Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
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The Global Prayer Digest is a daily devotional encouraging prayer for Unreached Peoples. A ministry of Frontier Ventures (formerly the US Center for World Mission), this devotional is available as a daily subscription from the GPD website (see link above).
Keith Carey, the editor-in-chief of the Global Prayer Digest, has graciously given me permission to post their daily devotions here in order to encourage more prayer for the Unreached Peoples. Please join in the prayer for the gospel to go to the ends of the earth (Matthew 24:14). If you find these devotions helpful, you can subscribe to their daily e-mail or to the printed publication - or just check them out here on Pray.Network! Past monthly issues of the GPD are also available on their site.
Today’s people groups are from Pakistan’s Sindh Province! These 400 pastoral nomads now live in Gujarat. The community is divided into a number of clans, called ataks, and they use the atak name as their surname. Each atak is equal to others in status. They are a little more flexible than the last two people groups in that they will marry outside their people group, but with strict limitations. They prefer to marry their cousins whenever possible.
Royma people are a community of cattle breeders. In addition to cattle breeding, the Roymas are farmers and agricultural laborers. Like other communities from Gujarat’s Kutch region, many migrate to other parts of India in search of employment. Like many Gujarati Muslims, they have a caste association, the Royma Jamat, that is responsible for the welfare of their community.
They are a 100 percent Sunni Muslim. They are unreached and unengaged, although many Bible resources exist in their Kacchi language.
Pray that Holy Spirit will give Royma clan leaders the willingness to embrace Jesus Christ as savior, depending on Him alone for salvation. Pray that the Holy Spirit will allow circumstances into their lives to reveal sin and their need for a savior. Pray for a disciple-making movement among these people that will spread to the desperately needy Muslim communities of India.
Mark 5:18-20, NLV
Jesus got into the boat. The man who had had the demons asked to go with Him. Jesus would not let him go but said to him, “Go home to your own people. Tell them what great things the Lord has done for you. Tell them how He had pity on you.” The man went his way and told everyone in the land of Decapolis what great things Jesus had done for him. All the people were surprised and wondered.
Though there are not any believers among the Royma people yet, pray for new believers to share with others the great things God has done in their lives, so that many will come to faith.
“Are you worth your salt?” This question goes back to days when salt was a very precious commodity. Our English word, salary, comes from the Latin word for salt.
India is the world’s third largest producer of salt, and most of it comes from Gujarat where the Gadhai people live. For years they were sellers of salt. Harvesting the salt demands hours of back-breaking toil in temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by freezing nights. Their name, Gadhai, literally means a donkey keeper, referring to their other occupation in times past when donkeys were the main beasts of burden. According to their traditions, they were once among the princely cast of the Rajputs, but lost their status when they converted to Islam.
Today there are only 100 Gadhai people left, and they are all still Muslim. Jesus talked about a shepherd who was concerned about one sheep out of a hundred, so we know the Gadhai are important to Him! The Gadhais speak Gujarati, the primary language in their state. Some also understand Urdu. The Bible is available in both these languages, as are many other Christian resources in print, audio, and video forms. It remains for someone to introduce them to this life-changing message.
Pray that the Gadhai people will hear the good news and find that God can give them a raise in status from being former princes to becoming the salt of the earth.
Matt 5:13, NLV
You are the salt of the earth. If salt loses its taste, how can it be made to taste like salt again? It is no good. It is thrown away and people walk on it.
Pray that when the Gadhai people begin to respond to the gospel, that they will be faithful to live as Christ wants them to live.
What would it be like to be part of a people who help celebrate the major events of life with songs? Most Langha are farmers, herdsmen, and small businesspersons in the western Indian states of Gujarat and Rajasthan. However, they are mostly known for their musical abilities and skills. They perform traditional folk music at births, weddings, funerals, and on Muslim holidays. The Langhas compose and sing songs that praise their patrons, i.e., the people who pay them. In recent years Langhas have enjoyed success as part of South Asia’s entertainment industry. Some have toured India and the world playing their music as examples of traditional Indian culture.
Most Langhas speak Marwari as their mother tongue. Marwari is written in the same script as Hindi and shares many of the same words. Marwari has no official status as a language for government or education. Langha people marry within their people group. They usually marry outside of their family or immediate clan.
