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The Remarkable Manish  

You probably never met Manish Sukhadev.  He recently succumbed to the Coronavirus wave sweeping over India. But before he died, Manish lived.  Really lived.

He was an Awana missionary in central India, and that’s where I met him back in 2011.  Born a Dalit—India’s lowest caste—he was a short guy with a big smile and an impish laugh.

Manish was one of those guys who was “on” 24 hours a day.  He was never not a missionary. Flipping through our India photos, one of my favorites is a shot of Manish parked on the cement floor with someone he had just met—and was trying to witness to. Because this guy sat on the floor, Manish sat on the floor.  Anything to show kindness and the love of his Jesus.

Manish was as tireless as he was fearless.  He thought nothing of riding crowded trains for hours or days to “sketchy” locations to teach or preach or lead Awana meetings. And he was bold to ask for prayer. Here are a couple of reports he shared on Messenger:

  • This week we had an amazing time ministering to Children in two different churches of Indore.  During VBS, God gave us an opportunity to lead ten children and seven youths to Jesus. What a joy in heaven when we see those souls follow you!
  • This week our ministry is in an orphanage with children affected by leprosy.
  • Had the privilege of meeting a servant of God who was put in jail for the cause of the Gospel. In a couple of hours, our family will be traveling to Neemuch to minister to girls rescued from prostitution. May I request you to keep us in prayer? Thanks.
  • Had an amazing meeting with first-generation Christians who are also church planters.  They have never been to Sunday School. When they heard about it, they got so excited about it. They have a plan to do Awana and Sunday School teachers training in the next couple of months.

Given a chance to sum up his life, I think he might use the exact words he shared in a report to his prayer partners:

  • Was a joy to share the Gospel which changes the life of many.

Don’t you want to grow up to be like Manish?

I do!

 

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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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