Wednesday, July 27, 2011

50th Birth Day – 50 years of God’s goodness – Some Reflections

Dear Friends in Christ the King,

Greetings to you in our Lord's holy name.

Born as the 2nd of 9 children to my parents (Pastor Paramanandam and Mrs. Susheelamma Mondithoka who were Government School teachers), and studied in Government Schools and Jr College (first 12 years my of education), sinful as all humans are, if I am a child of God and a servant of God today, it is all because of God's grace and mercy. It is grace alone. What I am and what I have, I am and I have because of His grace. I am grateful to my dad and mom (is with the Lord) who brought me up along with my siblings (6 brothers and 2 sisters - I am grateful to God for each one of them) – I still can't understand how they managed to bring 9 of us up and all of us are normal/healthy and in the Lord and who introduced me to Jesus Christ, my Saviour and Lord. My father is both my earthly father and spiritual father and his life has been a challenge for me in the areas of prayer, reading of the Scriptures, and serving the Lord.

I have experienced ups and downs, glad times and sad times, successes and failures, ebbs and flows, mountain top experiences and deep valley experiences. I should have died (humanly speaking) at least on three different occasions, but the Lord has kept me alive and healthy enough in spite of some health issues that I have been facing to enjoy life and serve Him. It has been more of goodness and joy than evil and suffering. God has not given me what I earned/deserved, but has given me what I did/do not deserve out of His amazing grace. This is a story of God's amazing grace and unconditional love and I know I can never thank Him enough for all this. But I just want to thank the Lord with all my heart for all His grace and mercy that He has showered upon me over the past 5 decades. My story has significance because it is inseparably linked to God’s story and He has in His sovereignty ordained things, places, and people for me to know Him, grow in Him, and serve Him by serving people in His name. 

I have three graduate (post-graduate) degrees, worked in the Government of Andhra Pradesh as a class II officer, taught Zoology for almost 10 years (and produced doctors, dentist, and many other kinds of professionals), worked with RZIM-India for 12 years (last three years as the National/Executive Director), have been teaching graduate students in seminaries like SABC, SAIACS, and others for 8 years now, and have been the pastor of the English Congregation of our Church for over 4 years now. I am also one of the three pioneers and have been the Director of HITHA (Hyderabad Institute of Theology and Apologetics) for over 2 years.

I have had the joy of knowing the Lord and enjoying Him for almost 35 years now. I have seen thousands of people coming to know the Lord and many hundreds have been strengthened in their faith through my/our ministry. He has taken me to some 15 counties on the Kingdom Business of preaching the gospel to evangelize and teaching God's truth to God's people to edify and transform - spoken in over 150 college and university campuses, in almost all denominational Churches and fellowships, spoken mostly to people in the marketplace - like engineers, professors, researchers, doctors, lawyers, judges, politicians, college and university students, and so on. I am only an unworthy servant and have done what the Lord has asked me to do and enabled me to do (Luke 17: 10) and so there is nothing to boast about, except for boasting in the Lord and His goodness.
I have shared life with my wife, Santhi for almost 20 years (we will be celebrating our 20th anniversary on the 21st of September) and these two decades have been very special. What a blessing she has been to me and what a humbling and glorious experience it has been to share life with her and to minister together with her. Our marriage has certainly been a means of sanctification under God. We both have shared life with Shamuel, our one and only son that we received as an answer to prayer (we waited for ten years and God answered our prayers and the prayers of many for us and did it in His time and in His way), for 10 years now (he celebrated his 10th birth day on June 16). This has been a very blessed period in my life and in some ways very productive two decades, as we kept our home open for people (college and university students as we were involved in the UESI ministry and also the Church ministry) and discipled many that are leaders now in different parts of the country and world, both in the secular and ministry fields. What a joy it is for us to run into such people from time to time in different parts of India and other countries and sometimes to minister together with them.

I can't believe that I am celebrating my 50th Birth Day today (16th July 2011). It is a celebration of God's goodness, faithfulness, grace, and kindness - all amazing. As we read in Job 41: 11, no one has previously given to God that He should repay him or her and everything under heaven is His, and so I want to acknowledge that every good and perfect gift that I am enjoying in life has come down from the father of heavenly lights in whom there is not shadow of turning (James 1: 17). I am counting the many blessings that I have received from the Lord over the past 50 years and giving thanks to Him.

I am/we are grateful to God and we want to praise His name and proclaim His greatness among God's people this evening at Centenary Baptist Church, Secunderbad (where I have been the pastor of the English Congregation for four years) from 6:30 pm.

Please join with us in praising God for all His mercies and also please pray for me that I might be more faithful and fruitful both in life and ministry in the remaining years of my life (the youth of old age - the fifties that I am entering into now). I want to know Him more and more in an experiential way, be transformed into Christ's image and likeness, and continue to serve Him and His Kingdom purposes together with my family (Santhi and Shamuel).  In Job 42: 12 we read that the Lord blessed the latter day of Job more than his first. In verses 5 and 6, Job says, “I have heard of you by the hearing of the ears, but now my eyes see you. Therefore, I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” I want to  be blessed more in the next stage of my life that I have entered into, not with seven sons and three daughters, more camels, etc., but with a new and deeper experience of God and myself – a more direct knowledge of God, the highest and most desirable knowledge one can have, and with more spiritual children. I/we would appreciate your prayers for us.

God has blessed me through many people that I am thinking of at this juncture in my life and I am grateful to God for each one of them. You are perhaps one of them and so thank you very much. The Lord bless you more and make you a greater channel of His blessings into the lives of many more people.

Thank you for your prayers.

In the Lord and His Mission,
Sudhakar (www.mondithokas.com





4 comments:

  1. LOKESWARUDU PAGIDALAAugust 25, 2011 at 11:45 AM

    PRAISE and GLORY TO GOD ANNA.............

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, praise the Lord alone Lokesh. The Lord bless you.

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  3. Praise the Lord, Sudhakar anna. God bless you. Continue to shine for His glory.

    ReplyDelete