Go Gideons!

This past weekend my husband and I attended a breakfast for pastors and their wives, hosted by the local Gideon camp.  Then on Sunday, one of the Gideons came to give a temple talk at our church.  In case you haven’t heard about this organization, they are the folks who put Bibles in hotel rooms;  they give New Testaments to students;  they hold Bible blitzs both here and abroad where they stand on street corners, offering Bibles to anyone who would like one. They also now give out a free Bible app!  Although I have some issues with their theology (make a decision for Christ), I have none with their mission of putting the Holy Scripture into as many hands as possible.

Terry and I had a good friend who was a Gideon.  In his final year, suffering from cancer, he would walk around the hospital where he was a patient, giving away New Testaments to other patients.  His dedication to God’s Word was truly inspiring.

When you attend a Gideon event, you will be sure to hear the testimonies of people who have been converted as a direct result of receiving a Gideon Bible.  At the breakfast we were treated to a video of a woman who “stole” a Gideon Bible out of a hotel room when she was a teen.  Everyone in her family was a “good” person.  They were generous and compassionate to others.  However, they were atheists.  She had no knowledge of the gospel at all.  She began reading that Bible on page one, and by the time she graduated from high school, she had finished it.  In college she met a Christian who witnessed to her, and she became a Christian.  Many family members converted.  She said that Gideon Bible would be the family Bible they would pass on — along with the story of how she “stole” it–to future generations.

“…so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11

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Step by Step

“God cares for you intimately, but is never thinking only of you.  His plans are always bigger than us, and that is for our ultimate good.”

From “Climbing with Abraham” by David Ramos

A few days ago, I read the quote above in a devotional I’m using.  It went on to say how Abraham, at the end of his life, had only one legitimate heir and a burial plot in the land where God had taken him.  He didn’t see the fulfillment of the promises God had made to him.  He never knew that one of his physical descendants would be Jesus and his spiritual descendants, the Church.

Then I went to a Gideon breakfast with my husband.  A man spoke about how he found a Gideon Bible in what he described as “a roach motel.”  In two years he had read the entire Bible.  He became a Christian, then a pastor.  He started a new church and now that congregation sponsors missionaries in 6 countries.  The Gideon who placed the Bible will probably never meet him.

Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses on a church door.  He expected to open a dialog that would lead to some reforms in the Catholic church.  He had no idea it would lead to new denominations, printing and translation of the  Bible into numerous languages, an increase in public education, etc..

We can only follow God’s leading one step at a time.  We are “living stones” in God’s plan, but we will only see a small piece of our part.  Maybe we’ll even think we have failed to accomplish anything. Lucky for us, we’re not in charge.  If we’re faithful, God will use us in ways we can’t even imagine.

So, if you’re discouraged, take heart. You’re part of God’s plan, just like Abraham, Martin Luther, and the Gideons.  He loves you and so do I!