Pray that the Lord would lead Indian believers to befriend the Langha and take Christ to them. Pray that the Marwari New Testament would get into the hands of the Langha people. Pray the Marwari JESUS Film would be shown to many Langhas, and they will be inspired to give Him their lives. Pray that the Lord would raise up growing churches among this people group.
Ps 149: 1, ESV
Praise the Lord! Sing to the Lord a new song, His praise in the assembly of the godly!
Pray that the Langha of India would begin to sing praise to the God of the Bible, the father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
They are a tiny Muslim group hidden away in India. The thumbnail profile on Joshua Project offers only this information: population – 400, language – Urdu, largest religion – Islam, 0.00 percent Christian. If you google the Khadim, you won’t even get a Wikipedia entry. All you’ll find is a link to a shoe store!
Since the Bible is available in Urdu, a language they speak, some might assume that the Khadim can choose for themselves. They can take or leave the invitation to faith in Christ.
But that isn’t how God works. He cares about all of His creation, loves all of the people He has made, and sent His only son to die for each and every one of them. He is a God who pursues, seeks out, and relentlessly offers the opportunity for salvation and eternal life. That’s why the Khadim people need our prayers. Despite their limited numbers, language, and location, they are highly valued by God.
Pray for the Lord to put the Khadims on the hearts and minds of mission organizations so that they will reach out to them. Pray for believers in India to be burdened with a desire to see a Discipleship-Movement established among the Khadims. Ask God to soften the hearts of the Khadim people. Ask God to work mightily and miraculously to draw this unique and valuable people group into His Kingdom.
Luke 15:20, NLV
The son got up and went to his father. While he was yet a long way off, his father saw him. The father was full of loving-pity for him. He ran and threw his arms around him and kissed him.
Pray for many from the Khadim people to accept the invitation of God the father for eternal forgiveness.
(This story is intended to illustrate truths about this people group.)
“I don’t see them,” the woman said with concern in her echoing voice. “Neither do I,” the other woman said. “But they must be here. They have to be.” The first woman added, “They’re here. We prayed, and our God is faithful!”
They were standing in the midst of a great sea of people—a multitude so vast that there were no discernable edges, no end to the congregation of men, women, and children. Suddenly the second woman pointed. How she spotted them wasn’t clear, but both woman knew that they were looking at Nyaria people in this holy crowd. They were dressed in white, waving palm branches, and singing a new worship song to the King. The women celebrated and joined their voices in the song, rejoicing that the Lord had heard and answered their prayers for the Nyarias!
Today, there are no known followers of Christ among the Muslim Nyaria people. If the glorious worship described in Revelation 7 began at this moment, they would be tragically absent. But today, you, and thousands of others will be praying for some from the Nyaria people to be added to His holy family.
Pray for the Lord to draw them by His Spirit into His Kingdom. Pray for thousands of the Nyaria people group to be present in eternity to worship the Lamb.
Rev 7:9-10, NLV
After this I saw many people. No one could tell how many there were. They were from every nation and from every family and from every kind of people and from every language. They were standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white clothes and they held branches in their hands. And they were crying out with a loud voice, “We are saved from the punishment of sin by our God who sits on the throne and by the Lamb!”
Pray for the Nyaria people to respond with gratitude and commitment when they hear God’s call.
How far can you trace back your family tree? Two generations? Three? The Agarias believe that their caste has existed from the beginning of the world. Their name comes from the Hindi word for fire. For generations, they have worked with furnaces as iron-smelters.
Today, the Agarias continue to work with metal. They manufacture agricultural tools such as axes, ploughshares, and sickles. Many have also turned to agricultural pursuits and raising livestock. Others specialize in making toys such as wooden masks for children.
Their children begin working at an early age. Consequently, only 10 percent of the Agaria people are literate. Of late, however, education has taken on a more important role, and parents are making efforts to send their children to school.
In 1950, the Indian Constitution granted caste-related privileges to the Agarias. The law established quotas in government jobs and higher education. Affirmative action created development programs for basic rights. Nonetheless, some Agaria people have been prey to money-lenders and have not been able to afford amenities such as electricity. Though most Agarias are Hindu, some are Muslim.
Ask God to provide His ambassadors who will share God’s riches with them. May they know the God who can provide for them on earth as well as in eternity.
Matt 1:1-2, NLV
These are the families through which Jesus Christ came. He came through David and Abraham. Abraham was the father of Isaac. Isaac was the father of Jacob. Jacob was the father of Judah and his brothers.
Pray that this people group, which is enthralled with family trees, will understand the value of being “grafted” into God’s holy family. Pray that they will desire to become part of His family.
