India Trip Summary – 3/27/12

Eph 3:20-21 (TLB)

“Now glory be to God, who by his mighty power at work within us is able to do far more than we would ever dare to ask or even dream of-infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, or hopes. 21 May he be given glory forever…”

Dear Friends and Family,

My father loved Ephesians 3:20 but often claimed Eph. 6:40 which is DOUBLE 3:20. (There is no 6:40, but that did not matter to Dad as he had a huge faith!)  I love numbers and I love to make good long-term investments.  Our trip to India was all about numbers that will, in turn, result in some excellent spiritual investments.  It is really all about people, leaders, influence, and transformed lives.  I hope to briefly give you a vision for what we saw God do right in front of our eyes in this nation which has massive numbers of people.  In the next few years India will pass China as the most populated nation on the earth.  Everywhere you look there are people, and each person represents an eternal soul for which Christ died.  Many are coming to Christ in evangelism of all kinds – including large crusades.  His church is young and growing and in need of leaders and those who are maturing in the faith.  And, most of all the evangelism has reached only the lower class of society and some of the middle class.  Few of the upper class leaders of society have been reached by the Gospel.  Our goals for the Shepherding Horses seminars were simple:

  1. Help the pastors to how to understand workplace leaders and how to build bridges of relationships with them and equip them as Christian leaders.
  2. Give pastors insights into how to make DISCIPLES of every follower of Jesus, which is in their church sending them out to their sphere of influence.
  3. Encourage workplace leaders in business, government, education, etc to understanding their calling and how they can impact their workplaces for Christ.

We did this through a one and one-half day pastors seminar and a four hour evening workplace leaders seminar in each of five cities across India.

The numbers only tell part of the story, but they do give us some clues as to what kind of return we will see from our investment.  Davidene and I spent 18 days on our journey, taking 11 flights, staying in 6 hotels, and teaching 10 different seminars in 13 days.  We had 5 or 6 of us on the team at any one time.  Two team members had to pull out at the last minute,  and we were joined by key volunteers in every city who helped with all the details of serving anywhere from 75 to 250 people at each seminar. Our leader, Charlie, pulled this off without a problem in multiple venues in just a few days. It seemed like we were always packing or unpacking or standing in line at an airport.  We had only a few hours of free time in the entire 2 weeks.  Davidene, Charlie’s wife, Sally, and Sherry Jordan got to go on a 15 hour journey to the Taj Mahal.

Pastor Perry Bowers did a super job in helping me carry the load the first week, but the last week I had to shoulder most of the primary speaking sessions.  Yet, God sustained me even with my 20% breathing capacity as I gave 39 of the 49 major sessions in 13 days of speaking. Near the end of the 2 weeks, I spoke 4 to 6 times a day and yet seemed to gain strength because of YOUR PRAYERS.  The speaking was not as challenging physically as going up stairs and ramps in the airports and the grind of constant travel by taxis and planes. My body was taxed to the max, and all the while, I was taking breathing treatments, medication, shots, and trying to get rest for an hour at any time that I could.  I would fall asleep in a minute in the afternoon and take a much needed nap. Chris, Geoff, Davidene, and key local leaders shared in the testimony slots which were extremely impactful.  Davidene addressed a key women’s group, and, while not planned, in the later cities she addressed the largely male crowd in both seminars on marriage and communication issues and hit a huge home run – maybe even a grand slam!!  This was simply a miracle considering the culture, but God did something really special in terms of application and reception.  Chris has a 15 year track record of working and living with Indians in the USA and India and was really received well. Geoff was able to share how churches and ministries can put a well in any village for only $600 instead of $6,000 and product cleaner water than what already existed in any city that we visited.  We had a small but powerful team, even though we had to leave some key members at home.  God really knit our hearts and lives together.

Very conservatively, we trained somewhere between 800 to 1,000 pastors and spoke to around 600 to 800 workplace leaders. Each one of those numbers represents a key Christian leader in India and I was able to personally talk to hundreds of them. From 9am to 9pm I was either speaking to the group or meeting personally with these leaders in brief touches with some wonderful men and women in the Body of Christ in India. I was encouraged by many that what we were sharing was a radical shift in thinking and we were told that this message was exactly what the nation needs at this time.  Many key leaders told me that God had revealed to them that what were we sharing was biblical to the core and what God was calling the nation to at this moment in their history.   Well over 50% of the pastors led key churches, were leaders of the denominations, or were leaders in key Christian organizations like missions, bible schools, or training ministries.  A number of them will go back and help us to train many more of the pastors in their networks or communities.  Charlie Abro has been with Campus Crusade for 41 years (and has been fundamental in taking the Jesus Film to India in 104 languages), Rick Warren’s Saddleback program to 27 cities, The  Billy Graham My Hope meetings, and other national agendas.  Charlie is highly respected because of his ability to bring together the entire body of Christ in projects over a number of years.  He is one of the most gifted and capable servant leaders that I have met anywhere in the world.  He plans to put the training into 14 different languages and work though the Bible colleges and down through the key denominations.

