My mom tells stories of when she was going to school in Minnesota or North Dakota where they had to walk to school in the freezing cold. Sometimes they would carry baked potatoes or even stones that were hot out of the oven to keep their fingers warm on the journey.
Most of us wouldn’t walk very far for anything. We’re used to the modern conveniences of transportation and we are too impatient to spend much time on anything. How far would you walk or how many days would you walk to learn more about the Bible?
We just completed another Oral Bible Storytelling course where people come to learn Bible Stories and retell them in their own language. Papua New Guinea is a strong oral society, so Oral Bible Storying fits very well in the culture.
But in order to come to the course, some of the people walked barefoot two days and then spent 20 hours packed in the back of a truck traveling the roughly 110 miles (180 km) to the course, only to repeat the process in reverse two weeks later. (It takes that long to travel the 110 miles because of the road condition.) I’ve walked to their village before. The steep mountains and valleys that you descend and climb make it seem like you really do walk uphill both ways.
It makes it shameful when I have trouble rolling over in my bed to read my Bible that is in my own language. Do I see the blessings of Christian radio, being literate and having tons of material and books to read, and having a full Bible in my language in multiple translations as something so little? How hungry am I to spend time with God?
It’s just another way my PNG brothers challenge me in my faith.