Reply to James about the concerned parents

Hello James
Thanks for visiting my blog… and for taking the time to write… You sound sincere to me… I really don’t want to get into a debate here… please understand me as this could go on forever.  I will simply answer a few of your concerns to the best of my ability and trust the Lord for the rest.

  1. Like you, I don’t believe that every Christian is called to leave his home, town and job and forsake his career to serve Jesus. However I believe that when a person has an encounter with God, his priorities in life often change and yes, there have been situations where young adults have committed their lives to serving Jesus and it has resulted in changes to previously held plans which is wonderful! This was the case of the apostles who left their nets (meaning their career) to follow and serve Jesus on His terms. I also believe that under the New Covenant one should be free to follow the leading of his/her heart. So, if someone feels the Lord’s call, that person should be free and encouraged to respond to it. However, be reassured that in our churches, there are many persons who have committed their lives to Jesus and continue in their current employment, while many others who are professionals or presently pursuing a university degree. Likewise, there are hundreds of young adults in our churches that are rooted and growing in their respective local churches in SA, UK, Zimbabwe, USA, Seychelles, etc and have never left there to come to Mauritius. Others have felt the Lord calling them for a time to Mauritius, either to spend time with the church, to work there or even study from there.
  2. I also believe in reaching the world from where we work, and live and to maintain relationships with all persons in and outside the church. Aren’t we as christians called to be a “light” in the dark and to be the “salt of the earth”? Most of the young people who are in Mauritius at this time are not here to be huddled together or to serve leaders, but to be trained under the Ministry they feel the Lord is calling them to, and are getting ready to be sent when the time comes, or return to their respective country when they feel that their time here is over. Be reassured that none of them is being encouraged to become exclusive or to move away from secular influence. They are in fact becoming equipped to serve the Lord to the best of their ability and calling to impact the world wherever that will be.
  3. Loving your child, is normal… but that does not imply that you should decide for him, especially when that “child” is of age, over 18 years old, and wants to live according to his/her conviction. We are not talking here of protecting a child from falling in a pool, but of respecting the freedom of choice of a “child” who has attained the age of majority, and is legally regarded as an adult and therefore has the freedom to be able to live his life according to his own judgment and to make his own choices.
    If parents feel there is a danger ahead of their child, the best they can do, if the latter is an adult and of age, is to warn them, pray for them, and release them. There is a limit where one can go to “protect” his child, who, on top of all, happens to be an adult… going beyond that is encroaching on his freedom and can only encourage him/her to draw further away. I think the two testimonies (out of hundreds) that I mentioned on my blog are a good example of that: that of the Williams family as well as that of Mrs Helldberg from Cape Town.
  4. Honoring your parents is an attitude of heart before anything else. I am sure that CTMI does not seek to do any harm to any family which is the basic pattern established by God. Children should honour and love their parents and respect family members, whether they be in the church, go to another church, be saved or unsaved. However, that does not mean doing everything they want you to. If your parents are unbelievers, does that mean that to honour them, you must do what they want or expect you to do? like for instance not to go to church, or not read your bible, when you are 20, have been touched by the Lord… and your heart lives for Him??? If you believe that, then we differ in our understanding of scripture and I wont be able to agree with you there. I therefore believe that all persons should be free to do what they feel on their hearts in faith and in accordance with what they believe to be the will of God for them. Should this involve visiting Mauritius or anywhere else. It happens often, in obedience to God, that one needs to follow His leading and this might not necessarily please other family members.
    The 4-5 young persons have all come under extreme pressure not by CTMI but by their parents and respective families and having known them personally for quite some time, I am in a good position to say that all of what is being said is pure lies and is twisted. It is not surprising as some of the concerned parents are not even born again…
  5. Jesus never sat down with the Pharisees and Saducees to answer all their allegations… He kept quiet and allowed them to say and do what they wanted…and did not justify Himself. Why should CTMI leaders go and sit with people who are acting in such a “pagan” way to try to justify themselves and attempt to explain spiritual matters to a group that appears to be in the flesh!!! The Lord is our judge and He will Himself bring justice in it all. He did say that we would be persecuted for the truth, and to rejoice when that happens. We will definitely not go to the level of the “concerned parents” and fight that kind of battle. This issue has nothing to do with us – it is between parents and their adult kids and it should be dealt with at that level.
    It is not a problem to talk to people, who have a genuine concern and an open heart, and answer their questions.
  6. We can at no time be held responsible for the damage that is being done to the church. We never started this “saga” which came about from disagreement between the parents of some five kids over some months. Since then, as you say, others (sadly even pastors and leaders of churches) supported blindly the concerned parents “grievances” believing all that is being said about CTMI, Miki Hardy and Basil O’Conell Jones without even trying to find out the truth. All those, including the concerned parents, will have to give an account to the Lord.
    One thing we know: nothing will stop the preaching of the gospel of the cross… No man, no church, no government!!! The Lord is building His church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it… As Gamaliel said wisely: “If this is of God… don’t take the risk of fighting God!!!”

I understand your concern…however, I don’t think this situation can be solved in the natural, by sitting down and talking it over, but only in the spirit… The gospel is gaining ground through it all and we rejoice for that!!! His grace will be sufficient to carry us through this time. As Peter and John said, we are proud to be judged worthy to be persecuted for the gospel we preach and for our given lives for the gospel and for our brothers and sisters. He is our shepherd and He fights our battles!!! He will bring His light and deliverance in His time, in His way…
I still don’t know your name, where you come from, the name of your church… so I hope that I wont see this reply on next week newspapers!!! It is hard to answer to mails or letters these days and we are learning to be very careful… We hosted people in good faith in our home, fed them and looked after them for a week… and then the next thing they did, is to go and publish on the news papers the pictures they had taken while they were staying with us and enjoying our hospitality… Isn’t that sad??? People can have grievances but the way they chose to deal with that is very sad and cheap!!! This is why there is no way we will be able to have anything to do with them as an organization or a church!!!
Lastly, let me reassure you… these young adults are well and happy as never before. They have come out of a life of drug addiction, of unhealthy lifestyle to a life given unconditionally to Jesus and are growing spiritually. If I were their parents… I would rejoice and be grateful for what has happened to them.
If there is anything else I can clarify, not in a spirit of debate, but out of concern, I am more than ready to do that… Please note that I am speaking here for myself and not on behalf of  CTMI, Basil O’Connell Jones, or Miki my husband.
On a final note, why not come to Mauritius, see for yourself, and meet these young brothers and sisters??? Or visit one of our churches or website and hear what is being preached?? You would be most welcome!