Ray Pritchard pastored in Los Angeles, Dallas and Chicago. Married to Marlene for 38 years, he enjoys being a husband, a father and a grandfather, riding his bike, and playing with Dudley and Gary, beloved basset hounds.
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Most people assume that preaching with an translator is harder than preaching on your own. They think that having to stop your train of thought every few seconds makes it harder to preach. I’ve found that the reverse is true. Ideally when you have a translator by your side, the two of you will be so much in synch that while he (or she) is translating, you have time to think of the next thing you want to say.
One of the favorite moments from our trip to Africa last April came when Peter Odanga translated for me at the Kwale Prison. He was so good that he imitated my gestures almost perfectly. You can tell from the picture that he was translating not only the words but also the emotion of my message.
When the speaker and the translator get in rhythm, you eventually become like one person giving the same message in two different languages. That doesn’t always happen, but when it does, the Holy Spirit transcends the language barrier so that we all can hear the Word of the Lord.
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