Hello from a very hot place. We’ve been sweating bullets lately and are thankful the rains have returned this week to at least cool it down to 75 in the afternoons. Hope your home is showing signs of spring and warmer weather, especially those in the North thinking the 50’s sounds like a heat wave!
Many of you may have heard about the terrible flooding and landslides that happened recently on another island here. Here is a brief update from some Ethnos 360 missionaries serving in that part of Asia Pacific: “There are over 100 bodies found, still 100 missing, including a friends 13 year old daughter. About 10,000 displaced people – homes, churches, schools, and livelihoods gone. Please pray for wisdom for us as we try to help. There isn’t such a thing as flood insurance here. They have no homes and no means to rebuild other than to ask help from friends and family….”
Just like Spring weather brings with it signs of new life, we’ve recently been seeing some signs of life and baby steps with the believers here. Although to an unaccustomed eye new growth coming out of the ground could look like weeds that need to be pulled, we see these small steps of maturity and are rejoicing! A few of the men have offered to take turns hosting the house church meetings. They are seeking to take ownership of their own fellowship together. We are grateful that we can be here not lording over them but seeking to disciple them through this process. Thank you for praying with us and for them!!!
I was reading in Colossians today and was praying Paul’s goal for the believers he was ministering to: “My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Col. 2:2 Oh that this would be true for our dear friends here. Christ is our life and treasure!
We’ve been fairly healthy this last month in the village, thankfully the rubella and mumps epidemics have not spread much into the area where we are. Especially since Torin has not had his MMR shots yet. We praise God for good health and safety, as we are living so far from professional medical help.
Fruit comes in spurts interior. Currently we are enjoying lots of bananas. We had fun chopping down a huge stalk of “king” bananas the other day. Naomi and I got to go out harvesting sweet potatoes with a friend. It always amazes us how “dumb” we can be compared to our friends here. We were practically stepping on the sweet potatoes yet still unable to find them. We all had a good laugh and after a few hours our baskets were full (thanks to our local friends).
Another provision for us this past few weeks has been some new vegetable sellers. These guys come by on their motor bikes selling veggies. It’s a huge help for us when they come. But so far this year, none have been coming. So when they pulled into the yard this past we were very happy to see them. These are just a few simple everyday kinds of things that are actually big to us as God’s direct hand of provision.
We were given a baby flying squirrel this past week. The kids have enjoyed trying to keep it alive. Another fun thing this year has been a new zip-line. With the help of a friend from the US bringing us some equipment, we got it set up in the village. It has definitely been a hit for our kids, as well as others in the village. Dina and Abby have really enjoyed their home school teacher Naomi. This week Abby and Naomi will travel out to town on their own. Abby has 4 days of standardized testing and Naomi needs a new visa renewal.
Thank you to each one of you for praying and giving toward the ministry here in the jungles of Borneo! Teaching continues in 2 villages. This month we are planning to visit a new village. One of the believers has family there. They have heard about the teaching meeting and they have expressed interest. Pray that God would open a wide door to the gospel.
Tim has come up with a few more tribal praise songs which have been well received. It’s been great to be singing praise with the believers in their own language. Our coworkers have had a really great month of translation as they are getting the book of Mark closer to being ready to check with a consultant later this year!
Treasured in Christ,
Andrea, Tim, Dina, Abby, Titus, & Torin Ullum