juana

Your gift of Lead Today transformed
her life and future!

Her nation was once the murder capital of the world — now there’s relative peace, but still not much safety:

  • Of the 29 countries evaluated in the Global Youth Wellbeing Index, Colombia ranks a dismal 27 for safety and security with the highest rate of death by interpersonal violence for young people of any nation in the index.1
  • A report by Doctors Without Borders decries: “A high number of threats, targeted killings, kidnappings, disappearances, harassment, extortion, and restrictions on people’s movements, [are] significantly impacting people’s physical and mental health.”2

Juana could see the suffering of her generation … but didn’t know how to help. Then you sent the Lead Today program to her town.

“I believe that God captured my heart from the very beginning of the program,” Juana says.

“I understood that to be a leader I must bless and influence the different spheres of society … in order to be like Christ — the light of the world.”

Today, Juana is shining the light of Christ as a leader at her school, and in her family, where she strives to be a good example for her younger cousins. Your gift of Lead Today is bringing hope to her, and all those she influences!


1https://www.youthindex.org/country/colombia

2https://www.msf.org/colombia-people-suffer-high-levels-violence-despite-peace-process

madison

Reading God’s Word —
or Engaging with It?

In the context of spiritual formation, this is a pivotal question: “Is it enough to simply read God’s Word, or must one actually engage with it to grow in their faith and be transformed by it?”

Consider eight-year-old Madison, who reads her Bible quietly for fifteen minutes every night before going to bed. There are many words she doesn’t understand, numbers in weird places breaking up the text, and fragmented bits and pieces of stories that don’t hold her attention or seem to apply to her.

But at Sunday School, a Scripture passage or Bible story is audibly and visually presented. Madison may be invited to draw or act out the story. Big words and ideas are contextualized for her and explained.

She sees the Bible verses on the wall, on a big screen, hears someone read it from the Bible, looks it up in her own copy of God’s Word, reads it aloud with her small group, and participates in a discussion about what it means and how it’s relevant to her life.

Which scenario do you think will have more impact on Madison’s spiritual development?

In a missional context, we cannot limit Scripture engagement to merely literacy-based experiences. Globally, many children are pre-literate, illiterate, or functionally illiterate.

It is vital that we contextualize God’s Word for every audience, not just those who can read Scripture on a page. That’s why OneHope invests heavily in orality programs, short films, drama teams, and audio as mediums to convey the powerful truths from God’s Word

God's big story

What Is God’s Big Story?

In African churches, children are raised in families who identify as Christian but don’t really have a faith of their own. Churches offer Bible Clubs but struggle with low attendance.

What is the solution? God’s Big Story, a OneHope program made up of 16 Bible stories that convey the overarching metanarrative of Scripture and lead children to faith in Jesus Christ.

Each story is supported by a baseball-card sized illustration that children collect at each club meeting — which keeps them coming back week after week.

keziah

A Refugee Finds Hope —
Thanks to You

Keziah and her family fled their home nation of Burundi amidst violent political and social turmoil. They crowded into neighboring Rwanda with scores of other refugees.

The future looked bleak because Keziah was no longer able to attend school … until Keziah was accepted at a Christian school and got to be part of the God’s Big Story program.

She eagerly memorized the Bible story from each lesson and treasured each illustrated card that reminded her of the story … when she had learned all the stories, they pointed her directly to a decision for Jesus.

Today, Keziah is following Christ as her Savior!

Thank you for showing her the way to new life in Christ and giving her hope for the future.

Your gift of Lead Today transformed
her life and future!

Her nation was once the murder capital of the world — now there’s relative peace, but still not much safety:

  • Of the 29 countries evaluated in the Global Youth Wellbeing Index, Colombia ranks a dismal 27 for safety and security with the highest rate of death by interpersonal violence for young people of any nation in the index.1
  • A report by Doctors Without Borders decries: “A high number of threats, targeted killings, kidnappings, disappearances, harassment, extortion, and restrictions on people’s movements, [are] significantly impacting people’s physical and mental health.”2

Juana could see the suffering of her generation … but didn’t know how to help. Then you sent the Lead Today program to her town.

“I believe that God captured my heart from the very beginning of the program,” Juana says.

“I understood that to be a leader I must bless and influence the different spheres of society … in order to be like Christ — the light of the world.”

