China (MNN) — Hard work and sacrifice is the perfect recipe to touch someone’s heart and encourage them.
Bibles for China recognizes that the right attitude is also necessary to make an impact on people in China during their Bible verification trips.
Barry Werner of Bibles for China explains that while they cannot call their mission trips distribution trips, “We do distribute Bibles, but we don’t look at it as a Bible distribution trip because in China, only the CCC, the China Christian Council, can actually distribute Bibles.”
Bibles for China is invited by the CCC to verify this distribution and to celebrate with the Christians as they receive their Bibles.
The next trip is taking place next month.
Before every trip, volunteer teams go through a short briefing to go over things they should and should not do and say while in China. Many of these don’ts fall under the category of politics.
Bibles for China also encourages teams to focus on what unifies them with the national Christians, and not the differences between the Western Church and the Chinese Church–or any political topics, for that matter. Namely, they are encouraged to focus on Christ, the whole point of the Bible distribution.
On the trip, teams get to go see where the Bibles are printed, meet their team leader and translator, then spend three days distributing/verifying Bibles and celebrating with other Christians. They have a final day to debrief and go sightseeing.
Werner says it’s “just one day to let our hearts settle back down and prepare us for the culture shock we’ll have when we come back into America after seeing a church that’s so alive in China–come back and not every church is quite as on fire in America.”
The work these teams do for three days is quite astonishing. “We try to have each team distribute between 5,000-6,000 Bibles in a 3-day period, usually to maybe 12 or 15 churches,” Werner explains. “These churches are quite spread out; they’re rural churches, so you might travel for an hour from one church to another.”
The teams leave early in the morning and get back late at night, sacrificing sleep in order to bring joy to remote churches. Werner says often times they return to a late meal with their host. While team members would often prefer to hurry through their meal and get to bed, Werner explains that meals with fellow Christians in China is a valuable connection point.
He says, “The days are long, and sometimes they get extended even when you think they might not need the extension. They still get extended just to have this social moment.”
The trip is taking place in November. While it’s too late to join this one, it is never too late to pray for God’s blessing over the trip.
Werner says, “Every team needs to have stamina. The health issues can be amazing with the travel, and so pray for good health. We’ll do the work either way, but it’s difficult to do it when you’re not feeling well.
“Pray for a humble spirit, a servant’s heart. Everywhere we go, we hear words like, ‘We almost have wondered if God had forgotten about us. But then we realized, when He sent someone halfway around the word to deliver a Bible to us–His Word, that He hasn’t forgotten.”
Werner says it is important for those who go on trips with Bibles for China to remember they are doing God’s work to build up the Church and to serve fellow believers. This enables them to be a witness to the people around them.
For more opportunities to support Bibles for China, click here.