Daily Topic for March 22, 2011
John’s gospel ends with an account that in many ways gives us a vivid picture of Jesus’ commission. The obedience of the disciples to Jesus’ word not only gave them a great catch of fish, but also opened their eyes to recognize Him. In that recognition was deep fellowship. And out of that fellowship, as it did for Peter, comes our commission to feed and care for others. Let us renew our lives afresh to Christ’s great cause of revealing His love to all the peoples of the earth, including Siberian peoples like the Chelkans.
Pray that we will know Him and follow Him, no matter what He tells us to do. Pray that He will reveal Himself afresh to us as we bring His revelation to others.
For several years, Native Americans have visited and worked in Siberia with the Altais, including the Chelkan subgroup. Benjamin, a Pueblo Indian from New Mexico, has been with the Altais. He passionately wrote about his experiences. “I was struck by the similarities and struggles that both our cultures are facing: alcohol abuse, loss of language and wandering youth. Like my people, they are being forced to lose their sacred sites, their shamans and worship of mother earth. Russia wants them to be Russian capitalists. It is important that I and others like me continue to be with them and help them to secure their rights to their heritage. It is good that our shamans are in contact with theirs. We are all becoming closer through the spirits. I look forward to returning to my brother Altais!”
There are about 800 Chelkans in the Altai Republic. They are bilingual with Russian being their principal language. Problems among their clan groups have increased as they move from small rural communities to urban settlements. Fighting for their ethnic survival has led some of them to return to their spirit worship, including shamanism. Only a few Chelkans are following Christ.Learn more at joshuaproject.net
Pray that God will stir the hearts of American Indian believers to be witnesses of His truth and mercy among the Chelkan people. Pray that Chelkans will quickly know that meaningful answers for their lives cannot be found in the dark realm of shamans and spirits which have misled them for many generations.