Today, Juana is shining the light of Christ as a leader at her school, and in her family, where she strives to be a good example for her younger cousins. Your gift of Lead Today is bringing hope to her, and all those she influences!


1https://www.youthindex.org/country/colombia

2https://www.msf.org/colombia-people-suffer-high-levels-violence-despite-peace-process

Reading God’s Word —
or Engaging with It?
by President Rob Hoskins

In the context of spiritual formation, this is a pivotal question: “Is it enough to simply read God’s Word, or must one actually engage with it to grow in their faith and be transformed by it?”

Consider eight-year-old Madison, who reads her Bible quietly for fifteen minutes every night before going to bed. There are many words she doesn’t understand, numbers in weird places breaking up the text, and fragmented bits and pieces of stories that don’t hold her attention or seem to apply to her.

But at Sunday School, a Scripture passage or Bible story is audibly and visually presented. Madison may be invited to draw or act out the story. Big words and ideas are contextualized for her and explained.

She sees the Bible verses on the wall, on a big screen, hears someone read it from the Bible, looks it up in her own copy of God’s Word, reads it aloud with her small group, and participates in a discussion about what it means and how it’s relevant to her life.

Which scenario do you think will have more impact on Madison’s spiritual development?

In a missional context, we cannot limit Scripture engagement to merely literacy-based experiences. Globally, many children are pre-literate, illiterate, or functionally illiterate.

It is vital that we contextualize God’s Word for every audience, not just those who can read Scripture on a page. That’s why OneHope invests heavily in orality programs, short films, drama teams, and audio as mediums to convey the powerful truths from God’s Word

What Is God’s Big Story?

In African churches, children are raised in families who identify as Christian but don’t really have a faith of their own. Churches offer Bible Clubs but struggle with low attendance.

What is the solution? God’s Big Story, a OneHope program made up of 16 Bible stories that convey the overarching metanarrative of Scripture and lead children to faith in Jesus Christ.

Each story is supported by a baseball-card sized illustration that children collect at each club meeting — which keeps them coming back week after week.

A Refugee Finds Hope —
Thanks to You

Keziah and her family fled their home nation of Burundi amidst violent political and social turmoil. They crowded into neighboring Rwanda with scores of other refugees.

The future looked bleak because Keziah was no longer able to attend school … until Keziah was accepted at a Christian school and got to be part of the God’s Big Story program.

She eagerly memorized the Bible story from each lesson and treasured each illustrated card that reminded her of the story … when she had learned all the stories, they pointed her directly to a decision for Jesus.

Today, Keziah is following Christ as her Savior!

Thank you for showing her the way to new life in Christ and giving her hope for the future.

How Lead Today is Inspiring a Generation of Godly Leaders

Binta

She Gave Up on Being a Leader —
Until You Sent Lead Today

Binta’s dream was to become a politician, be elected to government, and help make important changes that would benefit all the people of her nation of Sierra Leone.

Then her father told her: “Before you become a prominent personality, especially a politician, you have to gain influence by joining a secret society like I did.”

In West Africa it’s the Poro Society for women and is the counterpart of the Sande Society.3

But these societies have demonic foundations — when Binta’s father passed away, he had a Poro Society funeral, and she was terrified by the rituals and chanting —

“I decided within me I wanted nothing to do with that!” Binta recalls. “I would just get a basic job and live a quiet life if that’s what you have to do to be prominent.”

But then she was enrolled in Lead Today and learned the principles of godly leadership — that had nothing to do with secret societies or demonic power.

“This teaching really touched me because it revived my dream in me,” Binta says.

She’s now planning to pursue politics when she goes to college and help bring truth and justice to her nation as a godly leader.

lead today

Lead Today Shares the Gospel and
Builds Godly Christian Leaders

Lead Today is our integrated Scripture engagement program that teaches teenagers what it means to be a leader.

Through research, we discovered that young people in many African nations said they never wanted to be leaders. They are familiar with leaders who are corrupt and use their power to accumulate wealth for themselves, while robbing their people — no wonder teenagers don’t want to be like that!

They need to know that there is a biblical model for leadership that is honorable and important — and that anyone can develop the traits of godly leadership if they try.

We looked to leadership expert John Maxwell and his EQUIP Leaders team. God put it in John’s heart to help needy young people become strong biblical leaders, and he generously agreed to partner with us.

