Posted in Bible Translation Oral Bible Storying

How does Oral Bible Storying work?

Saturday marked the end of our second Oral Bible Storying (OBS) weekend! This is a really exciting time because now, for the first time, we have started to translate biblical content into Kwakum. We have spent a total of two weekends working on the Creation narrative from Genesis 1-2, and currently have a very good draft that we will soon be sending to consultants to check. I thought some of you might want to know what that looked like, and how OBS relates to Bible translation. This post is going to go through what we did for these two weekends,…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Encouragements and Exhortations The Hare Home

3 Ways Parenting is Harder than Missions

A common question that we receive is “What is the hardest part about being a missionary?” There are a lot of ways to answer that question, and I wrote about one of them HERE. One response I usually reserve for just for the ears of Stacey is: PARENTING! I don’t usually share that response with others because parenting is obviously not missions, and we would be missionaries even if we were not parents. But, I thought it would maybe be encouraging for those parents out there that are having a hard time, missionary or not, to know you are not…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Current Events

Joshua Harris: “Messengers will fail, but the message never will”

When I Kissed Dating Goodbye came out, I was fifteen and the book greatly influenced the circles that ran in. I even went to an event related to the book when I was in highschool. If you are not familiar, Harris presented “courting” as a methodology of seeking romantic relationships rather than “dating”. The overall idea was pretty good: dating in the mainstream sense is self-focused and often temporary, but courting allows parents and others to give input while focusing more on the long-term. However, it ended up for many people to be a set of legalistic rules that, in…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Africa Culture Encouragements and Exhortations

Where there is no justice

An athletic neighbor once bragged to me that he jogged to a nearby village and back each day. I (a linguist) joked that I only ran when the police were chasing me. He looked at me completely seriously and responded, “Yes, I have seen that you Americans run from the police on TV. Here we just give the police 1,000 francs (about $2) and there is no problem.” It was funny for sure, but also really sad…because it was true. Throughout our entire time here we have heard various stories of injustice. For instance, one of our neighbors was beaten…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Book Reviews Encouragements and Exhortations

Father’s Day Book Review: When Church Conflict Happens

My dad recently published a book called When Church Conflict Happens. I have been planning on writing a detailed review, and since Sunday was Father’s Day, I figured it was fitting to do it now. Whereas many of us would like to pretend like church conflict does not happen (at least not in our church), this book demonstrates how to identify different types of conflict, get to the root of it, and deal with it in a biblical and godly way. Keep in mind, the author is my dad, so this is probably not a completely unbiased review, but I…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Africa Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

Of Sandcastles, Ecclesiastes, and Missions

We are currently getting some beach time here in Cameroon (one of the perks of living in the tropics). At the same time we have begun studying the book of Ecclesiastes as a family. These two facts have resulted in many great discussions with our kids. Just the other day we were out building a sandcastle together on the beach. Moats were dug, walls were mounted, and challenges were hurled at the sea. However, it did not take long for the ocean to riposte with a foamy wave of wrath. As our walls tumbled, Makyra, our oldest daughter, cried out:…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Africa African Traditional Religion Encouragements and Exhortations

Do you really believe in demons?

Moving to Africa has plunged us into a radically different environment. I joke with Stacey that we would be prime candidates for the voyage to Mars, having already journeyed to a new world. I can stand next to a neighbor, see with fully functioning eyes the exact same event, and walk away with a drastically different impression. This reality was vividly demonstrated a couple weeks ago when we endured a ferocious storm here in the village. People’s roofs were ripped off and flung into the surrounding forest. Lightning was striking all around us and the thunder was terrifying. Both Stacey…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Christian Missions Encouragements and Exhortations

Lesson learned from Janner Wingfeather

People have asked me if I ever feel like just giving up on missions. We try to be honest on our blog about our lives here and sometimes when people hear the difficulties they feel like it is just too much. Of course, they are usually thinking about the things that are not that hard, like cockroaches and snakes. Those things are just annoying. What is hard is watching babies die, seeing people fighting in the streets, knowing that most of our neighbors are living incredibly difficult lives without God to comfort them, and knowing there is little to nothing…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Africa African Traditional Religion Poverty

Vain Generosity

I wrote a few months ago A Case for Generosity in which I made the claim: “Being generous is so close to being loved that for the average Kwakum, they are indistinguishable.” My conclusion to this blog post was that, as Christians, when considering all of the variables for giving, we should make generosity a priority. I used in this argument a case study of a little boy named Patrick who was born with hydrocephalus. His family asked me to help get him a surgery and we decided to give. We found that our giving in this case conveyed great…

Continue Reading...
Posted in Bible Translation Literacy Newsletter

[Newsletter] The Kwakum have an alphabet!

A week ago, chiefs from various Kwakum villages, fellow missionaries, the town mayor, and hundreds of “regular” Kwakum people gathered together singing the words of the song that is written above. It was a time to celebrate two things: 1) The opening of the new Kwakum literacy and translation center, and 2) the dedication of the new Kwakum alphabet. The Kwakum literacy and translation center is a five room plus once conference room building which serves as a hub for literacy work, Oral Bible Storying, children’s ministry, and translation work. Two out of the five rooms are bedrooms which the…

Continue Reading...