Wednesday, November 14, 2018

November 2018 Newsletter

       We have a story to tell below, but it's long. The short version is that Steve and the Titan translators shared the Titan translation of Genesis 15 for the first time in a church in Pere village and it really impacted people. If you'd like to know more, read on, otherwise, skip to the next section that begins with the heading "Budget News."

     In Pere village, after a long Saturday working with the Titan (pronounced Tee-Tawn) translators checking verses in Genesis, one of them said something quickly to me (Steve) in Titan before she left. As a beginner in speaking Titan, I only caught some of what she'd said. I gathered that someone would be speaking at church at 9am, so I was excited to hear who it would be! Thankfully, I turned to another Titan and asked what she'd said. He chuckled, "She said that the pastor has gone to another village, and you will be preaching tomorrow."    Gulp!

     The Bible tells us to always be ready, but finding out at 10:30pm that you're preaching the next morning, in the trade language of Tok Pisin mind you, is a little distressing. I didn't know it then, but God had a plan.

     We'd been working on Genesis 15 earlier that day, and had come to verse 6, which says, "Abram believed the LORD, and it was credited to him as righteousness." So I inquired about the Titan word they used for believe and how they use it in daily life. The word means to think about something for a long time, like the English word ponder. I learned they don't have a word for believe, or faith, in Titan. After a long discussion about what might be another Titan word to use, the Titans suggested a word which means to accept something as true, and one's life is then lived in light of that. So, they decided to use that in verse 6 and test it later with folks in the village.

     After finding out I was preaching the next morning, I regathered the translators and raised the idea of sharing our translation of Genesis 15 for the sermon. They thought it was a fabulous idea for me to read that so people could hear what we'd been working on! It wasn't as fabulous when I said that I wasn't a native speaker, so it would be better if they read it out loud in church instead. However, they agreed, and divided up the verses amongst themselves. When they read it aloud the next morning, the impact was palpable.

     Usually the Scripture reading is in English (their third language!), because there's no published Scripture in Titan. When it's read, you see people staring out the window or sleeping. But this time, the Scripture being read was in Titan. Everyone perked up and leaned forward, intently listening! Their expressions showed they were really thinking about what they were hearing.

     During the sermon, I reread verse 6 in my rough Titan. One of the older women really started nodding and taking notes! Yes, God had made promises to Abram that seemed impossible, but Abram had accepted what God said as true and then lived his life in light of that, and because of that, God considered him righteous. That was real faith. The same kind of faith required to believe that we are counted as righteous in God's eyes because of what Jesus has done for us!

     The reading of Genesis 15 that morning in Pere was just a glimpse of the Titan people having the Bible in their own language. I praise God for allowing me to see a glimpse of a future when the wonderful news about Jesus is read aloud each week from a Titan Bible in every Titan village!

Stay tuned, because in the next newsletter, we'll talk about what God did in the hearts of some of those in that service.

Budget News

     Now that we are transitioning to living in the US, the ministry budget Wycliffe has approved for our ongoing ministry with the Titan translation project has increased. In addition, since we joined Wycliffe over 4 years ago, some of our financial partners are no longer able to give.

     All of that combined means that we are currently at about 70% of our monthly budget. We must be at 100% of our monthly budget before we can be released to start our remote assignment helping the Titans with their Bible translation project. We need a strong base of prayer and financial partners to get us from 70% to 100%. Can you help?

     We are excited to start our remote assignment as soon as possible and get back to helping the Titans with their translation, so we ask that you would prayerfully consider partnering with us in this exciting ministry!

Click here to be a prayer partner.

Click here to be a financial partner.

Have questions about all of this budget stuff?  Click here to read more.

Please pray...
  • For the Titan translators to continue to share what is being translated with their communities.
  • For the damaged cell tower that services Pere village to be repaired soon, which will help us stay in contact with the Titans.
  • That we would have opportunities to share about our Wycliffe ministry with churches and individuals.
God i blesim yupela (God bless you all),
Steve, Mindy, Karah, David, & Jonathan Clover

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