Showing posts from 2020

The Brief Overview

There have been many changes that have taken place over the course of the last few weeks.  We are thankful to report we arrived safely in Minneapolis on May 30th with all our luggage and a couple weary smiles!  Gunner and Moriah were champs overall!  Our trip had a couple stressful moments, but honestly?  It wasn't nearly as hard as we had God be the glory!
Another huge blessing is that we got in to see our family doctor....this was an answer to many prayers!  We are trying some things to clear Moriah's bowel system as an X-ray showed significant blockage.  THANK YOU for joining us in prayer for our sweet little one!  We all are doing our best to work together to get this figured out, but it is hard to see her in pain.  Please keep praying with us that things get cleared up and we can find the root of the problem.  We thank you in advance!!!
As of the weekend, our quarantine has been completed.  We even got to attend church at our home church in Waterville, MN!…

In His Hands

Thank you to everyone who has joined the ranks in praying for our daughter, Moriah!  Last week, we sent out an update letter sharing that she has been having some issues with her tummy and skin irritation.  We were advised my our mission agency to consider coming home earlier to try and get some answers to these issues as we have been treating symptoms and not addressing the root issue.  After prayer and deliberation, we have been pursuing the option of coming home sooner. Currently we are trying, Lord willing, to come back May 30th.  Because our part of the world is mostly in lockdown or closed borders, that is the soonest that we could realistically try to leave.  We have applied for special transit visas to travel through Australia and we would appreciate prayers that these are granted because if they are not?  We will not be coming home yet.    Thankfully, we can trust our omnipotent Heavenly Father.  We can also place our dear little girl in His capable hands, knowing that He lo…


There has been much talk about quarantine, self isolation and restrictions about going out around the world with the global pandemic at hand.  As we have heard others talk and have read articles about life in the US currently, we must admit there are some striking similarities to being a missionary.  Let us explain...
The first is being separated from your "normal" life and really not knowing what to expect.  You can't go visit friends, catch a movie, or go to a nice restaurant.  The world can become very small and isolating.  When we first signed up for missions full time, we expected a lot of things to be the same as going on short term trips or even the couple years we served in Chile.  However, we changed fields, so things changed a bit more drastically for us.  We also went from serving in a first world context to a third world/developing world context.  
We were in for many cultural adjustments!  Phyllis didn't know how to wash dishes safely due to contaminated w…

What is church?

Have you ever thought about what is church…...most would instinctively say it’s a building, maybe a place of worship?  Undoubtably your definition of what church is has been changed or restricted over the last few months.  The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the church as a building for public and Christian Worship. So, what happens what we can’t meet in this building…or in our case what if we don’t have a building…. does this mean the church stops or doesn’t exist? I (Brian) heard an interesting thought the other day about early Biblical leaders…..Do you think Paul asked Timothy, “Did you go to church this week?”....or Peter ask John, “What church have you been attending?”  I personally don’t think so, because their definition was different than what is common today.  So, what was their definition and what was the early church?  To start I looked up and found the word church is used 108 times in the Bible (New Testament only).  The first time the word church is used in the Bible …

Fighting Fear

I reread a story in my Bible tonight that really got my attention in light of the current state of the world and the pandemic, COVID-19.It reads as follows: Jonathan, the son of Saul, had a son who was crippled in his feet.He was five years old when the news about Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel, and his nurse took him up and fled, and as she fled in her haste, he fell and became lame.And his name was Mephibosheth. 2 Samuel 4:4 Our Gunner will turn five in just a couple weeks.He can’t wait!Hahaha….isn’t that how it’s supposed to be?Children should be celebrated as they are a gift from God. :0) Mephibosheth’s dad, Jonathan, died when Mephibosheth was only five years old.That hits a little close to home!Given the recent pandemic prognosis, it would be easy to become anxious at this possibility living here in PNG.Weighty stuff to consider on a Sunday evening. Still, this story so captures the effects of fear driven actions and how crippling they can be—literally AND figuratively!!! Me…

Your Instrument of Choice

I have heard it said that your instrument of choice reflects something about your character.I chose the cello.I tried the piano, and I play limited guitar.I have often wished I had stuck with piano lessons rather than cello because the piano seems more available and can be accompaniment, not just for solos or ensembles.However, as I have thought on it as of late, I never would have made it as a pianist….I can’t multi-task for ANYTHING!!!Hahahaha!However, I DO see me in the cello. I do better supporting the melody rather than carrying it by myself, as a violin would.As a mom I’m doing dishes, laundry, meal prep, etc. and while those tasks seem routine a lot of the time, they also hold the ensemble together! The song that comes to mind, when I think of me and my cello part is Pachelbel’s, Canon in D for a string quartet.I had the privilege of playing that in an ensemble in Jr. High.While I was tempted to call my part “boring,” I got to play the same sequence of notes and revel in the m…

