Remember how Jesus told some ordinary fishermen that he would make them ‘fishers of men’? He still does that today, you know…
Jia’s a church planter in Indonesia who trained in a missional discipleship program launched with the help of Global Disciples. In his first years as a church planter he saw little fruit, partially because he was struggling with a pastor from his sending church. Jia admits, “I was a very stubborn person”. But as Jia participated in leadership training and then began to train new leaders, God went to work in his heart. Humbled and transformed he went back to his pastor with a spirit of repentance and their damaged relationship was restored.
Jia describes it as “Eight years of stagnation followed by two years restored with blessing”. The blessing was evident as Jia opened his heart to a community of illiterate fishermen where he went to plant a church. He is now training six men to become disciple-makers and church planters, to become ‘fishers of men’, just like Jesus called Peter, Andrew, James and John long ago.
But how do you train those who cannot read a Bible or write to take notes? Well, Jia sits with the men and takes them through a lesson. They listen, ask questions and discuss it with him. Then they go and teach the same lesson to three other people. This reinforces what they take in and helps them learn how to teach. As an added bonus, they’re adding more disciples and it’s revolutionized how they view their own abilities to serve and share the Gospel.
There’s also an economic impact. After training in basic biblical financial principles, these fishermen began working together to set the price for their fish and to save money for their downtimes. They’ve even chosen to raise their pastor’s salary, as they appreciate the way he humbly serves.
Today, this small fellowship has a vision for planting two more churches in Indonesia. Simple fishermen becoming ‘fishers of men’, by the power of God.