no rock like our GOD
Greetings from top of the World in the Name of it's Creator! Indeed, there is no Rock like our God. He is faithful and listens to our prayers and answers it in His ways which are above our ways, beyond our imagination--as in the story of Hannah and Samuel.
Such was also the case during our last trip to Nepal's Far West back in the month of May. I'm really sorry for the delayed report on that trip for which I had requested your prayers. Shortly after returning to Kathmandu, I traveled to the United States for the month of June to preach the Gospel, believe it or not, to Nepalis living there. Notwithstanding, thank you very much for your prayers, and as answers to these prayers: God helped us a lot and did let us experience some amazing miracles in terms of meeting lost souls. Praise God, it was a blessed trip.
So, team of six departed in our jeep for the Far West on May 18th. God not only gave us safe passage but also a wonderful time of preaching the Gospel through the half-mile hailer at Nawalparasi. This speaker really is a blessing, and we use it all the time. We saturated a town along the highway with the Gospel and got to supply some literature to a village pastor we met there. After teaching and training the believers in Kapilbastu the first day, we hiked up to the village of Khumchikot, where the Lord blessed me with a testimony of His Living Word. Almost two years ago, I had the privilege of preaching the Gospel to a household. I vividly remember that I spent quite a time in that house. And in this trip, I saw a lady sharing Christ using our Comic Tract, The Life of Jesus, to other ladies of the village. The Lord had changed the household into strong believers, and they are now giving testimony about our Lord and preaching the Gospel to their own people. Indeed, His Word does not return void. That encouraged me more to keep preaching the Gospel. We had a wonderful fellowship with those believers in a rice mill as there was no other room big enough for that. Check out the picture!
The next day, we drove all the way to Dhangadhi near Nepal's western border with India. It was almost 115 degree and our 20 year old, non-AC jeep was very hot. At Karnali Bridge, I bought some frozen water bottles and drove on to find a big tree so we could rest and sit in its shade. That was my plan; and it did not work. There were no big trees by the side of the highway, and God had His plan ready. I saw a big tree afar and pulled over in front of a house. I wanted to pull over in a jungle to chill out, not in front of somebody's house. But, there was no other option. So, we stopped at Chuha in Kailali District for a break. I sprawled out flat on the ground, but right away Brother John started to hand out Gospel tracts in that small village. A local pastor saw him and was so encouraged that he came with a bag of cold drinks to greet us. I had never met Pastor Rajbanshi before, but God and His gospel brought us together. Now, we can work more together for His Kingdom.
By God's grace, we preached the Gospel in Kailali with local believers. We saturated the village of Nauranga on May 22nd in the morning. We were almost 25 evangelists, and I got to preach to some hindu "holy men." Some villagers came out to us and even asked us to come to their houses to preach the Gospel! The souls are hungry for the Truth. Indeed, we need more laborers to reach these people. That afternoon, we wanted to avoid the heat and drove for one hour north into the mountains. Since we were short on time (I had to get back to Kathmandu to catch a flight to the United States), we planned to go to the nearest town, Budhitola, and preach there.
I had passed Budhitola many times on the way to Baitadi, but since we used the public buses, we could not just stop and preach wherever we saw people. That is one of the main reasons we prayed for our own jeep so that we could stop and preach wherever the Holy Spirit leads. That afternoon, I again passed that town of Budhitola; and I don't know why I did not want to stop. I kept driving up until I saw four young souls on the left side of the road under a huge electricity pole. We got off and shared the Gospel with them and gave them copies of the written Word in their language. In the midst of this, I just happened to look toward the other side of the road, up in the mountain. Three mud huts hung to the cliff. I asked Brother John to reach them with the Gospel while I went down across the river to reach a farmer who was irrigating his vegetables. Later, we came to know that those mud huts belonged to some believers who had no fellowship for a long time as there was neither any church nearby, nor any other believer. We spent about an hour with them. The Lord is awesome; and to follow Him is an amazing experience. We are blessed to meet those believers, and they were also encouraged to see us.
From this wayside, we pressed further up to Khanidanda to preach; and then we turned back and ended up preaching at Bhuditola on the way down. During all of this, we were invited to attend a house fellowship that evening and for a dinner also. We had a wonderful fellowship with the family of Brother Garibdas (literally translates "poor servant") whose whole family had spent their lives as bond servants. They were freed a few years back; and he is a good brother, always ready to serve the Lord. I miss him everyday. He can't read, but He follows the Lord according to what he hears from the Word of God. And, these poor believers fed us a big Nepali meal. It was a great gift!
The next day, we had a teaching seminar to the local pastors and leaders. Then, we departed for Kathmandu in the afternoon. While driving back through the Bardia National Park, we met a herd of wild elephants. There were many, and one would be foolish to stop and gawk at them. You either pull back, or you pass them. So I kept driving, watching them in the rearview mirror as they crossed the highway. There were many and are amazing creatures!
There are still many more villages to reach in the far western part of Nepal. Please pray with us that the Lord raises up some local missionaries to go up into the northern districts from Dhangadhi. I've been working toward that for almost two years; and Pastor Sanjeev is now ready to go. We are praying to support his expenditures so that he can go to the village of Hat at least twice a month and stay 3-4 days each time. Please stay with us in prayer. This brother led a group of believers to preach at a Hindu festival while I was in the United States. We had stored Project Jagerna literature in his church; and they gave out 7 boxes of them in 2 hours; and I had not even planned for this blessing of distribution. I'm glad that these brothers are getting the mindset of reaching the lost people in their area, "And the gospel must first be published among all nations (Mark 13:10)." I trust that the Lord will use them mightily in the days to come for His glory; and it is a great privilege for me and, I hope for you also, to partner with them to reach where you and I can't easily and always trod. I have to re-supply our far western storage at Dhangadhi with Project Jagerna literature soon. I also hope to see these brothers again and have a teaching seminar at one of the growing church at Durjana, near Dhangadhi where we had one day of our medical camp outreach last time and where we faced some threats from the Hindu extremists. But, where there is genuine church growth, there will always be persecution from the enemies of the Gospel.
We are also planning to go up to the Baitadi District together with Pastor Sanjeev and other brothers, and hopefully, Brothers Ricky Springer and Jesse Boyd from the United States will be joining us in October for this venture. This place has been on my heart for a long time and we are doing what we can. We would like to request that you pray for Baitadi specifically, where people are dying without Christ and the laborers are always few. Let's join in praying the prayer which our Lord Jesus asked us to pray: "Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest." (Matthew 9:37-38).
In our local sphere of influence, I took some time with my family for ministry during this monsoon and picked up the pace here in Kathmandu. The other day, a Hindu man came into our bookstore looking for a book of Hindu mantras. I told him that we don't have those books, but we do carry the Word of God. Then, I read a few verses from Proverbs from my opened Bible. He said that he does not follow the Bible, but I got to witness him even for few seconds. People are taking a lot of our Project Jagerna Gospel literature from the store. I feel privileged at least to be a witness and to have the presence of the Lord in the heart of the city, and also to pray to God in that place. The Lord is at work in Kathmandu and in Nepal!
Again, we would like to thank you very much for your continuous prayers and supports. These enable us to reach thousands of lost souls in South Asia. There are no words to fully appreciate your partnership in this ministry. We ask God's abundant blessings upon you, your family, your ministry and your work. God bless you and keep you.
If you would like to encourage us, it would be greatly appreciated. Sometimes the fight is fierce, and we need encouragement. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jayamashi (literally "Victory in Messiah"),
Brother Bishnu, Nepal