unreached people

What Mountain Is God Asking Me to Climb?

If we want to finish the task Jesus gave us to do, the Great Commission, having a solid answer to this question is vitally important! Are all the unreached people groups already reached? Or not? What remains to be done for every group to have the Gospel and disciples among them? Let’s first review what we discussed in our previous article on UUPGs and UPGs- Simplifying the Conversation.

A People Group (PG) is a group of individuals with the same history, language, beliefs, and culture.  The Joshua Project https://joshuaproject.net lists 17,281 people groups in our world.

An Unreached People Group (UPG) has the Good News, but it has not spread to most of the people. Unreached people groups lack enough followers of Jesus to evangelize their own people.  They still need outsiders to help them do that. According to the Joshua Project, this number is still 7,248! 

unreached people

Pursuing Unreached People on a Mountain

Many years ago, in Southeast Asia, I studied the Bible with women from several different ethnic groups.  One of the women belonged to a sub-group of a sub-group.  Her name was Ni Ra.  Ni Ra was and is a diligent student of the Word. She came to all our Bible studies prepared. She would then go and teach what she had learned. Ni Ra then taught women in her church and women in surrounding village areas.

One night she sent a message to me through a translator and mutual friend:

Teacher, I am going to a mountain about four hours from my home. Please pray for me, because it is then a two-mile climb up the mountain where I will move to live. Once the rainy season begins, no one will be able to get up or down the mountain. (It will be very rugged living in a bamboo house.) Please pray that I will be strong and healthy.

Now that I am 55 years old, my sons are all grown, and my husband is gone, I am free to go where I am needed. I heard about a small group of new Meuneu believers who have no one to teach them. Praise God that I will not need a translator! Meuneu is my heart language and I will be able to teach all that I have learned from our Bible training.

We prayed for endurance in mind, body, and spirit. She climbed the mountain and began her visit.

Success & Suffering

Before the second rainy season, Ni Ra was brought down the mountain on a stretcher by four men.  During her stay, she had witnessed about Jesus in words and actions. The entire mountain village accepted Jesus as Savior!

Her faithfulness had come at a cost.  She was weak from an extended illness. She had come home to die.

I returned to her village four years later. As I entered a teashop, there was Ni Ra! I was so shocked. She stood up and hugged me, “Oh Teacher, I have so much I have wanted to tell you.”

Through a translator, I listened to what God had done through her and for her. She appeared younger and full of life. God granted this servant a new season.

Ni Ra was inspired by Ephesians 1:11a-12, It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for… the overall purpose He is working out in everything and everyone (MSG).

It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for… the overall purpose He is working out in everything and everyone.

Ephesians 1:11a-12 (MSG).

Many believers do not have a happy story to tell after they visit an unreached group.  Sometimes they are rejected.  They may be beaten.  Sometimes they never return to their families.

We must not be paralyzed by fear, or by the greatness of the number still unreached. Let us look for the closest unreached people groups near us.  Then, let us each have the courage to follow Ni Ra’s example and ask, “Father, what mountain are you asking me to climb?”

10 thoughts on “What Mountain Is God Asking Me to Climb?”

    1. Iren, so true. It can feel impossible for many reasons. Yes, we must do it in the strength of Christ. Bless you!

  1. Kwao Christian Nii Ablade

    It’s important and alright we count the cost involved in wining the lost but we should not lose sight of the great reward that awaits the Disciple Maker.It cannot be compared to how much it cost us to get the work done.Emmanuel!

    1. Thank you Kwao. Yes, God’s reward is the joy in being known, and our reward includes the joy in making him known! Yes, there will be a cost. Good thoughts.

  2. As believers we are living to fulfill God’s purpose upon our lives, and also to affect people around us positively. Our life style must attract people to God. God has commissioned us to reach out to unreached people by telling them about Jesus and making disciples who will also make others, which is God’s purpose for all of us

    1. I agree Carolyn. Our lives need to demonstrate the love of Jesus to those around us. Reaching out to introduce people to Jesus, and making disciples… gives our lives purpose!

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