Would You Pray for the Uzbeks?

Would You Pray for the Uzbeks?

Uzbekistan, in Central Asia, is home to the Uzbeks, numbering 28,516,000 in the country and 32,497,000 worldwide. Uzbeks are known for immigrating and working in many other countries nearby in particular. Beyond this population there are also a sizable number of ethnic Karakalpak, Kyrgyz, Turkmen, Kazakh, Tadjik, Kalmyk, Bashkir, and Russian people living in this country, but the focus of this article is on the ethnic Uzbeks there who speak the language by the same name.

The love of Jesus Christ is largely unknown to the Uzbeks, and they face significant barriers to the good news reaching them as there is minimal Christian presence. Societal expectations and norms also pose challenges to sharing Christ’s love, requiring nuanced approaches. Pray for the Lord to soften hearts, breaking through and sparking a hunger for spiritual truth.

Uzbekistan’s economy centers on agriculture and natural resources, historically cotton, but in many other agricultural products as well. Government initiatives strive to diversify and reduce reliance on cotton and natural gas. Abundant resources like gas, gold, uranium, and copper, are beginning to contribute more significantly to exports. Manufacturing, especially textiles, food processing, and machinery, are also now a focus. The services sector, including finance and tourism, is expanding with efforts to attract foreign investment. Uzbekistan has undergone swift economic and social transformation of late, with the goal of stimulating growth and evolving the country into a genuine, contemporary market economy. Challenges include an underdeveloped private sector, legal issues, and ongoing diversification needs. Pray that some Christians may find a way to do business as Global Marketplace Multipliers among the Uzbeks to increase the witness of the love of Jesus among them.

Uzbekistan is a former Soviet police state and this dynamic has greatly affected the church which has often been persecuted and gone underground. The new economic openness to the world is allowing a re-growth of Islam that hasn’t been seen there in decades. It is a true challenge for the church to respond to. Many report that Uzbeks are rapidly returning to Islam. Because of Uzbekistan’s influence in the region, what happens there will impact all the other countries and the implications for the Gospel are immense.

Pray for local believers and foreign workers engaging with Uzbeks where they live. May they receive wisdom, courage, and divine guidance in navigating cultural landscapes. Pray as well for the growth of indigenous-led movements among Uzbeks, becoming beacons of hope and transformation.

*Unreached People Groups (UPG) lack exposure to the Gospel, often in remote or culturally isolated regions. Global Marketplace Multipliers (GMM) spotlights UPGs, focusing on those exceeding 10 million in population, known as “Frontier People Groups.” While all unreached people matter, these communities represent the most unreached populations globally, deserving strategic attention, so GMM raises awareness about their critical needs.*