“Dear God, thank you for forgiving me and thank you SO much for taking all of our consequences.”
That was Ty’s prayer last night, and I can’t tell you how awesome it was to get to hear his little heart express that to God. I found myself thinking, “If it were possible, I would do anything, give anything if it would help my child to be saved.” And it hit me that God feels the same way- He would give anything, and He did. He gave Jesus, his only son, so that we can be saved. That’s why we are here- because God loves His children and wants them to be saved, and it is worth the sacrifice of leaving friends and family to bring His message, because He thinks it is worth it.
Thank you for your prayers for us in this time. We have been reminded over and over what a spiritual battle we are in. It’s hard to believe that our time in this city is already halfway over. It has been a whirlwind, filled with laughter and tears, joys and struggles, things that are easy, hard, exciting, and mundane. We thought we’d share with you what a typical day looks like for us in CLA.
6:30am- Wake up, get ready, wash laundry, make breakfast, drink coffee
7:00am- Get kids up, eat breakfast, hang laundry, drink coffee.
7:30am- Clean kitchen and dining room, sweep floor
7:45am- Dress kids. Put sunscreen and bug spray on kids, pack a bag for the village
8:00am- Leave as a family for a village
8:30-10:00- Spend time in the village learning culture and language. Sometimes this is being a part of a “culture event”- gardening, building a house, opening a coconut. In that case we take pictures, record people’s stories about it, and write down pidgin phrases. Sometimes it is just talking with people or practicing our pidgin, for example showing them a photo book, talking about it, and asking them to correct our pidgin.
10:00- Walk back home
10:30- Wash dirty hands and feet. Cook lunch.
11:00- Eat lunch. Clean kitchen and dining room. Sweep floor.
12:00- Pack a bag for class and kids’ childcare
12:30- Put Wyck down for a nap in his childcare room. Sit outside the room and work on processing all the information we got in the village. Put it into the computer while Ty jumps on the trampoline.
1:00-4:00- Boys are in childcare and we are in class. These classes deal with various aspects of being a missionary and teach us how to learn language and culture on our own. Drink coffee while in class.
4:00- Walk back from class. Cook dinner.
5:00- Eat dinner. Clean kitchen and dining room. Sweep floor.
6:00- Play with our boys, maybe do some homeschooling with Ty.
6:30- Practice our flashcards. Do our reading for class. Plan what words or grammar points we need to try to learn the next day.
8:30- Eat ice cream (Yes, they have it at the store here!) and watch part of a DVD, play a game, or talk about our day.
9:30- Get ready for bed. Have time with Jesus.
Three days a week we have fitness training at 6:10am. Three evenings a week we have fellowship, Bible Study, and Discussion groups. We have classes twice a week. Once a week we each meet with a language helper on campus too. Every other week is our shopping day. Many Fridays we have culture events. Basically, this “typical” day is often not so typical.
Language Blunders of the month: Karissa told someone that she dropped her kids (the look on her face quickly told me I had misspoke!), and also that she stole money so she could come to PNG (That’s one way to fund the ministry, huh?). Matt told someone that another person climbed a coconut tree, got the coconut, and then chopped the tree down (rather than opened the coconut). When explaining what the Minnesota Vikings were, he accidentally communicated that the Vikings started killing the other team.
Till All Know,
Matt, Karissa, Ty, and Wyck Long
(Tribal Church Planters in Papua New Guinea)
– That we can learn the language well and faster
– For wisdom as we figure out how to schedule our days
– That God will give us comfort as we are missing our family and friends (especially Ty)
– That God will provide the perfect partners for us, and that we would have wisdom about who to partner with
– Karissa’s headaches have been better
– Though we’ve all been sick at some point (except for Matt!), it has been relatively mild and short-lived
– God is growing us in humility, trusting Him, and perseverance