Winds of Change at Wind River
From a recent Charis Talks – Alumni Edition
Charis alum Sarah Lucas and her husband are missionaries to the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming where Sarah is from.
You may wonder how they can be missionaries when they are still in the United States. Reservations and Native America is a nation within a nation. It is its own nation with its own government and laws, and when you are there, you’re in their country.
God really showed off for all to see when it comes to the Lucas’ and their ministry.
“Two weeks after graduating from Charis Bible College, we made a trip up there with our family and within a week we bought Native American land on the reservation, which is very hard to do. But we were able to purchase it with the favor of the Lord, and in three weeks, we built our playground and our pavilion and started summer programming!” says Sarah.
“When you come in there, you need to respect their way of living, which is very different from most of America,” she continues.
According to Sarah, some of the statistics on the reservation are as follows:
- 95% of women and children are sexually violated.
- 75% of homes are riddled with alcohol.
- Meth use is on the rise.
- Suicide rates are higher than among any other people group.
So how do you change a nation?
Sarah believes it’s by starting with the children. There are already 90 children in their program getting a hold of Jesus! They will be the ones changing the outlook of their nation because rather than turning to alcohol and drugs, they will have stayed in relationship with Jesus.
The Lucas’ had not planned to start a church for at least a year, but they ended up starting it in four months. The first time they opened the doors, there were 40 Native Americans in attendance!
To counter the horrible statistics above, here are some of the amazing things that happened in their first year on the reservation:
- Over 100 salvations
- 43 baptisms (in the pool at the Hampton Inn!)
- 3 weddings (they usually never marry on reservations)
- Around 100 in attendance at their church (They were told they would never get even one!)
Sarah says that she and her husband realize they’re not smart enough to accomplish all that God has accomplished in such a short period of time—all glory to Him!