This Malay people group in North Sumatra (that is, Sumatera Utara) is not actually an ethnic group, but rather a culture influenced by Islam. The North Sumatra Malay often avoid speaking frankly for fear they will offend someone. They use signs, parables, and traditional poetry instead. Other elements of their culture are theater and dance. In the dance, they believe they get supernatural power by using incantations and occult puppets called lukah. Most North Sumatra Malay are Sufi Muslims. However, they still hold to their old animistic beliefs. They believe that the teachings of Islam come from their own traditional values which give priority to orderly, harmonistic life together, where each person respects the other. They also believe that spirits are everywhere and influence people's lives.
Harmony is a priority for these people. For someone in the group to follow Jesus will disrupt this harmony.
Pray that nearby believers will reach out to them with careful help to improve their industries as well as to present the gospel to them clearly.
Pray for the few Christian believers within this community, that they will have a strong and faithful testimony for the Lord, and will honor Him with their lives.
The North Sumatra Malay need help in how to better use their land and sea. They need help to raise their standard of living through more efficient farming methods and fishing technology. Up to the present, they have had difficulty creating new jobs or obtaining new skills.
"I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth." Isaiah 49:6