In my recent trip to Verkhoyansk District in Russia’s Yakutia-Sakha Republic, the Lord allowed me to spend four to five days in each community. The roads are very poor in some places and to some communities the only way to get there is by water (air connections were cancelled about 10 years ago).
I did my best to use the given time to strengthen the faith of those people — and I have the desire to visit them again, because when new people are converted much depends on the regularity of visits. So far I have no funds, but I am praying about the opportunity to return to these lands at least after three or four months.
Will you join me in seeking the Lord? Pray that new believers will take Colossians 2:6-7 to heart: “Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.”
Here is how God is working in the lives of people I met with during my trip. …
Gavril in Batagai
Please pray for Gavril I. who is my classmate and a friend. He is a follower of his ancestors’ tradition in Yakut beliefs. He is smart, educated, and talented. He is a writer, a poet, an athlete, and an activist. He sings songs and has not smoked since his young years like myself — because he considers it foolishness.
I have been sharing Christ with him from the time of my turning to the Lord that is since 1992 (for 27 years). He respects me and never argues with me. He and I are friends since childhood. He is 43, married, and has three children.
Brother Nazar’s relatives in Borulakh
On a previous ministry trip in Borulakh, I visited a young brother in the Lord named Nazar. He came and listened to our team as we came with an evangelistic expedition. Their family invited us to their home. We came, sang songs and shared the gospel with them.
Last year Nazar finished school and entered a college to study inland navigation. I told him and his parents about our youth and that they have meetings where young boys and girls who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ learn about God. However, the school he went to would not let him leave, and he was not able to come to those meetings. At present he is serving in the military.
During this recent ministry trip, Nazar’s parents invited me to visit them. Nazar’s father had a stroke even though he is only 44. I told him that I was also paralyzed for some time because of a tumor in my brain. He is listening very well. Nazar’s mother, Sargylana, is also receiving well. Besides Nazar they have two younger sons. Please pray for their openness to the gospel.
Egor in Betenkes
Nine years ago we conducted a conference for Sakha Christians in Oktemtsy town and a man named Egor I. trusted Christ. Egor was baptized only last summer. There was no such opportunity before that time because the air tickets were very expensive, and baptism can be conducted only in the summer. He was very glad that the day finally came!
During this recent ministry trip, Egor and I visited his acquaintances and, of course, I spent my time with him one on one. It is my heart’s desire that there would be a church in Betenkes. For this we need to send someone from Yakutsk so that they could live among the people and work with them. This could be one brother or two brothers or a married couple. We need to pray about this important opportunity.
Compassion and the Gospel of Christ are transforming souls in Siberia, and beyond, as people are drawn to the church through encounters with believers.
Pastor Mark Zhuk writes of how the biblical foundation he received at Novosibirsk Biblical-Theological Seminary helped him during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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