During the celebrations for the 31st anniversary, the government imposed an almost total internet blackout for a few days. Even Google was blocked. Telephone lines were also cut. This is a good reminder for Christians engaged in reaching Iran with the gospel not to pour all their resources into the digital revolution, or any ministry that ultimately depends on technology. It is people who count. And even when everything is working perfectly, nothing can substitute for the ‘living letters’ the Apostle Paul talks about – men and women on fire for Jesus Christ, whose characters shine out and speak to others because they see who they are and how they live. Jesus Christ discipled twelve men and changed the world. Whatever happens in cyber space, that same challenge will never go out of date. This type of training is hard work, as it involves a lot more than Bible teaching. Most important of all there needs to be that context where the Holy Spirit can be free to turn that stubborn I of the ego into the beautifully broken C of Christ. This can be painful, especially for the mentors who have to keep the pressure on, so the saints can come out more precious. While there is much fine work given to the internet and the TV, quietly and faithfully some have not taken their eye off the jewel in the crown of ministry: discipleship.
- Agencies engaged in discipleship
- Willingness of churches to resource the training of the few
- For the ‘living letters’ today to have fire and compassion in their lives