Unsure of how the first translation of God’s Word would be received among a minority people group in the Caucasus, the response took the outreach team by surprise.
“God has not only opened the door to His Word—He has thrown it open!” declared Peter*, a MediaWorks partner. After two years of quietly translating God’s Word into the heart language of a minority group in the Caucasus, Peter and his colleagues were unsure how it would be received. Committing their efforts to God in prayer, they started introducing the published Bible storybook and advertising the accompanying app with audio, which MediaWorks designed. The response took them by surprise.
“When [people] found out [about] the book and an app with Bible stories, they invited us to the TV, radio and newspaper to tell the whole republic that they could have such a treasure!” Peter announced. Peter and other believers met with a university professor, schoolteachers, kindergarten teachers and librarians, which led to requests to present the new resources through regional media channels.
“We couldn't believe this book would grab the attention of the local people so much,” expressed Peter. Some schoolteachers wished to play the audio stories in their lessons. Kindergarten teachers invited the outreach team to visit again. A newspaper editor posted the information on Instagram, where their subscribers gave positive feedback and asked questions. Individuals who have responded to further online posts of the Bible stories are now communicating with believers.
“But not everything was so simple,” acknowledged Peter after a religious leader asked them to stop distributing copies. However, understanding that not everyone will welcome this development, the outreach team followed Jesus’ example and continued to share the good news.
“I’m very inspired by the Bible stories in my language,” said Anton*, the only Jesus follower in his remote mountain village. “Thanks to the stories, I learnt to preach.” Anton dreams of a family of believers coming to help him organise a small group in his village.
“People are now reading and listening to the Word of God in their own language,” shared Peter. “Local churches have begun to serve these people even more. They want to organise home groups for the study of Bible stories.” The church is small, and Peter emphasised the need for workers to join them to build on what has started. “We see that the local people are hungry for the Word of God,” he said. “We see that the harvest is ripe.”
MediaWorks and its partners praise God for the encouraging reaction to the Bible stories. May readers and listeners in the Caucasus encounter Jesus, including the actor who voiced the audio stories. We pray that Jesus will sustain the only believer in one village whose family is going through an extremely difficult time after experiencing tragic loss. We ask God to provide workers to go and support churches as they seek to establish Bible study groups and share the gospel in their communities.