Are you still praying for the Kaje people as they hear the foundational Bible teaching? Last week they learned of Jesus’ words, “”I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” Jesus is the one and only road that leads to forgiveness for sin, eternal life, God’s truth and the privilege of living with God the Father. Now a big week is ahead for the Kaje.

On Monday they will hear of Christ’s sacrificial death for them. Teaching on His resurrection, proof God accepted Christ’s payment for our sins, will follow. Please be praying much for the people of Kaje! Pray that they will not merely make mental intellectual assent to the facts, but that their individual hearts might be open to understand and believe that Jesus died for them! Pray for the missionaries, too, as they present the words of life to the Kaje people, Taylor and Abby Goheen, Jon and Jen Myer, and Christopher and Lilli Meyer.

And for a seeming answer to prayer – it sounds like at least some of the May River Iwam were able to go to the Believers’ Conference in Siawi late last month. The note above is from Peter Thomas who writes on behalf of the local church in the Iwam village of Aumi in PNG: “Hello and Goodnight, O yes friend Hope in the name of our Big Man / Lord Jesus Christ I say thank you to you like this, thank you for the thing you sent and I have gotten it. So I say thank you to you. So that’s all. I don’t have anything more to say. Goodbye to you. God bless you.”

I’m guessing, but since the ONLY thing I “sent” was money for fuel so they could make the trip, I’m assuming that is what he is referring to! Perhaps what is most remarkable to me, though likely not so obvious to you, is that he is actually saying “thank you!” WOW! This is extremely rare in Iwam land! Peter is not one of the recognized pastors of their local church but he has been faithful in his walk with the Lord for decades. Please do be praying for him as the Lord brings him to mind.

Peter with John at May River early 2019.

John Hutteman, Jr., the missionary who also attended the conference, has been flat out busy with other travels, meetings, and (rumor has it) is even filling in on some of the finance duties I used to do for our Sepik region. He will undoubtedly share more about the Iwam who went to the conference when he has time to breathe! In the meantime, please be praying that the Christians from each tribe who attended will be encouraged and challenged to walk ever more closely with Jesus as a result of the teaching and fellowship they have recently had with others of like faith.

Other news from Wewak, PNG – You may remember numerous mentions in the past about one of our lady employees – Susan. She was quite ill for some time and is now officially retiring from her work. She will go to the city of Lae and live with relatives there. She comes from a very works-centered religious group. How much solid Bible teaching she will be able to get while living with her family is not clear. Please be praying much for her that she will ponder the truths she has heard from God’s Word during her years of attending our Bible Study group, and that these truths will take root and grow in her heart. I do so hope you can all meet her one day when we all stand before the Lord. Please continue to pray too, for the other national ladies who work on our mission center: Lisa, Rosie, and Meta.

My ever sincere and grateful thanks to you for your part in the lives and ministries of each one mentioned. Because of your faithful generosity in prayer and support these last decades you can look forward to meeting many of these people as sweet brothers and sisters in Christ when we at long last stand before God’s Throne. How precious it will be when we see our Savior face to face to have these many different ones for whom you have prayed also be there in heaven worshipping and praising Him together with us!

Now since it would hardly seem fitting to not at least mention Christmas in a December update ….. here’s what’s been on my mind this first Sunday of Advent when “hope” is in focus. I used to hate my name. Who in their right mind would dub their kid something meaning “I wish (for something).” Or “Likelihood (slim but potentially possible.)” That’s the world’s definition of hope. Uncertainty. Chance. Desire dogged with doubt. Since coming to trust Jesus as my Savior though, that word / name has taken on the entirely opposite meaning. Now, to me, HOPE means “joyful expectation!” and “confidence in God’s promises!” “Anticipation of what God is certainly going to bring about!” God ALWAYS keeps His word! What He has promised He will indeed do. We can count on His faithfulness even through the rough times of life knowing that He is in control, has a perfect plan that’s far better than anything we can imagine, and that He’s bringing us to His promised end – eternity with Him! With that in mind … my prayer for you this Christmas season is found in Romans 15:13:

(WNT) “May God, the giver of hope, fill you with continual joy and peace because you trust in Him–so that you may have abundant hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.”

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