“Indonesia is not a people, but they are peoples.” One of families from BAIS told Bryn and I this during dinner one night. After visiting the Island of Bali this past week, this statement takes a new meaning. Indonesia is a beautiful country, but due to the many islands there are such drastic differences in the people groups from area to area. Indonesia is full of layers of different people groups that all have deep rooted differences. You can go 10 km and be in a totally different people groups in various parts of Indonesia. The Balinese are the people group that lives on the Island of Bali. Unlike the majority of the country, the main religion in Bali is Hinduism. Bryn and I during our trip had the opportunity to visit a couple of the Hindu temples. It was very interesting to talk to some of the people in Bali about what they believed. Every morning that we were in Bali, there were women that would bring these small square trays that have greenery, a flower, some rice or a cracker, and some incense. These are lifted up as daily offerings to the gods and demons. The incense smoke is said to be the ladder to the gods and the carry the hindu prayers to the gods and send their blessings back. What a unique experience that I have not experienced due to the Island of Java that I live on in majority Muslim. Where Bryn and I live on Java, we hear the prayer calls resound all around us remind the cousins to pray to their god. When I smell the incense of the Balinese or hear the prayer calls resound daily, I am broken for these people. How can these people not see God in the sunrise, the beauty of the rice fields, the sunset, from the mountains to the beaches of this beautiful country that call out His name of the creator and Savior of the earth. I pray earnestly that God would move in this country and that the lies told from generation to generation would be broken and the chains would be no more and the one and only God would be lifted up.
In my life especially over the last month, I have seen the power and strength of our Savior and I want these people, my friends, eyes to be open to the truth that can only be found in Christ. This last month, God has been breaking me. After announcing in September that I would be stepping back from teaching for the time being, Satan has been attacking in every direction and it has been such a challenge. But, even amongst the fight, I have been able to lean on God’s strength and provision more than ever. For without Him, my wonderful Savior, I would have not made it to see the light that has come. These words of Chris Tomlin’s song, “Our God”, ring truer than ever before, “And if Our God is for us, then who could ever stop us, And if our God is with us, then what can stand against? And if Our God is for us, then who could ever stop us, And if our God is with us, then what can stand against? What can stand against? Our God is greater, our God is stronger God, You are higher than any other, Our God is Healer, awesome in power.” I have been put through trials and sickness, but God has pulled me through and even amidst the trials God has given me hope through the questions and love of the students that He placed in my care. God is moving and He is stronger than any spiritual force against those seeking to tell the truth to the nations and He is higher than any god of the world.
Since arriving in this country three months ago, God has been revealing to me His way and that is not to permanently be a teacher at BAIS. I have no doubt that God had me in the class for this time for a reason, but He has other plans for my life. As of last Wednesday, God has provided a teacher to replace me, so that I can pursue God’s new path for my life. Starting in January, prayerfully I will be attending language school to learn Indonesian and whatever God has in store during that time. Please be praying for Bryn and I during the next few months during this transition time out of teaching and into a new season. Please pray for provision for our needs as we transition to a single income. We have no doubt that this is God’s plan and we know that He will provide for our needs. I can’t help, but think of a of the worship song, “Lord, I give you my heart,” I pray that as that as that song says that my desire would be to the will of the Father’s and that in Him and only Him will I be found. I pray that “every breath I take and moment I am awake” would be for the one who has give all for me. Pray that God’s Will and Way will have its way in my life, as I seek Him for this next season.
I pray this finds you well, feel free to send me an e-mail and let me know what is happening in your life. My e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. I think of you often and pray that God is working in your life and heart like He is mine. May You look to our God to give you the strength and hope as you stand in the amidst of trials that you are facing currently or have yet to come.