Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sleepless in... Mibu

We've finally come back into Mibu after more than a month being out in town. Actually, we've been back almost 2 weeks now. It's just that I'm only now getting around to writing an update after getting settled in!
We're back and into our routine. One thing that clues me in to the fact that I'm back into routine is that I frequently wake up at odd hours of the night and can't go back to sleep. I've come to realize more and more that it's just the burden of ministry that keeps me up. Not that I consider my ministry a burden, per se. But I wake up with thoughts about things going on with the church here or even more with translation issues I'm dealing with. Sometimes I'm bothered by something. Other times just excited about something and can't wait for morning. And then other times it's just mundane things that need thinking through. Once my brain gets going in the middle of the night, I'm done for. Anyway, I noticed when we were out in town I'd frequently be able to sleep through the night. Then when we come back in here the sleepless nights pick up again. Routine.
I'm very anxious to get started in Romans here soon. I have to finish up the last little bit in Acts first. That shouldn't take too long. After that I can really get started into Romans. I've spent some time here and there getting ready for it; reviewing some notes from our recent workshop and trying to think through my translation routine. One thing that has been weighing on me recently is a total feeling of inadequacy for what lies ahead. I feel like I really was able to get rolling with translation up to this point. Can you believe I've been doing it for more than a year and a half now? You'd like to think it's all downhill from here; that I'm beyond the hard part of the learning curve. Maybe I am, but I'm feeling like I'm not. After this workshop, whose purpose was to prepare us for translating epistles, I'm realizing that most of the method and the process that I had for narrative discourse were really only good for just that, narrative discourse. Now with the epistles I find that the way that I do things will have to change quite a bit if I'm going to be effective at translating the rest of the New Testament. In some regards I'm starting over again. Will I be able to find a routine that works again? I'm most certain I will, but at the moment I feel some level of inadequacy as I have before me the task of taking the various principles and trying to put them together in a way that I can make good progress in the translation task this next year. The workshop really helped with that. Now I just need to implement. Perhaps this has something to do with my early morning awakenings :)
Oddly enough, over the last few years I've found more and more comfort in feeling inadequate. I think that is where God uses us and teaches us the most. So I don't feel I'm in a panic. I'm ready to move forward, trying to take one faithful step at a time. But I am brought to this point again of realizing that if I am going to do this task that is before me that it's going to have to be in deepened dependance on God. I see that need afresh now as I stand before this huge mountain of a task. You can keep this in your prayers over the next few weeks and months (might as well keep em going for years) as I settle into this difficult genre.