Growing So Fast!

I can’t believe Josiah is five months old…. so you know what that means – I finally uploaded pictures from when he turned four months.  ;)  We’ve been trying to do pictures with this purple stuffed gorilla that we have each month, but usually the picture gets taken several days weeks after I intend to.  On the plus side, though, at least they’re getting taken!

Here are some from months before….

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And four months is a series of outtakes….  ;)

Most of the pictures started with Josiah, who couldn't quite sit on his own for terribly long, propped up. Before long, though, he was leaning to eat the gorilla.

Most of the pictures started with Josiah, who couldn’t quite sit on his own for terribly long, propped up. Before long, though, he was leaning to eat the gorilla.

...And then succeeding in eating it....

…And then succeeding in eating it….

...And then landing on top of the gorilla....

…And then landing on top of the gorilla….

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…Or it landing on him.

And then ended with him deciding the paper tasted much better than purple fur.

…And then ended with him deciding the paper tasted much better than purple fur.

Moral of the story?  We never did get that perfect shot, but that’s okay – these pictures much more accurately reflect his wiggly worm self anyway!  :)

…And his wiggly self is definitely loved a lot….

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…sometimes a little TOO much.  ;)

Time to get involved!

A few months ago, a friend–who I hadn’t talked to in quite some time–sent in a gift for our ministry.  When I was corresponding with her about the gift she wrote, “I’ve enjoyed reading your newsletters over the years, and decided it is time to get involved!”

Does this describe you?  Maybe you’ve been getting our newsletters, following our blog or tracking us on Facebook over the past couple of years but have yet to join our ministry team?

It’s not too late!  Now would be a great time to commit to praying for us or giving financially on a regular basis.  We can’t start our new assignment until we reach 100% of such commitments; currently we are only at 73%.  The sooner we begin the assignment the sooner we can start to have an impact, through fund development, on the nearly 2,000 language communities around the world who are still waiting for God’s Word.

If you would like to join our team, please click here or let us know if you have further questions.

Gifts Adding Up

I was visiting with a friend recently who said something to the effect of, “I really want to help you out financially, but I can’t give much and don’t think it will make a difference.”

Was I ever quick to jump in and correct her thinking–”Whatever you can give WILL make a difference for worldwide Bible translation.  One of the great things about our partnership team is that there are lots of people giving what you might consider ‘small’ gifts…and it adds up quickly!”

Not long after that, we received word of her commitment to give monthly to Wycliffe with preference for our ministry.  Commitments like hers are getting us closer to our goal of having 100% of our ministry budget pledged.  Don’t think you can give enough to make a difference? Think again!

However, despite new partners and others who have increased, we are still only at 73% of ongoing commitments–leaving a gap that must be closed before we can start our new assignment.  An empty office (see this recent post for a photo) remains at Wycliffe until we reach 100%.

If you want to help us get started in our new role please let us know of your desire to partner financially with us on an ongoing basis.   You can also set up gifts online through the Wycliffe website at https://www.wycliffe.org/partner/7921ED

Your gifts play an important part in reaching the nearly 200 million people still waiting for even one verse of God’s Word in their language.

Motivated By Scripture

This story from southeast Asia is pulled from the Wycliffe USA blog and it is an excerpt from The Finish Line monthly downloads. The Finish Line is a guide to praying for translation projects within three years of completion.  Click here for more about The Finish Line.

Having access to God’s Word in a community’s heart language is important, but people also need to be able to understand how to use the Bible and apply its teachings to their daily lives. That’s why Scripture use workshops are so important—to equip people in reading and studying the Bible for further understanding. In one community, a workshop was to begin after the Sunday morning service. Five hundred worshipers crowded into the morning service because they were so excited about the workshop in the upcoming days!???????????????????????????????????????????? One of the attendees was seventy years old. She walked a total of four hours every day, to and from her home in the mountains, so that she could attend the workshop! Then she’d head home each evening to look after her husband, who was paralyzed from a stroke. What a beautiful testimony of a woman who is motivated to learn more about the Scriptures!

 

Several of you have asked if I was able to start in the office yesterday.  Unfortunately, our level of financial partnership is still low–about 73% of the ongoing commitments needed to start have come in–so I was unable to begin the new assignment.  If you would like to partner, please contact us or sign up here.

30% in 30 Days Update

A few weeks ago we shared about our 30% in 30 Days campaign (Click here for the original post.).  An update is overdue!

