I hadn’t anticipated buying 120 Bibles in Swahili, but God is full of surprises. I was asked to preach to a group of about a 100 women in Congo. I preached on what it means to be God’s image bearers. The most fascinating part of our time was when I tried to explain to them that they were made for God first and foremost. I read the passage where God put man to sleep, and for a time – we aren’t sure how long – woman was with God before she was with man. The translator took 15 minutes trying to help them grasp that concept. The idea that woman was not made solely for man was hard for them. They live in a culture where women are second-class citizens, and their worth is based on their honoring their husbands and bearing sons. So to hear their worth is tied to being an image bearer – and their most important relationship was with God – was mind boggling. The translator, John, asked if I’d come back and teach this to his congregation! I ended our time with handing out the bibles and having them read Genesis 1:26 in their own language. To hear a room full of women declare themselves to be image bearers is something I will never forget.
Thank you to all who donated to help put the Word of God into these women’s hands. May the Spirit enable them to comprehend just how worthy they are and how magnificent their God is.