“It is the same with my Word.
I send it out, and it always produces fruit.
It will accomplish all I want it to,
and it will prosper everywhere I send it.”
— Isaiah 55:11
When I was an 8-year-old, my grandfather, Pop, took me to the Baltimore airport to hand out Bibles to passengers coming off of the planes. Pop shared with me that there was a right way and a wrong way to hand out Bibles. He said to never ask, “Do you want a Bible?” Rather, he instructed me to say, “I have a gift for you. I would like for you to have a Bible.” Not a question, but instead an invitation to receive God’s Word. A powerful lesson learned from a wise old sage!
Truth be told, I was petrified. I was just a small boy. Why should I be subjected to such rejection and humiliation? However, saying no to Pop wasn’t an option, so we dressed to look our best and arrived at the airport with bags of Bibles. He had the perfect place at the airport to do our ministry work already scouted out. After hundreds of times, he knew exactly where to stand for the greatest impact. But this was my first trip, and I was overwhelmed and afraid. We prayed and asked God to use every copy of His Word to penetrate the hearts and minds of those who received it.
Prayed up and trained up, I was ready to go. After two hours of giving God’s Word to strangers as gifts, I was surprised I wasn’t mocked, ridiculed or humiliated. Instead, I learned first-hand the incredible power of God’s Word being given as gift to bless others. I don’t think a single person said no. Maybe it was Pop’s training, or that I was an 8-year-old boy. Either way, it was used for God’s purposes.
Not only did my grandfather model a passion for distributing God’s Word, but my father did the same. There was never a time I remember my father not having a box of Bibles in the back seat of his car, so he could strategically bless someone with a gift. Now as a third-generation Bible distributor, I have the same passion to see God’s Word getting into the hands of coaches and athletes. I have taken hundreds of bags of Bibles around the world, so our international leaders can bless coaches and athletes in their countries with a gift!
One of the things I love most about FCA is we have the same passion for God’s Word. Often, I share with people that FCA is a sports ministry. They understand that. But when I share we are a Bible ministry as well, they are surprised. Last year, FCA distributed 169,815 Bibles and 2.5 million in the last 15 years! Did I just hear a “Praise God!?” We have a strong passion to print and distribute God’s Word, and more importantly, see coaches and athletes transformed in God’s Word. Creating scripture resources, reading plans and devotions help coaches and athletes to engage with the Bible.
We are also seeing the Bible ministry grow internationally, and the hunger for God’s Word is great. Just last year, we were able to partner with a Bible society to develop and distribute 50,000 Thai Sports New Testaments and 10,000 Vietnamese Sports New Testaments. We are in the process of developing, publishing and printing the 2018 STRONG Sports Bible Handbook into eight languages for summer camp: Korean, Mandarin, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Ukrainian, Russian and Urdu.
We are thankful bags of Bibles are blessing coaches and athletes around the world. We pray God’s Word will always produce fruit. We desire to lead every coach and every athlete into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ and His church. That’s our mission! And the best way to do this is to engage coaches and athletes with the Word, equip them with the Word and empower them with the Word. Join us as we continue to place millions of God’s Word into the hands of coaches and athletes around the world!
Father, thank You for using FCA as a Bible ministry and strategically getting Your Word into the hands of coaches and athletes. We pray You will continue to send Your Word out, and it will produce fruit. We ask that it accomplish all You want it to, and it will prosper everywhere You send it. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.