"And God, protect the lives of those who will receive these Bibles, and burn your words into their hearts so that they may endure whatever faces them as they step out in faith to live a life for you in an area of the world that is it forbidden to be called a Christian, Amen”
As the words stumbled out of my mouth and the last amen was uttered I looked up into the faces of those who had joined me in prayer. A lot depended on the afternoons activities. For the past two months we had been praying over five little New Testament Bibles which were headed to China. As the Bibles came in each month, we prayed for the individuals on our list even though we could not read their names for the language was foreign to us.
Every Bible we put into an envelope and sealed shut, meant another brother or sister would receive the words of life in a place very foreign to our comfortable lives in America. For the individual receiving the Bible, it also meant that these same beloved in Christ would face persecution and death as they possessed this life written on the page.
The emotions of the group stirred and like a dam breaking they began to utter, “Juli, this isn’t enough…”, “Juli, we need to send more Bibles…”, “Juli, how much do they cost…” Juli, can we do this every week…” I too was overwhelmed knowing what we were doing on the other side of the planet impacted eternity… our eternity as well as our beloved persecuted brethren… but what more could we do?
The Bibles are the lifeline for these people and we were the ones throwing them the rope…Were we providing comfort that day? Were we providing instruction, encouragement, support, to those in need? Or were we signing the death certificate for a mother, a father, a son, a daughter?
As I pondered these things, I looked into the eyes and hearts of my friends sitting beside me. For the first time, I understood what they felt. I saw them suffering as though they themselves were in chains. I saw pain in their eyes, knowing the consequences carried by these envelopes. I saw the burden on their hearts to send these Bibles on because they knew the beloved on this list signed up for what lay ahead. I saw the cost of what following Christ was for my friends… it was everything!
“It’s not enough”, I muttered… “it will never be enough…” “But…”
“There is no but… not for us, Juli… do whatever it takes because we need more Bibles to send each month!” The small group erupted unanimously but with unity of heart. Speaking to me the same vision and passion as was burning in my heart. Producing ideas for funding the ministry and excitement spilled over at the thought of praying over more names each month… “I’ll pay for five Bibles a month…”, “So will I!”… “Let’s have a bake sale to raise the money” “Juli, we have to do what it takes to get life into China!”
So there it was…our group had decided life. We choose the Words of life. We were going to send more Bibles into a country that prohibits them from being read or owned. We wanted to honor our brethren who enlisted to receive the Bibles by sending them, even if it meant giving their lives or their families lives to possess them. Our group chose life that day! So can you…Join us next month as we send twenty-five Bibles into a fertile hungry land where these words of life will rain down on those who are thirsty!