Friday, April 20, 2018

God is Talking to Me

These days, Wycliffe Bible Translators and our partners are involved using technology to produce Scripture in many different formats. For example, many cultures around the world are better suited to use audio Bibles. Once the Bible is recorded in a local language, the gospel spreads and its impact is multiplied through solar-powered digital players. Smartphones are becoming remarkably widespread in most developing countries, so Scripture can be easily shared from phone to phone in a village setting without the use of internet.


The Naro language is a "click" language spoken in Botswana, Namibia and South Africa by 12,000 people. The Naro Bible was first produced in printed form, but very few Naro speakers could read it. On listening to an audio Bible like the one in the picture, one Naro speaker said, "For the first time the Bible makes sense, and it feels as if God is talking to me."

To read more of the story: wycliffe.org.uk/blog/new-formats-for-age-old-cultures/

Thanks so much for your prayers for Equip. We had a great time with these new colleagues and are excited that they are ready now to go and do the work as they ask the Lord to build their teams of prayer and financial partners. I'm thankful also for good health and energy these two weeks. Next week, we'll continue preparations for a coming Connection program.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Meet Elsi

Elsi, from Kalimantan, Indonesia, speaks six languages. Last year Elsi came to Wycliffe Australia’s National Centre to improve her English.

For Elsi, knowing what language to use in which context is the key to good communication. She adapts her speech to different settings. She uses her Dayak language with her family, Indonesian with colleagues, and other relevant local Dayak languages in central Kalimantan. And of course she uses English with foreign visitors or in Australia.

The right language in the right context brings acceptance and understanding. Consider this translation of Matthew 28:5-6 from Da Jesus Book for the Hawaiian Pidgin language:

Da angel guy tell da wahines, “Eh, no scared! I know you guys looking fo Jesus, da guy dey wen kill on top da cross. Eh, he no stay ova hea, cuz God wen make um come back alive, jalike Jesus wen say befo time. Come! Try look da place wea he wen lay.”

Though it is highly meaningful for speakers of Hawaiian Pidgin, for English speakers, this translation may produce only confusion. Your ongoing partnership through your prayers and gifts helps accelerate translation for people groups around the world who are still waiting to clearly understand God’s Word.

Story Source: wycliffe.org.au/meet-elsi/

Spring Opportunities

April 7-20, we will host another group of new colleagues for their onsite Equip orientation. It is a privilege to extend your ministry to the peoples they will one day serve. I’ll get to teach some new things this session; I’d be grateful for your prayers for effective daily preparation.

Another part of my ongoing role is coaching co-workers who are building teams of prayer and financial partners. Pray that I will have much wisdom to encourage and advise them as they ask the Lord to complete their teams.

I am thankful for the ebb and flow of the Orlando program schedule which helps me be ready for each new session. It also permits some travel through the year. It was a joy to see many of you during my brief visit to Indianapolis in March.

Friday, March 2, 2018

A Call to Missions

The Wycliffe USA blog recently told the story of one family from Equip (new missionary training). Alex and Ashley Lee met at Cornell University in 2008 at their campus fellowship and — after an eventful 2013 featuring their wedding and graduations — soon headed to Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. There, the couple was floored by a story they heard a Wycliffe missionary tell. It took a few more years, speakers and books though before Alex and Ashley’s hearts were propelled toward serving in Bible translation.

The Lees recognize how helpful it was to take the time to address their hesitancies without feeling pressured. God knew their concerns. Ashley was patient with Alex’s slower pace, which was helpful to him. They worked it through together. The Lees hope to arrive in Papua New Guinea in 2020 to begin their work and help bring God’s Word to a people group that is still waiting.

To read more of the story: wycliffe.org/blog/posts/living-the-process-exploring-a-call-to-missions

As you pray and give toward my Wycliffe ministry, your partnership impacts many others like the Lees as they come through their initial Wycliffe training. Thank you for your part in speeding them on their way.

This month, we're preparing for future programs. And, there are some of you visiting Florida this time of year, so I'm doing some in-state traveling to see you, yay! I also have some time to step away. I'll be in Indiana soon. (message me for details!) Looking forward to reconnecting with many of you during that time. Then Mom will fly back with me and be in Florida for a while. Thanks for your prayers for a great month.

Friday, February 16, 2018

MKs

Thanks so much for your prayers for our Connection program this week. Things have gone smoothly. We pray that the impact will continue as the participants leave today. Our prayer is that the Lord will encourage them as they prepare to return to their areas of service all over the world.

My time is essentially always spent with the adults during these programs, but I've had more time this week with some of the 15 MKs (missionary kids), ages 2-18, who are here. I've been impressed by the way siblings care for each other, the way they have made quick friends across family lines, their resourcefulness. They could probably all navigate an international airport or a public transportation system anywhere in the world better than I could. :-)

One of my Orlando colleagues recently shared a video that gives a little more insight into the life of an MK:


Video Source: youtu.be/cga6fBJwzWE

Next week, we will have another Connection program -- this time, with colleagues who live in the US, but who work all over the world, thanks to technology. We are grateful in advance for your prayers that the Lord may renew them.

After that, March is a retooling period, preparing for the next groups to come, while I continue to coach some who are building their teams of prayer and financial partners. I'll also be heading to Indiana for a brief visit. Details soon!

Friday, February 2, 2018

Preaching the Wrong Thing!

Guillermo, a pastor for the Katio people in Colombia, was helping to check the translation of the book of Mark. When the checking team began work on the account of Jesus’ healing both Jairus’ daughter and the woman who had been bleeding for twelve years, Guillermo seemed troubled.

“I’ve been preaching the wrong thing!” he told translator Mareike Schoettelndreyer. “When I read this passage from my Spanish Bible, I didn’t understand the story correctly.”

From his understanding of the Spanish, Pastor Guillermo had previously taught that the daughter and the woman were the same person. But when he read the same verses in his heart language, Guillermo clearly understood. He could now preach confidently what he knew to be true.

Story Source: wycliffe.org/blog/posts/ive-been-preaching-the-wrong-thing
Pastor Adir from Brazil says, “A verse that we like very much today is John 3:16. This is a verse that makes me very happy - and all of the Kaingang churches. Because when we hear this verse we want to be firm in the Lord and fully believe in this Word from God.”

The impact of having the Bible in the heart language is tremendous! These pastors are now more fully equipped to shepherd the flocks God has entrusted to them.

More Good Things


It’s a joy and privilege in 2018 to continue the same pattern of working with both new and “established” Wycliffe staff through the Orlando programs and through coaching opportunities. Your prayers and gifts toward my Wycliffe ministry are being used by God to prepare and encourage many colleagues who serve around the world. Together, the Lord is using us to bring His translated Word to people like Pastors Guillermo and Adir. Then they might truly understand, believe, and lead others to do the same. Thank you for your part!