Our days have been busy with the constant change of needs. They have ranged from continuing to fix broken equipment, find supplies, do schooling for the kids and the many other daily tasks of life. This last week it was necessary to travel to the port city of Lae in order to get some needed supplies. For us, this about a 170-mile trip one way on the Highlands Highway. It is not the typical road we would expect from a national highway as it took us about 6.5-hour drive to get there and an 8-hour drive to get back. I (Brian) went down there with one of the GBBC students and a missionary couple that has joined our team from the Philippines. We spent a couple days shopping for supplies and trying to stay dry in the constant rain that was falling. It was a productive trip overall, but it always makes me thankful to be home!
This week we also started down the road to a very big milestone as Gunner took a placement test this week to begin 1st grade at a local mission school. He was a bit apprehensive as this will be a big change for him....and us as we have had the privilege to spend the 6 years of his life always together. It is about a 30min drive each way to the school. This will add a fair amount of expense with school fees, the driving expense and we will need to find another vehicle in order that Phyllis can do some of the driving. We believe this will be the best decision for Gunner at this point as it will give him some much-needed structure in school and the opportunity to interact with other kids who are in a similar situation as him. If you would be interested in helping towards any of the costs, please let us know!
One thought that has been filling our minds this week is found in Luke 22. The Bible talks about a man who had a furnished upper room that the disciples were told to “finish preparing” for the Passover. We don’t know much about this man who had spent time and money in getting the room ready with furnishings and other amenities. It doesn’t seem to matter how much time and/or money had been spent. What mattered was that he had spent time preparing and it was ready when Jesus needed it. Lots of the tasks we do daily seem so insignificant, but the reality is NOTHING is wasted in the hands of Our Great God.
A missionary by the name of Ruth Still who spent time in Peru was quoted in the book Passion and Purity written by Elisabeth Elliot. Ruth said, “If my life is broken when given to Jesus, it’s because pieces will feed a multitude while five loaves and two fish will feed only a little lad.” How challenging! This little boy in the story of the feeding of the 5,000 had prepared for his day by packing a lunch. It was used by God in a MIGHTY way because this little guy had prepared for his needs.
Each one of us are preparing something each day and trying to fight an uphill battle. For us it is dealing with land issues, financial needs, student fees, maintenance needs, and the list could keep going…you get the idea. HOWEVER, in the face of these pressing needs, the stark reality is that more than these physical needs, there are many around us who are not prepared for eternity!!! While physical needs may be temporal, they provide a gateway, a road to begin talking about deep, spiritual needs when we take the time to tend to the often immediate, physical need. We must spend time preparing and prepping the ground for the gospel seed! Are you ready for when Jesus asks to use what you have been preparing?