At our free meals program a few months back for some 200 children, we were faced with the stark reality of the words of Yeshua, our Lord and Saviour, as expressed in Matthew 4.4: “Man shall not live by bread alone.”
The children we went to serve had been fed with rice, chicken, vegetables, popcorn, nutritious local drinks, water and given various donations of clothing. With all this, many of the children wanted more meals and the other stuffs. It was a heart-rending experience.
One may feel so touched and moved by the overwhelming needs amongst rural children, and easily overlook their real need for spiritual food also. As the Holy Spirit would want it, we had a prompting to take a head count of the children without Bibles. It turned out over hundred of the children present, representing fifty percent plus, had no Bibles!
How could we provide for the material needs of children and neglect the provision for a much greater need – the word of God? Even though we had shared the word of God with the children and had led many to Christ, yet we were humbled by this lack of Bibles among the children and acted promptly to have their needs met.
Well, acting promptly has taken us a few months to come up with 50 Bibles so far, which we distributed last Sunday (Oct 27). It was a very memorable occasion for the over 70 children who attended the distribution ceremony. Only 50 of these had been formally invited.
It was an all-children’s affair. The Opening Prayers were said by a child. Another child gave a song. Many were given opportunity to recount what happened during the previous program. They all remembered the number of books in the Bible as they were taught and have gone to study the names of the books in the Bible in their right orders, as they were instructed! The pastor who led the children again gave the children a general introduction to the Bible and encouraged all to make the Bible their best book in the world!
All didn’t go down well with everybody, though. Some 20 children didn’t receive Bibles, and didn’t hide their feelings! Eleven of these 20 have not reached the age of reading yet, but wanted the Bibles anyway. The others who could read didn’t also get any because there was none left. They were all promised appropriate Bibles during our next distribution.
When we look back some ten or more years from now, a child is going to remember the day he or she received the gift of a Bible from our ministry, and may point to that day as the turning point for the transformation of his or her life.
The rippling and real effects this donation of Bibles will have on other children, their parents and their villages and communities will be monumental, as word is spread about the event, making more and more people hunger for the Word.
We now realize that a much more excellent way to glorify God in local rural communities in Ghana, through the distribution of free Bibles for children, is to have say a monthly stock of at least 50-100 Bibles ready for immediate distribution alongside our feeding programs. This figure represents 25-50% of our monthly average of feeding 200 children.
We will be praying towards that possibility, believing God will make a way where there seems to be no way. With God all things are possible. And with Bibles in the hands of children today, the future of these marginalized children will have a divine touch and a more glorified look!
As usual, many volunteers left the distribution grounds with a disturbing image in mind: some children crying for Bibles!
Pictures: Recipients of the Fifty (50) Children’s Bibles, all marginalized rural children in Ghana. We pray this represents the humble beginning of regular monthly gifts of 50-100 Bibles to marginalized rural children, so precious to put Lord and Saviour, Yeshua.
We recognize the help of the Bible Society of Ghana (Bible House) in offering us 10% discount on the cost of the Bibles. May God protect and elevate their good work.