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Adam_HS_largeIn Ecclesiastes 3 Solomon speaks to the rhythms of life. “There’s a season for everything and a time for every matter under the heavens: a time for giving birth and a time for dying, a time for planting and a time for uprooting what was planted…a time for crying and a time for laughing…”

I wish it was always a time for birth, always a time for planting, always a time for laughing, always a time for peace. But that is not the reality of life. Loved ones pass away. Hard work sometimes fails. The burdens of life can be crushing. Friends fail us. As we follow Jesus, he does not make everything easy, but he can leverage everything for good and he never leaves our side. And he calls us to be about his work and love.

Thank you for never leaving the side of the orphan. Thank you for planting seeds of hope and salvation. Thank you for empowering families to recover from financial ruin. Thank you for supporting pastors, children and families on the other side of the world through their challenging and joyful seasons of life. Your steadfastness echoes God’s love and brings about His peace.

May we embrace every season of life and walk with others through their winters and laugh with others through their summers.

Posted on June 25, 2017 | Tags: , , , , ,

Adam_HS_largeIn Matthew 5:16 Jesus says to “let your light shine before people, so they can see the good things you do and praise your Father who is in heaven.” In the beginning, God created light. Then Jesus came and said that He was the light, and if we follow Him we will have the light of life. Then before leaving earth Jesus says that his followers, you and me and the family of God, are the light, because we are the incarnation of Jesus to the world.

Jesus’ invitation to let light shine through us is central to our mission and purpose in life. I imagine this light of love and life shines like a lighthouse lamp, piercing the darkness with the power of a million candles to project over 40 miles. And at other times it is a lone tipping candle, bowing to light the wick of another. On a clear night, even one lone candle can be seen up to 30 miles away.

Your light has spread to the other side of the world and it shines brightly. It shines in the smile of a child who just learned to read. It shines in the recently healed widow, just baptized into the way of Jesus. It shines in the family in a remote village eating a full hearty meal provided by their new small business. Your tilted candle is spreading and shining the light of Jesus in some of the darkest places in the world and their lives will never be the same. Thank you for your illuminating love and life.

May we continue to shine and spread the light and love of Jesus.

Posted on May 31, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

tim_reliefToday at ServLife we’re remembering the people of Nepal on the second anniversary of the devastating earthquake that claimed more than 8,000 lives in that country. Little Sujata came into our care because her mother perished in the quake and fourteen ServLife pastors saw their villages partially or completely destroyed. There are so many stories of loss, hope, and courage in the aftermath.

Our people continue to recover from the effects of the quake on April 25, 2015. Today we invite you to join us in praying for our pastors, children, and families who are rebuilding their lives in Nepal. Click here and make a gift today in support of all ServLife is doing to propel reconciliation and justice in Nepal.

Remember with us. Pray with us. Take action with us.

Posted on April 25, 2017 |

Sometimes you have to slow down to move forward. This was the case for over 100 pastors who gathered in March for ServLife’s 2017 annual Pastors’ Conferences in Kathmandu, Nepal and Bihar, India. Pastors and their families came from all over India and Nepal, some traveling for days, to connect, learn and recharge so they could return to their villages with renewed energy. “When they come here they get charged. They get encouraged,” India Director Albert Das reflects. “That makes them move forward…to extend God’s kingdom.”

This year’s theme was Servant Leadership, focusing on Mark 10:45. “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Nepal Director Bekharaj Maharjan knows how critical this theme is for the pastors. “The most effective leadership in the church is servant leadership,” he notes. “This is what Jesus modeled for us.”

The theme was explored by a variety of local and international speakers, including Albert Das, Lazarus Thulung, Joon Jung, Adam Nevins and Kyle Pierce. Equally important to hearing from outside voices, the conference gave pastors a chance to tell their own stories. “Everyone has a different story,” Maharjan explains. “When they hear the stories, they think, ‘I’m not the only one going through that.’”

This unique blend of learning, listening and sharing allows them to reenter incredibly difficult ministry contexts with fresh passion for their work. Many of the pastors report experiencing loneliness in their work, and some of them experience a great deal of hostility toward the message of Jesus that, over time, takes a toll on them and their families. For others, the conference is one of the only chances they have during the year to step away from their villages. Maharjan notices a visible difference in the pastors afterward. “After coming to the conference, they are energized. They are encouraged. They are happy.”

