I have been looking forward to writing about this next extraordinary woman of the day because she encompasses what this blog is about. She proves that we are all blessed to come into contact with truly wonderful people each day. So today we celebrate the humble service of Dagney Pitts Stone.
I met Dagney at the gym, although I don’t remember the exact day. Really my experience at the gym is a blur of overhead squats, flailing around on a pull-up bar that ripped skin from my hands, and devilish little things called burpees that we all cursed under our hyperventilating breaths. We went to the same Crossfit Gym and knew more about each other’s dead lift max than we did about each others personal lives. Eventually, as usually happens, Facebook found a way to link us together and we soon became Facebook friends.
As many of us do I enjoy my morning coffee while trolling Facebook when it’s too early to deal with angry phone calls and emails at work. (I am pretty sure this is the reason the newspaper is dead and we are a little less informed about the world) After logging on I usually delete all Farmville references with concerning satisfaction then sort through new updates looking for a good laugh or two. From there its open road, I travel wherever my voyeuristic tendencies take me. (You know you do it too, come on!) It was during one of these mornings when I stumbled upon Dagney’s page and saw her employer as Wycliffe Bible Translators. Curious, I snooped.
Honestly, I take my Bible completely for granted. Small and white, it sits on the table beside my bed untouched for days usually getting more use after a bad day than a good one. Like many, the thought of God and my need for Him usually comes to mind after things have gotten hard. If I take God’s word for granted I suppose that means I take God for granted too. Sad, isn’t it? As I read about Wycliffe I was humbled to think of its mission; translating the Bible into all languages so all people across the world has access to God’s word. I had never considered that there are people in the year 2011 that have never even seen a Bible; this made me feel worse about taking mine for granted.
I was curious about Wycliffe so I asked Dagney a bit more about her role there. She explained to me that Bible translation has traditionally been an adult vocation but she is working to introduce the calling to teens as young as 13. As she explained, it’s never too early to prepare yourself mentally, emotionally and spiritually for joining missions. (I’m a short ride out from 30 yrs old and I am still preparing myself for the mission God has chosen for me… I need to get a crackalackin’!) So that’s what she does. She helps teens build a relationship with God so that they turn to their faith for guidance – a rustic idea in a world of instant gratification and subjective morality. She’s helping to create strong foundations for young people that they will be able to build upon for the rest of their lives.
She posts often on the Wycliffe website (linked below) with updates on the Bible translation missions and requests for prayer. Prayer has always been a weakness of mine and her passion for its power is contagious. She probably doesn’t realize how her standing steadfast in her own faith helps others have the courage to stand in theirs.
When I asked Dagney if I could write about her for this blog she acted surprised and offered to get me in touch with some other people who have done more missions overseas translating the Bible than she has. Perhaps she doesn’t realize the impact she has on those around her and the impact she has on people who have know her only in passing. She is a reminder to me that living our faith and doing service unto others shouldn’t be something we try and “fit” into our day, our faith and God’s word should be woven into everything we do. Her Wycliffe updates remind me how lucky I am to even own a Bible and my responsiblity as a Christian to read it more.
Dagney is an example of God’s grace and a truly humble servant; she is an extraordinary woman.
“But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God” (Acts 20:24, NLT).