What happened to June??? Yet another proof – the days may drag but the weeks, months, years fly by.

Back in PNG – A survey trip was done by several of our new missionaries who are looking to the Lord for where He would have them allocate. They visited the villages of two different language groups. Here’s a brief summary of their travels, written by Anna, the wife of one of the families:

Sowanda tribe / language group: “They are situated close to … some hill country. Very isolated and bushy with a huge interest and excitement for us coming and starting a work. They seemed genuinely interested in our desire to share with the God’s Talk, teaching them how to read and having a bible in their heart language. They were always huddling around and inside the hut where we slept with the leaders of the village asking all sorts of questions for our purpose and plans. A logging company has plans to put a road all the way to the Sowanda boundary in the next several years so starting a work sooner (rather) than later in there is ideal. Logging roads bring the distractions of town.”

Umeda language group: “Although having logging roads come into two villages, they remain remote. When we try explaining our purpose, we were interrupted by the head man who continued on explaining his cargo cult belief that if we come, we will bring God’s blessing and turn Umeda (isolated jungle location) into Vanimo (PNG town.) We tried explaining at different times that this was not our purpose, it kept coming up and the inquiries turned into ‘will you build a hospital?’ ‘Will you start a school?’ ‘You must build us an airstrip.’ This people (group) is yet walking in darkness and needs the truth of the Gospel. We now have the opportunity to pray for Umeda and Sowanda to see when and who will reach these areas for the Kingdom.”

We can be praying with this missionary team as they seek the Lord’s guidance in making the decision on where He wants them to minister. The missionaries are Adam & Anna Ferguson, Jason & Tami Hughes and Micah & Laura Myers.

Please continue to pray, too, for the ladies from our Wednesday Bible study group. I haven’t heard anything from them this past month but do know that a sweet Christian girl, Betila, has recently also been employed by the missionaries in Wewak. Betila watches the son of missionaries Chris & Ingrid Hughes so that they can be involved in their various ministries. (Ingrid it the one who took over the finance office duties for me, thus making it possible for me to come on Home Assignment.) As you pray for Lisa, Rosie, Meta, Susan, and Paula, please remember Betila, too.

On the home front June was kick started with a quick trip to Indiana for my 50th High School reunion. For those of you who know me well will find it unbelievable that I took NO photos. Thankfully a photographer was on the scene though so I have picture proof that I didn’t just dream it. I really was there! It was a wonderful occasion seeing friends I’ve only just wondered about since our 1969 evening of “Pomp & Circumstance.” The reunion ended too soon leaving me wishing for ongoing opportunities to keep better in touch with some of them. Meanwhile at least some are content to be Facebook friends.

Post reunion I needed to high tail it back to Missouri for my initial appointment with the opthmalogist. Thankfully he agreed – the cataracts in both eyes are ripe for harvesting! 18th June the worst eye was dealt with. My 2nd eye is scheduled for 23rd July. I had hoped they would do it much MUCH sooner and have asked to be put on their stand-by list in case a date opens up before that. If not, it looks like it could be well into August or maybe even September before I can get new glasses and figure out if I’ll be able to drive at night again. By then nearly 4 months of my home assignment time will be gone and I’ll only be beginning to plan for furlough traveling. Since such roaming necessitates a LOT of driving in the dark, if that isn’t possible I don’t know what God has instead. It is good though to know He has the details all worked out! Will certainly appreciate your prayers!

While re-couping from the cataract surgery and a bit limited in what I can do, I tackled putting together my “presentation” to be shown to anyone willing to view it! Alas, my backup terabyte hard drive died in PNG and I lost most of my pictures from the entire last 5 year term so compiling this short report was a major challenge. Thankfully other missionaries have let me glean from their snapshots so I have only about 1 million extras pics besides the few photos that are crammed into this 5 minute account. (Be assured, if you view the 5 minute edition you will NOT be coerced into also perusing the rest of my photo stash!)

Finding background music is always the hardest part (for me) of compiling the power point production. Finally after only 2 very l-o-n-g days of surfing God blessed my ears and heart with the PERFECT song! Unlike the well-known Christian artists who work with “big name” companies to manufacture their music CDs (who, being businesses, want BIG bucks for use of their music), the group singing this melody readily gave me permission to download their song for free from the internet and use it! Thank you, Lord!

Nearly every time I meet with others I am asked, “What will you do after Home Assignment time?” My answer remains the same – God has not yet shown me what’s around that bend in the road. My preference is still to return to PNG but if that is not what He has, then I will look toward going on home staff with Ethnos 360 for my final months or years until retirement. Be assured I will let YOU know when I know. Until then, I leave it resting in His worthy and all sufficient, ever faithful hands.

Your faithful prayers and support over these past years have been a tremendous encouragement and blessing. My grateful appreciation to you for standing together with me on behalf of God’s work around the globe. Thank you too for your continuing involvement thru the uncertainties of this Home Assignment era. We rest in Him and follow when and where He leads.

Co-laboring to bring back Christ as King!
Hope Sharp