Wycliffe Advocates Pack
Want to participate in the Bible translation movement? Then help us spread the word in your cell group, church, prayer group, or with your family and friends!
We’ve chosen to focus on the theme Finding Your Place in God’s Picture for the 2015 Advocates Pack. The body of Christ, just like a human body, is made up of many parts which enable it to function as it should (1 Cor 12:17-20). When we use the gifts God has given us to serve him and each other, we bring him glory (1 Pet 4:10-11). Could God do the work himself? Of course! But he chooses to work through his people (Eph 2:10). Living lives committed to making disciples (Matt 28:16-20) means finding our unique place in the beautiful and timeless picture God is painting in his world.
It takes a wide variety of people to complete the picture. You are unique with your own God-given gifts to contribute and a distinct role to play which only you can fill. All you have to do is be willing to let God use you – just the way he created you.
To reach the 180 million people across the world waiting for God’s Word, Wycliffe needs people willing to give of their time and gifts to be used by God. He often calls us in unexpected ways, to tasks we never could have seen ourselves doing.
In this Advocates Pack we have included video resources, a prayer focus, material for a small group discussion and some Wycliffe stories. Photos are available on a powerpoint presentation for download for your use. We trust this will be an encouragement.
Here are some video resources available for download to share with your cell group, church, or friends. Alternatively we can organise to send you a USB with these resources if you are having problems with downloading. Let us know by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Portrait Of Bible Translation [Aussie dub] from Wycliffe Australia on Vimeo.
Bible translation takes more than just Bible translators. It’s a team effort, and many service roles are in areas you would probably never expect. Watch this video to find out how God can use you to reach people with the Bible!
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ
We praise you, Lord, for your great wisdom, faithfulness and love.
Thank you that you choose to work through your people to carry out your purposes.
Thank you for calling people into Bible translation. We pray for new Wycliffe members currently building a support team and preparing to begin their roles in the places you have called them. Help them to rely on you to provide for their needs. Replace any feelings of anxiety about the unknown with a sense of hope and joy about all you are going to do. Give strength and grace to those facing the pressures of entering a new culture. Open up doors of opportunity and help them to communicate effectively cross-culturally.
Thank you for creating each of us unique and giving our lives purpose in your Kingdom. Give us discernment to know what gifts you have given us and how to use them to serve you, and each other, for your glory.
We place into your hands our hopes, dreams and fears. Lead us according to your will. Unite us in your truth and love, and help us to share the good news of Christ with the world, wherever you have placed us.
In Jesus’ name,
Discussion material – Finding Your Place in God’s Picture
Feel free to use the following material as part of your small group discussion or in your sermon.
God has given each of you a gift … Use them well to serve one another (1 Peter 4:10)
God has given each of you a gift
1) What gifts, abilities and skills has God given you? Think about your spiritual gifts (1 Cor 12; Rom 12; Eph 4) and natural talents.
2) How does God speak to us and guide us? Brainstorm some ideas and then consider the following points:
a. With the help of the Holy Spirit, God reveals His wisdom to us through the Bible (1 Cor 2:14-16). His Word is a light to our path (Psalm 119:105).
Wycliffe story: God speaks through His Word – Read about how Didier’s life was changed when he heard God speak to him through his mother tongue.
b. Through the gathered church of faithful believers, God appoints people for ministry and mission (Acts 13:1-2; 14:23; 2 Cor 8:19; Tit 1:5).
c. God uses events and circumstances. The shipwreck that seemed like an accident in Paul’s life ended up leading him into ministry in Malta (Acts 27:27-44). In the wilderness, Philip met the Ethiopian man who had been forced to leave Jerusalem due to persecution (Acts 8:26-40). Through the poverty and needs of the early church, the apostles were led by God to appoint the first deacons to serve the family of believers (Acts 6:1-6).
Wycliffe story: God often brings good out of seemingly bleak situations – read about how Kanytjupayi’s life was radically turned around and given new purpose in God’s Kingdom.
d. God gives us practical wisdom for daily life. In Old Testament books (like Proverbs and Ecclesiastes) and stories (like the faithful lives of Esther and Daniel) we see God’s people needing wisdom to live godly lives in a challenging world – just as we need today.
e. He speaks through many other unpredictable ways. In Scripture we see that God even used a speaking donkey (Num 22:28-30)! He is a great God who is interested in each person and patiently prompts and nudges us as we need.
Wycliffe story: Read Our Best Excuses Backfired, a couple who were convinced they were not suitable for cross-cultural mission but ended up joining Wycliffe.
Wycliffe story: Read God Unearthed my Hidden Talents, a story of how someone was proven wrong about her (un)suitability for God’s mission.
Use your gifts well to serve one another
1) What does it mean to serve one another? See 1 Cor 12:17.
2) Have you ever considered becoming involved in cross-cultural mission? What might that look like?
a. Pray. Not all are called to work in a cross-cultural setting and not all are in a position to give financially to mission work. But we are all capable of praying.
Wycliffe story: Prayer is vital – read about how W & J’s* churches supported their ministry for over 50 years.
b. Give. When you support a missionary, you are not simply giving them money. You are partnering with them in their ministry and together you are reaching people with the gospel.
c. Go. It might be going on a short-term trip or becoming a full-time missionary. Maybe overseas or right here in Australia. The needs are great and God can use you!
Wycliffe story: God can use anyone – read about how He even used a dog trainer in cross-cultural mission.
d. You may like to watch the video ‘Is It For Me?’ together [1:40 min]. (2nd video in Video tab)
3) Are there believers in your life who can advise you and pray for you as you work out what God might be calling you to do? If not, ask God to bring some alongside you who can share your journey.