I cried the night we found out that the shipment of books we recently sent via container to Zambia arrived safely. Our missionary friend told my husband that as far as they could tell they only lost one jug of coconut oil out of 18 tons of materials. Among the materials arriving intact were 15 cases of TGC-IO books. I emailed Bill that night and quoted Psalm 115:1: "Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory." My heart burns for the glory of God and for people to know who he is. This is why my husband and I are committed to supporting The Gospel Coalition International Outreach.
You may wonder why we treat the arrival of the boxes as a big deal. After all, these are just books, it's not like we're sending medical equipment which would lead to better health and saved lives. We long for people who have very few or no resources to be blessed by the treasure of good, solid, God-honoring, truthful, and useful books. Books that will feed pastors and church leaders with God's truths. Books that will teach people to fear the Lord and give them insight into what he has done through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Books that will help shape these people as they build churches, evangelize, and strengthen their marriages and families.
One of the issues my husband and I struggled with is this: What happens to people in these countries after they are evangelized? How do they grow? What about the pastors and shepherds? How can they be strengthened to shepherd the flock of God? Will they be prepared to explain the Scriptures when asked tough questions by believers or nonbelievers?
It is the work of the Spirit and the wisdom of theologians, pastors, and church leaders that go into these books. They are as valuable in nurturing the church in distant lands as they are in the native lands of their authors. Moreover, books are durable and enduring, potentially bringing instruction to pastor after pastor, year after year, for generations once they have been sown in the mission field. We are blessed to be able to support the words, ideas, and experience that The Gospel Coalition International Outreach brings to pastors and peoples all around the world.
We're grateful for our partners in ministry like the Simms. They carry the burden of Theological Famine Relief with us. We have asked the Lord to bring us 100 partners through monthly support and we are well on our way. Would you consider joining us in this great global cause?