Losing Fingers

Several years ago word came out that a man named Enoch was looking for a ride from the Highlands down into the coastal city of Madang. My family and I were driving down there for the very first time, having been in country only a few weeks at that time. We offered to give Enoch a ride.

For five and a half hours we got to know Enoch. At first he seemed very nervous and seemed to feel unsafe. I thought it was perhaps riding with strangers, but instead it was because of the area we were passing through, the area in which Enoch had met a very violent time. He proceeded to share his testimony with us, and it is in this video.

In late June we dedicated the Urat New Testament. Work like this is impossible without people like Enoch, helped by people like you. We are here to support Bible Translation, and you support us being here. Your lives have touched Enoch's life indirectly, but God knew exactly who would be helping Enoch and how and where.

To hear 'I decided to let God take revenge' has an incredible meaning in this cultural context and is tremendously indicative of God working in Enoch's life. His testimony has reached many. This is why we are here, to see God's Word changing people's lives in a meaningful way.

Thank you for your partnership with us!


Last Night

Last night we were driving somewhere and my son looked up and saw a
digital thermometer that read 68F.
He asked "Dad do you think that temperature is correct?"
I replied, "Yes, it should be."

he paused...
then said

"Dad I just had an epiphany. You grew up in California and you
instinctively assume gadgets work whereas I grew up here and
instinctively assume they don't."

It was a poignant observation. I did assume the temp gauge worked at
first, and then verified (by judging the temperature of the day being
slightly chillier than room temp), he assume it was broken, and verified
by asking me if it worked.

I ask 'why wouldn't it be working?'
he asks 'why would it be working?'

Interesting subtle difference in how he grew up.



For a while now, for fun, I've been creating a 3d map of where we live.
It isn't photo realistic, it doesn't look nice like Google Maps street
view. The idea being I could one day 3d print it out and have a model
of the area.

Today as I was tinkering around on Google Sketchup doing this... I
thought 'this would be better if the buildings looked like themselves
instead of white blocks'.

So I began to dig into how Google maps does the street view, if I could
make my own 'google car' and drive around the neighborhood.

The answer was "photogrammetry". In a nutshell, taking huge amounts of
photos and connecting them together to create a 3d map!

You can use stand alone cameras, drones, or even, a self-made "google
car" where you snap a ton of photos of things.

I thought it would be neat to spend some time creating a 3d map of the
place, so our friends back at home could do a 'virtual walkthrough'.
However, I've only just begun playing with the software for this and can
already tell it is going to take a LOT of time and THOUSANDS of photos.

So watch this space, I may one day, have it all done. I'm throwing out
my previous model and starting from scratch. If this works, it'll be
very awesome and useful!


How Did You Wake Up Today?

I had to euthanize a cat.

This post is not for the feint of heart. I hesitated to post it, but I wanted to highlight the difference of living here. Sometimes the differences are subtle.  Because this may have happened where I grew up in California as well.

Moments before my alarm went off this morning, I was awoken by the sound of barking/fighting dogs.  I looked out my window, and without my glasses on I saw 3 wild dogs tearing and tossing at something small and white.  I instantly assumed it might be our dog or our neighbors dog (which is small and white).

I burst out of the bedroom to run outside when I saw our dog.  Relieved, I realized it still may be our neighbors dog, because, when a pack of dogs comes up, your little domestic one on a walk, is no match.

When I arrived outside, my Swiss neighbor had scared the pack off and was hovering over a dying cat. I will spare you the details but it was dying and in pain.  The only thing humane to do was to end its life.  My neighbor being a cat lover, I volunteered to do the necessary work.

Thankfully the cat was a feral cat, and not one of the domestic ones with a loving home.  In fact this particular cat had also been terrorizing the neighborhood a bit, so there wasn't any love loss.  I know it's sad, but somehow that made it better knowing someone's beloved pet wasn't dying.

I'll spare you the details, but I buried the cat, jumped in the shower and headed to work.

Now I have to help deal with this pack of dogs.  Because as long as they are around, children, cats and little dogs in the neighborhood are not safe.

There is no animal control to call. This is one of those times where, if you're lucky, there is someone in the neighborhood who can do what needs to be done, and do it without the means of firearms. 

Why on earth did I write this blog entry? 

If you're thinking of coming here, you don't need to put animals down, there will likely be someone you can ask to do that for you. But, if you're the type of person who can do that, then believe it or not, that is yet another ability you have that can be used to serve others by doing a dirty job no one likes to do.  In this place, every aspect of you, every skill you have, can be utilized to serve and bless others. I am thankful to God for the way I grew up, and the animal husbandry I learned, and the experience and ability to be able to handle these types of situations.



Urat NT Bible dedication last month.

People of this generation:

Working hard so that people of this generation (and all future generations):

Can have God's Word in their language.

That's what it is all about.