Uganda (MNN) — For Deaf church planters serving with DOOR International, transformation is a regular occurrence. Change is a natural reaction when Deaf people encounter God’s Word in their heart Sign Language.
Just ask Malunya.
“The Deaf will change as they learn God’s Word in Sign Language,” he signs assuredly.
“Knowing about God in my heart language did something powerful to me. I think the Holy Spirit used the Bible in Ugandan Sign Language to change my heart and my mind.
“Now, I think differently; I understand many more things about God’s love, and His plan for my life and all who accept Him.”
You see, it would’ve been very easy for Malunya to become a bitter person. He could never hear the people who constantly made fun of him, but he didn’t have to. Their faces said it all.
They mocked him for being Deaf. They flapped their hands when he tried to use Sign Language. Eventually, Malunya gave up, feeling worthless and useless.
“It was really only when he encountered…other people who work through DOOR’s church planting program, who themselves know God’s Word through Sign Language Bible translation and were able to teach him …his life began to be changed,” shares Rob Myers, DOOR’s President and CEO.
DOOR International is a global Deaf-to-Deaf ministry that translates God’s Word into Sign Language and equips Deaf church planters with training and tools.
“We get to see not only the impact of access to Scripture, but the impact of people bringing Scripture into Deaf communities, beginning to teach people, and — as their lives are transformed — they themselves become leaders.”
When Deaf people come to Christ, they suddenly become part of a tiny minority group. There are approximately 70 million Deaf people worldwide, and less than two percent of them know Christ.
“Many times when a Deaf person comes to Christ…they kind of, by default, become a leader in the community — whether they are ready for it or not,” Myers explains.
“It’s critical when we’re trying to reach Deaf communities that we sow into them (Deaf leaders) by providing Deaf role models, by providing opportunities for them to lead…and empowering them to go out and reach their own people for Christ.”