And the Word Became Flesh

I sit back and close my eyes, the soft gray cover of my Bible resting in my open hands. It’s words are sweet, and somehow new even though I’ve read them a thousand times. I look over at the Tok Pisin Bible on my coffee table and my mind drifts to the times I’ve had recently with a good friend of mine. When she was young she was chosen as the daughter that would stay at home to care for her parents while the rest of the children went to school. Despite this discouragement, over the years she took any chance she could get to learn. She would sit with friends and look over their shoulders eagerly as they read aloud from books and newspapers. She begged someone to teach her to read and he had given her a few reading lessons. She told me once that any chance she got to try and read she took it and would studiously wrestle with each written page until she could read it. One day I was preparing a meal for the two of us and I saw her sitting on my couch gently caressing the pages of my little…

The Good Fight

Today I was reading a poem titled The Soldier’s Prayer by Amy Charmichael (a famous missionary to India in the 1800’s). A friend of mine had written it, and a prayer, out for me as I had left the USA for the first time to move overseas. At the time she had given it to me I had thought how incredible Amy Charmichael must have been, how much I had to live up to, how mature and advanced her relationship with the Lord must have been as I pondered the intense words of the poem. But as I read it today it struck me, that the bold words of Christian “heroes of the faith” may not actually have been the current spiritual state of said “heroes” but instead the words they penned may have instead been their heart cry, their aim, their hope.

Every once in a while, I have this bad habit (or maybe not so bad) of pulling out my old journals and reading them. Sometimes it centers me and refocuses me, and sometimes it just plain discourages me. But I noticed one thing as I flipped through a journal from…

The Battle is the Lord's

I pull my gloves off and toss them in the trash can by my leg. I twist the sink handles and let the water run over my fingers as I scrub them, as though I was scrubbing the stress of the day away too. I love being a nurse. Besides Jesus and telling people about Jesus, being a nurse is my greatest joy and passion. But, sometimes, stressful day after stressful day of intense medical work can wear me down. The last couple of months we’ve had an uptick in medevacs, traumas and the severity of medical situations we’re attempting to triage and treat. Everything has seemed to stretch my team, me and our combined medical knowledge and experience to their limits.
At the same time, I’ve been reading about the life of David. Now there was a guy that could understand significant stress and beyond. He was raised from being a nobody to becoming a national champion and right-hand man to the reigning king, only to be chased and persecuted at every turn. Then he became the leader of an elite force of …

The Face of Jesus

It was the middle of the night. I’d just spent a couple of hours with the doctor helping to patch up a trauma patient and he was finally stable. We were waiting to transport him to a hospital a few hours away for ongoing monitoring. His face was covered with dried blood and I pulled out a moist cloth to try and clear away the grime. As I worked steadily at the stains on his face I suddenly thought of Jesus. My patient had been injured protecting someone. I was struck with how Jesus had been injured protecting me. It may sound cheesy, but it was an incredibly profound moment. All at once, I wasn’t tending to a patient, I was tending to my Savior. I had the privilege of wiping away the gore of suffering for this man. Jesus wiped away the gore of suffering that I deserved and took it on himself. As I continued to gently wash away the stain of this man’s injuries Jesus reminded me of his words, “…Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” …

Easter With My Famo Family

The sun glimmered brightly through the open door as I pushed the blanket away from my face. A fire crackled in the middle of the room and Rhona's sister-in-law sat beside it tending a pot of sweet potatoes. Smoke wafted up towards the rafters and the grass roof. Everything smelled alive and wild and new. Elemental like earth and water and fire. I pulled in a deep breath, feeling life tingle in every part of me. Easter. The reminder that my Savior didn't stay in the tomb but rose from the dead. Because He lives I could live and because He came to rescue me I came to Papua New Guinea. It was almost too much. I stared at the ceiling beams and listened to the sounds of the household waking up.

Soon I willed myself to get up and wash. Today I would be going back home after the morning church service. The sun was bright and the sky new washed like a blue cloth pulled over the tented sky. I sat on a rock to warm myself as the rest of the family bustled around getting ready for chur…

A Bilum Full of Rocks

My mouth was dry. Over a hundred pairs of brown eyes were trained on me. I felt like my skin glowed white and my blonde hair might as well be a neon light. I looked in each face. What could I possibly have to say to this group of young people? Me. A white girl from another country who grew up in a city instead of a village and who could only observe and imagine some of the struggles they faced every day. I had prayed before coming to Famo about what I should speak about if I was asked to speak at the youth convention. The pastor had asked me to share my testimony. A dozen thoughts had clamored in my mind as I walked up to the front of the blue and white tent and grasped the microphone in my hand. I licked my lips, smiled and found my friend Rhona's face in the crowd. She smiled and lifted her eyebrows in a very Papua New Guinean signal of encouragement. I set down my little notebook where I had jotted my thoughts as I had prayed about what to say and I took a deep breath.

What w…

Welcome to Famo

The night was fresh and my friends stood around me as we shifted our bags and started off down the road. It was Good Friday and my friend Rhona had invited me to spend the Easter weekend with her and her family in their home area called Famo. Steep hills huddled around the road that wove around their knees as we tramped along, enjoying each other's company. Rhona and her family members chatted with me, pointing out different landmarks, villages, and areas. I drank it in like a parched man coming in from the hot sun; the fuzzy, grass-covered hills turning blue in the setting sun, the bleached-bone river rocks under my boots, the deep orange clay chiseled away at the roadside, the soft breeze carrying the scents of the valley towards me and filling me with their heady richness. I smiled and marveled at how amazing and good God was to me all the time.

We ambled on, making steady progress towards Famo in the coming night. Stars began to poke holes in the navy dome above us and the c…