Breathlessly climbing what seemed to be a never-ending non-trail to nowhere, our visiting team wondered who we might meet at the top of this series of hills. For many of us, this proved to be the “mountaintop experience” short-term teams imagine when they board the plane from the U.S. to regions beyond.
A crippled shepherdess met us at the end of this particular excursion. Our gift of an audio Bible in her language was the greatest encouragement she could receive. Unable to attend church services, and in fact unable to leave her mountaintop home at all unless carried, this sweet woman watched a small flock of sheep by creeping around with the help of a rustic crutch. I smile to think of her in that lonely place, accompanied by Jesus gently speaking daily truths to her in her own language as her lambs nibble at her long braids.
As we are recruiting future distribution teams, we often quote the adage, “If a picture is worth a thousand words, an experience is worth a thousand pictures” (author unknown). It is so true. What team members tell us is that they finally “get it.” Audio Scripture Ministries makes perfect sense to them. They understand the need to pray, to give, and to go. Experiencing the thrill of watching people hear God’s Word in their own language for the first time is life-changing.
Teams also tell us that it is an honor and a privilege to personally experience the culmination of this joint effort of reaching the non-literate. One person laboriously analyzes and transcribes the language and translates the entire New Testament. Others painstakingly check it for linguistic and biblical accuracy. Finally, others record and produce it in audio format. Words we hear to describe this generally include “unbelievable,” “humbling,” and “amazing” when teams give testimony about distributing audio Bibles in Mexico.
Team trips are not for the faint of heart. They are often physically taxing and spiritually challenging. Not all who apply will be accepted. Nonetheless, we encourage you to pray about whether God wants you to partner with ASM by organizing or taking a team trip to Oaxaca, Mexico, or beyond. Can we suggest a sunny winter vacation with a purpose? We would love the excuse to escape from the bitter cold of Michigan sometime next winter, while enjoying the vivid reminder of what Audio Scripture Ministries is all about. Join us! You won’t regret it.