I was struck this week by the role that language plays in the development of a relationship.
There is a young family living in the building next door. We first met them briefly on our very first day here and were only able to have a short, simple greeting (followed by friendly smiles and awkward pauses). Our kids played together at the playground, but there was very little conversation between the adults.
Over the course of the past three months, we have literally watched the language barrier crumble. Last week, we had them over for dinner and we had almost our whole evening in French (with a bit of English and a bit of their heart language too). It was so encouraging on so many levels, as they are also followers of Christ! We so enjoyed getting to know them better and rejoicing in our common Hope together - brothers and sisters in Christ around the world are so, so precious!
Language is a huge barrier to relationship, but with a common language (and patience), a deeper relationship is possible!
What about the people who don’t yet know that God speaks their language? Imagine the barrier to relationship if God’s Word doesn’t exist in your language!
Scripture in one’s heart language is critical to the continual growth in knowledge of Truth and God’s character. Even in Switzerland, where people speak many languages, many have told us (in English) things like, “If I only had a Bible in English, my relationship with God would be nothing like it is with my ___________ Bible.”
But, as the language barrier crumbles, the relationship can deepen. We’re thrilled to be a part of Bible translation! We get to be a part of breaking down that language barrier!
Thank you all so much for your prayers and encouragement! Go team!