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The Interpreter

By |August 25th, 2013|

Over the past several months, the sign language interpreter at my church has remained constant. This is a change from the multiple intermittent interpreters that have sat in the chair next to the stage that I’ve gotten used to. Now there is one man, every week, and we sit on his side of the main worship center.

My eye is drawn to him every week. During worship, the sermon, the announcements.

He’s good. He’s expressive. He’s passionate. He smiles and scowls and makes all the right facial expressions for sarcasm and candor and encouragement. He’s probably a believer; at least I would assume that to come to a church every week with the direct intention of translating emotional, exhorting, passionate speech into authentic American Sign Language that people believe, one would be much more effective if they believed it themselves.

I used to work as a relay agent in a Communication Services for the Deaf (CSD) call center, translating voice calls into teletype devices and vice versa. Part of the gig is promising that you will authentically translate tone and emotion. This means I had to describe how the speaking person sounded to the deaf person with text, and relay with my words anger, happiness, boredom, sarcasm, etc. within the context of the conversation.

As you can imagine, these FCC-protected conversations could get interesting. I remember all sorts of calls happening around me… some that were extremely awkward… […]

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Alongside Service

By |August 19th, 2013|

I was dating a woman named Christina some years back. We were open and honest, and had lots of fun, and she was fantastic. Most importantly, I’d determined to lead our relationship

in a Godly manner and direction that pleased Him. And I guess you could say that I did that, even during its soul-ripping apocalypse.

I broke up with her because I had fallen in love with someone else. That someone would eventually become my wife. And God’s hands were all over it.

That break-up was the hardest of my life, for two reasons:

1.) I never want to be the one to end a relationship, and 2.) trying to explain to an extremely emotional just-broken-up-with young woman how God orchestrated her horrendous heartbreak, I spectacularly failed the biblical warning to hold one’s tongue (James 3).

Needless to say, even though I was now free to date the woman I loved, I still had that gut-wrenching feeling of being the instrument of pain in someone else’s life.

I remember weeping – sobbing, really – over being “that guy,” wishing there was some other path down which it could have gone.

So my new girlfriend, Anna, and I started to pray for her… […]

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