“Infrastructure” is a term thrown around rather freely in the USA these days. Consider: Would we rather be traipsing across a bridge (pictured above) in Lembena land in PNG? Such pictures give us glimpses into their daily grind and hopefully, put our life here in a more true perspective. And hopefully, too, it serves to cause us to pray for missionaries who have left the lap of luxury America offers to bring the Good News of Jesus to people who would have no other chance to hear their hope of Salvation in Christ.
“Our daily life in the bush still looks pretty much the same day in and day out. Some days our brains work better than others and we are at least able to recall all that we have learned in the language enough to have basic conversations. Other days it takes all our brain power just to try and understand a question we are being asked. Often the people enjoy putting us on the spot and trying to test our comprehension abilities, so we have to swallow our pride and laugh at ourselves a lot! We are hopeful that we can display learners attitudes and humility in those moments to show how important this task is and we aren’t going to give up just because it’s hard and embarrassing. Sometimes they try to show off our language skills in front of visitors, who generally are easily impressed, since chances are if they are outsiders they speak a different language entirely so they are easily fooled to think we can speak fluently!
It takes just as much patience on the part of our language teachers when they have to sit with us through the painstaking process of going through language texts word by word. We are constantly asking them to repeat themselves or say it slower. Typing out a 3-minute audio recording with a language teacher can take as long as an hour if the speaker was speaking quickly!
– Pray that we allow the Lord to use us in spite of ourselves. Our own sin, selfishness and pride is more of a danger at rendering us incapable of accomplishing this task more often than we like to admit.
-Pray that we are able to give ourselves fully to the work of the Lord in every area of our lives, so that we are not ashamed at His coming.
-Pray that we daily choose to surrender our will for His will.
-Pray that our aim is His glory, not our own.”
The Fergusons went on to share the importance of missionaries experiencing firsthand events in language study as using someone else’s notes doesn’t give the in-depth understanding that comes with being involved with the local people, witnessing their lives and culture. They wrote:
Language is so tied to culture that we can’t just memorize a list of verbs and use them to directly translate from English. People here have a different perspective on the way things work so we often cannot find an exact English counterpart to verbs in the language, we need to see firsthand the way vocabulary is being defined and categorized.
In the same way, we need to grow and mature spiritually as individuals in our personal walks with the Lord. I can be so encouraged to hear about someone’s walk with the Lord and desire to have that same intimacy with Him, but just by hearing how the Lord has used their life circumstances to deepen their reliance on Him isn’t going to teach me the same reliance that I will be able to learn when He brings me through the valleys in my own life. May the secondhand stories of the faith push us to desire a deeper firsthand intimacy with Him! To God be the Glory, …
Well said, Adam & Anna! Won’t you please uphold the Fergusons before the Lord as God brings them to mind: Adam, Anna, Jael, Karis, Miles, Libby and Tessa Ferguson
Elsewhere in PNG, Jason Stuart has worked with Jonathan Kopf and a team of Hewa men (Faimpat, Yanis and Ken) to check yet more of the New Testament translation. A few more NT portions – 2/3 of Luke and 1-3 John — are yet to be completed. Lord willing the final review for those verses will be in January 2023 and then the whole Hewa NT will then be DONE!!!! Please do be praying for Jonathan & Susan Kopf as they press toward this goal!
And for the “meanwhile, back at the ranch” segment: Most of us would willingly admit, we in the USA have life pretty good compared to the rest of the world. We get impatient at the smallest irritations: lines at the bank or grocery store. Road construction. And oh my! How we gripe about the potholes in the roads! Can we instead be grateful they are just potholes and not bomb craters dotting the streets? Are our store shelves REALLY empty compared to Ukraine? Hopefully, we are letting God use our blessed lives to turn us to prayer on behalf of those who don’t even
know if they will survive the day! Let’s be remembering before the Lord:
– Ukraine, Taiwan, and other countries under threat of being taken over. Also, the people of Russia & China who are facing persecution too, thru this time.
– the USA – no need to elaborate here on the overwhelming needs for a spiritual revival!
– For missionaries serving around the globe in these troubled times. Covid made life uncertain. War and rumors of wars makes life all the more subject to uncalculatable and unpredictable changes.
– Pray specifically too, please, for missionaries who have sons and daughters currently serving in the military.
The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is established, that it cannot be moved.
2 Thy throne is established of old: thou art from everlasting.
3 The floods have lifted up, O LORD, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their waves.
4 The LORD on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea.
5 Thy testimonies are very sure: holiness becometh thine house, O LORD, for ever.
Thank you yet again for standing together on behalf of God’s people around the globe. We are indeed a privileged people, knowing we can trust Him even thru these troubled times. May God strengthen our intentional focus on Him that we might reflect Him daily to all the lost and troubled souls He brings across our paths.
Because Christ came and is coming again, we have ……..