Now, as the pastors reenter their ministry contexts, Das is asking the ServLife community to join them in prayer. Specifically, he hopes their brief time together will have a big impact as the Kingdom of God presses outward. “Pray for each one of them, that they will not have any fear. Let us move forward, and the rest God is going to do.”

View More: http://jadeandkyle.pass.us/servlife-conferences

Posted on April 10, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Udaya Bhatta’s life and ministry are perhaps best summed up in one word: love. This love is seen most clearly in his deep commitment to the message of Jesus and his unwavering care for the children of Nepal. Udaya first encountered the message of Jesus as a teenager. Raised in the mountains of west Nepal, he worked on his family’s farm alongside his father. The hardships of rural farming began to take their toll, and his father became gravely ill. When all hope was lost, his father found physical and spiritual healing in the good news of Jesus. This experience was so powerful that the entire Bhatta family began following Jesus, and Udaya’s life would never be the same.

IMG_2210After completing a degree in ministry, Udaya began a journey of sharing the hope of Jesus and caring for children in need. He became a vice-principal at a local school, overseeing the dorms where many of the children stayed. This time gave him invaluable experience in caring for and educating children. While at the school, he also started Bible studies that helped others understand the way of Jesus. Local authorities took issue with Udaya’s studies and street preaching, and began threatening him. He was beaten, threatened at gun point, and eventually thrown in jail for nearly a month. After over a year of appeals, the charges were dropped.

DSC_0130While this period was incredibly taxing, it led to something beautiful: a vision to care for the children of Nepal. In the midst of fighting the legal system, the next step of their journey became clear to Udaya and his wife, Bhakti. “We began to pray to seek for our Lord Jesus Christ’s guidance for what to do in future,” Udaya reflects. “Suddenly, one day He has put a thought as a vision in both our hearts to help orphan and destitute children in Nepal.”

Years of civil unrest in Nepal left thousands of children without families, and Udaya and Bhakti felt called to provide love, care and an education for as many of them as possible. Despite having little money and caring for two children of their own, the Bhatta’s took a step of faith and brought two orphaned children into their home. One step of faith led to another, as Udaya and Bhakti began caring for more children.

View More: http://jadeandkyle.pass.us/servlife-conferencesIn 2004, Udaya and Bhakti began a partnership with ServLife, and the Kathmandu Children’s Home was founded. Over the last 13 years, their ministry expanded and dozens of children have been cared for by the Bhatta’s and their staff. Today, through the support of child sponsorships, 53 children are cared for throughout three children’s homes in Nepal, and an additional 250 are given access to education through scholarships.

Today, when Udaya looks back, he still feels the same love that has marked his journey. “The downtrodden and the destitute children are not getting any opportunity for their future,” he reflects. “Because of that, we had compassion.” That love and compassion has empowered and changed the lives of hundreds of children.

Posted on April 7, 2017 | Tags: , , , ,

Tim KurthIn his first letter to the church in Corinth Paul wrote, “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (1 Corinthians 15:58)

There are certainly days when my head is down with my thoughts focused on mundane administrative tasks that I wonder if my work is really making a difference. Those same thoughts never occur to me when I’m standing on a mountainside in Nepal delivering food to families after an earthquake or leading a team of teachers presenting a training conference. No, I’m not concerned about laboring in vain when reports of the latest microfinance launch arrive or when I’m hearing the remarkable stories from our many church planters.

Here’s the truth I need to remember. The mundane office tasks and seeming drudgery of managing day-to-day operational details are just as important as presenting a conference or planting a church or providing another child an education. It is all work toward a common goal, to propel reconciliation and justice by building global community. Building a community of which you are such a vital part. It could be argued that the behind the scenes operational work is even more important since without this attention to detail there would be no stories of life change to tell.

Your steadfast generosity may, at times, seem far removed from the powerful stories that come from India and Nepal. But we are, together, abounding in the work of the Lord and in the Lord our labor is not in vain!

