Search for One, Find Many

by Bill Stephens, Mongolia

We traveled thousands of miles over dirt roads to follow-up on the Hoton believers in Mongolia. Follow-up for these people was not going to be easy because local people were busy with Naadam, an annual traditional celebration. In addition, a number of husbands and wives were separated due to tending livestock in the mountains or on the plains of their farms.

We were looking for a particular believer on this journey. His name is Joshua. Local people told us where is family was staying. We traveled 12 miles until we found his ger, a Mongolian word for yurt, a round felt tent. Once we arrived, his wife approached us and said, “He is up in the mountains with our goats.”

After finding a guide, the next day we went nearly 9,000 feet up into the mountains in search of Joshua. Throughout this journey we stopped at several gers asking about his whereabouts.

It was when we were at one of the gers when Joshua arrived on horseback. While waiting for his arrival, we were able to share the gospel with some herders. They had never heard the name of Jesus before!

During our travels, five nomadic herders made professions of faith. Before they received Christ, their most urgent questions was how to pray to Jesus. They were looking for certain ritual words or gestures to pray. We explained how prayer goes beyond ritual and that Jesus was Lord, not merely a genie god to grant us what we want and that we can approach him with all our concerns.