The recent earthquake in Nepal has shaken my heart and my mind.
This past summer, we trekked in the mountains of Gorkha, Nepal very close to the epicenter of the recent earthquake. The journey included a plane, a bus ride dangerously close to the edge, and a long walk in the Himalayan mountains. We set out on our journey with a team that included a doctor, a nurse, some students, Nepalis, Americans and our six- and four-year old kids.
Our host family welcomed us warmly to their home. During the evenings, we sat on their front porch and took turns singing to one another – them to us in Nepali, us to them in English. Then they’d teach us Nepali and laugh at the pronunciations by our “Southern” Nepali team members (my sister!)
Situated in the high peaks of the Himalayan mountain range, villages such as these remain virtually untouched with the Gospel – until the summer of 2014. An urgent battle rages for them to hear Truth.
In 2014 10/40 Connections had coordinated efforts of 9 different organizations to produce The Hope video into the Nepali language which would serve 30 million Nepali speakers. The video was produced right before our trek, so armed with a video projector, we trekked in with the means to share in their language.
Promised that electricity would come on at 7 pm, we scheduled to show a move about Jesus. Yes, the crowd came, but no, the guaranteed electricity did not. So our kids and some team members did puppet shows for the guests with a Bible story. The guests laughed along and enjoyed themselves, while the adults on our team wrestled with the “why’s”, as we wanted them to see a movie about Jesus!
The next night, our team again begged God for electrical power, while our kids were hoping to perform another puppet show. The crowd gathered – this time with more people. (God knew what he was doing!) We had everything set up, but for the longest time no power came.
Finally the village power flickered on! Cheering erupted from the crowd. We pushed the button on the projector, but then it decided to not work. How much goes wrong when you simply want to share Jesus!
My husband was sweating profusely, passionate and concerned for the Gospel and the crowd. I hovered around saying, “Think, Chad. Think through the process of setting it all up. Did we miss anything? Come on, you can do it. Jesus, give him wisdom.” Our team was praying aloud, begging God. As we waited for the projector to come on, monsoon clouds rolled in. We had no idea how long the power would stay on. More sweat. During the delay, even more people arrived.
The projector simply refused to start. Finally I took two cords that were already connected to one another and pressed them firmly together with all my strength. With clenched teeth I basically yelled in my spirit for Jesus to ACT, “Jesus, these are people of your creation! We trekked up here to tell them the Gospel in a language they’ll understand, but now YOU have to make the projector work! We can’t! We don’t love them like you do; you died for them so let them hear your story! DO something NOW, please!”
Suddenly, I felt some sort of jolt in my body and the projector came on when I said the word NOW! Truly a battle rages and JESUS won this one – NOT any of us but Jesus! Weak, I let go of the cords, locked eyes with Chad, and went and sat down shaking. Why is it so hard to tell about Jesus? Because Jesus is truth and the only way to eternity with God. Satan knows it and so he fights.
That night, I watched as the monsoon clouds parted revealing a full moon shining brightly on dozens of Nepalis. Every minute, I seemed to beg God to keep the power running.
The HOPE movie lasted for 82 minutes. The village power remained on for 90 minutes. The Gospel went out in a language the people understood. The little twelve-year old granddaughter of our host family, who experienced recurring nightmares, ran to us afterwards, pointed up and said, “Jesu. Jesu. Jesu.” Her whole countenance had changed.
The village NOW
Today I know that every home has been leveled. Each person who saw The Hope that night is either dead or homeless. Only helicopters can drop supplies in to them.
My remembered senses:
- I see the village leadership offering their humble thanks for coming to serve their people. I hear their words, “We are not much. We are certain this has been hard for you physically. But please don’t forget us.” And I see their smiles as we shared in full the hope of Jesus for their people.
- I see the deep wrinkles of the elderly who hobbled their way to the medical clinic.
- I hear the laughter from the porch where we sat as Nepalis and Americans – enjoying the others’ presence without shared language.
- I taste the rice, beans, and vegetables happily prepared by our hosts.
- I see the silhouette of the Himalayan range as Chad and the kids and I lay squished under a mosquito net on the front porch with the monsoon rains pounding down.
- I smell the dust of collapsed buildings and homes in the once clean Himalayan air.
And I mourn.
Is one time hearing the Gospel enough?
No. Not for most of us who have come to faith.
Was this the last village needing the Gospel in Nepal?
No. There are hundreds more. Nepal ranks in the top five nations in the world with the most unreached people groups. Millions still need to hear the Name of Jesus.
Is there urgency in your church? Urgency to move the Gospel to all corners of the earth remembering the 95% of the world’s unreached people groups who reside in the 10/40 Window. Do we (and how do we) care? Is the job just for those called to missionary life overseas?
For me, the doctor appointments, the school decisions, the grocery shopping, the driving from one event to the next, and the continual chore list threatens to exhaust me. My exhaustion then threatens my sense of urgency for what matters the most – the souls of people and God’s kingdom.
If we grasp an iota of eternity, we will discover the urgency of sharing the Good News to ALL the world – Especially to the very hard to reach places.
So let’s stop and listen to God’s cries for the world.
And let’s hurry and tell the Good News to all peoples.
Question: How can we generate a heart of godly urgency and action towards the things in life that matter the most?