HEADLINE NEWS! Introducing grandchild # 8 😊 Ezra Caleb Powers, born to Larissa and Charles on April 9th. Here he is with big brothers Elijah, Josiah and Micah.
We have just arrived back to Ukarumpa after our first “post-furlough” village stay. It was unusually cool (relatively speaking 😊), making life in general much more pleasant! The rains began early, though, which made it difficult to keep the solar system functioning well. This is the reason we usually spend June through mid-September here at Ukarumpa rather than on the coast. It will hardly stop raining at all during that time! We had to drive through the water on our way to the airstrip last week, since one of the 5 bridges was already flooded! Looks like we ‘skipped town’ just in time!
Although our plan was to jump right into language work upon our arrival in the village, we didn’t actually get started until several weeks later than we’d hoped. Previously planned Easter week activities, as well as several unexpected deaths (during the grieving and funeral days no work is allowed), put us a bit behind schedule. But in spite of that, we were able to meet our goal of finishing the village checking of 5 NT books. Two Tami men will be coming up here to do the final consultant checking of those books in July. Besides doing the village checking, Kim stayed very busy working with the 5 co-translators doing the initial ‘advisor’ checking of their drafted materials, including 2 John, 3 John, 1 Thessalonians and 2 Thessalonians, and Romans.
In another unexpected change, Pastor Ongengsa is now our Translation Committee Chairman! He has been very active in doing all he can to keep this work moving ahead. We are so thankful for him! He led the Easter Bible study and boldly proclaimed the Gospel and called people to live in a way that would please the Lord. Pray with us that much fruit would result in the lives of those who heard.
I, Annie, had been working on preparing a study to do with the women, but was having difficulty deciding exactly what the Lord wanted me to teach this time out. I had nearly decided that I would NOT teach during this village stay for a variety of reasons, when the Women’s Leader came to me and asked when I could start because they really wanted me to teach them! So…we started the next week 😊. I have begun a series on the names of Jesus, which will probably last all year (or maybe more!) We spent three weeks just looking at the name “Jesus”, which means “The LORD saves”! It was a powerful time focusing on the wonderful salvation of our God. We considered why we need to be rescued, what we have been saved from, what we have been saved for, how we are saved, and that there is only one Savior. There was a smaller group attending these studies, perhaps 35-40 ladies, but they are the ones who really want to be there! I am thrilled with obvious signs in many of them of a deep love for Jesus and a hunger to know Him better! Yes, the Word of God brings life and changes lives!
There also seems to be something new happening among the youth and young adults. On the surface it even resembles ‘revival’. Daily meetings, morning and night, with beautiful worship songs and powerful preaching. However, the preaching is confusing, not always Biblical, and has often been disrespectful of the village and church leadership, all of which is disturbing. A group of young men say they have a special calling from God and that they study the Bible all day and then preach, but they repeat the same things over and over, with much yelling and angry sounding voices. So, we aren’t quite sure where this all is coming from. Something they heard on the radio or saw at an evangelistic meeting in town, perhaps? We have our concerns about whether it is something of the Spirit or of the enemy. Yet to be determined- but please be praying that TRUTH would be proclaimed, and that we would have wisdom to know how we should be involved. While here at Ukarumpa for the next several months we will be making preparations for a visit from a team of 6 men and women from Grace Fellowship Church in Kentucky. They will be with us in Malasiga village from October 7-16. Their main focus is to interact with and build relationships with young Tami adults through Bible studies, sports events, and daily ‘hanging out’ time together. We look forward to having them with us! We will be translating into Tami the Scriptures they will use and produce a booklet of Tami Bible verses to use during the study. Planning meals, buying supplies, preparing a reasonable schedule, and answering a myriad of questions from the team will also keep us busy! We would appreciate your prayers for both us and the 6 team members as we prepare for this event.
LATE BREAKING UPDATE: As you are reading this now, we will be in Cairns, Australia, getting ready for Kim to be seen by an Orthopedic Surgeon on Thursday July11. He has a ‘stray’ piece of bone in the muscle of the top of his left shoulder that has been causing severe cramping of the left side of his neck and the resultant pain, which at times was incapacitating… ☹ This wasn’t on our schedule or in our budget, but God is sovereign and good and we’re trusting in His lovingkindness and mercy, asking that He would accomplish all His good pleasure in us and through us – in His way, and in His time.
CURRENT PRAYER NEEDS:
Wisdom, discernment and insight into what the root cause is (broken off bit from the spine?) and what the best course of action should be.
Much grace and encouragement for our Tami co-workers and friends as they absorb the disappointment of not being able to do this Consultant Checking or the recording of those 5 books afterwards.
Peace for Annie and me as we do whatever needs to be done to resolve this issue. May the Lord increase our faith!
Thank you for your faithfulness in praying and giving. We couldn’t do this without you. We love you. ☺
Kim & Annie
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