I think this is a common theme for most of us these days as the politics of the pandemic continues to alter plans and decisions in one way or another. As we wrote in our last update we were planning a trip into the village this summer. Well just 3 days before we were to leaving for the tribe I (Andrea) got sick and was feeling pretty icky while packing and prepping for our trip. On Sunday we both felt like we should just “make sure” I didn’t have Covid because we would hate to spread that to our friends in the village. Well that was certainly the Lord’s gracious leading because just a few hours later we got the test results and I was positive for Covid.
At that point we went into isolation in our house for the next 2 weeks. Because Tim and the girls had been with many people the last few days they also went to get checked but were all negative. They were able to take over with keeping the house going while I was quarantined. Thankfully the symptoms were not worse than a bad cold and exhaustion. Just as I was starting to pull out of the worst of it Tim came down with the same symptoms and we switched places in bed and I took over with the family. Yet another kindness from the Lord that we were not both sick at the same time!
So needless to say we have not been able to make our trip into the village as planned. Travel both on and off the island has become much harder. Currently flights are limited to “essential travel” and travel to the different areas requires special permits.
One of the tribal teams that we serve here, their village leadership is doing another ceremony to keep the sickness out of their area. These ceremonies include killing animals, making offerings, using powerful words (incantations), and marking their body in some way. These ceremonies are done to appease or manipulate unseen forces active in the world. Reflecting on all that is going on around the world it’s clear that no matter who we are, we all want a sense of control in life. We all want to feel like we know how to deal with adversity and have the resources or know someone who does to help deal with life’s challenges.
Tim has 2 trips planned for August. One to teach at an Elder and Deacon seminar and the other to teach at a training center where tribal believers are being equipped to reach out cross-culturally. Both are exciting opportunities to be equipping Indonesians to serve cross-culturally. We shall see how the Lord directs or changes the plans! Thanks for praying as Tim prepares for these meetings.
The girls have been working on a Red Cross babysitting class and we will get started into cooking classes in our own kitchen next week. The boys are working on races and pretending they are Mario characters! We’re thankful for some down time from school and opportunities to connect with other families here in the missionary community.
Transitions, adjusting, and changes are part of life but what a joy that we serve an unchanging and Rock-solid Savior! He knows our weaknesses and our need for stability and He is that for us even though our circumstances are often shifting. “He only is my Rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken.” Ps 62:2