Showing posts from 2022

The Heart of Heaven

The Heart of Heaven "For I [the Lord] have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord GOD; so turn, and live." Ezekiel 18:32 In our day and age, I feel like there is some confusion around this Biblical principle.  God does NOT get pleasure in executing consequences for sin.  He invites us ALL to turn and LIVE.  He has made the way for EACH of us to spend eternity with Him in heaven (John 3:16).  Does He ask us to live within boundaries?  Sure.  Is that a restricted way to live?  No more restricted than that of the athlete and the self discipline it takes to win a race.  The athlete sticks to the goal!  The athlete aims at the prize, and often sacrifices money, time and sweat in an effort to obtain it.   God is not in the race to gain the material things...He desires something much more valuable....souls!   This past weekend, Moriah Hovey gave her heart to Jesus .  God sought her.  He bought her at the price of His Own Son, and now?  She will be rejoicing in HIM and

Even in the Seemingly Small

Since 2019, we have started a collection of the butterflies and moths of Papua New Guinea.  We try to put a date on it and the name of who contributed it to the collection.  We dry out the specimens and press them inside a book and finally, we laminate them.  We have learned a few things about what works and what doesn’t…..generally, moths are too big to go through the laminator.  Their bodies don’t flatten enough to make it through.  We’ve had a couple mishaps… Anyways, this past week, I was walking along the balcony at school and saw a large, bluish creature fluttering near the ground.  It was after Kindergarten was over and lunch was nearly finished.  So, I yelled to Moriah to bring me her lunch container.  She burst out of the Kindy classroom door, and we celebrated with excitement after capturing our addition to the growing collection.  We were so excited, in fact, that when Gunner walked past to put away his lunch box, we stopped him to show him.   As I proudly displayed my &qu

A Missionary's Dream

Makia Baptism I recently went to another missionary’s home and was chatting with the Mom in the family.  She, too, is a Mom of “littles.”  Although, her “littles” are smaller than mine.  As I sat and we conversed about a variety of things, a sign on her wall caught my eye.  Very simply it said, “The dream is real …(emphasis added)”  I had to ponder it for a minute, and I felt like I was missing a piece of the story.  So?  I asked the question….”Hey, does that sign on your wall have a story?  It’s really intriguing.” “Why, yes, it does have a story…when my husband, daughter and I arrived on the field, there were some veteran missionaries that were leaving the field.   She came over and gave it to me as a gift one evening and shared that when the going gets rough that it had served her and her family as an important reminder.   THIS hardship.   THESE trials.   THIS sickness.   THESE differences of opinion.   THEY are all part of the package of ‘the dream’ we pursued…the dream we prayed f

Flannel Graph as a Ministry

When I first landed in a foreign country in 2009 to do missions, my teammate and I had a flannel graph.  It seemed outdated to me when we brought it then, but to a third world country?  It made SUCH a difference to have a visual for the students to help them imagine the Bible Stories we were sharing.  It really helped the kiddos engage in the story and encounter Jesus in a more realistic way. Recently, I had a friend ask me if I would like a set of flannel graph to use for ministry.   I declined because in this “high-tech age” we live in, I thought it would be irrelevant.   However, I agreed to check with my friends to see if anyone was interested.   Quite honestly?   I was less than hopeful that anyone would even consider it because to me it not only seemed outdated but now it seemed ancient.   To my utter surprise, there was a friend that jumped at the opportunity when I shared it with her as a possibility.   “Really?” I thought in disbelief.   I agreed to gather the materials fr


small…was the size of the town of Owatonna (pop. approx. 25,000+). BIG…that was the city of Santiago, Chile (pop. approx. 8,0000,000+). small…was the amount of belief I had when we started pursuing missions.   BIG…that was the God who brought us to the Southern Hemisphere and then around the World to the Eastern Hemisphere too (Papua New Guinea)! small…was the installation of an outhouse toilet on the church property where we serve. BIG…that was the impact for our little girl struggling with using a pit toilet (aka a hole in the ground). small...was the size of our little girl and the loose tooth she had. BIG...was the smile on her face when it finally came out! small…was our son when he decided to surrender his life unto Jesus. BIG…that will be the impact he could have if he chooses to follow Christ lifelong. small…was the stone in David’s sling shot.   BIG…that was David’s God behind the stone. small…was the baby Jesus lying in a manger.   BIG…that was the God who sent

GBBC Boys Dorm Update

 It has been a while since we updated on some of the projects going on at Goroka Baptist Bible College, so I'll take some time to bring you up to speed on one of the larger projects currently going on!  Many of you may remember that this has been a project we have needed to undertake for many years.  All the materials had been sources, gathered at GBBC, however the covid bug wrecked our plans for volunteer work crews to put it all together.  It was no surprise to God, as He had a plan and the perfect timing for everything to happen.  I (Brian) worked to get everything designed, approved, ground prepared and materials purchased, but I am limit on time and knowledge to run the building project.  Part of Gods perfect timing was a provision to that need.  The college was able to hire an well experienced pastors who was a former GBBC graduate and is a expert builder to join our team.  He continues to be a Pastor of a local church, but has graciously been working fulltime to move the boy

