Sunday, December 16, 2007

Prayers Answered

Friends and Supporters,

Thank you so much for joining me in prayer for Yagaso. It’s time for “the rest of the story”.

A friend who’s also been to PNG and knows and loves Yagaso called and woke me up this morning with the simple message that Yagaso had heard the full message of the Gospel- that Christ is her Mediator and died in her place to pay for her sins, that she answered questions demonstrating a clear understanding of the entire message of God’s plan for us, and that this morning she was with the Lord. Below is what Janie from ITF sent me as well- the best of the descriptions of events I’ve gotten. I have just wept all day today… Pondering His preservation of this woman’s life just long enough so she could hear His Talk in her own language… Amazed and grateful for her desire to hear God’s Talk in the last few weeks of her life… (she would ask the missionaries for a lesson even on days they weren’t scheduled to teach!) Just in awe at God’s goodness, His grace in Yagaso’s life (and mine and yours), His perfect timing, and His ways, which are soooo much infinitely higher than mine.

YAGASO IS WITH THE LORD!!!! Thanks for all of your prayers. I tried to send out an update several days ago, but with our internet going up and down all the time, apparently it didn't go out. I'm glad, as I didn't have the info I have now.
Rich (Bena missionary) and Heti (tribal believer) went to see Yagaso on Monday morning. Rich started the lesson on Abraham and Isaac, and how God provided a substitute to save Isaac. Heti then took that and used a "tok piksa" (talk picture) to explain how Jesus was the substitute for us. Rich said he just sat back and listened to Heti as in beautiful Bena, he explained very clearly the Gospel. Yagaso said she understood, but was very tired, and wasn't up to answering questions. Rich went back several times this week, but each time, Yagaso was too sick to listen. On Friday morning, Dawn (Rich’s wife) stopped by, and there was Yagaso, sitting up, and very alert. Dawn ran home and got Rich, who went back, and taught another whole lesson ending with Jesus' sacrifice for us. Before, Yagaso wouldn't be able to answer the question "How does God cover our sin?" until after Rich answered the question for her -- then for the rest of the questions, she would remember it. On Friday, he gave her no prompting, and she answered all the questions correctly and completely. (I’ll add that another missionary said she stated several times, “manaka”- “it is true”) She was totally alert, and awake -- more so than she has been in a very long time. Rich went away in amazement at what God had done. Dawn had been praying that God would give her one more chance to hear the Gospel, and He answered that request. That afternoon, Miriam (ITF missionary) went by to see Yagaso -- she was again too weak to even sit up. That Friday morning with Rich was the last time she was coherent and alert. The answers to the questions that Rich asked about Jesus were the last words she spoke. Today (Sunday), at 2:15pm, she stood before her Savior in Heaven. I can hear the wailing from the village as I write this. Praise God that although we will miss that precious, mischievous, fun loving spirit in the village, we can celebrate that she no longer has to live the difficult life she had here on earth. God is good. All the time!!

God IS so good. He loves all of us this much- that He gave His Son as a replacement for the price of our sins. He is a God of second chances, and redemption and grace- and this is such a vivid picture of that to me: that He would come to an old woman high up in a mountain, down a dirt road, on the Far Side of the World, even in her final moments before death, and make Himself known to her. It is NEVER too late! Do you know about this God and what He’s done for you? Or maybe you already know about God… Would you like to know more? I’d love to share with you more about this Jesus that Yagaso is now seeing face to face.

God bless you this Christmas season! If I may serve you through prayer or any other means, please let me know. I look forward to hearing from you!