By Dan Grove, CBM Strategic Associate in Bambalang, Cameroon with Wycliffe Bible Translators
Well, not THAT Jesus. I have had the incredible privilege of recording the audio for the book of Luke into Maŋkon, the language of the people of Bamunkumbit. I have recorded three days so far and have 382 separate sound files (which I have to edit, put in order and compile together). We are doing a multi-voice recording which means the different “speakers” in the text are spoken by different people. So the big parts are the Narrator, Jesus and lesser so, Peter. The script allows as few as 12 or 13 people to be involved but we believe the more we can get involved, the better! So we have 39 parts all together and are maybe half way through.
It just so happens that the guy who will be speaking Jesus’ parts is coming to the village tomorrow specifically so he can be involved. It is exciting to watch the excitement grow for these people (who do not really know why they are coming to the translation centre) all of a sudden hear things they have not heard before!
The translators are especially excited as they begin to see the fruit of their labours from these last 4 years. As we do recording, we keep things as quiet as possible using foam and blankets to mute the roosters, chickens, motorcycles etc. that seem to like this part of the village. Inside the room, however, I emphasize the needed quiet so we have a good clean recording. The problem is Alice. She is one of the translators. Every once in a while, while Joseph (another translator) is repeating the narrator parts from the prompter…every once in a while, Alice will make a kind of grunting or humming noise when Joseph is speaking.
“Alice!” I said. “Why are you making that noise?!” Her answer? “That part that Joseph just read…it touched me.”
This wonderful Christian lady, with not a whole lot of education, who is working diligently with the three other translators to translate God’s Word into her language for her people, hears God! She sees God in Jesus’ actions and words as she just listens to the Word. It is not her first time. She has studied these passages and struggled with her colleagues to express these things in her heart language and now as she just sits there and listens, it still gets deep down to her heart.
So tomorrow we will start recording Jesus! How so very exciting to be a part of this process that will see this Word come to so many more people in Bamunkumbit. So thanks for being a part of this too. Although you won’t get to see Jesus tomorrow like me, one day you too will see the fruit of our labour together when we meet in heaven and we all really get to see Jesus face to face. I will introduce you to Alice and Joseph and the 22 other translators we have worked with and they will have all kinds of stories to tell you about when Jesus finally came to their village and spoke directly to them. What a day that will be!!
May God’s Word touch you deeply today.