While we here in the USA endure (though some at least pretend to enjoy) the cold icy winter conditions, back on the front lines in the
tropics in PNG, prayer needs continue to abound.

Mibu – Missionary friend Kristin Simmons shared a bit of news: though the crisis in Mibu remains unresolved God has been at work! When the short-term police involvement ended due to a lack of funds, Christians in different villages were targeted. The adversary worked hard to make fear rule the day. God however is greater than any power on heaven or earth. He has used this crisis to cause His church throughout the area to rally together. An outreach that started back in November recently finished, and over 80 people accepted Christ as their Savior! Kristen wrote:

Many of these new believers have sought refuge with the church after entire villages have been burned by this gang! People are defying cultural norms as the Holy Spirit helps them think of Biblical responses. The way the church is handling this trial is causing others to seek what they have. And THIS is what it’s all about!

Heavy challenges remain, however. Many families and older people have been hiding in the jungle these past several weeks. Shortages of food, poor sanitation, lack of clean water, exposure to the elements (brutal even in the tropics) make existence hard. Add to that injuries and illnesses are without medical care. Kristen added:

The young, strong men remained in the villages to protect what they could. The weeks of separation, fear, and now sickness have taken their toll. One village medical worker recently returned and brought with him much needed medicine. It was in limited supply, however, so not all who needed it had access to it. With the return of the doctor, though, families are starting to return to the villages. Continued threats from the gang to return loom. Many church leaders have expressed a desire to take the gospel to the main gang, as well as imploring the Lord to not let the destruction that has come to the region close any doors to the furtherance of the gospel. God is certainly setting the stage for something HUGE!

Please do continue to praying Mibu, especially the believers there. God can certainly use this to draw many closer to Himself, members of the gang included. Let’s be praying to that end!

Over in Kaje: Missionaries Jon & Jen Myers (along with their co-workers Taylor & Abby Goheen) sent the following update and requests for prayer and praise among the Kaje people: when the missionaries first allocated among the Kaje people 6 years ago they anticipated the day when believers in their language group would be able to connect with other NTM churches in other language groups in the area. This would give the Christians opportunities for mutual encouragement, teaching, prayer and worship. That vision recently became a reality! Jon Myers writes:

…in late November of 2021, we had the great privilege of seeing the first fruits of this vision become a reality. The new Kaje church and these 3 other churches hiked and met together at a neutral location and for three days we worshipped together, prayed together, and shared from God’s Word. It’s hard to put into words the joy and amazement I felt standing there as these believers from different languages worshipped together. It was special. I remember thinking, ‘God is so good. How is it that he has allowed me to be a part of something so amazing!?’ Because each church came from a different unique language we all met together and interacted in the national language, Pidgin English, also known as Tok Pisin. It was a time of meeting new people, sharing stories, and mutual encouragement. After the 3 days were over, all 4 churches decided that this needs to become a yearly gathering. And plans are already being made for later this year.

Jon also shared these specific prayer requests for the believers in Kaje:

1. For the Kaje church to grow in their love for one another as brothers and sisters in Christ. Quarreling and fighting are what they have known and done for so long that it is still a constant struggle.
2. Fear of sorcery is a really big thing here. Pray for the Kaje to grow in their understanding and fear of the Lord so that they fear sorcery less and less and they learn to trust God more and more.
3. Pray for the other 8 Kaje villages. They have yet to hear God’s talk and they continue to ask us to come and share with them. It is hard for us to know how or when we will be able to do that with how much we continue to do here. (Further Bible teaching, translation, literacy, medical work, discipleship, etc., etc., etc.) Pray for them and for wisdom for us.
4. Pray for our German co-workers, Christopher and Lilli who are on furlough. Pray for Lilli who is pregnant that the Lord will grant her a safe delivery of their new child due the end of next month.

5. Some guys here are showing amazing signs of maturity in their walks with God. Pray for them as our enemy does not want to see these men continue to grow and become future leaders in this church. Some names you can pray for specifically are, Roghas Nggomo, Konmak, Ngganjere, Kumnang, Waemas, Bosko, Nggannggwap, Njapung, and Nyatke.
6. Pray for the many others who struggle more with the flesh and are not as faithful.

These are people you will get to meet in heaven one day! Whether we can pronounce their names or not, God can! He knows and loves them just as He loves us. He desires they too, grow daily in their love and understanding of Him. Your prayers for them now will bear fruit that will count for all eternity – in your life as well as theirs!

Meanwhile, back in SEMO (South Eastern Missour) – The days have settled into a “same ole, same ole” routine….
– working on long-term house issues for the eventual addition of 4 more family members to the abode. Please be praying for my sister Faith as she has so many seemingly impossible obstacles to see God surmount so that she and her family can come.
– being involved helping local friends as I can. These are precious friendships with the ladies, with the goal of being mutually edifying, encouraging and challenging to our spiritual lives.
My sincere thanks to YOU for your continued interest and support. Your prayers mean more than words can say. God delights to hear and He is so faithful to answer, in His own perfect time and way.
Because Christ came and is coming again, we have ……HOPE !!!!
Hope Sharp – Retired from NTMPNG to serve now, as God allows, in SEMO