Ministry Update from Sean Ransom
Training Men to be Expositors of God's Word
Preaching Modules in Davao and Cebu
The week flew by as Tim Carns and I taught the second of six modules on Expository Preaching and Pastoral Ministry. Tim is the Pastor of Missions and Discipleship at Calvary Bible Church in Burbank, who sends him out regularly to help TMAI training centers. We are blessed by his commitment to be an ongoing part of our training team in the Philippines.
This current module focused on preaching the letters of the Bible. Tim and I listened with the students to over twenty sermons, and then eight of the men practiced preaching a new 10-minute introduction to one of their past messages.
Several of these men come from different parts of the country, but in spite of the five different languages they collectively speak, they were able to preach in our commonly shared language of English. This is a blessing because they are able to get a lot out of their training through feed back from each other. It is always a thrill to see men improve in their ability to preach the Word as they practice, listen to one another, and give feedback to one another's sermons. After a day of preaching, they were really catching on, and it was evident that they were starting to get the principles that we were teaching. One pastor even told me that our training was the best he had ever taken part in.
I look forward to hearing their sermons again next module as they will have another six months to apply and practice the interpretive and preaching principles that we had taught them. Pray for them as they complete their reading, interpreting, and preaching assignments over the next six months.
Answered Prayer for Training Team
One last note on my time in Davao. While we were teaching there, it occurred to me that God has answered a prayer that I began praying about 12 years ago. I prayed that God would raise up a team to join me in training men in the Philippines. Since I had been on my own for the first nine years, I could only do this ministry in a limited fashion. Now, I have teammates on the ground in the Philippines helping me teach classes not only in Manila, but on three other islands. As I was finishing my week in Davao, I was blessed by the thought that because we are now a team we are able to really expand and deepen what we are doing. In fact, in just a few days my team mates would also be on the island of Cebu to begin a week of training for our students there. We have also been working together to write curriculum for three new classes and have developed two training programs with more on the horizon. What a joy and blessing it is to be a part of what God is doing and then seeing His faithfulness.
The Expositor's Fellowship
This week, we had another gathering in the South. This is a regular meeting to encourage our alumni, as well as to train and recruit other men who are interested in expository preaching and biblical ministry. We focused this gathering on preaching narrative sermons. It was also a blessing that seven men from City Bible Church in Alabang were able to join us for the first time.
Sean preached on Luke 18:35-43 and gave some tips on interpreting narratives. Then the men divided into small groups to practice those principles, followed by a time of sharing what they had discovered from the text.
A new development in our training ministry is student internships. We have begun to have some of our students help us in teaching during the Expositor's Fellowships as well as our Biblical Studies Program, and preaching in a couple of our partners' churches.
Next up for the Expositor's Fellowship is our gathering in the East which include the Cainta, Antipolo, Taytay and Marakina areas. Pray that we would continue to be an encouragement to these men and that opportunities to formally train others would result from these gatherings.
• Pray for the Ransom family's health, safety, growth and usefulness in ministry.
• Pray that our kids would all be granted faith in Christ and that they would use their lives for God's glory.
• Pray for Jessica as her counseling schedule is filling up. Ask the Lord to give her great wisdom and patience as she helps several ladies. (Praise the Lord that she was used to lead a couple of them to Christ this week!).
• Twenty seven men from eleven countries will be joining us next week for the TMAI South Pacific Summit in Manila. Pray for safe travels and that this would be a great time of teaching, planning, fellowship and encouragement.
• Pray for our students in our Biblical Studies and Preaching Programs. Pray that they would understand, apply and be changed by what they are learning through the Expositor's Academy.