During the pandemic, the Words of Hope team in Bhutan has focused on increasing coordination efforts with local church leaders online. Two times a week they host Zoom Bible study and fellowship meetings.
The church leaders are full of gratitude for the ability to connect and grow in faith together, especially during these difficult times.
“I was so lonely and depressed,” writes one church leader. “I couldn’t really share about it to my church members as I was thinking it would rather discourage them, since they all look to me as a strong leader. But this Bible study group became my friends, and I felt safe to share openly with them. I am thankful for the prayers and support I received. I feel much better now.”
Another Bible study attendee works for the government. He says, “As a government employee I feel pressure to remain quiet. I used to think that the best thing I could do was to live a good life, and so preach the gospel through my living. The Bible study has changed my thinking now.”
He goes on to explain that he now feels convicted that the gospel requires right living and more overt sharing of faith as well.
“I work in a hospital,” he says. “Every day I come across sick people. Sometimes they are very desperate, not just for medicines, but also for someone who can show love and care. I talk to them kindly and listen to them. Then I ask them if I can pray for them. Recently, one patient flatly told me that he would never ask for my prayers. But my wife and I kept praying for him. After a couple of weeks, he came back to me and asked for prayers. I asked him to remove the amulets from his neck and arms and then prayed for him. . . . The Lord is working.”
Church leaders are also appreciating the videos of sermons and teaching series that Words of Hope’s Bhutanese director has been sharing on YouTube and Facebook.
“I am privileged to share the Word of God during Sunday fellowship in our local church,” says a leader. “I am preaching mostly from your YouTube sermons, because they are not only consistent, but also very relevant. I can see how the believers are growing in Christ by applying the truth from the Scriptures and showing love to one another.”
She notes that the believers are growing spiritually and learning to support and love each other in practical ways as well. Recently a single mother with two children came to their church. The church members decided to take an offering for her so that she could afford to build a house.
We give thanks for the ways that God is building the church inside the country of Bhutan!