Thanks everyone for your patience in us getting out an update. From the moment the plane wheels hit the airstrip in Madang province, we have been busy busy busy. Our first week, we went to town 3 times to learn how to shop. Grocery shopping is something that now we will do every 2 weeks and it is a half day ordeal. We usually go to 2 different small grocery stores, an open air market, and a butchery. It sure makes us appreciate our supermarkets in the U.S. where we can get everything in one place :). Our second week was a lot of “warm up CLA” (Culture and Language Acquisition): visiting villages, getting to know PNG citizens, and starting to hear Tok Pisin (the national language), and memorizing it a bit. Those first two weeks we also had a lot of orientation classes. This third week we are now on our own schedule to learn the language and culture. Earlier this week Karissa, while trying to practice her Tok Pisin, had a conversation that went like this:
Woman: I am going to the village.
Karissa: No, I am going to New Tribes.
Woman: No, YOU are going to New Tribes. I am going to the village.
Words to describe what it’s like. Busy! (Between our required classes/ Bible studies/ group meetings, and CLA, there’s not much free time). Hot! (Like you’re just wet with sweat all day long hot). Beautiful. (It looks like a tropical paradise). Friendly. (The staff, the other new missionaries, and the PNG people have been very kind). Exhausting. (Life just takes more work here- lots of walking, being in heat, fastidiously cleaning after each meal to keep ants at bay, cooking without a microwave or prepared meals, lathering on sunscreen and bug spray, and packing supplies each time we go out). Lonely. (Though we are surrounded by great people, we miss you- our family and friends- a lot). Amazing. (We are amazed at God’s faithfulness in answering prayers. When our kids were sick twice and we asked people to pray, God healed them within a day. I prayed that Matt wouldn’t struggle with the heat, and he’s done just fine. One of our biggest prayer requests was for Ty’s transition, and he has done the best of all of us! God is so good!)
How to get ahold of us: FaceTime video or audio to KarissaLong@gmail.com or Matt_Long@ntm.org. iMessage to KarissaLong@gmail.com or Matt_Long@ntm.org. Facebook message us.
Till All Know,
Matt, Karissa, Ty, and Wyck Long
(Tribal Church Planters in Papua New Guinea)
– That we can learn the language well and at the pace we need to
– For wisdom in time management and balance
– For continued health as bacteria can aggravate stomachs, and heat can aggravate Karissa’s headaches
– That God will give us a supernatural comfort as we are missing our family and friends
– That God will provide the perfect partners for us
– Our boys are doing so well!
– Matt and Karissa have really been able to be a team and risen up to meet challenges together
– For so many answered prayers!
– We are thankful to get the privilege of hopefully taking His Word to a people group who haven’t heard it