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Archive for September, 2007

Updates

Please note the updates to the other pages–“Praises/Prayer Requests” on the Praise/Prayer Page and “Only Four Colors” on the Translator’s Page.

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Recent Events

Chad Translation Workshop (Sept. 3-20)

I was extremely excited about going back to Chad for this workshop.  I had been there during the weekend of Jan. 1, 2000 (I can assure you that we didn’t experience any Y2K effects!), so I was looking forward to seeing former acquaintances as well as renewing friendships with the students that I had while in Cameroon.  The Lord gave me the opportunity to see a number of former students.  Though communication is difficult in Chad, many of them still found out that I was coming and were able to meet me. 

I enjoyed preaching the gospel while there too.  The Lord showed me that He’s changed me quite a bit from when I was first in Africa.  I remember when my students would ask me at the last minute to preach at their church.  I used to fight against that.   But this time I was glad to do it when a student asked me only 30 minutes in advance.  I looked forward to being able to be an influence for righteousness in that needy land. 

I also enjoyed learning more about Bible International’s ministry in Chad.  It was great to meet the translators and to see their heart for the ministry.  It was also a pleasure to see our NTs being used in ministry.  I especially enjoyed getting to talk to the father of one of my students from my Cameroon days.  With great delight he talked about how he learned to read and write because we had translated the NT into his language.  I also thought it was neat that he used our Sango Bible to help him as he worked with us on the OT for his language.  He was using one of our Bibles to help produce another one. 

So, it was a joy to be back in Africa once again.  For some reason (i.e., because the Lord has made me this way), I find my heart able to engage in ministry in Africa in a way that I don’t experience in other places.  That’s why at one time in my life I felt called to be a full-time missionary there.  But I did sense something different when I went back this time.  Yes, the heat, humidity, bugs, and hard seats bothered me in a way that they hadn’t before.  But I also recognized that the Lord had been changing my heart to enable me to have a larger sphere of ministry.  He’s called me to translation work for people all around the world, and I realized during this trip that I wouldn’t be satisfied any more staying in Africa as a full-time missionary. 

It was a blessing to see how the Lord confirmed His calling on my life while I was there.  No, I didn’t receive confirmation as I read Translating the Word of God, by Beekman and Callow, a book that I’ve always wanted to read and finally got to read during this trip.  Though I enjoyed some parts, other parts were just plain drudgery.  I did receive some confirmation by seeing the results of our ministry.  But I also saw the challenges.  The greatest confirmation came through a studying the importance of translation in God’s program.  Translation is an extremely effective form of instruction.  But it’s more than that.  It’s the preservation of Scripture.  It’s what the director of BI calls “transformational preservation.”  We are preserving the Word through translation so that future generations of different languages can have access to the Word of God.  What a privilege to be called to this ministry!   

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