My father was a nomad businessman from Amdo in Northern Tibet. He met my mother on a business trip to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. Soon after their marriage, they found out that my mother was expecting twins. They were both amazed and shocked. A high Buddhist Lama prophesied that their twin boys were the incarnation of a big Lama. My parents felt very privileged , although they knew that their sons would be living in a monastery for the rest of their lives.
In 1959, my parents and twin brothers fled to Nepal to escape the Chinese Occupation. My parents worked in a carpet factory and the family grew. My two sisters and I were born in Nepal. Before my birth, my older brothers were sent back to Tibet to join their monastery. In 1981 we received news that they had both been killed. Later, my father also passed away. .My sisters went to live in the United States of America, and they supported the family for many years.
When I was eight years old, I was sent to a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in South India. It was my father’s wish that I also become a monk. I was very homesick in the monastery. In those days, telephones were rare and I was too young to travel by myself. Life in the monastery was hard. We lived a very disciplined life of learning scriptures, chants and meditations.
Although life in the monastery was hard, I had some very good experiences too. My Teacher Tenzing Sherap was very kind to me and treated me like his own child. He took care of my education and living expenses.
The monastery in which I studied was started by the Dalai Lama. There were 5000 monks there. We spent our time learning scripture, chants, musical instruments and special ceremonial rites that we could perform in people’s homes. I trained to play the ceremonial trumpet, and also spent much time in mediation and studies since my master teacher wanted me to become an officiating priest. I faithfully tried to discipline myself by fasting and meditation in isolation… but I struggled with temptation. Many times in mediation, when we were required to empty ourselves and invite spirits in, I struggled and was unable to do so.
I grew very discontent with my monastic life and made many plans to run away. When my teacher took ill, I gladly took care of all his needs. When he died, I decided to leave the monastery. One of my friends and I ran away from the monastery soon after that. When we reached Nepal, we wrote to the Abbot saying that we would never again return.
Not knowing what to do with our freedom, we joined the Indian army where many Tibetans served. We left the army after two years. For a while after that I drifted unsure of what to do with my life. I wanted to make money and so got involved in many schemes. I began to drink and to party. All these took a toll on my health and I often was guilt ridden and was always afraid. I visited temples and offered prayers to ease my conscience. I finally went home to my mother. She was disgusted to see what I had become. I went into depression.
During this very low time in my life, a Tibetan Christian gave me a Bible in my own language. The Bible fascinated me. The more I read it the more I liked it. My Tibetan Christian friend, Karma, invited me to church. When I went, I felt comfortable there even if some of the practices were funny to me. When I started praying, it felt right to pray to Jesus Christ. Many Christians were praying for me. My friend Karma prayed that Jesus would reveal Himself to me. One night in my dreams I was being chased by many monks with knives and stones. As I was running, a mountain appeared in front of me and I was unable to climb it. Just then an eagle appeared and carried me away to a safe and peaceful valley, with lots of fruit trees to satisfy my hunger. The next morning, I awoke and believed. I believe that Jesus was the eagle that saved me. From then on I began to attend church regularly and learned more about God and His word. I then went to North India to attend a Discipleship Training School with YWAM. It was here, in 1993 that I surrendered my whole life to Jesus Christ and was baptized.
After my time in North India, I went down to Hyderabad in South India for an English Language Training School. Here I was healed of a serious bleeding in my lungs which was a result of my lifestyle before I met Jesus Christ. After my healing, I was involved in street preaching among Tibetans in North India. God used me powerfully on many occasions. I have faced much persecution as a Christian. My family does not know the One True Lord Jesus Christ, and so they do not accept me.
After my time in North India, I attended a church planting training in Nepal where I met my wife Pelyang. We married in 2003 in Kathmandu. After this we felt called to go to Tibet with the good news of Jesus Christ. When we first arrived there, we had no friends, but God slowly brought people to us. We opened a small restaurant to serve tea and show the Jesus film. God began to touch lives. On Christmas eve of 2004, we rented a room and invited over 200 people to come so we could share the true meaning of Christmas. God moved and 45 people accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. We rejoiced greatly. Right away we began teaching them the bible and the importance of baptism. Ten of the believers were baptized in the spring of the New Year. Things were going well and people were growing in their faith and walk with God.
On the morning of June 3, the police visited our restaurant. We were later taken in for questioning and were told strictly that it was illegal to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Tibet. My wife and I were kept in separate rooms for 4 days and interrogated. They let us go on the condition that we give them the names of the believers. We knew we had to leave Tibet. We went to another city and stayed there for two months. We continued to receive news of the believers where we had been. It then became necessary for us to leave China. We arrived back in Kathmandu in September 2005.
Since our return to Kathmandu, we have continued to pray for the believers in Tibet who continue to face persecution. I believe that God is working among Tibetans. He always protects us when we are in difficult circumstances. He is always with us and we are grateful that He used us to reach some Tibetans. Our prayer is that some day we will be able to return to Tibet. We continue to share with our Tibetan brothers and sisters about the new life we have found in Jesus, and we continue to see the wonderful work of God in their lives.