We started the month of June feeling rather uncertain and discouraged.  Still needing 30% of our financial partnership goal with only one month to go until the anticipated start date (July 1) of our new assignment, I suppose that was to be expected.

Today, June 25, though we still have a ways to go before we meet our goal, we nonetheless feel hopeful.  We have gained a few new partners and some current partners have increased the level of their partnership.  (A big thank you to those of you who fall in these categories, as well as to all of our partners!  We are so grateful to each of you!)  We also had the opportunity to spend last weekend with a wonderful congregation in Sarasota that has a vision for worldwide Bible translation and understands how our new assignment can be used to transform lives — and several verbal commitments for financial partnership were made.

Office at Wycliffe just waiting to be filled!  (Hmm - some people fill in thermometers for a visual of their progress... Maybe we will gradually decorate the office as we get closer to our goal!  ;)  )

Office at Wycliffe just waiting to be filled! (Hmm – some people fill in thermometers for a visual of their progress… Maybe we will gradually decorate the office as we get closer to our goal! ;) )

Not counting those verbal commitments since we don’t know details yet, we are at 72% of our financial partnership goal with just one week to go until July 1.  We are getting a little nervous that we won’t be able to start as planned, but we know that God has performed far bigger miracles than this and that He has big things in store.  (If you missed it before, we cannot start our new assignment until we have monthly/quarterly/annual commitments reaching 100% of our goal.)

If you would like to join our team please let us know as soon as possible (even if you do not set up your gift immediately), as this will help us to plan our start date and know where we are with commitments.

You can easily set up a gift online using the NEW Wycliffe.org site; click here to check that out.  We appreciate all of you and look forward to seeing how God grows our team!

Investing for Impact: 30% in 30 Days

Over the past few weeks, we’ve been posting about our transition from Nigeria to the U.S.  The impetus for this move is my new role with Wycliffe as Vice President for Advancement.  I am slated to start on July 1.  We can’t wait to dive in to the new assignment, supporting the work of Bible translation around the world which leads to transformed lives!

This pastor is carrying a case of recently-translated Bibles in his heart language, Berom, to his congregation in Nigeria.  God's Word being carried off to transform lives!

This pastor is carrying a case of recently-translated Bibles in his heart language, Berom, to his congregation in Nigeria. God’s Word being carried off to transform lives!

However, the biggest hurdle to overcome right now is the growth needed on our financial partnership team.  Though we’re now living in the States and have a different job title, we will continue to raise funds to support the ministry of Bible translation to which God has called us, and given our larger family size and the higher cost of living in the U.S. compared to Nigeria, our monthly ministry budget has increased significantly. We will not be able to start our new assignment until God has led our friends, family and church communities, combined, to pledge at least 100% of that amount. At the moment, we are only at about 70% of our goal, leaving us with a rather significant (from a human perspective) gap.

At church a few weeks ago in Michigan, the pastor dug into the astonishing work that God performed through David in the battle between the Israelites and the Philistines. While I was slightly pre-occupied holding Josiah and trying to dodge the mustard yellow stuff seeping through his outfit (a nice outfit, seeing that we had him dedicated that morning as well), God used that sermon to remind us of a truth that was easy to forget in light of this gap: focus on God, not the giant. To the best of our knowledge, David never wavered in his faith in God to win the battle and the role that God had for him in that battle. David’s focus was on the Lord Almighty, not on the giant before him.

What are the giants in our life today? Different people have different giants, to be sure, but this seemingly huge financial gap could easily be a giant for us in the coming weeks. Despite the gap, we need to keep our focus on God. He will provide in His time, in His own unique ways.

Would you please consider joining God in what He is doing through Bible translation and at the same time help us to bridge this gap? We are looking for partners who are willing to commit to giving to Wycliffe on an ongoing basis (e.g. monthly, quarterly, etc.) with preference for our ministry. (Current partners who would like to increase their level of giving are also welcomed!)

For more information on giving, please click here. You can give by credit card, EFT withdrawal or by check. Please let us know if you have questions!

Thank you for helping us overcome this giant!

Note: Wycliffe uses and approves a ministry budget for its members. This budget reflects the amount needed to fund each ministry. Wycliffe requires its members to develop financial partnerships with individuals and churches to fund its tax-exempt purpose and to meet their full ministry budgets.