Just over nine years ago, with a calling to reach the Sundanese tribal group in West Java, an untried yet enthusiastic group of believers began a ministry after renting a safe house, funded by VOM Australia. Although the beginnings were small, this ministry has blossomed and produced much fruit. What started out with a handful of children from the rubbish dumps, being fed and taught about God, has resulted in many Muslim families coming to know Jesus.
As the children were taught about Jesus, they began to change and because of their transformation, parents became curious and wanted to know more. Many parents were at first unwilling to come to the safe house as they were Muslims and were reluctant to associate with Christians however, as parents were invited to Sunday services, they experienced God’s love first hand. The Gospel began to advance among the Sundanese people and the light of the love of Jesus began to shine into their community.
Baptisms were a frequent occurrence and as Bible study groups were established, believers were trained in God’s Word and then sent out into various communities. The safe house was never to be just a refuge but it became a school to train believers for ministry with pastors, leaders, teachers and evangelists being equipped with God’s Word.
This ministry now operates through four safe houses and from a handful of children, there are now more than 1,000 together with their families.
As the kingdom of God advances, there is always opposition but all hardships and challenges are committed to prayer. We were told by our national contact that, “Prayer is our priority. Without prayer, we cannot do anything. We have to depend on Jesus.”
As the ministry grew and a kindergarten was established in a predominately Muslim area, there was a lot of opposition from the Muslims. In the beginning some radical Muslims stoned the building, but the parents supported the kindergarten and the Christian teachers. In an answer to prayer, a Muslim leader stood with them and through his authority, the school is now protected against the radical elements in the community.
Throughout the years this ministry has been operating, their commitment to prayer has been their priority. “All we can do is pray because we know that God has a unique way of meeting our needs.”
Jesus told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest field” Luke 10:2.
Having been given these words, the ministry continues and the light of Jesus Christ is shining throughout West Java.