May we abound in the work of our Lord whether in the mundane or on the mountainside!

Tim Kurth
Assistant Director

Posted on March 30, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

As his name suggests, Lazarus Thulung’s life and ministry have been marked by new life emerging from dark depths. A third generation Christian and pastor growing up in the shadow of Mount Everest, Lazarus’ childhood was shaped by persistent religious marginalization. Because of her faith, Lazarus’ mother was left alone by her village to give birth to him while his father was away working. When medical complications arose, no one was there to help, and she died in child birth. To honor her, his father named him Lazarus, because his life came from her death. Devastated but not defeated, his father and grandfather continued sharing Jesus with others, even though it meant enduring beatings and imprisonment.

LazarusHis family’s example instilled in him a deep faith and commitment to the way of Jesus, which eventually led him to seminary and a life of church planting. He recalls hearing a statistic ten years ago that propelled him to action. “There are more than 3,912 villages in Nepal, but only 1,300 villages are reached by the gospel. That was the statistic…that really touched my heart. I have much to do,” he recalls. Around the same time, Lazarus met ServLife’s founding director. Once he heard Lazarus’ passion and vision, a church planting partnership was born.

_R0C2268From the start, Lazarus believed widespread transformation was possible. In 2006, he set of goal of starting 150 churches by 2016. To do this, he began training church planters in cohorts of 12-16 each year who would then go into unchurched villages with the message of Jesus. As of today, Lazarus and his team have trained 97 pastors, who have planted 121 churches, and have seen 4,700 people decide to follow Jesus, with 2,700 baptisms.  Their work is part of nationwide movement of new believers. Research suggests that in 1980, there were roughly 7,000 Christians in Nepal. Today, Nepali Christian leaders suggest there are over a million Christians in the country. Lazarus has helped fuel this movement by authoring 18 books, speaking throughout the country, and emerging as a Christian leader on a national scale.

In the midst of a vibrant ministry, Lazarus has experienced heartbreaking trials. Perhaps his greatest trial was the loss of his son, Abhishek. Born with severe disabilities, Abhishek was never able to see or talk, and, after a tough life, died peacefully at the age of 12 in 2012. Lazarus’ life and ministry was deeply shaped by the life and loss of his son. He notes that Abhishek brought him and his wife “joy in everyday and every moment of our lives. I realized that I lost a great theologian and mentor in my life.” Abhishek inspired him to write “Where is God When I am in Suffering?” and “When God is Silence”, which helped thousands of Nepali’s walk through pain and suffering.

View More: http://jadeandkyle.pass.us/nepal2016Throughout his ministry, Lazarus began to realize that to fully live out the good news of Jesus, Christians were called to empower people out of poverty. This led him to start the HOPE Fund, ServLife’s microfinance program. Since its inception, the HOPE Fund has helped dozens of families raise their standard of living through small, affordable loans to start small business. Currently, the HOPE Fund is operating seven villages and resourcing 75 families. For Lazarus, this financial program has deep spiritual roots. “We are blessed by God. We are loved by God, and we are sharing this love with one another,” he reflects.

Lazarus is confident that God will continue to use him to bring new life in the midst of darkness. As he looks forward, he sees an abundance of opportunity for the good news of Jesus to continue spreading in Nepal. As he looks back, he sees God’s goodness to him, even in the midst of trials. “God is so faithful,” he says. “He has provided everything that we needed. In different challenges we’ve faced in this journey, God is always faithful.”

Posted on March 1, 2017 | Tags: , , , , ,

Adam_HS_largeWhen describing God’s kingdom in Mark 4, Jesus said, “Consider a mustard seed. When scattered on the ground, it’s the smallest of all the seeds on the earth; but when it’s planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all vegetable plants. It produces such large branches that the birds in the sky are able to nest in its shade.” (‭‭Mark‬ ‭4:31-32‬ ‭CEB‬‬)

It’s hard to know or even imagine the impact of a gift of time or money in someone’s life. When I was 13 a guy at my church took a few hours and taught me how to play bass guitar and some basic music theory. It’s the only music lessons I’ve ever taken and it launched me into a world of music. I’ve recorded a few albums, was a worship pastor for a decade, and can play bass, piano, drums, guitar and more, all based on those first few hours of investment from my friend Greg.

