Patience. It’s hard sometimes, isn’t it? Especially when you know that what you’re having to be patient for is really important! But sometimes that’s what God asks us to do. Here are two ways I’m going to have to practice patience before I’ll be able to move into the tribal village to start to translate the Bible into their language:
1. Recently I had thought that I’d be leaving for Burkina Faso at the beginning of January. But now that may be delayed until the middle of February. The missionaries already over there have to do a lot of work to get ready for my arrival and may not be able to get to it until then. I may be able to buy tickets this month and once the tickets are bought I’ll know when I’m leaving. But until then it changes regularly, so who knows. 🙂
2. My first several months will be in the big city. There, I’ll be learning more French, learning the culture (way of life), and connecting with a local African church. But by the time I’m done with all that, my teammates who will be moving into the tribal village with me likely won’t be done yet. So I’ll have to be patient again as I wait for them to catch up. The great part is that I get to do something really fun during that time of waiting. Ok, it’s only fun if you’re me, I think, but I’m excited about it. Here’s what the New Tribes leadership told me about these plans for the 6 months to a year that I may be waiting for teammates:
“We want to remember your desire to do linguistics and so we feel that it would be very helpful if we were to get a much clearer understanding on the dynamics and needs in the southwest region of Burkina Faso. . . . [W]e feel that . . . it would be profitable if you could do some in-depth study of the languages of that area in order to help define a long-term strategy for the various groups there. We are thinking of something along the lines of a thorough survey of each language. . . . We believe that the linguistic training that you received . . . and your personal desire to be involved in language analysis lend themselves to this pressing need for clear, reliable and up-to-date information of what is happening in the region as far as discerning patterns and relatedness of languages, etc is concerned.”
Basically what that means is that I’ll get to work with the people groups New Tribes believes need missionaries, each for a few weeks. I’ll learn the basics of their language, figure out the basics of how it works, figure out how it compares to other languages, and then get to move on to the next one. Sound fun? Yes!!
Thanks for being patient with me and watching God’s plan unfold. I’m glad He’s the One in charge. Aren’t you?