From Cage to Mission Field: Reaching the Unreached in Southeast Asia
Amkaen was 35 when it descended upon him. His behavior became erratic, sometimes uncontrollable and violent. The villagers said an evil spirit had taken over. His family wore themselves out trying to help him with traditional methods, with no success.
By Andrew Needham
In this rural village in Southeast Asia, there was little else to do but confine him. The family built a raised wooden cage, just a few feet across, with no room to stand, and put Amkaen inside. They passed food and water through an opening. Amkaen lived inside the cage with no relief from his inner torment for five years.
Last fall, a pastoral team from a church in another part of the province visited a new Christian family in the next village. They intended to encourage and disciple the new believers.
Hearing about these spiritual men in the next village, Amkaen’s mother thought, perhaps they and their God could do something. She walked there and asked, “Can you please help my son?”
The pastors visited Amkaen’s village and preached to those who gathered near the man’s small wooden prison. “Jesus Christ is the center of power and healing!” they proclaimed. Then they had Amkaen brought out, laid hands on him, and prayed for him.
Villagers invited them to stay the night, so they did, praying and praising God. The following day, the people noticed a transformation beginning: Amkaen responded to the missionaries’ attempts to converse with him.
Through the day, the people witnessed Amkaen’s mind return to wholeness, and then something more. Amkaen said lucidly to the missionaries, “I would like to follow Jesus.”
Like the Gadarene demoniac, he began to share the story of his healing. His own village became home to a church of 35 people. One day Amkaen crossed the river to share his story in a nearby village. Fifteen people committed their lives to Christ, and now gather in a house church.
The testimony of Jesus is going across the land.
ANM partners with many local ministries reaching the unreached in Southeast Asia’s most remote places. Make the greatest impact by equipping more missionaries like those who helped Amkaen. In some places just $50 a month supports a missionary. Donate here.
Andrew Needham leads ANM’s media advocacy team.