This month we are celebrating our 3 year anniversary of arriving in PNG. God has been faithful is His mercy and care for us here, and we marvel at how much he has has let us be a part of and work on since our arrival. The words of this Jason Upton song encompass where I feel our hearts are resting.
“ It’s a holy thing to be wild and free
When I seek You, I’m going to find You.
There is no higher praise than to trust You”
- by the way if you have never listened to Jason Upton, you really should check him out;)
The last time we wrote we were filling you in on all the AMAZING things God was up to with our different ministries here in PNG. This month we thought we would take a minute to update you on whats going on for each of us.
John will be going to a funeral today for the young daughter of one of his friends and coworkers, Lemech. Please be praying for Lemech, his wife Mara, and the rest of their family as they try to navigate this most painful event. John gave Lemech and his family a ride into Kainantu just last week and Lemech's daughter sat next to him—it's been particularly hard to understand. John has also been pretty sick this past month. We praise God that he was healthy and well for the whole youth mission trip, and that we got to enjoy the Easter sunrise service as a family before his malaria decided to make another showing. This round lasted a little longer that normal, and then he got sick again with a nasty intestinal bug. Please keep praying that he can stay well. It’s pretty frustrating for him to deal with his bodies limitations when he has so much work to do. He isn't wired to just sit around and rest, so that's a challenge :)
Kristi has been busy triple time it seems lately. She is still homeschooling the kids, running the household, and working with the 8 grade youth… but now she is also getting Nori ready for transitioning into school in a few months here at the primary campus, preparing our home and all the paperwork etc needed for us to go on furlough in November (we just bought tickets and we fly out Nov 29th), and getting all the details together for the 9 months we will be stateside. Please pray for her resilience and time management. Pray that she will not miss any details needed to be attended to, but that she will also be able to stop and be present with the kids and the community here.
Nori is beside herself with nerves and excitement over going to school in July and then getting to go see her friends and family in November. She is constantly talking about one or the other :) Please pray for her to transition well, and to be a good friend to those she is leaving and to those she is seeing for the first time in a while. We are really praying for her friendships this year—that God will give her deep friendships here in her class, and that God will be the glue that helps her step back into friendships she has been missing so dearly back in the states.
Banner: this kid has our Biggest and best news. John got the privilege of baptizing Banner in the Ba'e River here. I know even with all the crazy things we have going on this year, it will remain a highlight for us all! Please be praying for him and his walk with Christ. Pray that his hunger for that relationship continues to grow by leaps and bounds, and that Banner can remember that in the mist of living a life that is constantly changing there is one thing that stays steadfast… and that is our Father’s Love and presence in his life.
Millie is going to be 6 this month… she turned 3 the week we moved here! Its really hard to view her as 6 years old, she is still a sweet little baby who wouldn’t talk or walk for ages… but now i think she moves, talks and sings, more than the other two combined! That girl is 100% from sun up to sun down! Pray for her in this next year of her life; there will be a lot of firsts for her, like 1st grade, first international flight (as far as she remembers), and first memories of America (that's right, she has pretty much no memory of coming here, or life before PNG). Leaving the only place she knows as home for 9 months will be a hard transition for this gal.
We miss you all and love you! please write us back and let us know whats going on with you :)
John, Kristi and the Craig kids
Here's a video of Banner's baptism for you. One of the best parts was when Nori ran into the water and joyously hugged Banner afterwards. For the sake of a little bit of internet privacy for this special moment, the video password is "river"