By God’s grace, the resulting program, Lead Today, has already begun changing the lives of young people in many nations of Africa — and it’s now being used on other continents, too.

It combines Scripture from the Book of Hope with special teachings on the 14 traits of biblical leadership and how to develop them.

bongani

God’s Big Story brought him back to
church — and is changing his life!

There wasn’t a Sunday School — no Children’s Church, no Children’s Minister. The children were usually left to play outside the church while the adults had a service.

But then one day there was an incident: one of the kids threw a stick at a beehive. The angry bees swarmed after the children — who ran into the church with the bees following them! Almost everyone in the building suffered from bee stings that day.

That was it for Bongani. He didn’t go back to church anymore. It was safer to stay home and watch TV than risk getting stung by bees!

He didn’t know that their church had begun a new outreach to the neighborhood children, using OneHope programs, until his older sister brought her Book of Hope home from church one day. He decided to go to church the next Sunday and check it out … and was immediately drawn in to the God’s Big Story program.

Each week, he learned a new Bible story and received his own illustrated card — now Bongani attends church every week and is learning and growing in God!

happy kids

112 million children and youth received
God’s Word in 2018 — thanks to you!

Official numbers are in — all gifts have been tabulated — and with the loving generosity and prayers of friends like you, we met the 2018 goal of sharing God’s life-transforming Word with 112 million children and youth last year!

Praise God for this great news —

And thank you you to everyone who prayed and gave — especially to those who contributed at year’s end to the $1.2 million Every Child Matching Challenge — what an impact you made!

She Gave Up on Being a Leader —
Until You Sent Lead Today

Binta’s dream was to become a politician, be elected to government, and help make important changes that would benefit all the people of her nation of Sierra Leone.

Then her father told her: “Before you become a prominent personality, especially a politician, you have to gain influence by joining a secret society like I did.”

In West Africa it’s the Poro Society for women and is the counterpart of the Sande Society.3

But these societies have demonic foundations — when Binta’s father passed away, he had a Poro Society funeral, and she was terrified by the rituals and chanting —

“I decided within me I wanted nothing to do with that!” Binta recalls. “I would just get a basic job and live a quiet life if that’s what you have to do to be prominent.”

But then she was enrolled in Lead Today and learned the principles of godly leadership — that had nothing to do with secret societies or demonic power.

“This teaching really touched me because it revived my dream in me,” Binta says.

She’s now planning to pursue politics when she goes to college and help bring truth and justice to her nation as a godly leader.

Lead Today Shares the Gospel and
Builds Godly Christian Leaders

Lead Today is our integrated Scripture engagement program that teaches teenagers what it means to be a leader.

Through research, we discovered that young people in many African nations said they never wanted to be leaders. They are familiar with leaders who are corrupt and use their power to accumulate wealth for themselves, while robbing their people — no wonder teenagers don’t want to be like that!

They need to know that there is a biblical model for leadership that is honorable and important — and that anyone can develop the traits of godly leadership if they try.

We looked to leadership expert John Maxwell and his EQUIP Leaders team. God put it in John’s heart to help needy young people become strong biblical leaders, and he generously agreed to partner with us.

By God’s grace, the resulting program, Lead Today, has already begun changing the lives of young people in many nations of Africa — and it’s now being used on other continents, too.

It combines Scripture from the Book of Hope with special teachings on the 14 traits of biblical leadership and how to develop them.

God’s Big Story brought him back to
church — and is changing his life!

There wasn’t a Sunday School — no Children’s Church, no Children’s Minister. The children were usually left to play outside the church while the adults had a service.

But then one day there was an incident: one of the kids threw a stick at a beehive. The angry bees swarmed after the children — who ran into the church with the bees following them! Almost everyone in the building suffered from bee stings that day.

That was it for Bongani. He didn’t go back to church anymore. It was safer to stay home and watch TV than risk getting stung by bees!

He didn’t know that their church had begun a new outreach to the neighborhood children, using OneHope programs, until his older sister brought her Book of Hope home from church one day. He decided to go to church the next Sunday and check it out … and was immediately drawn in to the God’s Big Story program.

Each week, he learned a new Bible story and received his own illustrated card — now Bongani attends church every week and is learning and growing in God!

112 million children and youth received
God’s Word in 2018 — thanks to you!

