A group of Iranian Christians are gathered for morning devotions. One brother, Nima, stands and begins sharing from his heart with the group, all of whom are students on an intensive church leadership training course. Nima shares his gratitude that, through the training, God is daily ploughing their hearts, refining characters and establishing fertile soil.
Nima is a farmer from the north of Iran. He knows about soil. “At the top all seems well,” he explains, “but the farmer knows that underneath there is hard unbroken soil full of worms that must be dealt with. The ploughing must happen.” The hard soil underneath the seemingly spiritual exterior has to be dug up and broken down. The worms – “We all have worms” he emphasizes – must be taken out.* He is so grateful this is happening in his life. The group nods and praise God for His work in their own hearts.
Nima speaks for the vast majority of students who pass through these training programs in the Iran region. They recognize God at work and are deeply thankful that the difficult period of ploughing will, in time, lead to a fruitful harvest as they commence ministry among fellow Iranians. Reaching Iran begins with training the right leaders
• Current students of training programs
• Graduates now in ministry
• Godly wisdom for the trainers
*Here the analogy breaks down as worms are of course good for the soil, but our brother was speaking poetically at the end of an emotional meeting.