How to join our Wycliffe ministry

When you make the decision to be a part of our ministry with Wycliffe in Europe and beyond, here’s what you need to know.

If you’re committing to pray for us and want to let us know, you can go to this Wycliffe site to indicate that. You people who are crazy-committed to praying for us should probably give us a phone call when the Spirit drives you to pray. I think you know what I mean – the Lord works in mysterious ways.

If the Spirit is pressing you to give to God’s Kingdom, and you’ve decided that our ministry is a good outlet for that need, there are two ways to do that: 1) go to this Wycliffe site and complete the process on the Internet, or 2) send a check payable to Wycliffe Bible Translators to the following address, with a note that your gift is for our ministry.

Wycliffe Bible Translators
P.O. Box 628200
Orlando, FL 32862-8200

You may be interested to know that we have two kinds of financial needs: regular monthly support and one-time household setup. So far as the first goes, we need to receive about 9% more ongoing support before we can go to Germany (as of 7/8/2011). Once we get there, we have to “set up house” by purchasing a car and home furnishings. So far, we have a bit more than 62% of that amount (as of 7/8/2011). To contribute to our getting set up there, please note that your gift is for account 281600-71.

Tear it down, pull it up, sell it

“… let us throw off everything that hinders ….” (Hebrews 12:1)

When I look around our house, especially in its present state – Katherine would be furious if I put up pictures – it becomes all too clear that we have a lot in our life here that hinders us. Old things, books, toys, clothing, furniture, paperwork, the house itself – it all weighs us down. And the process of getting rid of it all, in one fashion or another, is pretty painful. It’s so easy to say, “It’s too much. I just can’t do it.”

There’s a lot that we’re trying to do simultaneously: sell or give away unneeded items, renovate parts of the house, set aside things to put in storage, and prepare for life in Germany. Oh, and while all that’s going on, there’s the daily grind of household and office. “Hey, welcome to real life.”

But is that the way the Liddles are supposed to live? “… let us throw off everything that hinders, and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” I’m not aiming to get preachy – it’s just that the message from God is the only instruction I can truly rely on, especially when struggles in life seem insurmountable. Katherine and I are convinced that God has marked out a race for us. Now He’s watching to see if we’ll run … or if we’ll hide.

Please pray for us to have this perseverance as we literally wade through everything that we’ve accumulated in our time in the U.S. Oh, how the enemy tries to take hold of us through our stuff! Jesus said, “Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.” Unfruitful? I do not want to be like that.

Pray for Katherine and me to have patience with one another as we persevere through this season of stress. A big move will always put stress on a marriage We want to demonstrate to each other, to our sons, to our families, and to anyone else who’s watching (even the enemy!) that the power and love of God can overcome all difficulties.

This week I’ll complete the removal of some of the carpet in the house, clearing the way for the new flooring. We’re setting aside a mountain of things to tag and haul off to a Just Between Friends sale next week. And Katherine and I will be sitting down together with our health records, application forms, and a German dictionary so that we can apply for health insurance over there. Gesundheit! Bitte, beten Sie!

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” (Hebrews 12:2-3) BAM!

“The Clone Wars … begun they have.”

That’s what Yoda, the Jedi master, says at the end of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, after the Republic’s newly-acquired clone army arrives to deliver a contingent of Jedi knights from destruction by the droid army of the Separatists. It’s an ominous premonition of what is to come.

If you haven’t seen that movie, it’s OK — I’m not really trying to fill you in on the plot. It’s just that Yoda’s statement came to mind today.

This morning, my Wycliffe colleagues in North Carolina successfully upgraded the email system that many of us will change to over the course of the next year or so. It’s the one that most Wycliffe members around the world have been using for years, but now it’s robust enough to handle the additional traffic that nearly all of us will throw at it. You can’t begin to imagine how much Bible translation relies on email. It’s a staggering realization for me sometimes.

So I thought about what Yoda said, and in our situation I interpreted it as, “Something big has just happened, and we’re going to have a lot of hard work to do as a result of it.” You see, in Dallas, we’re responsible for more than 1,000 email accounts. Some of those aren’t actually in use, but most of them will need to be moved to the new system. I have six people on my team, including myself, to do that work — which is in addition to our regular workload. If you’re a believer in Christ, you can correctly interpret that as a prayer request.

In the end — when the work is done — the change will be a good one. Our people around the world will be able to communicate and collaborate better — and at a lower cost. The result won’t be similar at all to the one Yoda would face in that story. Friend, thank you for praying me through this time!