Small investments in God’s kingdom reap amazing branches of hope and empowerment. For just $35/mo, each of Nazir’s four children are able to attend school and receive the education that his parents could not provide for him. For just $3 per bible, Pastor Mansing’s entire church and surrounding churches were able to receive bibles from a generous church in Texas. Jamuna received a loan for $200 and it changed her family’s life, empowering her to send her children to school and feed them properly. Your generosity is planting seeds of amazing harvest on the other side of the world, and we are deeply grateful and excited to have you propel these stories of hope and transformation.

May God multiply our gifts and produce a large harvest of love, hope and salvation.

Posted on February 6, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

LazarusAlbertUdayaI remember my first trip to India and Nepal in 2006. I’d been a ServLife volunteer for a few years and was excited to see the work firsthand.

As I met the pastors and children I knew my life would never be the same. A few trips and six years later I was hired to work with ServLife, and my heroes in India and Nepal.

We are going to celebrate all year, sharing the stories of our three international directors, along with stories of the pastors, children, families in India and Nepal, and stories of people like you that are building global community to make a difference in the world.

Thank you for your prayers, time and financial support that has helped make all of this possible. And please join us throughout the year as we celebrate all that God has done!

– Adam J. Nevins
Executive Director

Posted on February 3, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

AlbertPreachingAlbert Das’ life and ministry have taken him many places, but his journey always drew him back to one area: Bihar, India. Born in Bihar as a high caste Hindu, Albert’s life began on a harsh note. Both of his parents died suddenly, leaving young Albert orphaned. At first sent away to a children’s home in Bihar, a couple from Kolkata soon adopted him. Even while being raised in Kolkata, he had a sense he would one day return to Bihar.

When Albert’s travels first took him to Raxaul, a town in Bihar, in the early 1990s, he asked a local, “Are there Christians here?” The local resident laughed, “Christians?” Undeterred, Albert asked a follow-up question: “Do you know Jesus?” The man responded, “Who is Jesus? A Bollywood star?” With that brief conversation, Albert Das knew he had found his eventual ministry home.

As he grew and began pursuing a life in ministry, he traveled around Asia to receive theological and practical training. During this time, he met ServLife’s founding director, who was on a college mission trip. As the two talked, Albert shared his vision for training church leaders and caring for children in Bihar. Seeing a clear opportunity for partnership, ServLife was born.

For the next ten years, the partnership was nurtured and groundwork was laid. Finally, in 1997, Albert knew it was time to return to Bihar to plant churches and care for children. Despite having the highest crime, murder and poverty rates in India, Albert had high hopes for the region. “Northern India breaks my heart,” Albert reflects. “It’s known as the graveyard of missions, as if no good, no life, can happen there. But I’ve never believed that. Instead, I’m convinced God will turn this land into His vineyard!”

DasFamilyAlbert’s faithful pursuit of God’s vision for his life has changed countless lives. In his 25 years with ServLife, Albert and his staff have trained 184 pastors who have started churches throughout northern India. The children’s home that Albert started currently provides safe, loving care for 30 children. An additional 50 children in local villages receive an education through ServLife’s sponsorship program.

As he looks ahead, Albert sees even greater things in store for Bihar. He has plans to build a church, training center and school that would give 1,000 children an invaluable education. Perhaps most importantly, he sees a new generation of leaders rising up to offer hope and healing in Bihar. He has a dream that, in his words, “the young generation which are coming will be encouraged and they will also move forward, without seeing any challenges… and they will just go all out for the Lord.”

Posted on February 1, 2017 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Latest News

Seasons and Rhythms of Life

June 2017

In Ecclesiastes 3 Solomon speaks to the rhythms of life. “There’s a season for everything and … Read

The Light and Love of Jesus

May 2017

In Matthew 5:16 Jesus says to “let your light shine before people, so they can see … Read

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Servant Leadership

April 2017

Sometimes you have to slow down to move forward. This was the case for over 100 … Read

Enduring Love

April 2017

Udaya Bhatta’s life and ministry are perhaps best summed up in one word: love. This love … Read

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