A new day is dawning in mission land. 5:30 a.m. to be exact. My phone rings. It’s one on my team of nurses. Their phone calls I never ignore. A child with a seizure. Febrile. Reassure Mom. Get fever reducing meds down. Check for malaria. These are our first steps. More problem solving will come as the day progresses…. I don’t like people to suffer, but I love walking with them through difficult things. With our expatriate doctor on an extended furlough my nursing skills are being pushed to new boundaries and limits and I AM IN MY ELEMENT. So grateful for all the teaching that Dr Di has poured into me.
Working on my Master’s, in nursing education, is an amazing experience. I am so blessed and privileged to have this opportunity. Advanced Pharmacology has been immediately applicable as I consult with expatriates. Which makes the text book, lectures, and case studies come alive. Unfortunately, with everything added into life a few things must get tossed out and sadly my writing has been one of them. Gratefully, it is Thanksgiving week break and the boys and I have taken a few deep breaths from school. Yet it is quickly looming to an end and I am determined to write a few lines for this blog and publish them. We managed to escape to the beach. Clean up a few things that had been ignored for the last 3 months and I have been able to connect with some friends who have been waiting patiently for me to slow down.
Recently, I had the unique and honored privilege of being present for a video conference call with three physicians in Australia, the dental Papua hygienist (and she is SO much more), and the patient. My role was to simply help with translation (from Australian medical lingo to English/Indonesian to our more than fluent hygienist). The patient had growths on her face that were horribly disfiguring. They hung down and stretched over ½ a foot. Her life has been filled with shame, teasing and humility that none of us could ever understand. This team of doctors in Australian are planning on doing a humanitarian effort and will reconstruct her face. They plan to spend three weeks with her in December running all the tests and creating the complicated and intricate plan of two staged operations. In February the patient will return to Australia for those operations and months of rehabilitation. It was an amazing hour, to just step into this situation, that has already taken over a year of planning. I can’t wait to watch and see how it all goes. The hope is to make a documentary on this case: for future learning and inspiration. There is so much more to this story……
We have a NEW pilot. His name is Michael and he has many flight hours under his belt. We are excited to have him on campus as we are almost flying again. Michael is twenty-seven and feels like an older fake son to Darron and I and another “big brother”, to the left behind bros. Many Friday night meals are shared together, and we look forward to seeing Michael “take-off” and thrive here in Papua.
Tragically, we lost a member of “our extended family” in October. Her name was Emily, and she was a college student in the USA. Her family has served here for years. Our mission community was in deep grief as the news of her death reached here. I cannot even begin to explain to you the bonds that form with fellow missionaries that serve alongside you. Perhaps this picture will give you just a taste of the love and commitment of missionaries. This shows most of the people that came to Emily’s service that were all missionaries here in Papua at some point in time. Three non-family members flew from here to support the Adam family. Much love. Much loss.
Blessed are we to have experienced this love ourselves when Bob Roberts crashed and in other difficult situations. Even this Thanksgiving weekend we were blessed to sit around a very long table, filled with traditional Thanksgiving dishes, and enjoy “our extended family”. Most of these family members have part or all of their children in the States. There is much understanding and love and common purpose. It makes our bonds deep.
We continue to enjoy working with the Seminary next door to our aviation campus. Despite very poor student living conditions they are growing. These last two weeks the English “speaking and hearing” students have come to our home to hear real English spoken. Bless them!!!! Here were some of their questions: “What is America like? How do you make whole wheat bread? What is your family’s favorite food” (it was easier to pull out leftovers from the fridge than try describing Mexican food)? Now imagine sharing those answers with someone who has the language skills of a three or four-year-old. It lends to much laughter. Mutually my empathy runs high, for I am far from fluent in Indonesian. This week we baked together. Again, easier to do and taste than explain. Much fun.
Over the break I managed to do a little painting with friends. They are always waiting and wanting to learn. Who am I to teach painting? haha Have mercy. A long term desire of mine has to been to use this as an outreach ministry. In fact, about 3 years ago we purchased paints with that in mind. However, it came to no fruition, but just today I was asked if I would teach with for this very purpose. I am really excited. Now to figure out where to add that into the schedule?!?
My dear friend Ida has weathered through the first year of grief. Now her sweet gift from the Lord, Joel, is walking. I have loved watching Ida choose joy and hope and watching her baby grow into toddler.
I hope this just gives you a tiny glimpse into life here. We are still sweating as you all begin to turn on your heaters. Jacob is tackling high school with great strength and Nathaniel is facing 8th grade and anxious to join his brother in high school.
Jacob and friends recently played at an evening hot drink and dessert fundraiser. One of the high school boys had composed the music. Other than catching 5 rats in our attic, I think that’s all the news for now. Until next time, we covet your prayers.