Archive for July, 2010

One month anniversary

25 July 2010

Today marks one month since I came to Kiari! Mr. Smith asked me if I wanted to stay, and my answer is a most definite YES!!!

It’s funny how once I sit down to write all the things I’d thought about writing fly out of my head. School went well this week– and saying that reminds me of one thing I was going to tell you about. I’m sure any of you who are teachers can identify with the problem of classroom noise– only my problem is the lack thereof rather than an overabundance! All answers are whispered, and when I say “use your real voice” the student just gets embarrassed and whispers even more quietly! They’re getting a little better though– and maybe my ears are getting sharper and more adjusted to their accents too!

This week I finished “turning” a skein of rope and learned how to make a bilum (rope bag). Today there was a crowd of ladies crowding around to watch me, and one of them said, “Yu meri tru bilong PNG,” which means “You’re a real PNG lady.” That made me happy!

We have a man visiting from the US to help with the airstrip, and he arrived Tuesday. Unfortunately his drive from Nomane to Kiari wasn’t nearly as smooth as mine– the truck broke down several times and they made it back only by wrapping the broken part each time with some wire made from a piece of chain-link fence that a lady sold them beside the road!

This coming Wednesday we’re having a baptism. School is canceled and as baptisms are a big deal here we’re having a mumu, or underground barbecue– only I think this one is only vegetables, no pig. Please pray for courage for the new believers as they share their testimonies and for strength for Brother Randy as he stands in the freezing cold river long enough to baptize them all!

Thank you for praying for our mission trip. The team got back safely and we’re looking forward to a report from them this afternoon.

Hope you have a blessed week!

Elizabeth

“O use me, Lord, use even me, Just as Thou wilt, and when, and where….” -Frances Ridley Havergal

To check email in Kiari, I carry my computer about a mile down the mountain to church and sit on the edge of an overlook where a fitful cell phone signal connects me to the outside world. ☺ Due to this limited connection, I have to limit the file size of my incoming mail. To ensure your message will reach me, please don’t send pictures or attachments. It’s also nice if you can change your mail format to “plain text” (which usually decreases the file size a good deal) and delete the text of previous messages. In other words, leave off all the “extras”—but do still write! ☺

Greetings from PNG!!!

18 July 2010

At long last I have gotten email set up. Many apologies for the lack of communication to this point– hopefully I’ll be able to post weekly now. ☺ I arrived in PNG on June 20th and spent several days in town before flying out to Kiari on the 25th. The trip went well and I felt very welcome as Kiari turned out to welcome me. The kids even decorated the gates to my house and made cards and a poster for my bedroom.

My first couple of weeks were pretty slow, basically adjusting to life here and getting to know my way around. Catherine and Tiffany, our nurse and other teacher, were on vacation during that time, so I had the house to myself and enjoyed having the Smith girls over a lot. School started up again this past week, and I’ve really enjoyed teaching more and more classes each day. The school year will end in August and Tiffany is leaving in September, so I’d really appreciate your prayers as I make lots of decisions about the next year (schedule, how many grades, etc.).

One night that really stands out in my mind is Tuesday, July 6. We have evangelistic “fellowships” in different hauslains (lines of houses) every Tuesday evening, and this particular time it was up at Haitakol, high up on a ridge above my house. Lots of people crowded into a grass-walled house with a dirt floor, and by the light of a single battery-powered fluorescent bulb someone had hung up we sang and prayed and Pol (Paul), one of our church leaders, preached a very clear message about how Jesus is the light of the world, and whoever follows Him will not walk in darkness. As far as I know most of the people listening are still walking in darkness– please pray for them to choose Christ’s light.

The funny thing about the night– and the thing that really fixed it in my mind– was that one of Pol’s illustrations contrasted two groups of five people walking in the dark– one with a light, one without. The group without a light would obviously be in trouble, especially on the steep, slippery mountain trails of Kiari. Well, going back, our group of five was walking in the dark with flashlights. But our flashlights were only so good, and when we got to a place where we had to walk down a barely-notched log, I couldn’t see where I was stepping and slipped and fell, spraining my ankle. Thankfully the Lord strengthened it to carry me down the mountain to my house, with the help of my kind companions who carried my bag, held a light so I could see where I was going, and caught me innumerable times when I stumbled and would have fallen. The next day I couldn’t walk at all, so I know it was the Lord Who helped me down that night. However, the whole thing has really burdened me for the folks of Haitakol. Sure, I slipped in the dark and fell, and it wasn’t fun– but I’m fine (actually now I can walk normally for the most part– just carefully ☺). But if these dear folks continue to walk in their spiritual darkness, they will surely fall, and their fall will be into the eternal darkness and pain of hell. Again, please pray for them to come to the Lord and walk in His light.

Well, this is long enough for now so I’ll close. Thank you so much for your prayers! Please pray especially this week for a mission team from Kiari Baptist Church that is going to the village of Gono. Several of our ladies are from there and are burdened for lost family members and friends.

And one more note– you may have noticed that my prayer letter was not posted this month. I realized that most of you are also on my prayer letter e-mail list and were getting it twice, so I decided not to post it on my blog any more.

Again, thanks for your prayers, and I hope you have a great week!

Elizabeth

“O use me, Lord, use even me, Just as Thou wilt, and when, and where….” -Frances Ridley Havergal

Since I have only a limited connection in PNG, large files will not make it through to me. Please do not include the text of this message when you reply and don’t send pictures or attachments. In other words, leave off all the “extras”—but do still write! ☺