Pressing on

🎶I have decided to follow Jesus/I have decided to follow Jesus/I have decided to follow Jesus/no turning back/NO turning back!🎶 -?-  (emphasis added)
We have been trying to write a blog for several days here, but it is difficult to know what to say.  Is there risk?  Absolutely.  Are we going to stay? Until God directs us otherwise, YES.WHY, you may wonder?   Because Jesus Christ gave ALL to save us, and we love Him!  Papua New Guinea has caught up to the rest of the world and is in shut down mode.  All schools have shut down, flights grounded, and any ground travel not recommended.  We have been locking down the Bible College, however much of the country continues to do what they want as there is little to no enforcement.  There is a general sense that something is going on and a brew of panic as we go into any store.  Technology is not very prevalent here and most of what people hear is through word of mouth...and if you have ever played the telephone game you know how quickly facts…

When the rain comes...

Undoubtedly your last week has looked far different than you expected with the panic that is spreading across the world due to the corona virus.  We have been told there are no confirmed cases in PNG yet, but in reality there has not been testing for it either.  So as we see the news stories and information spreading it seems to be a bit of a title wave encroaching at our doorstep.  We can’t control what is coming, but we can decide what we are going to do with it.... Sometimes when it rains, it pours...literally.You might be surprised to know that our little fellowship at Makia didn’t meet this Sunday.It wasn’t because of the feared virus.It wasn’t government mandated.It wasn’t because our numbers necessitated it.It was due to rain.There were no livestream options available to our believers.  There wasn’t another Bible believing church they could reasonably walk to.  We did try to gather, but our pop up canopy and tarps just would not have been enough. Our national pastor made the ca…

At the Cross

🎶 At the cross/at the cross/where I first saw the light/and the burdens of my heart rolled away/it was there by faith I received my sight/and now I am happy all the day!🎶 -Isaac Watts Sometimes we look at the cross and see it as precious.  Sometimes it looks like an instrument of torture.  Sometimes it reminds us of our sinfulness and our need for forgiveness.  Sometimes it reminds us of dark days preceding new life for us all.   Today?  For me?  I look and see a cross (literally) and it makes me smile.  Many hands have made their mark on our campus and it’s physical structures and layout.  Many have been involved in training nationals to equip them to reach the country of PNG with the Gospel.  And the cross?  It is central to us ALL!!!   While the cross was intended to divide Jesus' followers and eradicate His teachings from the temple, it brought unity and the vision of capturing the people of the world with the transforming Words He spoke.  And ya know what?  It is still doing th…

Tangible progress

We have been struggling the last month to get a post out as much has been going on.  Each day has been filled with lots of challenges and victories.  We have had the privilege of having some friends from home come and work with us for a couple months.  They have been a tremendous blessing and have assisted in getting much accomplished here at GBBC.
One project that we have been working on for some time is defining the front entry way to the college.  The goal was to make a circlular style entry way that gives a nice apperiance.
Dirt was hauled in and the large scale  sculpting began.
Once it was mostly defined cement was poured around the perimeter 
We wanted to make is low maintenance so we decided to try to cover it with stone and cement
It was quite a process of searching for stones and placing them one by one.

As usual Gunner needed to be on site to inspect the work and see how he could get dirty!
The completed project has turned out very well!  The guys helping on the project named it M…

Calling Up

This April we are in need of help specifically to work on the project of a huge new boy's dorm.  We have been praying that God would raise up the right people at the right time to help us on this big endeavor.  I (Phyllis) have found myself thinking on a quote I once heard that really resonates with this season of our lives...."The task before us isneveras great as the Power behind us."  I don’t know who said it, but I remember reading it on a daily calendar that my parents gave me the year or two before my Dad died.  Little did I know how often it would be called up in my mind in the years to come, but it has stuck with me.  
Now, as I sit here, I wonder what is being called up in your mind as you read that.  What kind of trials or hardships are you facing?  What are the tasks before you that might be hindering you from venturing out on a 2-3 week mission trip to the other side of the world?   Let me share three struggles that kept me from missions for a long time.... Numb…

Praying a way!

Sometimes on the road, there seems to be NO way through.  We recently had a road trip to Madang, a coastal city in PNG.  There is one road....ONE get from Goroka to there and it was full of obstacles!  It's at least a 8 hour drive but it depends on the condition of the road.  At one point on our journey, the road was impassable.  A bridge had failed and there was no way to cross, so the road was just diverted down through the river.  A semi truck and trailer had gotten through the river but got stuck on the way back up the river bank and there was NO WAY around him.  We were already hours into our drive and there was NO going  We waited and prayed with earnest!  Gunner and Moriah prayed too....and their prayers are just as fervent as ours!  
It's nothing like a road block in the states.....there are no signs of issues ahead, there was no police presence, no tow trucks to was chains and manpower that moved the truck....or so the people thought!…