Men, what did it take for you to “get” a wife? Roses? Chocolate? A ring? If you are a Mirshikar, you’d have to jump through one last hoop before becoming “Mr. and Mrs.” Tradition required the bridegroom-to-be to catch a bird. This was not just any bird. It was the ferocious Loha Sarang, the Blacknecked Stork. Assuming that the man had already performed all the necessary pre-marriage conditions and formalities, he and the wedding procession would locate a Loha Sarang. The bridegroom would approach the bird with his bird-catching rod. Since the man would be at a distance, the bird would not feel threatened. Then the man would jerk his rod at the stork, and the super-glue at the end of the rod would attach to the feathers of the unwitting bird. If the man succeeded capturing the bird, he would proceed to the bride’s house. If he didn’t, the wedding would be postponed. This tradition continued until one day when a particularly strong stork fatally gored a hopeful bridegroom with its dagger-like bill.
The Mirshikar people number around 10,000 and are a people group found exclusively in India. These Muslims are unengaged and unreached.
Pray that they will hear of the heavenly bridegroom who gave His life on a cross so that He would obtain His bride, the church.
2 Thes 1:11-12, NLV
For this reason, we always pray for you. We pray that our God will make you worth being chosen. We pray that His power will help you do the good things you want to do. We pray that your work of faith will be complete.
Pray for the Lord to thrust out worthy ambassadors to the Mirshikar people of India.
Have you ever seen an Indian saree? It is made of yards and yards of shiny silk.
The Pangan people live in India’s northeastern state of Manipur, where for centuries the women raised silkworms. Once an important staging post on the silk route, Manipur provided silk for trade with China’s Yunnan Province. In recent years Manipur has developed plans to revive its silk industry. Currently, each Manipur cocoon yields 800 meters of raw silk, compared to the 1,200 meters for each cocoon in Japan. Consultants are teaching the locals modern Japanese methods, hoping to increase production. India is one of the world’s largest producers of silk, and project leaders in Manipur aim to become a bigger contributor to India’s annual output.
There are 120,000 Pangans in India. They are able to communicate with many other peoples by speaking Manipuri, a trade language common to 29 different ethnic groups in Manipur. Manipuri is taught as a subject up to the post-graduate level (Ph.D.) in universities of India, apart from being a medium of instruction up to the undergraduate level in Manipur.
The Pangans are Muslim, and there are no followers of Christ among them. Bible translations are available in their language.
Please pray that God will put His word into the hands of the Pangans. Pray for many to be discipled in the ways of Christ, and to share Him with others.
1 Thes 3:13, NLV
May our God and Father make your hearts strong and without blame. May your hearts be without sin in God’s sight when our Lord Jesus comes again with all those who belong to Him.
Pray that when the Pangan church is established, that it will be noted for holiness and a willingness to shun sin.
The Bandukkhar people of northern India derive their name from their occupation: maker of guns. They number 700 people living in the largest city of the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India’s only Muslim-majority state. Though they are part of a larger occupational caste of ironsmiths, the Bandukkhar believe that their work of making and repairing gun barrels is superior to the work of ordinary ironsmiths.
The Bandukkhar live in a region marked by opposition to Indian rule and known for international conflict between Muslims and Hindus. As a result, the Indian government has placed extreme restrictions on gun making in this region, which threatens the livelihood of the Bandukkhar people.
This 100 percent Sunni Islamic patriarchal people live simply. Economic transactions are typically in cash, and the community is without its own land. At the same time, Bandukkhars follow detailed traditions for things like marriages and the birth of children.
There are no believers or workers among them. But the Bible translations, The JESUS Film, gospel recordings, and radio broadcasts are available in their primary Kashmiri language.
Pray for a strong interest in Christ-centered resources among the Bandukkhar. Spiritual leaders among the Bandukkhar are key to doors opening for the gospel; pray for dreams, visions, and power encounters to free their leaders from spiritual deception. Pray for God-sent witnesses. Ask God for a harvest of souls leading to a Disciple-Making Movement.
1 Chron 22:16, NLT
You have expert goldsmiths and silversmiths and workers of bronze and iron [to build the Temple of the LORD].
Pray for the ironworking Bandukkhar to receive Christ so that God may build His living temple among them. Pray that these skilled people will use what God has given them for His glory rather than for the glory of man.
(This is a story which illustrates truths about this people group.)
