Last Saturday our friend, Jason, came and spoke to John and I as well as a few friends about his new path in life. He has decided to join with Wycliffe using his skills in software development to help with their Bible translation project. There are more than 6900 languages in our world, which blew me away. I have to be honest that it did not seem like a compelling mission until I heard him speak about it. I wanted to support him because I know he is faithful to Christ and I consider him a friend.
Listening to him however, put everything in perspective. How can someone come to know and accept Christ as their Saviour if they can't read God's word? For so many in our world the Bible is like a neatly bound blank book. It's pretty but meaningless. I never actually sat down and thought about this before. What's more, their are many languages for which there is no written form of the language. All in all there about 2100 languages for which not a single word of Scripture has been written. The task of translating the Bible to all of these languages would be insurmountable without the help of the technology, which Jason will be a part of.
Also, listening to Jason gave me a new appreciation for who he is. As I listened, I kept thinking about how inspiring he is. Not many are willing to leave everyone and everything they know in order to heed God's call. I kept asking myself if I would do the same.
What's more interesting is the Gospel this week was Matthew 4:12-23. Jesus asks Peter and Andrew to leave their nets behind them and He says, "Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men." Our priest gave a great Homily about how in today's day in age we would do a lot of introspection and Internet searching before we decided this was a true calling. By the time we would decide to go, Jesus would have moved on to the next town, and we would miss our opportunity. It takes a great leap of faith to simply say "yes" and trust in the Lord. Most priests have that same huge leap of faith as they leave their family, their jobs, their possessions behind...hoping this is a true calling. Father Alfonse described what it was like for him to leave his nets behind and what a struggle it was for his family.
Jason is lucky in that he has the full support of his family and friends, but irregardless of that it is still quite a step to take and I am sure God will bless him for it.
I know many wanted to come and hear him talk but were unable and should time allow we would like to schedule an additional time. In any case I wanted to pass on the link to Jason's Wycliffe page. Jason not only needs financial support for his mission but prayers as well. You can sign up to support him in either form at this URL: http://www.wycliffe.org/Partnership.aspx?mid=4702DC . Here is a link to Jason's blog so you can read more about his journey in his own words: http://journeytodallas.wordpress.com/ .
I hope that those of you reading this can take some time each day and pray for the work that Jason will be doing.