Posted in Encouragements and Exhortations FAQ Mobilization

Why Are the Laborers Few: Part 4: Supporting National Christians

We have been working through some objections that, at least in part, contribute to the lack of workers on the mission field. So far we have covered the objections: 1) “I don’t want to beg for money“, 2) technology induced sleep, and 3) it’s hard to leave mom. Today I want to consider an objection that I have heard from time to time: It is both more effective and efficient to support national Christians. The core of this objection is that the process of sending out expat missionaries into the nations is expensive and time intensive. Further, when we as…

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Posted in Encouragements and Exhortations FAQ Mobilization

Why are the Laborers Few? Part 3: Because it’s just hard to leave mom

Why are missionaries on the field so worn and spread so then? In the words of Jesus, it is because the laborers are few (Matt 9:37). But why are the laborers few? I believe that one of the reasons is because leaving the warmth and familiarity of one’s family is extremely difficult. The Kwakum people understand this. Many of them die in the same house that they are born in. Even if they do move to a different village, it is of utmost importance that they be buried in the front yard of their childhood home. Why? In part, it…

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Posted in Bible Translation Christian Missions Common Objections Encouragements and Exhortations FAQ

Why are the Laborers Few? Part 2: Technology Induced Sleep

Stacey began a series last week discussing the question: Why are the laborers few? There are many answers to that question, one is that some people are unwilling to raise support, which is what Stacey discussed. This week I want to think through a different response: the rise of technology. Currently we live in a village in Cameroon, Africa and we are able to regularly see and talk to people all around the world. Just the other day I had a Zoom call on which I talked to someone in the Philippines, another in France, and another in Canada, all…

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Posted in Christian Missions Common Objections Encouragements and Exhortations Partnership Development

Why are the Laborers Few? Part 1: “I Don’t Want to ‘Beg’ for Money”

It both pains me and brings me joy to say that more people are asking me to teach them the Bible than I have time to teach. I am a Bible translator in title and yet I am also teaching literacy, evangelism, discipleship, and caring for physical needs. I love my job, but I am tired. Every missionary I know would say the same thing. There is simply so much kingdom work to do on the field and not enough people to do it. Why is that? Why are missionaries pulled so thin? In a word, it is because we…

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Posted in Current Events Encouragements and Exhortations

3 Lessons From Abraham Piper

The other day, as I was looking for a John Piper quote, I came across the NY Times article A Pastor’s Son Becomes a Critic of Religion on TikTok. The article speaks of the rising popularity of Abraham Piper, son of John Piper. Abraham was originally excommunicated from Bethlehem Baptist, but then returned to the church four years later. Throughout the years I have seen some of his social media posts, and I have often found his attitude to be cynical and (honestly) concerning. So, now Abraham is rising in fame as an “Exvangelical.” His platform: criticizing evangelicals and the…

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Posted in Africa Christian Missions Culture Culture Shock Encouragements and Exhortations

“Culturally Competent” Yet Still on the Outside

This last week, Dave’s drafting team was working in our village. Watching them work and talk, I was reminded how I have come to consider them to be some of my closest friends. We are united in the Lord, in the work, and in our love for one another. During our shared meal, this group of guys started telling some of their traditional folktales, full of wild arm movements, animal imitations, and silly faces. They were cracking up to the point of crying, sometimes having a hard time getting the words out, and slapping each other on the back for…

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Posted in Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

How NOT to Choose a Career

When I was a kid, many people told me I could pursue any career I wanted. I went through a number of desired careers including (but not limited to): comedian, doctor, and insurance salesman. In high school, a career counselor looked me in the eye and said: “Ignore all that stuff. You have limits, you can’t just do anything you want. You need to figure out what you are capable of doing and pursue that. But if you can find something that you love to do, you will never work a day in your life.” I like this advice for…

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Posted in Africa Current Events Encouragements and Exhortations

When does a protest become village-burning?

People have asked us for our take on the racial tensions in the US and although I haven’t spent much time following it, this week I watched a video of people vandalizing a Target. The images I saw were strikingly similar to the violence we constantly hear about on the English-speaking side of Cameroon. I think the burning, pillaging, and violence we find here could shed some light on the conflict currently taking place in the States. The Anglophone Crisis: A Little History Relations between the former British colonies and the former French colonies have been tense since the independence…

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Posted in Bible Translation Encouragements and Exhortations

4 Steps to Pursue Diversity in Bible Interpretation

One day, near the beginning of his public ministry, Jesus was approached by a Roman centurion. Jesus had already been doing some shocking things; just a few verses before he touched a man with leprosy, healing him. So, maybe his disciples were growing accustomed to his “different” methods. Maybe his offer to heal the Roman’s servant would not have seemed so strange. They may have been surprised to hear that the centurion believed that Jesus could heal from a distance, but I suspect what surprised them the most was when Jesus replied to him: “Truly I tell you, I have…

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Posted in Bible Translation Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

A Case for Diversity in Bible Interpretation

I would like to make a claim at the outset of this post: proper biblical interpretation requires diversity. Specifically, we need to study the Bible with people different from us in order to best understand the meaning of the text. This claim is not unique to me and when I have heard it in the past, I have brushed it aside. My reasons for rejecting such a conclusion were: 1) as a believer, I am indwelt by the Holy Spirit who guides me into all truth (John 16:13), and 2) I believe in the perspicuity (or clarity) of Scripture. By…

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