Some years ago when I first moved out of the jungle and into a provincial small town setting I had to learn to live in the urban realm again. It was decidedly not the norm for town living though. If I remember right, we got our:

  • Chicken at the gas station
  • Butter at the bank
  • and money at the grocery store

or some equally unexpected combination for finding and purchasing the above.

I now live in the major metropolis of our province. For the most part things are found where you expect them to be. The one exception — since last November the bank has not been stocked with cash in the smaller denomination bills that we need! Seems a trivial concern but when our petty cash order comes back in all K100 bills – problems arise. Most of us live out of the local market where food is sold for about K2-5 per purchase. Even getting back K1 in change will decidedly delay your marketing venture.

There is NO WAY anyone in the market would have change for a K100 note! So – will you PLEASE make this miniscule matter a prime prayer point – especially this coming week when we will need to top off our petty cash supply again! WE need “small denomination stuff!” — K20, K10, K5 and K2 bills, K1 coins, K0.50 coins, K0.05 coins (though these 5 toea coins are fast becoming obsolete!) Thanks!

Other than that – life is stuck in the wonderfully recurring and repetitive rut – obviously stated by one who thrives on a “same ole, same ole” routine. Time cycles around weekly agenda of ladies Bible study, spending reports, balancing petty cash; fortnight pay periods; and “closing of the books” by the 25th of each month. Throw in filing of numerous miscellaneous forms, spur-of-the-moment printing projects, catching & correcting oversights, backing up computers, and an endless list of other menial tasks. Then the weekend of cooking, baking, cleaning, church… then repeat all the above.

Our ladies Bible study continues to be the highlight of the week.

We’ve been studying 1 Peter with the women who work here on our center and we are now all the way up to chapter 1 verse 5. “Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” Discussion of the “last day / end of this era” was enlightening.

“Why do you look forward to the ‘last day?’” I asked them. We all (myself included) had the same answer – we anticipate with joy the time when we will be free from worries, cares, sickness, tiredness, all the woes of this world. We then talked about how “me-centered” that is. To help drive the point home I asked the ladies, “What do you think? If someone gave me a kitten, which would I like more – the kitten or the person who gave it to me?” They all know me way too well. “You’d think more of the kitten!” they said. Yep. Too true. “That’s how I’m treating God,” I told them, “liking the benefits and blessings He gives rather than really loving Him. This is wrong. It is sin – but I know me. I cannot change myself. I need God’s forgiveness and I need to let God change me.” Only God in His infinite grace can transform my heart to that end, and give me the words to help the ladies in our study group to learn to love our Savior more, too.

Will you please be praying with us as we seek to learn to cultivate the jubilant expectation of seeing our Savior Jesus face to face, desiring and loving Him rather than merely awaiting the benefits His promised us with everlasting life.

My special thanks to you for your loving concern for these ladies. God uses them to teach me so much in my Christian life. Here are a few updates on each of the gals:

  • Lisa’s husband’s relatives – Pastor Graham and Sela – have not been located. It’s been over two months now since they have been lost at sea. Please continuing praying for the family members still wondering their fate.
  • Rosie & baby Philip are back at work and doing well. Rosie’s husband Rex is pursuing building a house for their family here in town. Lots of details to yet be worked out but please keep them in your prayers as God brings them to mind.
  • Meta’s children – 3 ½ year old Maili and 2 year old Kodi – are not well. Kodi especially has long standing health problems but was recently started on some meds that might help. Please pray to that end!
  • Paula & Susan still have lots of family needs – Paula with her adult children and Susan with her adult kids + the grandsons that she is raising as well as. Since families here tendto all live together, it makes for anything but peaceful households for these ladies. Pray they can stand strong and not let the hassles with their adult children wear them down.

Also current happenings on our mission center:

  • Dean and Loretta Mundy – ole time missionaries who worked in another language group upriver from the Iwam are back working on a translation project for their Owininga people.
  • A new family – Tray and Brandi Ischy from Texas have joined us. They are settling in well and taking over our mission supply department, doing the buying, packaging of the cargo, meeting and loading planes, and whatever else is necessary to keep our missionaries out in the “rural” (jungle) locations supplied.
  • 2 new families – Nathan & Rachel Mueller and David & Emily Rimestad — hope to allocate to a new tribal area the middle of this month. Their actual move in date has been postponed several times (due to health issues, availability of the helicopter, etc.) but they are hoping this time it will really happen!

And some ongoing prayer needs for our Sepik Family members not currently on location:

  • Two missionary friends – Deb & Gail – battling cancer
  • Cade – teenage MK (missionary kid) bedridden with Lyme’s disease for over a year now
  • Christiana Hutteman STILL waiting for her USA citizenship to be processed so their family can return and take on the ministry of tribal liaison work, keeping our tribal churches encouraged, edified and connected now that expat NTM missionaries are no longer on location.

Prayers for these are appreciated too as God brings them to your mind.

THANK YOU for being a part of God’s work around the world! I am so grateful for your friendship, prayers and other means of support. You are vital to our team effort toward the goal of seeing every people group around the globe have the chance to hear the good news of Jesus!
Co-laboring to bring back Christ as King!
Hope Sharp