“…In whom we have boldness and confident access through faith in Him.” Eph.3:12
The Dinangat church is studying Ephesians right now, and this verse was part of Sunday’s passage. What a joy to discuss with them our great privilege of access to the Sovereign God of the universe through the work of the Son! Let’s not take for granted all the privileges and blessings that are ours because of Jesus!
Moving What a whirlwind summer! We praise the Lord for a fantastic time with Jordan as he visited from the States during his break from Bible school. In the time he was here, he reconnected with great friends and got to see their graduation, spent a few days “chilling” with us in our families favorite coastal town. He hiked Mt. Wilhelm (over 14,000 elevation). Also while he was here, our family had to move from the house we were in to a different, slightly smaller house, to make room for a larger family coming to serve. The massive amount of packing, cleaning and set up took quite a bit of time, but we were grateful Jordan and Judah were both here to help us accomplish this task before leaving for the summer. Right after they left, we three packed (again) for spending the next 6 weeks with the church in Dinangat.
Traveling Over the past year, Judah had done many odd jobs
to save money to travel back to the States with Jordan for the summer. The Lord
has provided work for both boys through their grandparents’ handyman business,
doing lots of painting and construction to earn money for school. Praising the
Lord for all their smooth travels getting to the States and the three days of
driving, and for the sweet time they are having with their grandparents.
How’s the church? After the boys left, Jer, Alayna and I flew into Dinangat for the summer to work on checking translation portions and discipleship. Our elders, Felix and Lukas, are doing a great job with keeping the church Gospel centered in the midst of opposition and heretical teaching that is always pressuring them from the outside. However, they do struggle with shepherding since both elders are also extremely busy with outside work as community liaisons for the government, securing government funding for vital community projects, etc. The needs of the church are great, and they could definitely use help. As is always the case in ministry, the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few! We are so excited to see the ladies continuing to meet faithfully for worship and Bible study every Friday, and we praise the Lord for the several women who are serving in ministry roles. For the six weeks that we are here, I, (April) meet with the “leading ladies” every week for a time of discipleship and prayer. Walking through a study of Titus 2:3-5, we discuss what it looks like in their context for the spiritually older women to teach the spiritually younger women. This has been a fun study for us all and I’m so grateful for their enthusiasm for the Word of God!
Translation Every morning, Jer meets with his translation co-worker, Basa for four hours. While we were at the mission center he was able to finish drafting the entire book of Luke, so now he and Basa are going over each verse with a fine tooth comb and have completed the initial check on 7 chapters so far, as well another preliminary check on 1 chapter. He would like to complete the initial checking of Luke while we’re in here. His afternoons are usually spent on discipleship and lesson planning. I spend a couple of hours each morning doing a different phase of checking for each chapter as well.
Water! Later this month, the community will be installing a water supply system that will provide several taps of fresh clean water throughout the village. While the project is government funded, the community asked Jeremiah and Ralf to head up the project, so the two guys designed the system and purchased all the supplies. But installing this system would take valuable time away from the already limited time Jer has for translation. We are so grateful that Josh Simmons, our regional tech support leader, has agreed to come in with his family and their friends, the Allens, to head up this project for us! We are looking forward to having them come in and be a blessing to the Dinangat church and to us! Lord willing, they will be blessed also as they visit with God’s people in this remote corner of the globe!
Our Co-workers Return! Also later this month, our co-workers Gary and Esther Smith, with their two high school kiddos Nathan and Zach will return from their one-year home assignment and come join us in Dinangat for a while! We can’t wait to have our friends back in here! Please pray for them as they transition once again, this time leaving behind their oldest son, Caleb and their married daughter Charis, her hubby, Jacob, and their twin baby boys! Good byes are really, really hard! Shortly after they arrive, the Lilley’s (who happen to be Esther’s sister and family coming to work in PNG for a year) will also come in for a quick visit! So- lots going on here!
Praise and Pray!
- Pray for Jordan and Judah, that the Lord would use this time to strengthen their faith in Him! PRAISE: They have already seen Him answer many prayers and provide for them in wonderful ways!
- Pray that the Lord would strengthen and guide Felix and Lukas.
- PRAISE: Basa is joining the teaching team! And please Pray for him, his first lesson is July 7 and he is fairly nervous. Pray also for Emma, our other teacher, as he faithfully teaches the kids every Wednesday
- Please pray for the youth in Dinangat! Many of them are confused about how to follow the Lord in their particular trials and struggles. We will hold a small youth event for them next Saturday. Please pray for wisdom for us as we seek a way to encourage the church in their discipleship of this special group of kids!
- Please pray for Alayna! As the only English speaking kid in here, she spends many hours alone. Pray that she would allow the Lord to teach her and grow her faith through this season.
Friends, though we are grateful for this work that He has allowed us to be a part of, it often pushes us far beyond our limits in every way- physically, intellectually, spiritually, emotionally, financially- we are simply ‘not enough’. But praise God with us that He IS more than enough, and He is our Great Provider! And we are thankful for YOU who support us in so many ways- this job takes a team and we are grateful to be able to serve Him WITH YOU!