Why Would This Tzeltal Indian Family Give Me a Wardrobe Worth More Than Their Entire Month’s Wages?

The Tzeltal Indians live about an hour and a half from us in Cancuc Pozo Chiapas. For a long time I have admired the bright colors of their clothing as we have ministered to them providing relevant teachings, evangelistic campaigns and now even a Bible School which started in February.


On February 20th, we finished a full day of teaching and prepared for a nightly service in the village. The Pastor quietly pulled me aside and told me to go to a small wooden hut located outside of the church building. “A Family has something that they would like to give you” he said.

This was not the first time I had received gifts from the Tzeltal Indians. They’ve given me coffee, handmade bags and even livestock. I was honestly expecting another rooster to add to my ever growing population of chickens at my home in San Cristobal.

Was I ever surprised as the women pulled a beautiful Tzeltal Wardrobe out of a small plastic bag; it was just the right size.

“We want to give you this as a token of our appreciation for faithfully bringing us the Word of God each month” the family explained.

“I thought to myself, “I couldn’t possibly accept such a large gift. I know very well that the Tzeltal Indian wardrobes are very expensive.” In fact, they are worth more than $200. That’s well over a month’s wages when you consider that the average Tzeltal makes less than $30 a week when work is available. Most of the time, the Indians barter crops, animals, coffee and clothing because currency is scarce.

I considered the time involved in making such a beautiful piece of clothing- even longer than a month. I was reluctant to take the gift but I knew that I would offend the family if I didn’t. What’s more, I didn’t want to rob them of a blessing by not allowing them to give.

I accepted the gift.

“We are so thankful that you visit us each month, your ministry has changed our lives” they explained.

What a reward. Their words to me meant so much. I felt honored as I walked away with the wardrobe in hand, thanking God for the privilege to be a missionary to the Tzeltal Indians in Chiapas.

Luke 6:38 states that it is more blessed to give than to receive. I may have received some nice clothing and a pat on back but I feel even more satisfied to be able to share Gods Word with people in need.

You may download this month’s newsletter in pdf format:March Newsletter (360)

I want to thank you. Because of your prayers and financial support we are able to take the word of God to tribes like this Tzeltal family I just described. Thanks for helping us to help others!

Serving Christ Together,