the beauty of
Hello Fellow Light Bearer!
It feels like the world gets darker and darker each year. But in 2022, light actually pushed back darkness—and it’s because of you.
Granted, we don’t know the details of your year. You may have knocked out some important goals, or you may have a new treadmill that’s collecting dust.
In the following pages though, you’ll find proof that you have impacted lives across the world with the gospel through the grace of God and your support of Light Bearers.
This report is an expression of the impact you’ve made.
You’ve put Bible study guides into the hands of an alcoholic in Zambia who has now found freedom in the gospel.
Through ARISE Intensives, teenagers and the elderly alike became excited about their relationships with Jesus and sharing Him.
People both inside and outside North America have been given support and prayed with through our spiritual care program.
And there’s so much more.
We believe that with your help and by God’s power, people will continue to find freedom in Jesus.
Why? Because no matter how dark the world gets, we’ve seen that you are determined to shine your light.
As you read the following stories of lives you’ve touched, may you be inspired to continue this journey with us and to hasten the second coming of Jesus by spreading the good news of God’s faithfulness across the globe.
On behalf of our entire team, thank you for being a fellow light bearer.
Stop & Stare
We are part of a culture that is defined by the presence of what Lady Gaga calls, “The Fame Monster.” That is, a person who pursues fame for fame’s sake, because of the benefits that attend fame. Some act, some sing, and some, oddly enough, are famous for being famous, for doing outrageous things that make everyone stop and stare.
In fact, pop culture has become a fame- making machine. Countless people are on TikTok, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook trying to be famous as a life’s vocation. The point of the entire sick pursuit is to cash in with every click and view on social media.
The downside is the “monster” part. Often the worst kinds of characters are idolized, and the constant subliminal message becomes, “It’s good to be bad,” or at least financially profitable. In other words, the system we’ve created rewards egomania and immorality.
A Different Fame
God told ancient Israel that He wanted to make them famous on the world stage, not for scandalous behavior but for the beauty of His character shining through them:
“Your fame went out among the nations because of your beauty, for it was perfect through My splendor which I had bestowed on you” (Ezekiel 16:14).
Israel was called to become famous for good rather than for evil. Her “beauty” was to be God’s beauty shining through her. Then she was to use her fame to invite people from every nation into a covenant relationship with God.
When Jesus came, His character and deeds were so attractive that Scripture says, “His fame spread throughout all the region around Galilee” (Mark 1:28). He became famous for His deeds of love and for His teachings about God’s good character. Then He transferred this very same mission to the church He founded:
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).
This is why the mission of Light Bearers is, “To vindicate the beauty of God’s character.”
We know this is your mission, as well, and that’s why you are part of Light Bearers. Thank you!
Your Impact Through ARISE
Have you ever ripped a page out of a Bible? Jim did. It wasn’t a rejection of God’s Word. Quite the opposite.
Growing up, he’d been steeped in legalism, pressured to earn the approval of God, the church, and family. He saw Scripture as merely a book of regulations and doctrines without Jesus at the center.
One day, through watching a show called Table Talk, Jim discovered Light Bearers. Eventually, he saw an ad for the upcoming ARISE Intensive in Fresno, California.
At the intensive, along with about 300 other attendees, Jim listened to David and Ty teach the gospel as the truth that pervades all Bible doctrines. The Bible is not split between an angry, law-oriented, old covenant God in the Old Testament and then a happy, grace-filled, new covenant Jesus in the New Testament.
Scripture is one big story of a God who is in love with each one of us, and so He came to rescue us.
To emphasize this beautiful continuity, David invited all the attendees to ignore the page in their Bibles that separates the Old and New Testaments. So Jim removed the page, and he felt freer.
“To actually learn about the Bible as a whole story was so liberating. It freed me from the box I was in...Now I spend more time with God on a daily basis, because I know it’s not my efforts or my works that count. It’s actually knowing Him that counts.”
In 2022, more than 700 people learned the Story of Scripture through ARISE Intensives. Your support provided the funds for 388 young adults to attend ARISE Intensives and find the freedom offered by the gospel.
Your Impact Through Spiritual Care
Jackie loved Jesus. Jackie loved her husband and newborn son. So it surprised and startled Jackie when the cloud of postpartum depression arrived at her door.
Days turned to weeks, then months. And despite all her loving and all her prayers, that stubborn darkness refused to relent.
Depression wasn’t really talked about in Jackie’s family, church, or culture. When she did share her struggles with friends or well-meaning church members, she could tell it made them uncomfortable. She’d be met with a change of subject or, worse, a religious platitude that, while true, felt distant and cold.
One Sabbath, Jackie discovered Storyline Online Church. The topic was mental health and the gospel. Jackie sat up. She felt a spark of hope when she realized that believers can struggle too. Maybe she wasn’t a lost cause. Maybe she wasn’t alone.
Jackie reached out to the newly formed Light Bearers Spiritual Care Team for prayer. She was surprised and even a bit startled at the response she received.
“I was not expecting such warmth, kindness, and support. That you would take the time to listen to and understand what I, a complete stranger, am going through, meant the world to me.”
Jackie loves Jesus. Jackie loves her husband and growing son. You need to know that in a real sense, it was you who reached across the world to support Jackie through your support of Light Bearers. You’ve reminded her how much Jesus loves her.
Your faithful support shares hope and Christ’s love with a growing number of people like Jackie around the world.
