The cluster of villages in the shadows of the Himalayas are an anthropologist’s dream: the exquisite wooden courtyard homes and the fertile lands at eight thousand feet elevation provide shelter and work for the P. peoples, one of the last matriarchal societies in the world. Property rights are handed down through the woman’s lineage and “walking marriage” is practiced widely, where the man visits the woman at night but then returns to his sister’s house the next morning to help her care for her children, often having no meaningful relationship with his own children. Their houses are adorned with colorful Tibetan Buddhist prayer flags flapping in the breeze as the aroma of incense wafts by, emanating from the snow-white stupas (mound-like places for meditation) nestled into every P. home. But this idyllic scene belies the rough edges and the dysfunctional social and family dynamics that are more suitable to the local name given to the P. peoples which translates as “Barbarians from the West.”
“Derma” and “Joshie” (not their real names) grew up in this context as neighbors and friends. When Derma was sick during her teen years and no local doctor, nor even the chanting of the best-paid lamas could accurately diagnose her, much less cure her, her family wrote her off as already gone. And yet, our merciful Father led an American physician across her path who accurately diagnosed her with acute tuberculosis, found medicine for her, and rescued her from the grave. It was then that Derma heard the good news about the Great Physician, and she believed in Him. Around the same time, Joshie was hearing parts of the same story and seeing it lived out in a teacher’s life, and he, too, came to believe. When Derma and Joshie married each other a few years ago, not only was it a rare example of true marriage for their culture, but it was also the first known marriage of two P. Christians in the history of the world!
“SEED” (not its real name) is partnering with Joshie and Derma in 2023 to grow three thousand cherry saplings and five thousand apple saplings for two years that SEED will then buy back to sell to future customers. This arrangement gives this young couple the promise of a living wage from their land, allowing them to stay and serve in their community, while also giving SEED a new source-nursery, after maxing out our own nursery space in our current city. Our consulting visits and nursery management training for this couple will also give a context for regular mutual encouragement and accountability in an environment where temptations for young believers are overwhelming.
With support from the Easter Sacrificial Offering (ESO), SEED will be able to make a difference in this couple’s life, and by God’s grace, bearing fruit in their family, their village, and the wider P. region, including fruit that will last.
This is just one example of how, through our Tenth global partners, this year’s Easter Sacrificial Offering will help accomplish God’s global mission to bring all nations to Himself, especially those who are unreached and hidden.
You can give to the Easter Sacrificial Offering online, or by check.
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