Update and Continued Prayer

  As I (Phyllis) sit to write this evening, I am rejoicing and yet heavy hearted all at the same time.   To God be the glory, our family is finished with quarantine, and we are free to go and come from our house now…we are thankful for that!!!   However, there is also heaviness around us and in us as we see and know people who are living in turmoil amid all the election upheaval here in Papua New Guinea.   There are no easy answers.   Homes are being burned, lives are being uprooted, and belongings are being ransacked and stolen as the fighting continues.   Please pray for wisdom for us as we desire to help and show a different way!   Our God is ABLE, and this is a part of why we are here….people won’t always hear our words, BUT they can see our lives and the inner peace we can maintain while in the midst of conflict around us.   Please pray for opportunities to share JESUS….HE is the Difference Maker!!! A woman within the body of believers in our area died unexpectedly of a brain

Quick Update and Prayer points

As always, it is never dull when you live in the "Land of the Unexpected."  That is PNG's other name.  Thank you for your prayers!  My parents (Brian's) have arrived just over a week ago and will be staying for a couple more.  It was a pretty rough transition because it is a very long and tiring journey to get here.  My dad was sick the first several days, but has begun to level out.  The kids have thoroughly enjoyed them being here (to put it lightly).  They have been sharing stories, working on puzzles, going for walks, reading and soaking up every second while Grandma and Grandpa are here.   We have had a few unexpected hiccups this week….    The first one is a few days ago Phyllis began to get sick and was not recovering quickly like she normally does.    Well, the short of it is she has finally been hit with the Covid.    This is her first time getting it, and so far she feels crummy, but overall doing alright.    I know she would appreciate your prayers as she i

Locked out

Sometimes God gets a hold of my heart in the strangest circumstances and situations.  Yesterday was one of those days.  When I leave the house, typically I check three things: 1) The doors are locked. 2) I have my key. 3) I have my phone.  I don’t always check them in that order, but when I leave the house, it is a routine for me to check those things.   Well, you can imagine my surprise when I went to let myself in the house after working on cleaning our porch a bit, only to find that the front door was locked.  Hmph.  No big deal, I thought.  Gunner and/or Rie must’ve accidently locked the front door when they were playing earlier.  So?  I went around the other side of the house and checked the other door.  Strange.  It was locked too.  Gunner and Rie were both outside with me, although they were playing and hadn’t missed going into the house. I have to confess; I was a bit flustered.  I called out to G. and Rie and plainly asked, “Hey guys, did one of you lock the doors?” “Yup!” Mor

Saturday Slugger

Brian hit a home run this week with the group of guys he is working with to create an "entrance" to GBBC.  Check this out!  Gunner and Moriah striking a pose…. Finishing the electrical on the back side…. The flags are the twenty two provinces of Papua New Guinea.  The sign is to testify to the establishment of the Goroka Baptist Bible College, but ultimately?  The whole project is to the glory of God!  The "hill" that the flags and sign rest upon is known as "Mount Moriah."  It has been no small feat for the guys to build and transform what used to be a nice mound of dirt and create a masterpiece that testifies to our Creator God who redeems life from the dust of  the ground!   Gunner also hit a big milestone….we now have a seven-year-old in the house!  Can you see a glimpse of his excitement in his face while he was opening gifts? He had great fun….he requested homemade corn dogs….for breakfast!  I denied his request, but I made them for dinner instead. H

Sneaking a Peek

It is no slight thing to catch a glimpse of heaven here on earth.  This Easter Sunday, we had such a privilege.  Gunner and six other national believers followed the Lord in a believer’s baptism.  What made it heavenly to me was the fact that it was multi-cultural, multi-lingual, multi-generational, and yet?  The entire thing was   worshipful !  Worship brings unity to our feeble, human hearts and is a demonstration of intentionally looking off ourselves and up to our Savior.  What a marvelous thing to behold!!! We had no idea what to expect exactly for the service as PNG is known as “the land of the unexpected.”  We walked 20 minutes through a village and down the side of a mountain to reach the spot where the river water pooled.  I (Phyllis) fell twice on the way down….hahaha!  Thankfully, I wasn’t hurt too bad. 😂 Gunner bounded down the steep incline and tried to keep up with the “big boys.”  The service was simple, but oh!  SO rich!  Gunner was busy trying to put rocks from the ri

The Gift of Change

I started writing this little book for our son, Gunner, when he began school at Nuhmonoi Christian Academy here in PNG.  To be quite honest, I didn’t finish it in time to give it to him before his first day, so I shelved it.  However, it came to mind this morning as I was contemplating a blog post.   Change is all around us.  It is inevitable.  However, we have a promise we can claim that is constant.  2 Cor. 5:17 in the Bible says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come…" Our Savior offers new life to ALL….and?  He offers it freely!   As you read about the gift of change, I pray you are encouraged to consider that Christ is the hope you can set your life on! He will never change!!!