christians and some are not.
In Korki, Shakeel taught from Matthew 7:24-27 "What does it mean that the wise man built his house upon a rock?" He went on to tell the story Jesus told about two men: one who built his house upon a rock and another who built his house upon sand. The house built upon a rock weathered the storm, and the builder is called wise; but the house built on the sand collapsed during the storm, and the builder is called foolish."
"It is like making strong foundation of faith", he said. "It is for the next generation, so they follow what their parents have done for them in following Jesus Christ. I told them that this is a time for all people to make a decision to worship God, not only when I just come and gather you all and have fellowship, but you must make it a practice in your life to worship God alone."
Qandar Bux Burdari:
Here, in order to encourage their faith, Shakeel taught about the miracles of Jesus so the people would grow in knowledge of Jesus' earthly ministry. His goal, Shakeel said, is to build their understanding of Jesus and his miracles, so they will believe Jesus Christ is our healer and Savior, too.
Arab Solangi Kumb:
Using Matthew 6:18, Shakeel taught the concept of fasting during the season of Lent. He used biblical illustrations of devout people who fasted: Esther, David, Moses, Elijah, and Jesus himself.
"As we know, the Lent season has begun and I thought it is very import to teach about biblical fasting as many of them were not aware of the BIble's teaching on the subject." As he taught, "Fasting is the practice of denying one's flesh of its earthly desires to devotedly seek the Lord."
This meeting was held in our church building in Khairpur. Below you see both Shakeel and Rustam leading the teaching and worship.
Shakeel taught from Luke 15 about the woman who found her lost coin and then gave thanks and from PsaIm 100 which is a psalm encouraging God's people to give him praise. Then they had a time of praise and thanksgiving in a home of one of people. Afterwards, Shakeel received a phone call from someone who had been at the meeting telling him how blessed they all were because of the ministry there.
"As the rain and the snowcome down from heaven, and do not return to itwithout watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." - Isaiah 55:10-11