5 days until Departure for PNG! (Papua New Guinea!)
I write with anticipation for this great journey that has been set before me for the previous 10 months! I thank you all again for your interest, financial support, prayers and encouragement along the way.
I will join the leadership of this trip of 7 travelers total. Together we will journey to this far corner of the earth, document the success of a 2 year scripture translation project, and bring useful supplies to the missionaries living and serving out there full time. The culturally appropriate clothes have been acquired and treated with insect repellant formula. The pack has been hike tested and proven sturdy. Sleeping supplies include compact mummy sleeping bag, inflatable sleeping pad, para-sheet ground cover, and hanging mosquito net. This week I am busy stashing away small lightweight gifts for them and consolidating my personal hygiene items to be airport friendly and village camping effective. Disposable traveling reading material and some clothing’s layers will be carried and jettisoned along the way. Once aboard the plane, there is no more to do! No bases left to cover at home, and no packing items to add. The trip will begin: receiving each hour the path God has for me on this journey.
We have our final itinerary as follows:
Tampa – Dallas. Monday Nov 3. American Airlines 4:30pm EST.
Dallas – Sydney. Monday Nov 3-5. 8:10pm
Sydney – Brisbane. Nov 5. Qantas Airways 8:05am local time
Brisbane – Port Moresby, PNG Wednesday Nov 5 10:40am local time
Port Moresby – Lae, PNG Wednesday Nov 5 16:00 local time
A whirlwind of scenarios attempt to flutter through my thinking: What if a team member is injured or harmed? What if there is an emergency on one of our 10 flights roundtrip out and back? What if I have to perform CPR on someone? What if a south pacific natural disaster should occur? I have fought off the fear and anxieties of the greater what ifs… similarly I release the fears of the little what ifs… What if i have to eat very strange repulsive food? What if I cannot sleep on the plane? What if I have to hike in the pouring rain, eaten by mosquitos and sunburned? What if seat 79J is not a good seat?! (No kidding. That’s my seat assignment from Sydney back to Dallas. But hey. I was born in ’79 and my name starts with J. Why change it now?)
What if the whole trip is a disaster?!
So what. God says I love you and I will take care of you. Period. There are no “what ifs” in God’s world, from God’s point of view. Everything He has written to happen, will happen and will be His best. I am confident in this. He is carrying this team; He is carrying me. What if I have to… anything. So what. God already has the plan and the supply of strength and grace in place to take care of it. He is only setting Himself up for glory and success. May I be willing to be used to glorify Him!
INAM = It’s Not About Me.
Only His Glory.
Matthew 10:5-8 (paraphrased)
Jesus sent the twelve disciples out with these instructions:
…Go to God’s lost sheep.
Go and announce to them that the Kingdom of Heaven is near.
Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, cast out demons.
Give as freely as you have received!
Matthew 10:28-31 (NLT)
Don’t be afraid of those who want to kill you. They can only kill your body, they cannot touch your soul.
Fear only God,
who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
Not even a sparrow, worth only half a penny, can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it.
And the very hairs on your head are all numbered.
So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to Him than a whole flock of sparrows.