God’s fame is spreading thanks to your support
ARISE Intensive Attendees
Bibles Printed and Shipped to the Mission Field
Storyline App Downloads
Your Impact Through Publishing
Somebody—perhaps it was you—gave 5¢ to Light Bearers. That 5¢ printed a Truth Link study guide that was given to Labiam.
Labiam was an alcoholic. Going to doctors and talking to pastors didn’t help. His addiction cost him his close relationships and a good-paying job, which isn’t easy to come by in Zambia.
Wandering the streets one day, like you do when you’re feeling lost, he walked into a shoe shop owned by a guy named Lloyd. On the shelf, next to some shoes, he saw three pamphlets titled Truth Link, which piqued his curiosity.
“You selling these?” he asked.
“No,” Lloyd replied.
Labiam’s shoulders dropped.
“But I can give you one!” Lloyd smiled.
Labiam walked out of the shoe shop with Lloyd’s contact info and his new study guides. Soon he and Lloyd were reading the Bible together regularly. Through study after study, Labiam felt something begin to break free inside of him. He and Lloyd prayed together and Labiam found healing from the pain he had experienced in a past relationship. It wasn’t long before he found freedom from his addiction as well.
One day, along with 27 others with whom Lloyd had been studying the Bible, Labiam chose to be baptized and publicly declared the freedom he’d found in Jesus.
In 2022, your support of Light Bearers put 110,000 Bibles and 2.1 million Truth Link study guides into circulation globally. Labiam is one of the countless people whose lives have been changed by your generosity.
Your Impact Through Storyline
“If you do enough, you might be saved,” they said. “If you go every Sabbath to church, if you wear a full suit, if you only have Adventist friends, if you abstain from going to the movies, if you only use music from the hymnal, if you only do what we say, and what we say only, you will be saved.”
That was the gospel Angel learned, and the gospel he was living by—a works-based gospel that led him to experience a tragic irony that you may know too: religion without Jesus—not atheism—is the furthest place from God.
Angel always wondered, “Is this what God wants from me?” Then he discovered Storyline Church’s YouTube channel. Through Storyline, he has been learning what it means to be saved by Jesus’ work on the cross. He is experiencing the freedom that brings.
When you find freedom, you can’t help but talk about it, so Angel has talked about it. He wanted to support the work that helped lift his burden of legalism in a tangible way. So he became an online greeter for Storyline Church, digitally connecting with others from around the world.
Your faithful support of Light Bearers has helped Angel understand the beauty of the gospel. He is drinking in the amazing experience of connecting with a safe community built around grace.
Thanks to you, Angel’s story is just one of countless others. Storyline messages have been played more than 450,000 times over the past year, each representing a difference made by your support.
Allocation of Resources
Every gift is put to maximum use with the highest standards of financial integrity.
Your support in 2022 has spread
God's fame around the world
God's Fame Everywhere
A look at the future of Light Bearers
Hopefully you realize by now that you’ve created quite the scandal this year, one that’s gone around the world. But it might not be the kind you’re thinking of.
Typically, a “scandal” is something that happens on the public stage to cause offense to our senses.
With an ingenious play on words, the Apostle Paul calls Jesus a scandal (see 1 Corinthians 1:18, 23-24). The cross event is an offense to our sense of what God ought to be and ought to do: the Creator murdered by His creation— voluntarily. And yet, upon deeper consideration, the cross is “the power of God” as we never could have expected. It’s what pure love looks like when faced by pure evil. It is a beautiful scandal.
You gave generously to make this scandal the thing many people talked about in 2022. Those funds helped transform Jackie’s life in England, they helped free Labiam from his addiction, they lifted the burden of legalism off of Angel’s shoulders, and they have changed the lives of so many others.
And we have even bigger things ahead! Instead of 450,000 plays, wouldn’t it be amazing if Storyline messages—sermons drenched in the beauty of God’s radical acceptance and love—were played a million times by the end of next year?
Light Bearers has distributed 750,000,000 pieces of gospel literature to date. What would it be like to finally hand that billionth piece of literature to someone in Zambia and see them understand the cross for the first time?
What would happen if we were able to reach every Adventist home with the soul-liberating message of the story of Scripture through ARISE Online, ARISE Intensives, and the on-site ARISE program in Australia?
What if there were a global community connected by the sheer joy of knowing the beauty of this great scandal?
You can make this happen.
We know it’s hard to believe. We live in a world that teaches us to constantly lower our expectations. Scripture, though, is constantly telling us that God wants to exceed our expectations. When He makes a promise, He goes big and He wants us to expect big things.
Let’s not lowball God as we lay our aims before Him.
You partnered with us in the past not because you wanted people to say the sinner’s prayer once and then move on with their lives, business as usual, but because you believe in Jesus’ words in John 17:3:
“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”
You know that eternal life is not merely an un-ending duration of biological existence. It is a quality of life that comes from knowing the Christ on the cross right now. Therefore, we don’t get eternal life when we go to heaven. We take it with us to heaven.
You believe that God wants to give it to each and every person, and that He has invited us to participate in sharing the good news of this beautiful scandal. We have an active role to play. That’s something worth talking about.
With your continued partnership, the coming year is going to be more scandalous for Jesus than ever.
Let’s make God famous in a world that desperately needs to know Him.
Because of You…
Your generous support allows us to continue sharing God’s fame with the world. Your partnership will transform more lives like those mentioned in this report, along with countless others. Thank you for making a difference.Give Now