I have been back from 40/40 for a little over two weeks now. That means that language study has kicked into full gear! After the first few classes, we went out to find some Jula speakers (it’s harder here in Ouaga than it will be in Bobo). How do you find them? Well, we just drove up and down the street, hung our head out the window and would greet in Jula. If they greeted us back we stopped the truck, got out and began the introductions. This method proved beneficial and we found several women who were willing to let us sit with them and practice speaking. It was a hoot! Of course there was a ton of laughing, so you have to just leave any ounce of pride at the door! But it was great and we got to hear our language spoken a lot.
Language learning is a very humbling experience. Things that I could accomplish easily in the States are now close to impossible here. I don’t even have the language of a two-year-old yet! But, the Father is teaching me to rely on Him and not myself. It is a frustrating process. I want so badly to be able to communicate with my people right now, but I know it takes time. I found a quotation from Nelson Mandela today that reminded me why it’s so important: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.” Everyone should have the chance to hear the gospel in their heart language. Knowing that doesn’t remove the frustration of the process though. My goal is to echo what Paul says in Colossians 1:28 – “Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.” And it is because of this desire and goal that I struggle through and press on with language learning. But it is only through His energy that He powerfully works within me.
Things to praise God for:
- The ladies who are willing to sit with us as we learn to speak their language
- Awesome fellowship these last two weeks with colleagues from a neighboring country
- A language teacher who has been so flexible as we figure out the best learning method
A few requests:
- Language – patience on the long days, understanding of new terms and phrases, and good rest so that we are able to stay attentive
- For my team leaders – safe travel back to Burkina and a relaxing last couple of weeks with family
- For the relationships that will be formed through learning language – ask that the Father would open doors and allow opportunities to share as our language progresses
Thank you for continuing to lift me up. I can’t put into words how encouraging it is to hear back from you and to know that you are lifting me up before the Father. I truly am blessed.
If you have a minute, write back and let me know how I can be praying for you.
Grateful for your support,