Our total communication blackout has come to an end! We are back in the world of internet, email, and mobile phones.
Early October saw all the POC students pack up our supplies in preparation for four weeks of village living, and it soon became a question of who would have the biggest pile of stuff!
It was a shock to see how much we considered ‘essential’ for surviving in the village – many of us felt convicted of our Western approach to life. What would the villagers think when we turned up with all this ‘cargo’? Would our relationship start off by highlighting our differences?
We had no need to fear, as the welcome from our host wasfemili (watch family) and other villagers was warm and full of anticipation – the children were particularly intrigued by the strange waitskin (any non-PNG person).
The intent of the village living stage was to become familiar with building relationships with nationals, founded on sharing daily life, learning skills and growing in appreciation of their culture – all while communicating in Tok Pisin. Adding a degree of difficulty, was the need to cart water from a spring, cook on an open fire, wash in the river – pots, clothes and ourselves – and maintain our supplies without the convenience of cold storage.
The real challenge, though, is to be real – to genuinely be seeking to have a Christ inspired love for the people we continue to live amongst and serve here in PNG.
“We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.”
1 Thessalonians 2:8
We will share a few village living stories next week…
Please pray …
• thanking God for sustaining students through occasional illness during village living
• that the lessons learned will be valuable for our future service in PNG
• for our transition to the next stage of orientation in Ukarumpa, establishing connections within all areas related to our regional management role