Silas Balraj, Vice President of the Asia Region, shares a beautiful update on how the church, children and families are faring one month after the closure of our India programs.
13 Apr, 2017
April 15 marks one month since the heartbreaking day that Compassion India’s doors closed for the last time. It seems fitting that this day should fall on the eve of Easter Sunday. When the world was dark and all hope seemed lost, God was at work doing the miraculous. Because He lives, His work also lives. Compassion’s work in India may have closed, but the seeds of change were planted. And they have borne fruit and will bear fruit, even if we can’t see it yet.
For Silas Balraj, the Vice President of the Asia Region, the closure “broke him beyond words”. Yet one month on, his hope in the church and Jesus Christ remains steadfast. Read his encouraging message of how your legacy continues to bring hope to children and families living in poverty.
You started a movement in India and it hasn’t stopped
With all my heart, I deeply desire to say thank you. You have been God’s blessing in starting a movement. Today the program has been stopped by man (and only done with God’s permission). However, the movement of children tasting the love of Jesus, families being touched by love from thousands of miles away, assurance and care in the midst of nothingness, is a powerful reminder that you have been used by the Lord to begin this amazing movement.
Today, you may not be able to support [Compassion in India] as you desired, but be assured you are a co-labourer in God’s work. As Paul states in 1 Corinthians 3:10: “According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it.”
What you contributed to has not stopped. God has used you to build His kingdom. Today this building continues under a new chapter, and the assurance is that this chapter, though new, is bring written by the same author: Jesus Christ. Remain blessed dear sponsor, God has and is still using you. You are His blessing to generations to come.
Over 200 of Compassion’s former church partners continue to serve the children
We do not have confirmed information, but we do know that over 200 churches are doing what is within their means to continue their ministry to children. I believe the children are being cared for; the church is helping them to complete the educational year. The Indian Body of Christ with resources is connecting with the churches and projects impacted by the exit of Compassion International. They are stepping [up] to help the church and the children with providing support—not to the extent that Compassion International provided—but to the end that they continue to enjoy being known, loved and protected. We will know more after this networking/collaborative initiative of the local church as it [gains] momentum and grows.
The seeds sown into the local churches are already bearing fruit
God is always on the move; there is no end to His Kingdom. He uses all things to work together for good, even in this painful end to 48 years of Compassion’s ministry. Today it may look depressing and disheartening in the eyes of man, but not with God. He is raising for Himself a remnant that is living out Jesus and His commission. The work continues—maybe not in Compassion’s terms—but in the Father’s terms to save and care for his precious children. May we not forget that it is His work and He invited us to join Him (John 15:16).
The beginning of a new day in India
I have been broken beyond words. This has hit me harder than just being a staff member of Compassion, [I’m also] seeing my own people suffer by this outcome. But the Lord has reminded me through His word from Ecclesiastes 3:14: “I perceived that whatever God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, nor anything taken from it. God has done it, so that people fear before Him.”
While this breaks me as a person, I am deeply affirmed that this is God’s plan; it will endure forever. It may not be the way I desire it or pray for it, but His kingdom will endure. As I have watched over the recent few weeks, I am encouraged by the many actions of the Indian Body of Christ coming together to care for precious children, showing them that Jesus cares for them, that hope continues. God is not finished with India. He is starting a new chapter, writing his story whether Compassion is in it or not. And this is His blessed assurance: it is the beginning of a new day in India.
Thank you to our sponsors
Allow me say thank you once again, you have blessed the work of the Lord beyond words. Your reward is in heaven. You will see your precious sponsored child as part of God’s enteral plan. I praise the Lord for you, your generosity and your love. Thank you for responding to the leading of the Spirit to sacrifice, pray and care for precious children, especially those in India. Your labour and prayers are not in vain. We remain praying for you that your faith will only grow stronger, enjoying the grace of the Lord, even in this painful separation [from] your precious sponsored child. Remain certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. God bless you, dear sponsor!
Silas Balraj, Vice President of Asia Region, Compassion International
Interview by Roz Walsh, introduction by Zoe Noakes, photos by Jake Thomas