This time last year I was sitting on an airplane on my way to Papua for six months to be a missionary. My first every long term mission trip where I volunteer in the Love Papua Centre, with no income apart from savings and a few friends and family supporting me with a love gift. Now one year later I am still in Papua, working as a volunteer at the Love Papua Centre.
I was speaking to Mom on our weekly Saturday night/morning phone calls (depending on the time difference.) I said if anyone would have told me four years ago I would be half way around the world working away from home, family and friends I would have laughed. Four years ago I was recently born again, I was someone who didn’t even want to go to the shops on my own because I had no confidence. I was a person who had been broken over years of abused and didn’t know who I was or who loved me. It really is true what the bible says in
1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment…
I can honestly say that all that I am doing now is because of the love of God, there is no way my old self would be doing this. There is no way I would want to live in a place where you have to use cold water for everything and every time you need warm water you have to boil the kettle, I would also hate not having reliable internet or data connections or being away from my PlayStation and most definitely would hate having to leave the house with minimal makeup and sometime my hair not being perfect! I would also cringe in horror at sleeping on the floor next to cockroaches, lizards and many other bugs when visiting the local villages, and also having to use a bucket of freezing cold water at 5am to have a shower…not to mention the toilet!
I’ve learnt so much in this last year about myself and my relationship to God. I have learnt that to be truly on fire for God it takes discipline and surrender.
Matthew 6:33 NKJV
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
This has been the verse I’ve lived, quoted, mediated and learnt to do here in Papua, to seek God first. I’ve watched people with little physically be spiritually strong and on fire for God. I have seen the church in full function, where signs, wonders and miracles follow the believers. I have seen many miracles that you could take out the book of Acts! I believe its all down to the fact that they seek God first. These people here have very little, they don’t have the lifestyle we have in the west but they have something so much more, something that we have lost, they have the fire of God. They love God with all there heart and turn to Him with everything they have, when they face bad situation the first person they turn to is Jesus.
I long for the churches of England to have this fire again, to see the signs, wonders and miracles that we see here. I long for the blind eyes to be opened, the lame to walk and the captives to be set free. I believe that England might be better off physically. But, I long for them to catch a spark of what we have here, I long for the church to be on fire for Jesus again. For the church to arise and stand for what it believes and to reach the people in need, to visit the hospitals, prisons, addicts and broken people. For them to share the love of God to the forgotten people of the world. This is what we are doing here in Papua, we are reaching the hospitals, prisons and forgotten people.
I have no idea what the next year will bring but I am giving it to God and trusting Him to guide me and use me where ever I am to share the love of God. I’m trusting Him to direct and guide me along the next year, that together we can see more people set free and receive the love of God. God Bless.
The man who has God for his treasure has all things in One. – A.W. Tozer