As I unpacked our bags from our recent trip to Michigan, I noted some wear and tear on our 26-year-old “shoe bags.” We use them for our shoes but that is not their original purpose.
Ken and I joined Wycliffe Bible Translators (WBT) in August of 1990. WBT provided us with extensive preparation so that we could successfully live long term in a different culture. One of those requirements was something called Field Training Course (FTC). For those going to Asia or South America, we traveled first to Texas and then to Mexico. For three months we lived in cabins, camped outdoors and stayed for a month with a host family in Mexico. It was “the best and worst of times” as they say.
Wycliffe gave us a list of items that we needed to bring to FTC and a weight limit on those items. One of the requirements was to bring 10 cloth bags that could be closed at the top with a string, just like a hooded jacket. For those who know me (Anne), I don’t sew. So this requirement caused me a bit of stress.
“No problem,” said several ladies from Christ United Methodist Church of Fraser, Michigan. “We’ll make them for you.”
And they did. Ten bags, some grey, some blue, some pink, were handed to us before we left on our adventure.
While their original purpose was to carry food on long over night hikes, they eventually morphed into bags that would protect our shoes. Those bags have traveled with us for over a quarter of a century! Every time we use them, we think of those who made them.
We just returned from a trip to Michigan where we were able to speak at Christ United Methodist Church. At the end of the service, the pastor called the leadership to the front of the church, along with a special group of people who have met and prayed for us once a month for 27 years (!), and they recommitted their partnership with us. Our heads were anointed with oil, and as the pastor prayed for us we heard “We’re with you, we’ve been with you, we’ll continue to be with you. We’re committed to Bible Translation.”
What a joy to have such a great group standing with us! If you’d like to partner with us financially or by receiving our newsletter and praying, please click on this link! Come join our team!
Wycliffe Bible Translators is celebrating 75 years of existence in 2017! We’re proud to have been part of that heritage for over a third of that time (27 years). On the occasion of their 50th anniversary, acclaimed preacher, Billy Graham, spoke to a group of people about the importance of Bible Translation.
Listen to this 2+ minute Billy Graham video of his impassioned plea for workers! In it he says, “It might be said that Jesus only had two verbs: ‘Come & Go’. Come unto me and Go into all the world!”
Thank you for being a part of this important work. We’re doing it together!
On Friday morning, 33 AD, the Roman governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate, set known terrorist Barabbas free from prison. Barabbas, an insurrectionist of the Zealots and a murderer, had been due to be crucified by local Roman authorities, but after a strange turn of events, was allowed to leave prison after having his sentence commuted.
Barabbas, known only by his first name, means Son of the Father. When asked about his freedom upon leaving the filthy prison, Barabbas, looking gaunt and dirty, had a surprised smirk on his face. “I have no idea why I was let go. But who cares! I’m ready to go and meet up with my friends and celebrate!”
When told that a man name Jesus was set to be crucified instead of him, Barabbas asked, “So, what did HE do?”
After hearing that Jesus had claimed to be the king of the Jews, Barabbas said, “It’s strange. The name Jesus means ‘Savior’. Man, I wish I’d known Him! We could have worked well together!” Jesus, a former carpenter from the little town of Bethlehem, had made statements such as, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life” as well as, “No one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” Barabbas had been convicted of killing several Roman citizens and causing riots in the city in order to overthrow the Roman government.
“Oh well,” he replied. “Better him than me!”
No word was given as to Barabbas’ future plans other than a statement of “back to my previous work” said with a wink. Jesus is set to be crucified later this day.
References: Matthew 27:15-26; Mark 15:7-15; Luke 23: 18-25; John 18:39-40; John 3:3, 14:6
Everyone parent and every child knows “the Look.” You know, when the child is fidgeting in church and you turn to them and “look” at them? Or maybe it’s at the dinner table! Everyone is holding hands so you can pray and then two kids start arguing because one is squeezing the hand of the other too hard? They get “the Look” from the parent.
Cut. It. Out.
It might look like this:
When my dad gave me “the Look” or when my husband gave our girls “the Look” they usually stopped what they were doing immediately and settled down. While each of us love our children immensely, sometimes we don’t love their behavior. “The Look” gets them back on track.
In John 18, we read the account of Peter who denies Jesus three times when asked if he was a follower of Jesus. The book of Luke (22:61-62) records that Jesus “looked straight at Peter” after he refused to admit three times to others that he was a follower of Jesus.
The difference between my parenting look and this look of Jesus was that this was not a gesture of condemnation. Instead, it was one of complete love and of one who knew Peter’s heart. He knew that Peter loved Him deeply, he knew that Peter would deny Him (he had warned him), yet he still loved him.
What struck me again was the difference between Peter’s remorse over his sin and Judas’ actions after he had turned Jesus in. While Judas immediately ran out and hung himself, Peter didn’t. He wept bitterly, but he still came to the place where Jesus was hung on a cross. We know from later chapters and church history that Peter went on to be a great leader and writer in the church.
Why the difference?
Because one had a relationship with Jesus and the other didn’t. Judas hung out with Jesus and looked like he was a disciple of Him, but his heart had never really changed. He was the same sinful Judas, whereas Peter spent the same amount of time with Jesus and had a changed life. Yes, he was loud and impulsive (sounds like me) but little by little, he turned different areas over to the Lordship of his Savior.
We don’t have the privilege of physically walking and talking with Jesus, but we do have the Holy Spirit with us here on earth who guides us as we have a relationship with the entire Trinity.
We have been given God’s very words to read and study so we can learn from people like Judas, Peter, and even Jesus Himself. That’s why we are committed to getting God’s Word in to the hands of the Bibleless people of the world!
Who will you be today? Choose to be a Peter…a follower…a sojourner. Then when you get “the Look” you’ll know it is one full of love, not condemnation, and you too can look forward to the day when you see Jesus face to face.
Wycliffe Bible Translators recently celebrated their 3,000 translated Bible! It’s so great to be part of an organization that is ridding the world of Bible Poverty.
Thank you for your part! Less than 2,000 Bibles to go!