In Dinangat– Last month, 2 of our Bible teachers (Jaspa and Lukas) blessed us by willingly hiking for two days through mountainous terrain to come out of Dinangat, and then another full day on a PMV (public motor vehicle) to drive up the treacherous road from Lae to Goroka, where we now live. The journey was exhausting, and they had no small amount of aches and pains once they got off that blessed PMV. They did this to save us hundreds of dollars in flights. They did this to help work on the Bible translation for their people. They did this for the Lord. And we were so very grateful for the week we got to spend with them working through several translation projects and catching up on life in the village. Please continue to pray for wisdom and grace for the accurate translation of every verse of Scripture we work on!
At the end of the week, they laid all their cards on the table. They spoke of the many discouragements they were facing as teachers, the challenges and the trials. They confessed that they felt like they weren’t doing a good job. And while some things weigh heavy on our hearts, our overarching response is, “This is good.” Because these dear men have come to a place where they are recognizing their own weaknesses, their helplessness to exact real spiritual change in the body. And we are anxious to see what the Lord is going to do, because once we see our helplessness, then the Lord can use us! The Lord is attracted to weakness, for in our weakness, HE is made strong! Ralf with our co-workers Jeremiah and Gary were able to then spend some good time with Jaspa and Lukas, encouraging them in the Word and praying together. We are excited about what the Lord has planned for them! Please don’t forget our Dinangat brothers and sisters, they need your prayer!
In our Family- Last week we had the opportunity to attend a workshop about “Transitions for TCKs“. We learned all about our kids that grow up here in PNG but are not citizens here and then after graduating from school they are transitioning back to their “home” country where they don’t feel at home. You all know how we left Naomi in Germany after last summer where she started this big transition of living and working in Germany. Since then she had many new experiences in her life, good ones and also hard ones and about that she gets to tell you a little bit right here…
Hello everyone :)! Before I want to share a few things about me I want to thank you all! A few days ago one of my friends asked me how we as a family are supported financially in our ministry and life in PNG. When I told her that everything is financed through personal gifts of supporters she was shocked cause she had never heard of anything like that before. I then realised that this is really amazing and that truly it is because of you all (and our God of course!) that my family can minister and live in PNG. And I just appreciate you all so much and want to THANK YOU!!!
I am doing really well in Germany. I am still discovering many new things and feel like I am on an adventure still. I get so excited when I can do things on my own, like go shopping or park in a parking garage and get my own parking ticket. Or it is so much fun that I get to go to the bakery myself and buy my favorite German breads. I discover new foods and new places to go with friends and feel so free to do all those things freely especially because I didn’t have many opportunities for that while living in PNG. I am not a “normal“ German and I feel it every day cause I discover so many things that are so normal to everyone around me here and it is exciting.
But at the same time I also still struggle a lot. Many days I sit at home crying because I miss my family and PNG so much! That pain in my heart is still very strong! It is hard for me to not have my parents and my sisters with me to watch me as I am driving a car now, as I am managing life here and discovering new things. And I missed Christmas with them and all their birthdays already and I still struggle a lot with that.
But I can say also that I have never ever before in my life experienced God in my life as I did in the last 6 months without my family. I never needed Him like that before. I totally saw how God took care of me with so much love, grace and patience. No matter how many times I turned away from Him thinking that I could manage things by myself – He was always with me and for me! He often lead me outside of my comfort zone and it was hard but exactly then I experienced Him and saw how He cared for me!