Christmas is an opportunity to give hope

IPS11-24-14India (MNN) — The simple fact that you’re reading this story gives me some indication that you’re missions minded. You want people to hear the Gospel. You may even want to be the one share it. You’re probably already doing that in your own neighborhood. What if I told you that you could have the same impact, but on an international scale, by just adding someone you don’t know to your Christmas shopping list?

The program is called, Gifts that Make an Impact, a ministry of India Partners. “This is a way for you to help someone in need and honor the people you love here in the U.S., choosing one of about 12 or 14 possible gifts on our Web site,” says Donna Glass with India Partners.

These are practical gifts that go to poor and needy individuals who don’t know Jesus.

At IndiaPartners.org, you can choose from providing a water well for just $175, a sewing machine for $95, an audio Bible for $15, or a day of safety for a child whose mother is working in the red-light district.

Glass says sewing machines are a popular item because it’s a simple way for a woman to start her own small business. “After completing a free tailoring [course], she would receive a free sewing machine. [Women] can start a tailoring business out of their home, and they can make some money to help support their family. This is the only money that their family may have coming in on a regular basis.”

While this opportunity meets their physical needs, what about the spiritual needs? Glass says these women are introduced to Christ through the classes. “They have daily devotions. They are exposed to the Gospel every day. Most of the sewing schools are held in a local community church. So, if they should ask ‘Why are you doing this,’ that opens up the door to sharing the Gospel.”

Christians in the region also provide farm animals. If you’d rather purchase farm animals such as chickens for $25 or goats for $75, you’re providing individuals or families an opportunity to produce eggs, milk, and protein for their own consumption, or to sell in the market.

Many nationalistic people in India believe Christians are forcing people to convert to Christianity through these programs. Glass says Christians wait for questions before sharing Christ. She says it’s difficult to be accused of forcing Christianity on someone when that individual is asking the questions.

The needs in India are great this year. Consider purchasing a gift in honor of a loved one. Click here to see the options.