Local teen spends seven weeks on faith-based mission in Nepal

 

By Josh Beneteau

 

A local teen has just returned from a faith-based mission trip in Nepal.

Isaac MedlerIsaac Medler, 18, spent seven weeks travelling and teaching in Nepal with the American organization, Royal Servants.

“This has been something I’ve wanted to do for a while now,” Medler said.

Royal Servants takes high school and post-secondary students overseas to show them what life, religion and culture is like in other countries. They go as a Christian organization and share their beliefs with the locals.

“It’s a two-way street. We learn about missions overseas and they are being taught what we believe as Christians,” said Medler. “We spoke with many people who had never heard of the bible or Jesus Christ or Christians.”

Over the seven weeks, Medler and his group of 23 leaders and students travelled to three different cities in Nepal. They landed in the capital, Kathmandu, and spent some time there before traveling to Chitwan and Pokhara.

“Chitwan is a city and a national park, with tigers, lions, rhinos and elephants,” Medler said. “Pokhara was a very beautiful city, but it rained every day.”

They also visited a leper colony, which Medler says was a shocking experience.

“People would have no noses, their face would be flat and their limbs are just gone,” he said “Even giving them a hug means the world to them because no one touches them.”

Medler said that the people were happy to see the group and welcomed their company.

“People that have leprosy are cast out of the town and put in these camps,” he said. “We basically went to spend the day with these people, share with them about Jesus, and hear their story.”

That was one example of the work Medler did in Nepal. But the main reason the group went was for what he called “relational evangelism.”

“Basically we were building relationships with people and spending time with them,” Medler said. “This includes going to their houses, meeting their families, learning about their culture and telling them about what we believe as Christians.”

“We say, ‘we share the love of Jesus Christ in what we do’,” he said. “We want to sit down with them [and] have meaningful conversations with them.”

Medler says he was shocked by what he saw in Nepal. The main religions there are Buddhism and Hinduism, which both believe in reincarnation.

At the Hindu temple, Medler saw people burned alive; while their family watched and hoped they were good enough to return as a human and not an animal.

“I saw a live person with a blanket over him, still moving, be burned alive,” he said. “It was very sad to see this continual cycle. They don’t really have a hope or an assurance of where they are going [when they die].”

This is why Medler and the Royal Servants went to Nepal. To give the people hope.

“As Christians we do have an assurance of where we are going to go,” he said. “It’s not about being good enough. We’re all bad and Jesus took the penalty by dying on the cross, so it’s a gift. You just have to believe in Jesus.”

Medler says the locals were very open to what his group had to say.

“Many people believed in Jesus when we told them and wanted to know about Jesus and who he is,” he said.

He said it isn’t easy to change the people’s beliefs but that the group was making progress.

“Not many people will make a decision right then and there when we talk with them because they’ve been living their entire life this way,” said Medler. “It takes time, but our organization has been going there for 20 years, and we’ve been seeing people after a couple years who finally believe.”

Medler considered his trip a success and it gave him the experience needed to become a full-time missionary.

“With going overseas and having this experience, I was able to go and see the culture instead of reading a book about it,” he said. “I really felt that I could live overseas and do that as a full-time job.”

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