|She wasn't too sure about this cake!|
That conference was the Check-IT-Out Conference hosted by Wycliffe. Very few people knew what we were doing that weekend. Those that did know were praying for God to show us clearly what we were to do. We were looking into the possibility of using Tim's IT skills in the mission field. We weren't sure how, when, where, or what, but we knew God said to go, so we went. I sat in these meetings that were really geared toward those with an IT background with not a clue as to what they were talking about. All I knew was that there were over 2,000 languages in the world that still needed a Bible in their language. These people groups had no way of reading or completely understanding the Bible. I remember thinking, "Wow, you'd think all languages would have a Bible by now." I was amazed at how Wycliffe was using the God given talent and intellect of these gifted men and women to greatly increase the translation process through the use of computers. I was amazed at how the linguist would use shoeboxes of index cards to translate words and sounds as they learned them. As a mom with kids, I'm wondering how many times those boxes were dumped out or had something spilled on them or colored on or....well, you get my point. Now they have a program called Shoebox that enables them to translate without all the index cards to store their words they have learned. Where it used to take 30 years or so to complete a New Testament translation, it now takes 12-15 years. All because of the technology God has provided.
What a difference a year makes! A year later, we are now in full preparation to join the translation work in Papua New Guinea with Wycliffe. We've completed our initial training and begun forming our partnership team. We hope to be in Papua New Guinea in less than a year from now. Just as our kids learn so much in that first year of life, we, too, have learned tremendous amounts about ourselves and about our continued dependence on our Heavenly Father. Although as kids get older, they tend to become less dependent (hopefully) on their parents, this is where the analogy ends. Today, we are even more dependent upon our Heavenly Father. Only He knows what our future holds, and it is an exciting journey to behold!
Disclaimer: Please do not ask me (Tara) any technical computer questions from Check-IT-Out. Not only was my mind several hundred miles away thinking about Janel as she was trying to give birth to Sadye, but the conference certainly wasn't in my mother tongue! I don't think it was in English, at least not good ole' Southern English!