Do You Desire To Have A Nica Bible?

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I just got back from Nicaragua and want to share some Bible insights I gathered from the people there. I noticed that on average the brothers and sisters there treat their physical Bibles different from me. I want to be clear that this article is not meant to try to condemn anyone especially the church in America. These are just there categories of care that deeply affected me and have helped shape new convictions.

Perhaps I’m becoming more and more phone-based like all of America. I thank God all of the time for You Version and technology in general and we should. It is not only a luxury to be able to connect so quickly and easily with the entire world and with each other but it is also a great tool. No, it is an arsenal. We have insane power and resources available to us.

Back to the story, the Willing To Go team spent the bulk of our time in the 3 locations: on an island called Zapatera, at a discipleship camp for men called Campo Gonia and at a wonderful church called El Puente. In each of these cases a Bible story developed and I would like to share them with you. I hope you find both encouragement and challenge in this. As we said on the trip, “This is challenge by choose.”

1. Great Hearing
One of the team members purchased Proclaimers to leave with the communities on the island. We left one there with a Person of Peace who wanted to begin a Christian Church gathering in His home. This tool is incredible. It is a solar powered audio Bible (in Spanish).

This man who hosted us and escorted us to the rest of the communities in the island smiled all the time. This makes it hard to evaluate how to respond to a lot of things. But this man showed a level of seriousness that accompanied a weight of glory to have the privilege of housing such a priceless jewel in His home as the Word of God.

The morning we left the teammate presented the Proclaimer and the brother did not stop thanking us even after we made it to the mainland and he headed back for the boat. I know that the Word of God will be lifted up there and heard by many. God’s promise that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God means that others will come to faith right there in that home where we stayed.

2. Great Care & Distress
Campo Gonia is a ministry for men ready to make a change in their lives. Many have experienced jail time, broken families, addictions and other such broken backgrounds. These guys get one shot at a 9 month program. They don’t have to be Christians but they must be open to the message.

Everything that goes on at that farm/ranch is centered around discipleship. Working with animals or manual labor are not merely therapeutic. They are now seen and taught and understood to be Worship unto God. Many of these guys haven’t really read the Bible or been around those who do very much.

Each one of these guys had Bibles that displayed their character. They take ownership by learning to truly make it theirs. The way they hide it in their heart is different and unique. Most used high lighters to mark the pages all up so that they can easily find the things that helped them in the past. Some just used a pen.

The common thread was that much like the tools they used, the Bible’s had wear on them and not just wear from writings and markings but all around deterioration from carrying it everywhere and to every activity. We use what we treasure. The picture in this post is one of the men’s Bibles.

3. Great Ownership
The last group I spent the most time with was a small group at the local church where we did the XPlore study together. My interpreter/friend had a Bible that had a split column of Spanish and English. I noticed that it looked brand new. I never asked why. After the first night I understood why it looked so immaculate and why it might last his whole lifetime.

He told me how much he made in a year when we began talking about the potential of sending missionaries. It wasn’t much. The amount was not as important to him though but what he did with that amount. He was really processing what it will look like to give to missionaries right there in El Puente. Then I remembered how nice and thick this Bible was with the hardback cover and it hit me that he really puts his money where his mouth is.

Finally, at the end of the time I saw His treasure went into a chest. He keeps the box casing that the Bible came in and he puts it in His pack back. No wonder it’s like brand new still. Wow! That’s all. Just wow.

Final Encouragements
I don’t like to write in my Bible but I was blessed by seeing the marked up Bibles at Camp Gonia. I know lots of people who love marking their Bibles up and they seem to grow closer to His Word with every mark. I was reminded of the power of the reading of the Word at Zapatera. Oral presentations are vital. We are blessed to be able to both listen and read along with our Bibles on our phones. Let us not forget to speak the Word of God and also to thank Him for the gift of literacy. I was struck at the heart and care for Bibles at El Puente and I hope that all three of these images leave scar tissue in my heart and mind that makes me cringe when I do not treasure his Words like I should. I want my life, my heart, mind, all of me to be like a back pack encasing the Word of God securely in a manner that is easily accessible and shared with all peoples.

Let us join in efforts of Bible translation for groups who still do not have the word of God in their Mother Tongue. We are so spoiled to the Word of God. It is like mana to us, we have enough for everyday and yet we even neglect it. We have to feast on it and make sure we are spreading it to the end of the earth.

