21 June 2021

Commencing our written contributions around Salv Army Women's current theme, 'Your Calling is Calling!', Commissioner Martha Pawar shares her testimony. She considers how God's calling on her life was far above her own plans and desires, and reflects on God's continual honouring of her response through the years: 

As a child, I was brought up in The Salvation Army’s orphanage girl’s home in Mumbai. When I reached Grade Eight, I shifted to a boarding school for both boys and girls in Fariabagh, Ahmednagar. I was happy and satisfied with my life, but in the worship meetings I never felt a need to respond to calls to the mercy seat.

This all changed in my final year of high school. As my classmates and I sat in a meeting conducted by the cadets, God’s words touched my heart. I confessed my sin and asked Jesus to forgive me, and this moment changed my life.

I thought my desire was to become a nurse, but God revealed another plan for my life when he called me to Salvation Army officership. Jeremiah 17:7-8 says, ‘But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.’

These verses brought God’s voice into my life, always uncovering his divine plan to me. These truths have been the foundation of my life journey as God’s chosen servant in the ranks of The Salvation Army.

Since accepting God’s calling on my life, one of my passions in ministry and service has been multi-cultural ministry. In my officership, I have enjoyed working outside my home territory of India Western, meeting new people and gaining new experiences. I feel that bringing multiple cultures together in worship and community is the platform where I can fulfil the Great Commission, given by our Lord Jesus Christ, and truly go and make disciples of different nations.

I continue to serve joyfully with Suresh as lifelong coworker in God’s Kingdom. We have been blessed with our three children, two boys and one daughter, and our six grandchildren. Their Christian witness is my joy. Following our days growing up together in the home for children, Suresh and I have served for forty years. We want to finish our service well, until God calls us to our home in Heaven.

Commissioner Martha Pawar currently serves as zonal leader for South Asia, International Headquarters, with her husband Commissioner Suresh Pawar. Born in Bombay (now Mumbai), Commissioner Martha has served in several appointments in corps, divisions and territory within India Western Territory, and has also served at International Headquarters and as a territorial leader within the Sri Lanka Territory.

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