Some time ago (I can’t remember exactly when) I started holding on to all my $5 bills. If I was given a $5 bill in my change, no matter the sacrifice, I held onto it. I had a specific place for them in my wallet and about bi-weekly, I would transfer the $5 bills to a sort of piggy bank.
Originally, I knew we wanted to save up for a French door refrigerator. When we bought that (largely with $5 bills), I kept saving the fives. About a month ago, we bought a new-to-us car and again paid for it with cash (much of it in $5 bills). Still I kept saving.
It was difficult sometimes when I would only have a $20 bill to pay for something under five dollars only to receive my change in the form of three $5 bills. It can really cut into the grocery budget sometimes. But I had made a commitment to save them and saw the Lord’s hand even in the change I was given at the store. This morning I could see that the idea of saving my $5 bills all that time ago was part of a divine plan.
This morning I walked into church (late like almost always with our two little ones) and one of the pastors from a local church was speaking about the One Hope Project. We are very familiar with this ministry since it is a local ministry our church has been involved in for a long time. The purpose of the One Hope Project is to encourage the persecuted church by giving them what they desire the most: a Bible in their own language.
Each year on the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church, we are given the opportunity, through the One Hope Project, to contribute to their mission. We take an offering and provide Bibles (as many as we can) at $5 each. Each $5 donation pays for printing and delivering the Bible into the hands of a persecuted believer. And each year we have done this has been amazing! Since 2008, God has used our small valley to raise $60,000 to give nearly 13,000 Bibles to the persecuted church!
But the pastor who spoke this morning issued a challenge that immediately signaled the call of the Lord on my heart. He asked us to consider committing to give $5 each week, as long as the Lord should enable us to provide a Bible each week for the persecuted believers elsewhere in the world. I immediately knew that God was preparing my heart to give my $5 bills, one week at a time to encourage and build up His church and my fellow brothers and sisters. And I am so excited to share this opportunity with you!
Here is the card we were given the opportunity to fill out and give to our pastor:
Isn’t this such a neat opportunity? Just imagine the change you get from your groceries going to encourage fellow believers elsewhere in the world with the Word of God! Or imagine forgoing that Starbucks drink to gift a persecuted Christian with a lifetime of encouragement from the very Word of God! I am so excited for this!
My pastor followed up the other pastor’s remarks and challenge, with a quote from Abraham Lincoln regarding the Word of God:
What more can I say? If you would like to get involved in this challenge, please go to the One Hope Project website and check it out. They have partnered with Open Doors to do this project, so you could also commit to do it and then just send the money to Open Doors (if you do it through this link they will be able to track your donation as having come through the One Hope Project).