The day the text of The Voice was finally ready to go to the printer, we had quite a commotion in our corner of the building. There were tears, laughter, and even (dare I confess?) a little dancing! Seven years of laborious efforts were coming to a close for our internal editor on the project, the only one in the building that day who had worked on it for so long. I cried with her, even though I had only worked on The Voice for a few months.
The air was charged with so many thoughts – thoughts of victory, uncertainty, satisfaction, relief – that it was hard to discern who was feeling what and why. Now that it’s been a few days since we sent the text files off to the printer, I’ve had some time to think through the powerful feelings that overwhelmed me that day.
When I reflect on the project, I feel overcome with humility. I was never supposed to work on The Voice. My sweet friend, Merrie Noland, was going to coordinate the proofreading. She was an amazing woman and an extremely knowledgeable editor who had been with Thomas Nelson for more than 30 years. I always looked up to her for her skill, her attitude and her perseverance. And what seemed like in a flash, she was gone – she passed away this past summer after a battle with cancer. I was honored to be asked to work on The Voice simply because of Merrie’s legacy, because of her talent and her spirit. I could never hold a candle to Merrie, but I’m proud to have carried a project through in her stead.
Simultaneously, I feel extremely grateful to Frank Couch (Vice President for Translation Development) and Maleah Bell (Associate Editor), who asked me to work on The Voice. I’m thankful that they trust me and believe in me enough to put such an important project in my hands. More than that, I’m grateful to and humbled by God that He would bless me with the gift of working on a new Bible translation, a translation that I believe will change people’s lives. Who am I to work on His Word? I’ve always felt it a privilege to work on the Bible, but that feeling is much stronger now than it’s ever been.
As our group journeys into this next phase, spreading the Word and sharing The Voice, I echo Paul’s words to the Romans and pray for the success of this product and the inspiring of many lives for God:
(Romans 16:25-27) “So to the One who is able to strengthen you to live consistently with my good news and the preaching of Jesus, the Anointed, with the revelation of the ancient mystery that has been kept secret since the earliest days, this mystery is revealed through the prophetic voices passed down in the Scriptures, as they have been commanded by the Eternal God. In this time, this mystery is being made known to the nations so that all may be led to faith-filled obedience. To the one true and wise God, we offer glory for all times through Jesus, the Anointed One. Amen.” – The Voice
Misty Bourne graduated summa cum laude from the University of North Alabama in 2007. She has been with the Bible Group at Thomas Nelson since December of that same year. The majority of her time at work is spent managing Custom Bibles. She is also one-third of the self-proclaimed department Cheer Committee.