Jahor strummed on his guitar; he loved to sing and tell stories. Perhaps one day he’d leave Kashmir and make a name for himself in Mumbai. Jahor dreamed of starring in a Bollywood movie and becoming rich and famous.
Jahor was a member of the Kashmir Bhat people group. They have a long history of being entertainers. Sadly, Jahor and others like him didn’t realize that money and fame wouldn’t bring happiness. Yet they have been committed to that belief for centuries. The Kashmiri Bhats had been bards and entertainers in India since 1295 AD when King Patapa Ruda of the Kshatriya Dynasty hired Bhats to entertain him in his palace.
This people group is 90 percent Hindu and 10 percent Muslim. Though we are focusing our prayers on the Muslims today, the Hindus also need prayer for the light. There are few, if any, followers of Jesus Christ among any of them.
Pray that Kashmiri Bhats would seek and find the light of God. May they be drawn to music that will lead them to the one who is the truth. Pray that they will use their musical abilities to share the gospel and to disciple others in how to live victorious, holy lives.
Ex 15:1-2, NLV
Then Moses and the people of Israel sang this song to the Lord, saying, “I will sing to the Lord, for He is praised for His greatness. He has thrown the horse and horseman into the sea. The Lord is my strength and song. He is the one who saves me. He is my God and I will praise Him. He is my father’s God and I will honor Him.
Pray that soon there will come a day when the Kashmiri Bhats will use their voices to praise God as thankfully as Moses once did.
(This is a story which illustrates truths about this people group.)
Ali, a young Bomba man in his early 20s, wondered how many gods there were. The Hindus said there were millions of gods and the Muslims taught that there was only one. Even if the Muslims were right, could he be sure Allah was the true God? He didn’t dare ask this question openly. Ali’s parents were Sunni Muslims, and they would be very upset if he ever started questioning Islam. Ali put all those thoughts aside and resumed planning his pilgrimage to Mecca.
Legend has it that the Bomba people migrated from Arabia to northern India hundreds of years ago, so Ali was hoping to learn about his roots while he was on pilgrimage. No one knows for sure if these legends are true. An Arabian origin may explain how this people group came to be completely Islamized.
The Bomba people speak the Dogr language, a language that has a complete Bible and radio gospel broadcasts. Few members of this people group have become followers of Jesus Christ.
Pray that the Bomba people would come to see Jesus Christ as more than a prophet. May this people group develop a hunger for the true God. Ask God to raise up faithful workers to reach out to this people group for the sake of Christ.
Jer 2:28, NLV
But where are your gods that you made for yourself? Let them come if they can save you when you are in trouble. For you have as many gods as cities, O Judah.
Pray that the Bomba people will understand that there is but one God who can deliver them from sin and from any danger.
(This is a story which illustrates truths about this people group.)
Sirjat loaded clothes into the washing machine at her laundromat in one of India’s largest cities. She was in her 30s and is a member of the Dhobi people group. Her family had once lived in Kashmir, but they left that state to get away from religious turmoil and violence. Hindus fought Muslims in Kashmir, and too many on both sides had died. As Sirjat switched on the washing machine, she thought about how dirty she felt on the inside. She was a Muslim, but Allah seemed to have no answer for the guilt she often felt.
The two million Kashmir Dhobis have been clothes washers for as long as anyone could remember. This people group is found all over India, but those who originated in Kashmir are different than the others. Most are Hindus, but some are Muslim. Most Muslim Dhobis speak Urdu, a language with a complete Bible. Few if any of them have given Jesus a chance to change their lives. At this time there are no efforts to reach Muslim Dhobis for the Lord.
Ask God to lead a mission agency to work with Muslim Dhobis. Pray that there will soon come a day when Muslim Dhobis will sing Christ’s praise as they go about their daily tasks. Pray that they will disciple others until there is an unstoppable movement among them.
Zech 3:3-5, NLV
Now Joshua was dressed in dirty clothes and standing in front of the angel. The angel said to those who were standing in front of him, “Take off his dirty clothes.” And he said to him, “See, I have taken your sin away from you, and will dress you in beautiful clothes.” Then I said, “Let them put a clean covering on his head.” So they put a clean covering on his head and dressed him in clothes, while the angel of the Lord was standing by.
Pray that the Dhobi people in Kashmir will read this verse and understand the value of being forgiven of sin. Pray that they will understand that only Jesus Christ can make us spiritually clean.