I want to go into more detail and give a bit of an update on the idea about Action Bibles that I mentioned in my last post. The new church I have started going to has really blessed me. One Sunday, the pastor gave a sermon on reaching our community. Paul said, "I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some." (1 Cor. 9:22) The pastor stated that we need to know what our neighbors care about, so that we can present them the Gospel through that. For instance, I know churches do barbeques in parks so that they can gather a crowd and witness to others that way.
After the sermon I prayed in the pews for God to show me how to find and reach the very hearts of the people in my city. I kept thinking, why do I feel the need to leave the country to tell people about Jesus' love, when there are needy people right in my community? Could it be that I am more concerned about being judged by an American community than by an international community? This moment in reflection was what I needed to really think about my motives for serving God. I realized that I should be willing to serve Christ in any situation, even the most awkward and least glamorous settings.
It was then that God placed on my heart an idea for a project. My heart is in teaching children, especially in getting children excited about reading. Quite a few of my former students lit up like Christmas trees when I brought them comic books to read. So a little voice in my heart said, why not combine my passions, the childrens' interests, and the Gospel? Some people might remember The Picture Bible, which is an illustrated version of the Bible. I grew up with and loved this Bible, for its vivid details and descriptions of Bible stories.
When I returned home, I researched illustrated Bibles and found a more contemporary illustrated Bible. The Action Bible is a very crisp and colorful illustrated Bible, best read by 9-12 year old children. I thought about how I would use the Action Bibles in a ministry. I immediately thought about the after school program I worked at for nearly two full school years. The program is run in a church across the street from an elementary school. Since it is a faith-based organization, I knew that it would be a wonderful environment for a weekly Bible study. When I spoke with the director, she was completely on board and even donated towards some Action Bibles. I am so excited about how this project is turning out!
I want to read and discuss Bible stories with the 4th and 5th graders in the after school program one afternoon a week. Everything is ready for me to begin this new ministry. All that is remaining is the Action Bibles themselves. Since they are illustrated, it would be better for each of my students to be able to read from an Action Bible. I would like to have 20 Action Bibles before starting this class, as I believe that God will bring at least that many interested students to the class. With shipping, each Action Bible costs around 15 dollars. My grandmother has already helped raise some of the money for the Bibles and so far we have nearly 6 Bibles paid for. Praise God! I hope to begin this Bible class soon, so if anyone would like to pitch in towards some Action Bibles, I would be very appreciative. I believe that once children understand how much Jesus loves them, their world will just open up for them and we will see a big difference in their lives.
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