“Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7, NIV
If you live in the United States, when you hear the word “Thanksgiving,” you probably think of Pilgrims, Native Americans and a huge feast involving turkey and pumpkin pie held to celebrate the harvest. While the story of the first Thanksgiving does involve some of those elements, “giving thanks” to God began much earlier than the 1600s.
As we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, we should remember Patrick’s faithfulness to God’s call, as well as God amazing ability to use unlikely people and circumstances to advance His Kingdom.
According to Romans 12:6, God has given us different gifts. The gift that God has given to me is to serve Him and others through my language skills. I was born and raised on a very remote island in the South China Sea. My mother tongue is a dialect which is only spoken in that region. I had to learn Mandarin, the national language, at school. At the age of 12, I was chosen to go to a junior high …
“The entire village surrounded us with drawn swords,” Mathew recalls, “all shouting, ‘Cut off their heads! Cut off their heads!’”
Standing on a narrow street in Cuba’s second largest city, my cameraman, our translator and I are shielded from the wicked, late morning sun by a row of colorful, weather-beaten buildings that look like something straight out of the 1950s. Even though this is December, it’s close to 90 degrees and the humidity has to be approaching 100 percent. My shirt is soaked through with perspiration and I can feel the sweat running down my neck and back. But the pastor I’m talking with doesn’t seem to mind or even notice the heat. He has come to Santiago from a small, rural church about three hours away and is excitedly telling me about his nation, his people, and their hunger for God’s Word.
Biblica is about the Bible – God’s Word – in print, digital and audio-visual format. We translate the Bible into strategic languages of the world in a way people understand, so they are transformed by Christ and inspired to join God’s mission to the world.
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