The past few weeks, kids at Candies Creek have been collecting quarters as part of AWANA Club International ADOPT A CLUB. We have partnered with the missionaries in BANGLADESH for many, many years. Last night we had the most incredible time hearing from Mr. Rick Adolph. Mr. Adolph is a long time member at CCBC and was born in Bangladesh. His parents started the first AWANA club in that country!
Mr. Adolph shared about the people, the culture, the faith and how we can minister to children there. Each quarter tube, which hold $10, provides AWANA club and materials for ONE child for ONE year! That’s right, is there anything here in America your kids can do every week that will impact them for eternity for the cost of only $10, a year???
The kids were enthralled as Mr. Adolph brought items such as a sun-umbrella, a woven rain mat to cover workers in the rice paddies, a miniature rickshaw and fishing boat, Bengali Bible, a lunch box, fan and other ordinary every day items people in Bangladesh need!
Animals in Bangladesh? Would you believe that the wild boars in Bangladesh eat and tear up the rice paddies? Did you know that the Muslim people there do not want to touch or have anything to do with this “unclean” animal so the Hindu people in Bangladesh have to try to control the population? And since the Hindu population is only about 10%, the boars are out of control. Many people get injured by the tusks of boars and have to seek medical treatment. And yes, Mr. Adolph brought a very impressive boar tusk to show us just how dangerous these animals are. We saw a saw tooth fish…well the saw part anyway and it looks exactly like its name.
But what got the most oohs and ahhs from our 3-year-old to 6th grade crowd? The 16 foot python hide! Oh yes, when that giant was unrolled it stretched across the room and the questions and screams began. This unfortunate python had eaten one to many chickens and was “taken care of” by the locals.
The lungi, the tube of cloth worn by Bengali men around their waist, was fascinating too. Mr. Adolph wore a lungi and showed us several ways to tie it and how versatile a clothing item it is. You can wear it long for everyday wear, you can tie it up above your knees to work in the rice paddy (rice paddies, we learned, can have mud all the way up to your knees!) and you can wear the lungi super short (yes, looks like a diaper) to play soccer! It’s the perfect outfit for all-weather and activities.
But of great importance to us as a club, beyond the wonder of learning of a different culture, was how we can be a part of children in Bangladesh learning about Jesus. Missionaries are not allowed into this predominately Muslim country obviously. So people who share the Gospel have other professions, jobs, skills or trades that they use as a platform to share the Good News! Mr. Adolph’s family worked in the medical field and he told us of all the many opportunities that gave them to help people physically and point them toward Jesus. Here in Charleston, TN we can use our $10 in quarters to help the “missionaries” reach children through the SAME fun and games, SAME Word of God and SAME Jesus, we have here. We are all in need of a Savior and this special night showed me that we can’t be stingy with it!
I want to mention that one young AWANA clubber has been working for several weeks making personalized cards to sell. She has used the work of her hands to raise $200 dollars so that 20 kids in Bangladesh will have God’s Word in their hands each week! I have to be thankful and wonder why God has put that desire in her young, young heart to care so much about children she has never met? Is it because she loves God so much, she has to share him? Is it because she loves Bengali children?
Why are we collecting quarters? Our goal is $360. We can be part of 36 kids hearing the Gospel and having a chance each week to learn the joy of memorizing God’s Word. What a precious gift we can send overseas. (And did I mention we learned that Bangladesh is exactly halfway across the world from us? 12 hour time difference, day and night.) I learned so much last night! Keep praying for children in Bangladesh to hear about Jesus!