As I travel to different countries of the former Soviet Union, my heart goes out to pastors and churches who are struggling to impact their nations. I firmly believe they will be able to do so only when they themselves have become spiritually strong. I know of no means to encourage greater strengthening than the Word of God taking root in the lives and prayers of His people. Derek’s teaching can serve as a key tool in this process of nourishing leaders and believers who are seeking to impact their nations through God’s Word, prayer and fasting.
One way of supporting church leaders in their spiritual growth is through our conferences for pastors and Bible Correspondence Course students. These events provide wonderful opportunities for pastors and students to worship and learn together, pray for each other and receive much needed spiritual refreshment for future ministry.
During May and June 2007 we hosted two such conferences in Georgia and Ukraine. Our hope is to do the same later on this year in Armenia and Iran.
Georgia is a fairly new ministry field for us and we are now in touch with representatives of the largest denomination there. Key leaders, who have come across Derek’s books invited us to host a ministry conference for them. This was a wonderful opportunity to minister to Christian leaders in this nation and to make Derek’s teaching available to a wider audience of believers seeking to develop a biblical response to everyday challenges they face.
Through our conferences in Ukraine, we aimed to equip and encourage our Bible Correspondence Course students and enable them to relate to our ministry personally. We provided opportunities for them to receive ministry through prayer and prophetic words.
We believe, according to Ephesians 4, our call is to resource and equip the saints for ministry. Although the conference fees are small, some of the pastors and students we would like to see attend will not be able to do so because they are not able to afford the travel and accommodation costs. Yet they are the people who are ministering in some of the most needy areas of Armenia and Iran—people who give the most and often receive little by way of encouragement or support. That is why we would like to offer some sponsorship opportunities for such leaders and students so they do not miss out on being equipped and strengthened for further service.
At present, we are looking to raise £2,500 to sponsor 50 key pastors and students to attend our conferences in Armenia and Iran.