SmythsInPNG's Weblog

September 18, 2013

Do you believe in prayer?

Filed under: Missions — smythsinpng @ 1:56 am

Do you believe in prayer?

Actually, in the way that many people speak about prayer; I do not. The difference is mostly semantics. What I do very firmly believe in is a God who answers prayer regularly and specifically when we pray. I do believe we should pray. We have been commanded to pray.  God is the object of prayer; not prayer itself.

The power is not in the abundance, words or manner of prayer but in God; with whom people who pray align their own will to match His.  These people are looking for the glory of God in the answer to a prayer which is in agreement with His revealed will but may be in contrast to what is apparently occurring.  Prayer is the action of believing that God hears the requests of His people.  Prayer is the action based on the belief that God can and will change circumstances upon hearing the request of those who pray in accordance His revealed desires and character.

We have seen God answer many specific prayers over the years. Even now we are seeing some answers to prayer.

Diana and I very much appreciate those who take time to pray specifically for us and for effective ministry. We need your support in this way. It would be foolish to think that we can accomplish anything of eternal value in our own strength.  We need God to work through us, provide for us, lead us and guide us.  We believe that God has answered many past prayers in very marvelous ways.

God works through the prayers of His people. I do not fully understand how or why, but He has chosen to use individual and community petition to accomplish His purposes. I wonder from time to time if it is the relationship aspect of prayer. We draw close to Him as individuals and as a community of believers; aligning our hearts together toward accomplishing what is His revealed will. We pray for laborers, for wisdom, direction, for the salvation of the perishing, for provision to accomplish His purposes for us.  As we pray, we begin to see what God was already doing as well as those things which were apparently not happening before we began to pray.

It seems that many people believe that prayer is like a magic formula to manipulate the spirit world to get the desired result. This is very similar to the animistic beliefs we have seen among people who have no knowledge of God.  God cannot be manipulated.

Prayer in itself has no power, but the Creator God of the Bible has ALL power. That power has been given to Jesus.  He is the one who told us to pray.

In the power or authority given to Jesus He told us to go and teach everybody about Him.

Matthew 28:18-20
“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you:and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

February 21, 2011

February 21, 2011

Filed under: Missions — smythsinpng @ 10:28 am

Planim Pos

Plant Post

In Papua New Guinea the equivalent of laying a foundation is to (“planim pos”) plant the posts. Everyone knows that if you don’t dig holes and plant the posts in them your house will fall during the first earthquake or get washed down the hill.

Set the Floor

We use this illustration from daily of life to show the importance of laying a foundation for teaching God’s word. First the holes are dug in the posts are planted in them. Then a framework is built to strengthen the posts and establish the floor.

When the floor is established then the walls and a door are framed.

House Nearing Completion

After the walls are secure a ridge pole can be erected on which the roof can be laid. The roof protects the finished walls which protect the interior and beautify the house. Without establishing the foundation first a house lacks strength and integrity and will crumble under adversity.

Mengen House

The same is true when teaching God’s word. When people are taught the essence of religion, even biblical truth, without a clear understanding of the Holy character and nature of God, their own helpless sinfulness, and God’s provision to attain his righteousness, their faith is shaken and sometimes destroyed.

Fuel Shed Framed

We are rejoicing that the work team was able to build a foundation of our fuel shed last summer.

Securing Tin

Last week we were able to put the roof on the shed.

Insecure Fuel Shed

Before our return to the USA (June/July) we hope to secure the building by mounting walls and a door to protect the contents. Thank you team for all your hard work!

February 18, 2011

February 18, 2011

Filed under: Missions — smythsinpng @ 12:36 am

Thirty years ago today I boarded an airplane in Indonesia as a 19-year-old kid bound for the USA to begin a career as a missionary pilot. My family had just spent the last two years in the middle of Borneo working among the Urun Daan people preparing to plant churches among them. Hiking in the jungles and running the rivers for supplies gave me a taste of doing things the hard way. Surely missionary aviation would speed the task of taking the good news to the remote peoples of the world. I had nothing with to begin my journey but a suitcase and a destination. These many years later I have many tales of God’s provision, direction and timing to enable me to have a part in planting Bible believing churches in many remote places. Thank you for your part in enabling us to do this work!

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