18 Comments Add yours

  1. I’ve had my Bible (NIV Study Bible) for over 20 years. It is tattered to say the least. The cover is hanging by a few loose threads. My husband suggested that I get a new Bible. At first, I was excited. I went to the store, eager to explore different translations, different layouts, etc. but when a saleswoman asked how she could help, I burst into tears telling her I needed a new Bible–I realized I didn’t want a new Bible. I knew this one. I knew the feel of the pages, the notes I had marked about this verse and that verse. I knew that whatever verse I was looking for would be located on the bottom left—or wherever (I sometimes can envision where something is located on the page before knowing its reference—maybe that’s weird). I am sure the saleswoman was confused by my big emotions and by the fact that I decided not to buy a new Bible. That was a month ago and everyday, I think, “someday this cover is going to fall off and then what?” The answer I think came from you in this post—Then people will see how much it means to me.

    1. Spaniardviii says:

      Get your old Bible rebind so that you may keep it until you meet the Lord 🙂

  2. That’s awesome!
    The redneck in new says ducktails the cover if the binding starts letting the pages go but I don’t know if you can go that far yet. Haha.
    Seriously thanks for sharing! That’s a great story.

  3. The redneck in me* says duct* tape*

    Sorry

  4. Debbie L says:

    I completely wore out a study Bible in 10 years. A friend saw the binding coming off and my pages falling out. She said she would re-bind it for me….but she never did. It broke my heart when I could no longer use it….so I also went to the Bible store to replace it….I just couldn’t find one to replace it. I still have my “Sunday Bible” that only followed me to church and yes, I do mark it up each Sunday from the sermon with notes.
    My husband needed a large print Bible so I went off to buy him one. That’s when I learned they have “updated” the version we both grew to love and understand, NIV to NIV 2011. Oh my, it was heart breaking again to see the changes….
    Then we got a new pastor who challenged us to try NASB or ESV. He said NIV was really written at the 7th grade level. No wonder we understood it so much. We now I hardly use NIV, but it is my standard and in my heart as I read other versions, and I do read my Bible daily, on my iPhone. I’m so grateful for the 10 years of foundation I have buried in my heart.
    I love this post!

  5. pruningthetwig says:

    Thank you so much for this post. I have been trying to read my Bible more regularly. I have since realised that it isn’t about the actual act of having to do it but the heart behind it. When I read your post, I was forced to take a look at my heart for God and His Word. This has been a heart-revealing read for me. I know the Lord is close to those who draw near to Him. He pursues me but I must respond. Do I desire His Word like a bee to honey? Do I get drawn to it? Those are the questions that linger in my mind. Those guys are inspirations. They know real treasure when they see it. Once again thank you for this post. God bless you and your family!

    1. pruningthetwig says:

      I hope you don’t mind but I’d like to reblog this?:)

  6. Thank you all for the comments. I love hearing these stories. Why don’t we post pictures of our falling apart Bibles. I would love to see them.

  7. rachnotes says:

    Always been taught to respect my bible , in the sense of valuing it as the word of God. I can’t believe it but as an older generation in UK I now use my iPhone bible a lot now! I smiled at Nicky Gumbel also enjoying the connectivity technology brings. Good to hear of the value and power of the bible in other places. THANK YOU

    1. Thank you. I surprise myself how much I appreciate technology and it surprises me how much it serves my spiritual life. It’s encouraging to know I’m not alone too.

  8. To be honest James Technology does confuse me at times and I have often joked about this but yes I agree with you God’s Truth can now be shared all over the World because of it, Thank you for reminding us to be Thankful for all of God’s blessings.

    And yes God has blessed us greatly by giving Man understanding to invent ways to reach Mankind with His Truth even though Technology is sometimes used for evil too. But what is very important is for us to ask for His wisdom and empowering and believing we have received it as the Scriptures ask us to do which leads to God’s greater knowledge and insight.

    I will leave a link for you, it provides many of the Scriptures that talk about this important need although you may know more James, please share them with me if you do and I will add them on. We all need Godly wisdom, no one was born with it, King Solomon asked for God’s wisdom which pleased God and he received it, we all need to humble ourselves but sadly many think Worldly wisdom is enough.

    Wisdom – http://freedomborn.wordpress.com/2012/05/07/the-gaining-of-wisdom/

    “Christ”ian Love – Anne.

  9. wanderlustwarjie says:

    I used to refrain from marking my Bible whenever I have my quiet time. Being an OC (at times), I just don’t like any unorganized marking in mine.

    But as I grow deeper with God, I learned that in every mark I put in my Bible gives me a glimpse of how far have I been from before. Now, I even put my reflections there to make sure that they are all in one place. Nonetheless, it was such a surprisingly pleasant view to see my Bible all worn out. Each section that is still clean reminds me that I still need to give more of my time.

    But then again, we need to make sure that as much as possible, our Bibles will last for years, if not a lifetime, by taking really good care of it.

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