The past 16 years of my life have largely been invested in developing native leaders and indigenous gospel movements in one of the most spiritually dark places on earth – north India. Being a servant and a “mother” to upcoming native leaders, enabling them to bring the Gospel to their own people, is my passion. These youngsters who come to Christ from the depths of despair in the clutches of idol worship and poverty, are like gemstones. Though each one is precious, I am always searching for that rare diamond, a tiny point of light gleaming through dirt and a rough, unpolished surface, that hints that this one has especially great potential. Though polishing and fashioning may take many years, it is a joyous adventure serve, in whatever small way, to enable that young leader to go far for God’s Kingdom.
The following is the testimony of a young man who has been my disciple and assistant for over five years, and who is especially dear to my heart. Gaurav’s pet name is “Prinsu” which means “prince” – a fitting name for a young man who is truly a prince for God.
“I was born in a Hindu family and my father and mother were idol worshippers, so I was also very much involved in these activities. Every morning and evening I made offerings to the gods. But one day I realized there is no peace and no love. I was watching the religious TV serials Mahabharat and Ramayana. I saw how the gods were always quarrelling with each other and each wanted to become ruler. So I thought, if my lord is fighting just like humans, then how can I have peace through him? At the same time I saw all around me how the people had no peace either.
In 2003 I came to the city of Lucknow and visited a church meeting. The pastor was giving an example from the book of Mathew showing that Jesus came as the Light to the world. Through this word, I realized that Jesus is the one who can give me peace and life and light. Then I went to another church. There the Lord Jesus spoke to me. He promised me, ‘When you call on Me, I will answer you.’ I confessed Jesus as Lord and for the first time in my life, I found peace and true joy.
At that time I was staying in the home of my nephew Alok, which is also TellAsia’s office in Lucknow. When in India, TellAsia’s international director, Leanna, lives there too. She began to do Bible studies with me and to help me improve my English. Later I learned she had taken interest in me because she saw my desire to grow in Christ and my sensitivity to the Holy Spirit. She started to mentor me and became my spiritual mother. In 2005 she baptized me. This was an unique experience in my life and I felt Holy Spirit on me.
Continued in next month’s blog post.
~ Gaurav Srivastava,
Assistant to the Director