Scott’s News July 2018 Edition

Printable PDF of our July 2018 newsletter:

View July 2018 newsletter here:


This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world.
It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives,
just as it changed your lives
from the day you first heard and understood the truth
about God’s wonderful grace.

(Colossians 1:6 NLT) 

What a blessing to catch up with Bible story team leader, Wen Lee, over lunch with our friends Kelvin (SIL Australia lecturer) and Roslyn Nicole (Wycliffe Australia Personnel Manager)

Dear Friends and Family,

We had the privilege of catching up recently with one of our lecturers from when we did our SIL Australia training for Wycliffe. Wen Lee is now working with Bible storying teams in her home country in Southeast Asia. When we asked her about the impact that she can see Bible translation having in her context she shared something she was incredibly blessed to witness.

Wen Lee was working with a Bible storying team on what we call ‘key terms’. These are terms in the Scriptures that carrying particular depth and meaning – words like ‘grace’, ‘sacrifice’, and in this case ‘holy’.  As she worked with local pastors and others involved in Bible storytelling, it quickly became clear that there was a problem.

Relying largely on their understanding of the national language (which for them is their second or third language), the team said that their understanding of ‘holy’ was that it means ‘clean’. When Wen Lee pressed them further, they said that this meant taking a bath before church and wearing clean clothes to church. So for them, the term just meant outside cleanliness, not internal cleanliness.

As the team discovered that God wanted to clean their hearts and empower them for his purposes, they got very excited. The next Sunday at church, they shared stories from the Bible, using the phrase in their language that best conveyed the meaning of the term ‘holy’. And they saw God do something amazing.

There was a man who had come to church that day who was being held captive by an evil spirit. But because his own language was being used, he heard and understood the good news that because of Jesus, he could be clean on the inside and used for God’s good purposes. And he put his faith in Jesus! The church witnessed God free the man from the evil spirit and fill him with the Holy Spirit. They saw an incredible transformation as this man was saved, and they experienced first-hand the impact that is possible when people hear God’s Word in the language that best speaks to their hearts. 

Our friend Maria came to the Bruce Hooley dinner lecture that SIL Australia hosted, and she said that the lecture reminded her of how good God is to transform us into his people for his good and loving purposes in this world.

We give thanks for Wen Lee and the work of others like her who are bringing life to others as God’s Word is understood. And we pray that the transformation that she has been privileged to witness in that community will continue. And what a privilege to share a meal with Wen Lee as she visits Australia, and to encourage one another in the Lord!

In the recent workshops and dinner lecture that we at SIL Australia hosted, we were reminded that God transforms us so that we can see him transform others for his good purposes. We had a wonderful time discussing how we can better partner with others in our work, how we can truly love those we partner with, and how we can bless and support each other as we seek to work in friendship for the sake of God’s Kingdom. It was a delight to see others encouraged in their work, and especially to see how the SIL Australia team pulled together to make these events such a success. We truly work with such amazing folks!

We give thanks to God for those we get to work with in partnership – including all of you. God is answering your prayers and using your gifts to further his work throughout the world. Your generosity frees us to bless others in this work, and we are so grateful.

When participants of the recent SIL Australia workshops were asked to reflect on the words that were standing out to them regarding effective partnership, these were some of the key words identified in what they’d learnt. The larger the word the more participants chose that term. This list is so affirming of the ways we aim to partner with others in this incredible work we get to do. Praise the Lord!

If you would like to give a one-time gift to support our ministry, or if you would like to join our financial support team in regular giving, please click on the link at the end of this email or use one of the pathways listed at the end of this email.

You may notice that we’re working on becoming better communicators. We appreciate your prayers for this. We do hope that you are finding this encouraging — we are so grateful that God has led us to a place and season where this is possible. Please let us know how we can pray for you or encourage you, or if there are any particular topics you would like to see us write about on our new blogsite.

Thank you for partnering with us. Thank you for allowing God to transform you. May God work through us together to train and encourage intercultural workers in order to see disciples of Jesus growing through the Scriptures available in the language that speaks to their hearts. God bless you!

Graham and Ellie

Support Us

We’re praising God for:

  • continued improvement in Ellie’s health and the good medical care she is receiving. At the time of sending this letter, she has had 12 well days in a row, which is the longest run of wellness she’s had in the last 5 years!
  • a great team of people to work with at SIL Australia, and their continued acceptance of Graham and warm regard towards us
  • the wonderful conversations and connections made possible through the recent workshops, and dinner and lecture – and that these events were successful
  • his provision for us. We are now averaging 80% of our support quota. We’ve had some existing supporters able to increase their giving, which is a wonderful indication of God’s provision for them too.

We’re praying for:

  • continued strength, stamina and wisdom as Graham leads SIL Australia. Graham is preparing for board meetings and for more travel. Next week he travels to Fiji for an important area leaders’ conference
  • continued improvement in Ellie’s health, and especially that these days of wellness will turn into weeks and months of wellness
  • focus and productivity in our research — we had a good research week and need to find more time to devote to our studies
  • God to raise up the financial supporters he wants to use to provide for us so that we can bless others.
Graham is thankful for a new standing desk. He was getting very sore from so much desk time, but he’s also very tall and so standing desks are usually too short for him. This one is designed for people over 6-foot tall. When consulting with his staff about whether this was worth the money, everyone was lovely and supportive. One staff said, ‘You just have to stay in this role long enough to make it worth it.’ We take this as a good sign.

Support Us

Electronic giving from anywhere in the world: 
Or donate through any Wycliffe organisation worldwide—just include a note that it is for us, Acc.#281522
By cheque in the USA: Wycliffe Bible Translators P.O. Box 628200
Orlando, FL 32862; note it is for Acc.#281522
For partnership information/inquiries:  Wycliffe Australia
70 Graham Rd, Kangaroo Ground, VIC 3097   (03) 9712 2777

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