The bus would go no further. This was the end of the road. Mutabu got down. She would now have to climb three mountains before reaching her small secluded village in the Himalayan Mountains. She was returning home from visiting relatives in the lower mountains.
As she climbed, Mutabu thought about the tall preacher who talked about the Savior who forgives sins. She heard the Gospel message while staying with her relatives in the lower mountains. She thought about her relatives who now worshipped this Jesus and how their lives were transformed.
Mutabu had never heard about Jesus before, and one night while with her relatives, she asked Jesus to forgive her sins and accept her. The tall preacher, P.G. Vargis, baptized her. Mutabu remembered saying, “I feel as clean as the fresh snow.”
Mutabu wondered if the preacher would come to her mountain village. She had implored him to come and tell her sons about Jesus. No one in her part of the mountains had ever heard him before.
P.G. Vargis kissed his toddler son and bade his young wife good-bye. He hiked the mountain’s narrow trail, knowing that one fall would be the end of him. Urging his tired, hungry body on, he finally made it to the village.
Mutabu’s sons were suspicious of a young man from South India traveling so far to meet their widowed mother, and they began to plot. “Tomorrow we shall kill him,” they whispered.
The next morning, as Vargis washed his face in a nearby pond, Mutabu rushed to him. “Run! Run as fast as you can. My sons have misunderstood you. They plan to kill you!”
P.G. crept back to retrieve his backpack and saw the young men sharpening their knives behind the hut. How could Vargis possibly climb down three mountains fast enough? The trails were narrow and the edges tricky.
Vargis walked as fast as he could. After some time he glanced back, and saw the young men with glistening knives in pursuit. He walked faster, but the boys, familiar with the mountain shortcuts, would soon catch him. Vargis started to run as best he could.
The pursuers gained ground. Suffering from exhaustion and thirst, Vargis collapsed under a tree. His death was just minutes away, “Will Lilly even know how I died?” he wondered. He pulled out the life story of O.J. Smith he had been reading, and wrote on the last page, “Even if my wife becomes a widow in her twenties and my son fatherless, I am willing to die if God will give me one soul for every drop of my blood.”
Then a strange thing happened. The pursuers gave up. Vargis made it back down the mountain, and the next day Mutabu’s oldest son knocked on his door. Vargis panicked. Mutabu’s son said, “My mother has asked me to bring you to our village.”
Vargis was suspicious and refused to go. The son refused to return to his village unless Vargis returned with him—and to prove it, he stayed with his relatives and attended Vargis’ Bible studies. He listened intently to the messages and wept every time. But Vargis remained unconvinced.
Finally Vargis realized that he must return to the village. Hadn’t he decided to reach the unreached, at any cost? Once again Vargis hugged his baby son good-bye as Lilly stood with tears in her eyes. This could be the last time he would see them. Vargis then carefully instructed, “If I don’t return, do not go back to your land. Stay here. Preach the Gospel and raise our son to continue the work.”
Vargis reached the village to speak to the villagers gathered under the stars. He noticed a dramatic change in these people. Hardened men were weeping and praying with an intensity he did not understand.”
Mutabu then told Vargis what had happened. When her sons had returned from chasing Vargis, they overheard her sobbing and crying out to God. “God, protect the young preacher! My sons misunderstood him. They don’t know that he is Your holy man. Change my sons!”
A great conviction fell upon the young men as they heard the prayer, and they began to weep. Mutabu then told her sons about Jesus and asked them to repent. They cried out to the “God of their mother,” and they wept for forgiveness. They experienced an immediate and powerful transformation. Vargis baptized the village families, and a church was born. One more village had been reached. One more mountain was singing. “The mountains and the hills shall break forth before you singing.” (Isaiah 55:12)