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Three Nights in the Jungle

By Nixson, RMM worker in Thailand

Since his baptism in 2011, Lan has been constantly looking for ways to share the gospel with people in his home village and surrounding areas in Southeast Asia. He has been working with a team of six other believers from nearby villages for almost two years (read more about this group here). They have been creative in finding ways to meet people in new areas and build relationships. Last year they started a project planting watermelons in a new village as a way of meeting people and sharing the gospel. They have also hosted Christmas and New Year’s parties in new villages. The people living in the villages of the teammates and the surrounding villages are mostly Buddhist, while those living in the more remote areas are tribal groups who worship spirits and ancestors. Lan and his team believe the tribal groups are more open to the gospel and that the gospel spreads more rapidly among them.

“According to their beliefs, if someone enters the jungle and leaves without staying for three nights, the jungle spirits will be angered and attack those living in the jungle.”Recently the team took a three-hour motorbike trip to visit a jungle tribe in a new area to start building relationships. Their plan was to travel there, spend a few hours with them, and then travel back home the same day. But once they arrived at the village, their plans changed drastically. The tribal people would not let them leave. According to their beliefs, if someone enters the jungle and leaves without staying for three nights, the jungle spirits will be angered and attack those living in the jungle. The team felt that if they tried to leave, the tribe would be upset and would not be open to the gospel message, so they decided to stay for three nights. There were frustrating moments for the team and they had to wear the same clothes for three days! They made beds with tree leaves and slept on the rocks by the river. They had to eat some interesting things that they weren’t used to eating like snake and monitor lizard. The tribal people were trying to find a monkey to eat one day, but Lan prayed that they wouldn’t be able to catch one, and they didn’t! As they spent time with the people, they began to share about God and the Bible.

After three nights the team returned home to clean clothes and worried families. Since there was no cell phone service in the jungle they were not able to communicate with anyone outside for the three days they were gone. Back in the jungle people were talking about what these men shared with them. None of the people that the team shared with directly have believed so far, but they have been sharing with others about what they heard. And now there are three families of believers in the tribe! It is amazing to see how God is working and people are hearing about Him in unexpected ways. Lan and his team planned to take a day trip, but God had other plans and we’re thankful that they were obedient to His leading.

Please keep Lan and his team in your prayers as they travel and share God’s word in their country. Pray also for the new believers in the tribe, that they will continue to seek and find God.