The Fisherman Barber
The Light must shine in the darkness
Imagine living in a country where someone dies every four seconds without knowing Jesus Christ. Imagine living in a country where more than 22 000 people die daily without spending eternity in heaven. Imagine living in a country where you there are more than 400 000 “dark” villages with no church and not even a single Christian witness.
This is the harsh reality that every one of our Christian brothers and sisters in India experience.
Brother Ramesh is an instrument of God
Brother Ramesh is a Barber in a small village just off the coast of India. He is also an active Church Planter. He owns his own boat and his “boat” is the local Barbershop where he cuts hair and shaves beards, just down the road from a huge Hindu temple. Many men get into his boat weekly and some of them leave completely changed.
I guess you have nowhere to escape to when the blade of the Barber is against your throat. You have to listen when he turns your head in his preferred direction. You also listen when he tells you about Jesus Christ. This semi-literate barber and Church Planter evangelises lost souls this way. His clients sit down. He shaves them. They listen. He tells them about Christ. It’s that simple!
He shares the Gospel from a picture-poster-set, called the Heart of Man chart. Christ’s redemption for all sinners from their hideous sins are central in his presentation. They listen attentively. They ponder. It confronts them directly and convicts them of their sin. The most wonderful part of all of this: some accept Jesus Christ as their Saviour. This is exactly why there is already a church in this village in India.
Brother Ramesh is shining His light
There is a small fishermen’s village approximately 15 km from the Barbershop. The entrance to the village is guarded by a Hindu temple. A Hindu priest chants his mantras over a PA system three times per day. Darkness, yes spiritual darkness, is strewn over these poor, precious people, as he repeatedly chants.
Some of these people have heard the Gospel of Christ before, but it confused them. Then, one day, Brother (Pastor) Ramesh came to the village. That day, light broke through their darkness. Ramesh shared from the Gospel and for the first time a certain Brother Ramu understood the message.
Ramu is the first convert of this newly planted village church, which is also a very short distance from the seashore. Ramu’s wife also accepted Christ. They are fishermen. They know how to cast nets and catch fish, but now they have been caught in a net and brought to the heavenly shore for the first time. Hallelujah! They are mending their nets and expecting a great catch for our Lord Jesus Christ.
The Church is Growing
And then there is Brother Suri. He heard about Ramesh and how his friend Ramu had accepted Christ. “Is all of this real? Is Jesus the only true God? Is Jesus all powerful?” These are some of the thoughts Suri was struggling with. His father was seriously ill and in the jaws of death. Suri started thinking again, “Can this Jesus really do the impossible?” Indeed, He did! Suri’s father was healed in front of his very eyes.
Ramesh prayed with them and the whole family got saved through witnessing the healing miracle. This new church is no longer defined as “two or three gathered in His name”. They have grown to about ten people as Suri and his family joined the church too. And, oh yes! God still saves fishermen and yes! He still turns fishermen into Fishers of men.
Ramesh has started training a student pastor in this fisherman’s village. When he attends the Harvesters’ training, he records the sessions on his mobile phone, so that he would be able “to train faithful men (and women), who would be able to teach others” (2 Timothy 2:2). All praise to our Lord Jesus Christ for what He is doing in India!