Monday, November 25, 2013

Go Down to the River

“In the early days of the church, baptism was a declaration that the believer was definitely identifying himself with that group of people who were called Christians and were despised and hated. 
To be a Christian meant something. 
To identify yourself with those who were called Christians meant persecution, maybe death; it meant being ostracized from your family, shunned by friends. 
And the one act which was the final declaration of this identification was baptism.
 As long as a man gathered with Christians, he was tolerated, but when once he submitted to baptism, 
he declared to all the world, ‘I belong to this despised group,’ and immediately he was persecuted, hated, and despised. In baptism, therefore, the believer entered into the fellowship of the sufferings of Christ. A person might be a believer and keep it strictly a secret and thus avoid unpleasantness and suffering, 
but once he submitted to public baptism he had burned his bridges behind him.” 
Dr. M.R. DeHaan

The walk to the river

It's not a long walk, from the church to the river. Perhaps five minutes. Down the dirt road, take a left. Step quickly across the wooden bridge, rickety from age. Follow the dirt trail, packed hard from the tread of a thousand footsteps. 
It is a path she's walked before and a river she knows well. 
But today is different. 
Today the trail leads to a place of declaration. 
Today, to step into the water is to declare she is a Christ follower
Today she leaves the old behind.

"I am baptized so others know I met Jesus. I know the Good News."

Baptism in Nepal is the great line of demarcation.

Simply attending church or declaring oneself to be a Christian is not nearly as important as stepping out in front of your community and following the Lord in believer's baptism. Many Hindus will accept a family member's church attendance or interest in the Bible, or even a statement of acceptance of Jesus Christ, but once a believer has been baptized, he or she has truly separated from culture, family and the remnants of the old life. Often, persecution follows baptism, and Nepali believers know the significance of a public walk to the river.

They know to be a Christian means something.
And they know to be a Christian often means suffering.

"I know Jesus is the Way, Truth and Life. 
So far I have been walking in darkness but now I know the real light is Jesus Christ. 
I decided to take baptism so others will know I know Jesus' name."

But they also know the Word is Truth.
They know the joy which comes from following the Lord.
They know the One True God.

And because they know the Truth, they are willing to walk to the river and sink beneath the water to proclaim their dedication to the One who made them, the One who called them and the One who saved them.

"I decided to take baptism to show I have a close relationship with Jesus Christ
and to have a chance to grow more in my faith in the Lord."

Vision Nationals-Nepal's pastor training program exists to equip leaders to shepherd followers of Christ in local villages and communities. These men stand shoulder to shoulder with their congregations, encouraging believers to follow the Lord regardless of cost or consequence. When a new believer stands on the banks of a river, preparing for baptism, the pastor is there as well.
Nepali Christians never stand alone. 
They are encouraged and guided and loved well by men of faith who are dedicated to the preaching and teaching of the Word of God and the feeding and care of God's people. 

If you would like to invest with us in equipping the local church in Nepal for the Kingdom of God, please contact us.

To give by mail:

Vision Nationals
191-B Palomino Trail
Ridgway, CO 81432

If you choose to give by check, please designate your gift in the memo line as "Nepal Church Planter Support."

To give online, click here

Please select "Nepal Church Planter Support" under "Purpose of Gift."

Monday, November 4, 2013


One of the great joys on Vision Nationals-Nepal's ministry campus in Kathmandu is receiving guests. In October, we enjoyed a visit with a team from Canyon Hills Community Church in Bothell, Wash. Nancy, Megan, Steve, Diane and Julie came to Kathmandu intent on showering the children of Mercy Mission Children's Home with the blessing of time and love.

Each day the group spent on campus brought new moments of excitement for the children who call this place home. From fun crafts and silly songs to Bible lessons and new games, the group brought additional laughter and life to campus and made each child feel special and treasured.

The primary focus of the trip was a Bible club held on two consecutive days on campus. Each session opened with songs and dancing, followed by a Bible lesson and follow-up game. The children listened intently to the lessons, learning stories about Paul and Jesus and lessons of love and truth.

The favorite activity by far involved a large, colorful parachute which made the journey from the Pacific Northwest to Kathmandu. The children had so much fun throwing the parachute up in the air and sitting beneath it as it fell, running under the fabric, from one side to the next, and playing cat-and-mouse. 

Thank you, Nancy, Megan, Steve, Diane and Julie for showing the love of Christ to the children of Mercy Mission Children's Home. 

Thank you for your time and energy. We miss you already!!