#22. God's Smuggler

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Neither he nor Ion, secretary of the group, spoke a word of my languages, nor I of theirs. We sat facing each other across the barren, multi-numbered room, quite unable to communicate.

Then I saw something. On Gheorghe's desk was a well-worn Bible, the pages eaten back an eighth of an inch from constant turning. What would happen, I wondered, if we were to converse with each other via the Scriptures? I took my own Dutch Bible from my coat pocket and turned to I Cor 16:20.

"All the brethren greet you. Greet ye one another with an holy kiss."

I held the Bible out and pointed to the name of the book, recognizable in any language, and to the chapter and verse number.

Instantly their faces lit up.

They swiftly found the place in their own Bible, read it, and beamed at me. Then Gheorghe was thumbing through the pages, looking for a reference, which he held out for me.

Proverbs 25:25: "As cold waters to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country."

Authors: Brother Andrew with John and Elizabeth Sherrill

Synopsis: Brother Andrew sought adventure throughout his childhood in Holland. He stole pennies from his brother and put sugar in the gas tank of the German lieutenant during the WWII German occupation. At that age, he did not expect God to take his quest for thrills and turn it into a missionary's courage. He devoted his life to smuggling Bibles behind the Iron Curtain, and this book is the tale of his experiences.

* * *

As with most of the books on this list, I've read this one over and over and over. It reads easily, almost like a novel, and tells a powerful tale of courage and faith and change of heart. I love Brother Andrew's view of his work as God's use for a little boy who longed for adventure, and his stories of the oppressed Christians he visited are quite moving.

There's even romance in there, and I have to admit that one of my favorite parts is the chapter where he prays for a wife.

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