Queen is worried about the people in her village. We were sitting on short stumps in her warm kitchen, checking the lesson about Nicodemus. She was telling the story back by paragraphs, tracking well with what Jesus had said about being born again. A little later in that story, Jesus makes the point that the work of the Holy Spirit is like the wind; it is real and affects us, but who can understand how it does what it does. Queen commented, not for the first time, that surely not everyone here will believe. “I don’t understand why they aren’t listening,” she lamented. “I tell my mother and my son to go, but when the day arrives they find something else to be busy doing. Not everyone is going to believe, are they?” she asked me.
We looked again at John 3, where Jesus spells out that God would have it be that all would be saved; it was for that purpose that he sent Jesus to earth—not to dole out punishment, but because of his great love for all. But it is also true that some rejected the Christ during his time on earth, and some reject him even now, and her family’s reaction to the truth is heavy on Queen’s heart. The implication of what Jesus said to Nicodemus is clear to her. “Not a single person will see the time of God’s ruling as king, unless he has been born again another time around.”
I tried to encourage Queen, reminding her that while some have been interacting for a while with the Scriptures as translation and lesson helpers, some are just beginning to hear. I told her that our team, and many of those far away who are also children of God, were daily asking Him to help the Nahuatl listen and believe. I told her she could also ask God to do that, as well as tell the truth to her family.
Jesus ends his conversation with Nicodemus by comparing himself to a light. Those who believe, draw near to the light, but the rest reject it. Queen commented, “Surely some here are rejecting the light. But I am understanding that all those who don’t believe will be punished. Why aren’t they believing?” she asked again in frustration. “We don’t know how long we will last here, and once we die we can’t change our minds. Now is the chance for believing.”
We know that you all are also praying that the Nahuatl would clearly see that “now is the chance for believing.” By next week our team will be presenting the death and resurrection of the “one who God promised long ago for saving.” We are asking God to convince hearts and minds of the truth and to bring many to come to know him. Some, like Queen, seem to clearly understand and be burdened for those who might be missing their chance. Pray that those individuals will brave persecution and ostracism in order to reach others with the truth. And pray that the new church will band together and find an identity as a brand new family.