Guest post by: Dr. Gary Johnson
e2: Effective Elders
As I write this, I have just arrived for a leadership conference in Fairbanks, Alaska. At this time of year, this part of our country is shrouded in dark coldness. It’s commonplace for temperatures to be at or below zero, while the sun shines for only a few hours a day. Yet people here are excited because change is happening before their very eyes. With the sun rising earlier and setting later, the days are getting longer—and that excites people in this extreme part of our country. Change can be seen.
Only God can create change like this. God, our Creator and Sustainer, transforms His world one day at a time. The same can be said about His Church. He is transforming it by transforming those who lead it. How exciting it is when we see that happen before our very eyes.
It was my recent privilege to see such transformation happening in a completely different climate from where I sit now, on a completely different continent.
Time, Wisdom, & Knowledge
Two weeks ago on the campus of CICM (Central India Christian Mission), e2: effective elders held an Elder’s Conference. According to Dr. Ajai Lall, Founder & Director of CICM, it was the first event of its kind in the 36-year history of the mission.
For three days, over 300 church leaders came together to be further equipped and encouraged as they develop elder-led churches. Meeting in main sessions and workshops, these leaders from across India (and even from two countries that are closed to Christianity) learned biblical principles for practical application in their local church. We explored issues such as how to recruit and train elders, how to structure the local church, identifying the work that elders do, and more.
One of the participants testified to the impact this conference had on him: “We are so grateful and thankful for the e2 mission, that they came to India to talk to us. They really encouraged us. We really understand how to make disciples and fulfill the mission God has given to us. We are so thankful to all the speakers who gave their time, wisdom, and knowledge. Now we are making more and more strong pastors to make more and more strong elders in our churches. Thank you very much.”
Changed as Never Before
All sessions were filmed so that the material could go beyond the conference to be shared with the 3,000 churches planted by CICM across India and in surrounding countries.
“This will change the church in India as never before,” Dr. Ajai Lall said. “That’s why this conference is so important to us.”
CICM will be using this material as curriculum in CIBA (their Bible College) as well, and they will be sharing it with their consortium of 14 other Christian Colleges in India.
“We have been challenged and strengthened and trained to develop elders,” Dr. Lall continued. “We praise God for all of you. Thank you for your help. This is going to impact the churches, and it is going to help us to have stronger leadership and ultimately to fulfill the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
We at e2 thank CDF Capital for investing in elders. For years CDF has been an essential partner of e2: effective elders. As in times past, CDF made a significant contribution that enabled this conference in India to take place. Thanks, CDF Capital, for investing in elders, both across our country—and now, around the world! The Lord is working through you to change the world by transforming those who lead the Church.
CDF Capital loves to see how God is working through organizations like e2: effective elders. And we, in turn, thank you, our investors—your partnership with us allows CDF to contribute to conferences like this. You are contributing to global transformation for the Kingdom!
Enjoy the video below for a glimpse into the e2 conference with CICM.