I just want to document a very unforgettable encounter I had. In a meeting invitation for this year’s Gilead School, I was able to join a team of selfless advocates. But the highlight of the experience was that I met 2 missionaries from Papua New Guinea. They are a couple who already served in various lands, and guess what, the husband is a Filipino from Pangasinan (who has been in Papua New Guinea for 10 yrs!) and the wife is a Japanese.
I learned a lot of things from our encounter. In order to be a missionary (serving in foreign places where there is a great need for preaching the word of God), one thing you need to have is ENDURANCE.
ENDURANCE: Two words can be retrieved from it – END and RUN; which means running until the end.
I was very much strengthened from the experiences and trials they encountered, and I want to share it with you.
1. Being a missionary based in Taiwan, the husband became a victim of a car accident. Reckless drivers in Taiwan, make sure that their victims are already killed (they go back, run over the victim, and run away). When a car hit him, the missionary husband, pleaded for help. The driver pitied him and brought him to the hospital. The missionary even preached to the driver while in pain. As a result, his life was saved and the reckless driver became a Bible study eventually.
2. In some remote areas, CANNIBALS do exist. The missionaries constantly flee for their lives, so that they will not end up being served on a platter for the tribes.
3. Nomadic as it may sound, but they sometimes ended up living in a bush or under trees. The wife’s most difficult scenario was having to endure insect bites for they slept without the comfort of four-walled houses.
4. Communication barrier is a major problem, and it requires a long time to learn the language of the place. Cultural difference is also a problem, and so is food. “Nothing beats the Philippine food sinigang and adobo!” exclaimed the Filipino missionary.
5. No cellphones, laptops or any high-tech devices was available in some areas. No emails, Facebook, or Blogger, for that matter :P
These are just some issues, but absolutely there are more. Being a missionary may prove to be difficult and challenging, yet these missionaries have a blissful glow in their eyes and a fulfilled voice coming from their hearts. Why? Because they adjust their lives in order to serve a worthwhile purpose, the greatest career of all time – being of service to kind-hearted individuals thirsty for the truth and being of service to God. What more could they ask for?