Hello There!

What we do

I wanted to write a post about how many of the diverse community building aspects of our work here came together in one day this Easter but… there is a time to speak (or write) and there is a time to be silent.

I will only say that I finally got my first suturing experience on a real live human being and remembered to take a picture… as soon as I’d finished bandaging. I was slightly tempted to pull off the tape and get a picture anyway but… Instead I’ll just leave you with these. Really, they’re much more pleasant than a machete wound on someone’s butt anyway.

"A wild bush man appears"

On the way to the garden with the tractor

Yes, they were jumping from up there

Tree-Jumping in Angoram

Bananas, firewood and children. A good days harvest.

On the way back from the garden

Does this make us less redneck?

Moving the old jalopnik out of the yard

I told them I'd take a picture to prove how hard of workers they are

Guys resting under my house

 

March photo update

Living in the jungle and all, internet connectivity can be a bit of an adventure at times. So I apologize for any late updates, missed replies or general lack of communication. I am trying.

On that note, here’s some pictures. I’m trying to get an update out but until thenRaun long Painiten Kids and stuff. Doo doo doo looking out my front door. Putting siding on the house

Updates/Struggles and News

 

I’m leaving.

I’m moving to PNG.

On January 25th 2017.

47 days.

And as the countdown begins I can’t help but feel a little trepidation. I know that once I’m gone I’ll have some element of peace. It’s like standing, perched, on the edge of the abyss, feeling the fear caress your heart and knowing that when you leap it will be replaced with living the moment. There’s no time to be scared when you’re falling. But the contemplation can be terrifying. And I think FAR too much.

 

So. Still trying to get my ducks in a neat little row. My tools are packed and I’m working on getting them shipped over there. (Hopefully they’ll get there within the next couple years so I can actually use them.)

Trying to get rid of everything that’s not going with me. Who knew it would be so hard?  I’m excited to be able to pursue poverty a little bit more freely in the coming months.

All the paperwork’s sent in; so now it’s just a waiting, praying and (hopefully not) stressing game until I get my passport back. God willing it will be stamped with a two year visa.

I received my acceptance letter from Outreach International today. which is kinda nice since they’ll be able to accept donations and funnel funds to me.

Still talking with my church about support.

And… I think that brings everything up to date.

 

I struggle knowing what to share. I can’t help but feel I’m doubting God when I ask Him for something and then make the same need known to someone else. I can recognize that they’re His hand but it still seems feels faithless sometimes. I want to make myself vulnerable to the Church.

I got an opportunity to share lunch with a missionary here in the states and we talked about the benefit of openness in sharing about ministry. I’m probably too critical of others not being open about their struggles, sins and failures. Those things actually seem easier for me to share. On the other hand I greatly struggle to make my needs known. I was taught to be self-sufficient. Not to cry out for help but to climb out of the pits I fall into with my own two hands.

There is some benefit in this. But it leads me to denying others the place to participate in my life and ministry. My cousin talks about how God considers our fruits as belonging also to those who partner with us in ministry. And I don’t want to be guilty of denying others that blessing.

I know for sure that I want others to let me know when I can lend them a helping hand (or five bucks, or a football…) But it’s a struggle for me to not be hypocritical in this area.

 

And so, here are some needs and prayer requests:

I’d love to bring simple toys with me like Frisbees or Soccerballs, but they’re not in my budget right now.

I need to trust God as he calls me away from friends and family.

I need His peace.

I need… money. I’m currently about 10% funded and that doesn’t include any emergency funds or means of returning to the states.

I need to get rid of a lot of stuff. (cello, cold weather gear, canoe, etc.)

I need to be intentional about pursuing Church and Community in the time I have left in Colorado.

I need to be doing whatever God wants, specifically with preparing to leave. Whether that means learning more, seeking closure in relationships or supporting those who remain behind or whatever.

 

To those that read this. Please pray for me. And as always, stay in touch.

Books!

BooksSo, books have kind of been an addiction for me. I’ve read a lot. I’ve owned a lot. I’ve spent a lot of time and a descent amount of money on books.

I was realized earlier that it wasn’t until I moved to PNG that I lived in a room without at least a couple bookcases.

But now… I’m leaving.

Bookcases

 

And really, books are just stuff. There are a few I’d like to bring with me when I move. But for the most part I’m trying to get rid of them.

 

UPDATE:

Too late my friends. All the books are gone.

Happy reading!

God needs…

I was sitting around a table full of Christians, we were discussing race, politics, immigrants, the president elect, the future, the brokenness of the United States and the brokenness of the church in the US. It was beautiful. They were broken, I was broken, we were broken together. We talked, we listened, we wept.

Well, they talked. I opened my mouth and then God said “Shut up. I got this.” And someone else said exactly what I thought needed to be said.

It took a couple rounds of that before I started expressing what I felt the needs of the conversation were to God instead of trying to interject them myself. Time again He replied to those prayers and led the conversation through the voices of those around me. And then it dawned on me, God didn’t need me there. He had me there, He had me praying. But He was the one guiding that conversation. He was the one in control and I was just there to watch and pray. And learn.

God teaches me. And today He taught me a lot. But the one I got excited enough to tell Him to remind me of is that He doesn’t need me. I’ve always known God could do whatever he wants without me or you, but I’d never realized it in this way before.

I have a lot of skills. There’s a saying that a pretty woman is absolutely helpless on her own because there’re always men ready to jump in and lend a hand. Maybe that’s sexist and I’m not a woman, but if the saying’s true then I must be pretty ugly.

But God isn’t sending me to PNG because I can swing a hammer or diagnose TB. He doesn’t need my winning personality or my mad pull-up skills. He’s sending me so that He can go. In me.

God doesn’t need me there. He needs Himself. And this crazy fragile, broken little vessel carries Him around.

Selah.

I’m not going to PNG to do construction or to reach the lost or anything else. I’m going to be Christ. Not to say I’ll do that perfectly, or well, or very much at all. But that is what we, as CHRISTians, are called to do. Maybe that means cutting two by fours, maybe that means teaching english, or changing diapers. But our calling is to be His hands and feet. His body and bride.

And the less we are there, the less I am there, the more He is. Let me decrease that you may increase Jesus.

God doesn’t need you. But He can and will work through you. He works, not you. Walk by the Spirit and let Him guide your steps.