I’m reading a book by Nicky Gumbel called Questions of Life, which goes along with an Alpha course Erick and I are taking through our church. It’s basically geared towards those who are curious about Christianity, but are not quite sure about the whole thing. It’s so excellent! Very thought provoking but not preachy-I really enjoy it (we are taking it because, well, just about everyone in our church has taken the course through the years. It’s a great refresher for those who aren’t new to the faith). Anyway. Not my point. 🙂 Last night I read this paragraph:
About sixteen years ago I was on vacation with my family in central Asia, in part of the former USSR. At that time Bibles were strictly illegal there, but I took some Christian literature, including some Russian Bibles. While I was there, I went to churches and looked for people who seemed from their faces to be genuine Christians. (At that time the meetings were usually infiltrated by the KBG.) On one occasion I followed a man, who was probably in his sixties, down the street after a service. I went up to him and tapped him on the shoulder. There was nobody around. I took out one of my Bibles and handed it to him. For a moment he had an expression of almost disbelief. Then he took from his pocket a New Testament, which was probably a hundred years old. The pages were so threadbare they were virtually transparent. When he realized that he had received a whole Bible, he was elated. He didn’t speak any English and I didn’t speak any Russian. We hugged each other and he started to run down the street jumping for joy, because he knew that the Bible was the most precious thing in the world.
I couldn’t wait to dig back into my Bible after reading that paragraph. Who am I to let it sit by my bed, for the most part going unread in the name of “busy-ness?” I prayed for fresh eyes and a hunger for the Word, and I got it. Mighty fine feeling. 🙂