Last March, Leina met two women in her neighbourhood. Before they could meet a second time, COVID had hit. With most people adhering to the stay-at-home message, it seemed like an impossible time to build a relationship with a couple of strangers. But God had plans, reminding us that even during a pandemic, there is much we can do.
Feeling a nudge from the Holy Spirit, Leina made a phone call to each of the women and asked if they’d like to read the Bible with her every day. “I felt awkward, and I was surprised when they both said, ‘yes’, with no hesitation. The effect was so powerful. One of them accepted Jesus and has grown so much by reading the Bible and doing a devotional every day that she has become a committed Christian.” This new believer shared the Good News with her daughter who has also become a Christ follower. Leina was able to drop off a New Testament for her. Leina had never done anything like this before and so she didn’t have a prepared plan to draw from. “I prayed and asked God about it. I wanted something interesting because I wanted them to know the Bible is not boring. We are very diligent. One of the ladies has never missed a day. She loves reading her Bible.” Leina has observed that many people are involved in ministries and attend all manner of fellowship opportunities but they don’t read their Bible at home. “That is the most important part,” stresses Leina.
As the three women continued to read the scriptures together Leina quickly realized she needed to teach them to be independent learners. At the very beginning they used a devotional guidebook. Then they graduated to reading the Bible directly and Leina posted questions for them to think about, meditate on, or talk to God about. First they read Jonah, then Esther, and eventually they read the Gospel of Mark, and several short NT books.
“After a while I explained to them that using a guide, or even with me posting the questions is like eating something someone else has already digested for you.” She told them, “We don’t want that. We want first hand hearing from God!” She impressed upon them the importance of opening their Bibles every day and of learning not to rely on her. “If they don’t do it, or if they only do it because I send them the verse – then it is no use.” I am training them to be independent and successful Christians. Now we are reading Ecclesiastes and sharing what we are each hearing from God.”
Leina Choi is a believer at Markham Missionary Church in Markham, Ontario. She is pursuing her MTh at Tyndale University in Toronto. Leina is at school purely to know more about God. “We don’t all have to be a pastor. To love God is a ministry for everyone. I love God so much that I decided to know Him more.”
This article is featured in the Winter 2020 edition of The EMCC Together Newsletter
Download a PDF copy of the newsletter and previous EMCC Together publications here: https://emcctogether.ca/emcc-together-back-issues/