During the kids’ recent spring break we spent a week at our mission’s center on the coast of PNG. The heat and humidity can be a bit much after the temperate climes of the Highlands, but in exchange for living in a sauna you get to go to beaches with warm water, amazing snorkeling, and only a few sea lice.
We bummed around on beaches, slept in, played some games, watched some movies, and went out to eat a couple of times. We vacationed with our good friends, so we even had enough people for some water balloon volleyball!
If you haven’t tried water balloon volleyball, you should. Maybe wait until the snow melts.
It was a good time of rest and recovering from our most recent bout with health issues. The pain in my back and side that sent us to Australia is better now. And God had worked everything out for us even before we asked: On the day that I wrote to our physical therapist about the pain, she told me there happened to be a doctor volunteering at our clinic the next morning (our regular doctor is away on furlough). When that doctor wanted to send me to the clinic at a different mission, there happened to be a flight already scheduled for the next day that I could hop on. And when we decided to go to Australia, we had no difficulty getting tickets (thanks to our amazing travel agent!), visas, a place to stay AND a car to use, and someone to watch our kids (thanks to our amazing coworkers). It was all arranged within a matter of hours, and if you’ve ever had to plan a trip to a foreign country, you know that is not always the case! We even already had all the money we needed thanks to a generous extra gift from a donor back in January, not to mention the fact that Chris’ passport, which was supposed to have been sent to the embassy to be renewed, hadn’t made it out of town yet. Initially we had been annoyed that it hadn’t been sent when it was supposed to, but the fact that it was still here when we needed it helped us to see that God had gone before us and had arranged everything just the way it needed to be. We are so thankful for a loving Father who blesses us more than we deserve. And thank you to those of you who were praying for us during that time and others–much is being accomplished through your prayers.
Now we are in the final school term of the year. Micah will play touch rugby this term, so pray for a safe and injury-free season! At the end of the year our family will spend a month at our home in the Pal tribe. Please pray for the Pal church. The Bible teachers recently gave in to community pressure to invite people in from a neighboring tribe to do animistic rituals that they hoped would counteract the rituals that were done last year and which they believe had awoken evil spirits in the ground that made them sick. Not all of the Bible teachers actually took part in the rituals, but not one of them stood up for God’s truth or refused to comply. Pray for them now as our coworker spends the weekend with them pointing out where they went wrong and helping them to choose the path of repentance. Because they were all complicit in what happened, we are directing all the Bible teachers to refrain from teaching for now, but we are encouraging them to continue to read God’s Word together in their villages and pray together. I’m sure we will continue to deal with this issue when we are in there in June.
In the meantime, have a happy Easter!