Written by | July, 2015
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From the Field – Flexibility July 25, ’15

Jyothi Benjamin completed his two year training and returned to India in July ’91. His work at that time was to assist his father in the church and to work with the orphans. After a ’97 visitation team recommended starting a seminary, Pastor Jyothi Benjamin began the Bible institute that was the seminary in May of ’98. Two other men were called to assist in the teaching over time. Also over time Pastor V.S. Benjamin had health problems and could no longer visit the congregations and conduct all the work that is necessary to maintain and expand the church. In the last few years this work has devolved onto Jyothi’s shoulders so that his hours teaching have been reduced as his time out in the congregations has increased. There are now three men teaching in the seminary beyond Jyothi. The work in the congregations involves: periodic visits to congregations, conducting colloquies for pastors who want to join the CLCI, with his brother Nireekshana conducting pastoral conferences, exercising discipline when needed and sizing up and leading in expansion efforts. A tall order with our God supplying the strength and will to do what He requires. Another indication of the flexibility needed is that not all men can come for the three year seminary program so that another approach of conducting colloquies is carried out that men might lead their congregations into the CLCI.

Jyothi’s brother, Nireekshana, also exercised flexibility. In 2001 at our request he quit his engineering job in Assam to come home to help in the church. We made this request due to his father’s declining health. Nireekshana has worked out a couple ideas on how to support the CLCI from within, but due to financial limitations for setting them up has had to put these on the back shelf. Again we seek to be flexible and not to lock ourselves into just one approach or idea in the areas where God gives us freedom and places within our minds good old common sense and the ability to see benefits and disadvantages in the areas of consideration.

We pray that God’s will will be done. And in turn we should act accordingly not trying to impose our will, but seeking what God wants. In our overseas mission work there are many variables that we need to take into account when decisions are made. And then there are those situations that we cannot fully expect, but must meet with God’s help and direction to go forward with flexibility.