Our guest author today is Dan Taylor — in collaboration with Shema Kallimel — a close friend in ministry who works in North India with his organization 5 Rivers International.
The airport was shut down. The roads were closed. The snow kept falling. This was Kashmir’s worst snow storm in 17 years. In the midst of the storm, we sat with Pastor Sunny drinking traditional Kashmiri tea, called kahwa, and praying. Our two-day visit had now turned into five. My team was beginning to think we had wasted our time coming here. We felt we were doing nothing of significance. As we sat watching the snow get deeper, a man came to see me.
This man, Irfan, is a Muslim businessman who raises sheep in the mountains along the Pakistani border. He told us about a people group called the Gujjars who live a life of poverty high in the mountains of Kashmir. Irfan proceeded to share his vision of helping the Gujjars through an economic development project of raising sheep.
It took me a moment to grasp what was happening. As we sat, stranded in a snow storm feeling like we were wasting our time, God used a Muslim man to invite us into a region that had been closed to Christianity for 2,000 years. Last month I was able to return to Kashmir and Irfan took us into the mountains to visit a village of the Gujjar people and meet the shepherds chosen for the sheep project. We were received very warmly as we went from house to house drinking tea and breaking bread together. It was a beautiful day as we walked up to the top of a hill with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.
Then the shock came. Irfan and the village leader led me to the top and said, “This is the land we will give you to build your center so you can bring people here to pray for us.”
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! An opportunity to pray over the multitudes that were weary and scattered, lost without a shepherd. An opportunity for Jesus to bring his sheep to himself. An opportunity brought to us by a Muslim man. Jesus said in John 10:16 that He had other sheep that have not yet been gathered in. And He desires to bring them in so that there may be one flock and ONE shepherd. Here was an unreached people group in the mountains of Kashmir giving us land to build a house of prayer so we could come pray and minister to them!
The next day Irfan met with me to discuss the project. Our conversation turned to Jesus. I explained to him that no longer are we slaves trying to earn God’s favor but we are His children deeply loved by the Father. There was nothing we could do to earn His love. We sat quietly in the Presence of God as tears began to roll down his cheeks and the Holy Spirit penetrated his heart. It was just as Jesus had said. The other sheep had begun listening to the Shepherd’s voice.
Through our partnership with SEAPC we have agreed to take on this sheep project. SEAPC will supervise the business side and 5 Rivers will provide the funding and bring teams to pray through these mountain villages. Would you pray with us as we attempt, through this project, to reach out to an unreached nomadic people group in the mountains of Kashmir?
A total of $15,000 is needed to fully implement this project. Five flocks of 25 sheep will be purchased that will multiply, adding more shepherds and flocks in the years to come. If you would like to be a part of bringing Jesus to the Gujjars through giving, praying, or going on one of our prayer teams, please contact us at 5riversinternational.org. If you’d like to give, please mark your gifts “Sheep Project.”
To learn more about where and how SEAPC serves, click here.
SEAPC is dedicated to changing lives through prayer. If your heart is moved and you would like to partner with us, you can donate here.