Life is like a seed. You water, cultivate the soil and wait for the sun. A bud appears. A nurturing hand removes the weeds. The seedling develops into something of beauty and relevance. Onlookers want to know what kind of fertilizer caused it to grow so tall and strong?
What if there were only seeds in the world? No water. No soil. Only seeds.
For Melanie*, a Deaf woman in southern California, her life resembled just that – a packet of seeds. No more, no less. A life of struggle, without direction, was all that she knew. Poor choices led Child Protective Services to her doorstep and her children taken away. People no longer saw her, only her problems. She was a dying seedling, without a cultivator.
Melanie knew she had to make a change. One day, out of desperation, she took a chance and attended church. It was there that she learned she had access to God’s Word in her language – American Sign Language. That’s when she met Jesus and everything changed for her.
As Melanie engaged with a church community and the Gospel in her own language, she saw how the Redeemer pursued her! God was cultivating her life with fertile soil, and she was growing in a new direction.
Today, if you meet Melanie on the street, her life looks different. Her youngest daughter is back at home, and Melanie is raising her to know Christ. Her daughter often shares their story, pointing out how her mom found herself in God. Some even say her daughter resembles a young missionary at heart.
Through sign language Scripture, God brings Deaf people into a community, strengthening one another for spiritual maturity and discipleship. For many new Deaf believers, this is the nurturing hope they have been searching for all their lives.
“I planted the seed, …but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.” 1 Corinthians 3:6-7
**God has been cultivating the American Sign Language Bible since 1981! Our translation partner, Deaf Missions, has an inspiring goal of completing the books of the Old Testament in 2020, thereby providing access to an American Sign Language Version for every book of the Bible!