So, how do the numbers add up?  Well, when you talk of numbers you need to consider multiplication because in the long run, it works better.  Of those pastors in attendance, at least 20% (that is the normal response in any teaching,  but this was a special group) of those will apply the principles and 20% of those will become leaders in the transformation process.  So, I am expecting that close to 200 will apply these radical concepts that are not “new”, but instead a return to the model of Jesus’ interaction with the twelve.  Of those 200, about 40 to 50 will be key implementers and leaders in the Indian church in REDISCOVERING THE METHOD OF JESUS MAKING DISCIPLES AND TRAINING SPIRITUAL LEADERS.  If only 160 pastors become equippers of the saints (and particularly leaders) – in addition to preaching and teaching –  they will each impact an average of 100 to 200 in their congregation (probably more due to their having the larger churches and many head networks).  Each one that they impact has anywhere from 50 to 500 in their sphere of influence.  The workplace leaders have even larger networks – whether they are a small entrepreneur, an educator, a government official, or an executive in a larger enterprise.  So, if you reach INFLUENCERS, you are in the multiplication business which yields great returns.  We were asking these leaders to NOT ONLY shepherd the sheep but train and EQUIP the horses (leaders) in their churches.  We asked them to continue to preach and teach but ON THE SIDE TO train leaders in a small group and INVEST into and DISCIPLE 2 or 3 new leaders every year or two.  The reception of and openness to radically changing their thinking was very encouraging.  The willingness of many to immediately APPLY these truths IMMEDIATELY was surprising.  Some even picked out the names of their key leaders before the day was over.  Others contacted them before the next day seminar.  Every pastor seminar but one had MORE people the second morning than the first day.  This is unheard of in any conference.

Most spoke English as a second or third language, but the culture is different, and we came from half way around the world.  The hearts of these key leaders were touched by the Holy Spirit and HE went before us and prepared the way.  The prayers and receptivity seemed to build in each city (which were unrelated), yet the prayers seems to have a CUMMULATIVE effect.  The response was the BEST that I have seen anywhere in the world although the book is in 13 major languages and has been well received in Latin America, Europe, Africa, and particularly in Asia.  God is just moving in India through miracles, breakthroughs in the Hindu and Muslim religious groups, in the midst of huge persecution in the north, and in massive crusades in the south.  In the USA most of the “horses” get the message immediately but fewer than 5% of the pastors in the USA get the equipping model that God is calling us to and less than 1% are doing it.  The pastors are just overwhelmed by the sheep making requests and are simply doing what we are demanding INSTEAD of what God has commanded.  So, as Dr. Perry Bowers boldly proclaimed, in our nation we have disobeyed God and are not making disciples and the church is in decline.  Perry is a pastor who has given the last 20 plus years to making disciples of key workplace leaders.  He and other key pastors are my HEROES.

As I am home now, please pray for me now as I continue to reduce my steroids, reduce my weight, get more healthy, AND to understand how I am able to serve Charlie and these pastors as they take this message across India.  How can we assist through email, phone, resources, etc?  Does God want me to ever travel again?  How does my health fit into all of this?  Is this huge breakthrough just in India or is God doing something across the Body of Christ at this time?  I have to re-enter my normal life in my study and at the office.  I have three key speaking events in April then take most of May off for some minor surgery.  So, I will seek to be listening carefully to exactly how God wants us to proceed to not lose any of this fruit and this unique opportunity to serve these leaders.  I really need to hear clearly on the next steps because  investment opportunities such as this are RARE.  Thanks again for your diligence in your PRAYERS and in encouraging us and supporting this effort.  May our HEAVENLY FATHER reward you in every way.

Your brother,

Kent

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About kenthumphreys
Kent Humphreys has been a business leader for over forty years. He also served as CEO of FCCI/Christ@Work for six years and now serves as their worldwide ambassador, speaking, writing, and mentoring young leaders. He continues to be active in distribution, private equities, and real estate. Kent and his wife Davidene have written six books together. They have three children and eight grand-children.

One Response to India Trip Summary – 3/27/12

  1. Juha Tentke says:

    Praise the Lord! I have praying during your trip this:

    1 Chronicles 4:10 Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.

    We have a great God. He has blessed you and whole team, enlarge your (His) territory to India. He has kept you all from harm and you have been free from pain (He gave you energy to speak and teach).

    God bless you!

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