Someone recently asked me what “hardships” I faced living in PNG. I had to stop and think. The first thing that eventually came to mind were the months I was “alone” without co-workers on site in the tribal village.

News from PNG: Kaje Tribe: Imagine, if you can, living as the single ex-pat family, isolated in a jungle village. Your 2 co-worker families are on home assignment in their respective home countries. You have wonderful local friends, people you love and care deeply for and who, in return, give their interested friendship back to you. Precious shared relationships — but with life backgrounds so diverse that total mutual understanding is limited. You’ve been the lone ex-pats in the village for about 3 months when finally that much anticipated day arrives! The helicopter is coming and bringing back one of your co-worker families! At long last you will again have cohorts next door to help share the load of ministry teaching, relating, and dealing with the needs of all your local friends and “family!” It’s hard to find words to express the joy and relief of having like-minded others around to help carry the load!

So it happened a few weeks ago in the Kaje tribe when the Taylor & Abby Goheen family returned from their Home assignment time to rejoin Jon & Jen Myers in the jungle. Better said in Myers own words:

We are so thankful to have such good relationships with the Kaje that even though we were on our own, we have been overjoyed to be here ministering to them. They truly are our dear dear friends. Our kids too are thriving as they live their lives as examples to their Kaje friends and spend time hanging out and playing with them. Even so, it was still a joyous reunion indeed to be back with the Goheens after being apart for a year.

Myers also shared some detailed prayer needs where we can uphold them and the Kaje people before the Lord.

During the last couple months Jon has finished teaching through the book of Ephesians and has now begun teaching through Romans. It has been so incredible to witness God’s word impacting lives here. But guys, there are still some who are really struggling to follow God.
– Please remember to pray for the believers here. There are many believers whose growth is so clearly evident and who clearly desire to serve the Lord with all that they are. But there are also those that are constantly falling into sin.
– Please pray for marriages here. The Kaje men and women have always been physically violent toward each other and the believers here are really trying to break this cycle of violence, but it’s hard for them not to fall back into this cycle of violence when they are blinded by anger towards a spouse or their children.

Do missionaries make a difference? In their recent update Jen Myers shared:

One of our dearest friends, who really is like a mother to Jon and I, Kwaimik, often breaks down in tears imagining what her life would be like if we had never come and remembering the darkness she used to live in. What God has done for her is frequently on her mind as she labors on here in Kaje. May we all also never forget what the Lord has done in our lives. Praise be to Him!

Please do pray for these missionary families and the Kaje people as God brings them to mind! Thank you!

Another “Please pray” request: There’s a proposed get-together of the “Upper Sepik River” area national churches November 26-29. No details yet as to which tribal church is hosting this conference. The tribal churches potentially able to host and/or attend would be: Wabaku, Siawi, Sinow, Soromi, Iteri, Nakwi, Ama, Nimo, Owininga, and the May River Iwam. To borrow & share the tidbit of this news from retired missionary friend Linda Krieg:

Please do be praying, even now, as the various tribal leaders make plans for the gathering, deciding on the theme and speakers and as well as working out how to feed everyone from jungle sources (no running to Walmart, if you run out of food). Pray that God’s Word will be the basis for all sessions and that the fellowship will be great. If the Lord should send a few extra wild pigs into the pathway of arrows, or maybe an alligator [crocodile] or two, that would really help the meat situation.

And fish. Lots and lots of fish. Maybe some eels. Birds and possum are scarce but God could bring some in. Some of the tribal areas can garden so perhaps God will give them an extra abundance of produce. The hosting village ladies will be super busy with processing sago for the staple food. Please pray for them too, as this is grueling work in the hot tropical sun. They will need to have sufficient for their extended family needs as well as all the extra for the ones coming to the conference.

Meanwhile back home in SEMO: How fast life can change! While driving a friend home, a car ran a stop sign and my car was totaled. No one hurt – for which we thank the Lord! To give you a glimpse of God at work in this situation:

  • 4pm Friday – accident happened and totaled my 2014 Camry XLE
  • 6pm – my insurance company’s estimate for my reimbursement = $4000 MORE than I had paid for the car!
  • 8pm – my brother found a 2014 Camry SE online within the price range of the reimbursement
  • 10am Saturday – we found, test drove and bought the car!

So much to praise and thank the Lord for! I would appreciate your prayers though for:

  • The friend I was taking home. She feels the accident was her fault since she had called me to drive her and says she’ll never ask me to take her places again. I feel God brought us together so I can help her out with rides etc. as needed so please pray she can rest in God’s provision of my being her on-call chauffeur.
  • The driver of the other car. She admitted fault. In chatting with her, she’s a “church-oriented” lady, though I’m not sure if she’s saved. She was on her way to work, and didn’t see the stop sign. She too blames herself. Pray that she will see God working to bring good from this for her, too.

Again, my sincere and grateful thanks for your interest and the countless evidences that you care. It is precious to see so many of you willing to be involved in reaching out and praying for the needs of God’s people near and far. Regardless of our locale, we co-labor together to see others have the opportunity to know our Savior, and then to grow in their love and understanding of Him. Thank you for standing together with me for these past 40+ years.

Co-laboring for King Jesus!
Hope Sharp