Biglife is an open book—literally. In 1999 our founder, John Heerema, was reading Unveiled at Last when he came across a piercing question: “Are you leading a little life in your own little world?” The author was referring to God’s purpose: to bless His people so that they may pass His blessings on to others. John then learned that one person dies every second without hearing the name of Jesus even once. He was immediately convicted. The book had opened up a much bigger world, one calling him to a life of discipleship.
Fast-forward to 2003. On a mission trip in India, John encountered a village populated entirely by Muslims. His Christian interpreter, Mina, asked him to stay away. Having engaged with the villagers for months, the interpreter was beginning to earn their fellowship and trust. If John were to approach, Mina would be viewed as a Western puppet and all progress would be lost. It was a startling revelation.
Over time, John began to see God’s plan meant empowering others to share the Gospel—those already familiar with the language and local customs. These evangelists never grow homesick, because they’re already there. Biglife began to look for, and train, locals who could reach the villages that John could not.
Today, Biglife travels the globe seeking people of peace, much like those described in chapter 10 of Luke’s Gospel. While some are existing believers, many come from long traditions of Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism.
As a result, Jesus’ light is piercing some of the world’s darkest places. Where once there was no gospel witness, there now is a growing community of Christ followers. Communities of believers now gather where they can: in homes, under trees, anywhere space is available. Even those living with the daily threat of religious persecution are sharing their personal testimony and bringing family, friends, and neighbors to the saving words of Jesus Christ.