WHY MALAYSIA?

Malaysia presents a very unique and strategic opportunity to minister to unreached people from all over the world. Our neighbors are from Nepal, Pakistan, Egypt, Indonesia, and Bangladesh...just to name a few.  They come from unreached and difficult-to-access places - the kind of places you have to take planes, rickety buses, motorbikes, and then a long walk by foot into.  Yet here we all are in Penang, living side-by-side.  Migrant workers, like the Nepali men and women we minister to, come to Malaysia to find work and an income to provide for their families. Malaysia largely writes them off a second-class migrants who come to do the jobs that locals don't want to do and are considered dirty, dangerous and low paying: garbage collection, cleaning, factory work, and construction.  They are vulnerable to cheating, abuse, exploitation, and poverty.    But we believe that God has brought them to Malaysia for a bigger purpose - to discover God.  Right now, the Gospel is bearing fruit and growing in amazing ways among the migrant worker community in Malaysia. 
We partner with a YWAM Nepal team in Penang which has led many Nepali migrant workers to the Lord.  These men and women, lives transformed by Jesus, deeply desire to make a difference in their home communities in Nepal.  We equip them with the spiritual and physical training they need to do so in practical ways.  We bolster the local Nepali churches so they can minister effectively to their own communities'  physical and spiritual needs.  Multiplication is what we seek - we train and disciple people here so they can go back to their home countries to do the work we would never have been able to achieve.  In doing so, they take with them the knowledge and skills they need to help others to catch the vision and train others...and the multiplication continues.  Malaysia serves as the springboard for this work - we believe that God's Kingdom is growing and bearing fruit in ways that we cannot see. 

Malaysia also serves as a place of refuge for people fleeing persecution all over the world.  Over 90% of refugees in Malaysia right now come from Burma.  Having already fled from a life of fear and violence in their home country, they reach Malaysia to become unwanted, isolated, and defenseless. The government considers refugees to be illegal aliens, and they have no protection from exploitation.   Stories of human trafficking and human rights abuses abound.  Although the refugee community is near and dear to our hearts, this ministry is on the back burner for our family right now.  As our son gets older, we hope to re-enter this much needed ministry.  You can read about Erin's experience teaching at a school for refugees here.  

In addition to migrant workers and asylum seekers, people from all over the world choose to make Malaysia a destination for retirement and education.  Penang, in particular, is well known for it's low cost of living, rich heritage, delicious food, and tropical climate.  Every continent (except Antarctica!) is represented in our building alone.  For example, the nation of Japan is 1% Christian and a culturally hard-to-reach people group.  Our Japanese neighbors have lots of time on their hands and a desire to practice English, so they are eager to study the Bible and very open to the Gospel.  

The nations are literally at our doorstep.  The harvest is ripe in Malaysia!  
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© Reuben + ErinMaira Gall