Official numbers are in — all gifts have been tabulated — and with the loving generosity and prayers of friends like you, we met the 2018 goal of sharing God’s life-transforming Word with 112 million children and youth last year!

Praise God for this great news —

And thank you you to everyone who prayed and gave — especially to those who contributed at year’s end to the $1.2 million Every Child Matching Challenge — what an impact you made!

NATION BY NATION

ukraine

UKRAINE

Karina was only 13, but she felt responsible for her family — her mother suffered under severe alcoholism. Like many children of alcoholics, Karina stepped up and tried to take care of everything.

It was a relief for her when she was invited to a winter camp sponsored by the local church. And she was thrilled when, in addition to the fun and games, she received her very own Book of Hope.

Karina discovered she did not have to carry the entire weight of her family alone, but that there was a God who loved her and would never forsake her. She joyfully chose to make Jesus the Lord of her life!

“I have hope now!” she says triumphantly

SENSITIVE NATION

Hoa’s parents are migrant workers. They’re desperately poor. When Hoa first began attending Sunday School, she had such poor self-esteem and felt so ashamed, she wore her hat down low to cover her face and never looked anyone in the eye. But now that she has been learning about Jesus from the Stories of Hope program, things are changing for her! She’s overcome her shyness and is filled with happiness and hope.

marisol

MEXICO

Marisol’s fractured leg was painful, and it made her sad, too, because she couldn’t go to school or play with her friends. But then a children’s ministry team came to visit her and brought her the Book of Hope. She read it while she recuperated and discovered the love of Jesus Christ. Thank you for sending her God’s Word to bring her hope!

zimbabwe

ZIMBABWE

The headmaster of Francis Aphiri Primary School asked the local Child Care Ministries Hope Centre to train their school prefects for 2018 in leadership skills, and the Hope Centre enrolled the new prefects in the Lead Today program. Today, the headmaster says these are the best prefects in the school’s history; boys and girls who lead by example and have made a powerful, positive impact on the other students!

lisander

A New Life and a New Future —
Thanks to You

Lisander was basically alone on the streets of a nation in chaos.

His home country of Venezuela has been in political and economic freefall for some time. His family is in turmoil, too. His father abandoned him, and his mother just stopped caring — leaving Lisander on his own.

He didn’t go to school, so he never learned to read …

Yet when you sent the Book of Hope for distribution through a church in his impoverished neighborhood, it impacted Lisander anyway:

He started attending Sunday School where the class was studying together through the book. He couldn’t read, but he listened carefully in every session and soon chose to dedicate his life to Christ!

This was a turning point in his spiritual life — now he knew there was a heavenly Father who would never abandon him. He was filled with joy and new hope …

But it was also a turning point in other ways:

Lisander’s new church family surrounded him to help him catch up on his education. They organized a literacy program to help him learn to read, and they’re believing he may eventually be able to return to school.

The former bleak outlook would have doomed this young boy to poverty, perhaps gang life or drug abuse … but now because of your gift of the Book of Hope, he has a new family, a new life, and hope for the future!

Thank you for reaching out to Lisander, and multitudes like him, with the life-changing power of God’s Word.

A New Life and a New Future —
Thanks to You

Lisander was basically alone on the streets of a nation in chaos.

His home country of Venezuela has been in political and economic freefall for some time. His family is in turmoil, too. His father abandoned him, and his mother just stopped caring — leaving Lisander on his own.

He didn’t go to school, so he never learned to read …

Yet when you sent the Book of Hope for distribution through a church in his impoverished neighborhood, it impacted Lisander anyway:

He started attending Sunday School where the class was studying together through the book. He couldn’t read, but he listened carefully in every session and soon chose to dedicate his life to Christ!

This was a turning point in his spiritual life — now he knew there was a heavenly Father who would never abandon him. He was filled with joy and new hope …

But it was also a turning point in other ways:

Lisander’s new church family surrounded him to help him catch up on his education. They organized a literacy program to help him learn to read, and they’re believing he may eventually be able to return to school.

The former bleak outlook would have doomed this young boy to poverty, perhaps gang life or drug abuse … but now because of your gift of the Book of Hope, he has a new family, a new life, and hope for the future!

Thank you for reaching out to Lisander, and multitudes like him, with the life-changing power of God’s Word.

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