Since our return in October of 2009 there has been non-stop construction on our corner of the center. This is a necessary step towards making room for more laborers and is usually considered a good thing. However, when you live at ground zero for an extended time it tends to wear on ones sanity.
From the siding of the new duplex behind us to the remodeling of our neighboring duplex unit, to the landscaping of the grounds around us for better rain run-off we have had our fill of construction noise and activity. Before you get too judgmental of my negative tone I would ask: Have you ever heard the noise produced by a saw cutting aluminum siding? Have you ever had your pictures and décor removed by the vibrations of a floor sander? Have you ever been feet away from a landscaping crew who are digging ditches in your yard with shovels and a Bobcat tractor while you are working at your office desk? Have you ever enjoyed a headache from a varnish fume high and not reaped the refinished floors that go with it?
We completely understand that the construction crew has to complete these projects and are grateful for the necessary expansion of housing. However, we share all this to ask that you pray for us in this nerve racking trial….especially for Andrea as she spends Tuesdays and Thursdays at home taking care of our needs here.
When we as believers commit to serving the Lord we are promised trials and persecution. Thankfully we have not heard the sounds of conflict or tasted persecution as yet. Please DO NOT forget to pray for our fellow brothers and sisters around the world who are enduring such things for the name of Christ.
It is that time of year again and our High School graduation ceremony was held on June 2nd. In addition to Andrea’s ministry in the office at the hanger she co-coordinated this years graduation. Andrea does enjoy these kinds of organizational tasks, but keeping the graduates, their parents and the volunteers focused and organized was quite involved. This opportunity also allowed her to further bond with the graduates.
This is an emotional time of the year because these missionary kids (MK’s) celebrate this educational accomplishment while also dealing with unsettled feelings of their eminent transition into their “home” country and adult life. Many of them consider PNG home as that is where most of their years have been spent.
Along with graduation here comes the “mass exodus”. It is this time of year when many of those that are due furlough (home assignment) choose to begin it (for obvious education reasons). Most of those returning to PNG from home assignment are not due back until late July. There are also several families “going finish” at this time. They have chosen for various reasons to change fields or return home. This year’s exodus is the largest in recent years. Therefore, there are fewer missionaries here to cover the ministries that do not pause.
We are short staffed at the hanger and each is filling multiple roles until reinforcements return in July. Pray for us in this that we find our strength in the Lord and safely perform our responsibilities.
The above mentioned “turn over” of missionaries is another prayer point. This can be a disappointing distraction to those of us who remain. We need to keep our focus on the Lord and not the “waves” of circumstance around us.
Okay, so graduation and construction are not seasons (unless in the case of the later that you are from Wyoming or Montana). However, living on a tropical island near the equator creates a longing in Paul for seasons that he grew up loving in Colorado. Yes, we have a wet and dry season here, but they truly only vary in the amount of rainfall. Yes, it is a fairly beautiful tropical island. We say “fairly” because of the seemingly endless grass fires that burn and the dusty, dirty feel that those cause.
Many say that if you are to be stuck in a season what better than Spring? We am guessing they were not allergy sufferers. :^) Speaking of allergies, praise God with us as we have received news, and soon payment, of our first and second of many medical claims for the expensive Xolair that Paul is on (which lasts 12-18 months).
We hope that from our open sharing of our life experiences here in PNG you do not feel we have become cynical and defeated. Our intension is to express to you in real life examples why your prayers for us are so vital. We do need your prayer support that we do not get our eyes off the Lord and onto the many distractions around us. We all have an enemy (Satan) that does not want to see the Light enter his darkness.