The Lord gave Amos and Mata a baby boy last night. Epekio gave them one of the blankets she had made. She said her sister is now in labor so she will give her the other one she has finished.
Daddy and I were able to work a little bit on checking Acts this morning, but there were a lot of interruptions. Tomas came early to work. Jevin came to help Daddy change the oil in the generator. The people working on the school toilet came early for tools, etc. We did manage to get part of chapter 7 checked, so were thankful to have been able to accomplish a little bit.
Most of the rest of the day was spent trying to think of and do everything else that needs to be done before tomorrow. School was supposed to start today, but the toilet wasn’t ready. But it is ready now (except for the door).
Mailin, Lilian, and Tania came this afternoon to meet with me again. They didn’t get here until around 4:30. I wondered if they were going to come.
A good number of men are here tonight to work on translation. Daniel’s group is checking Matyu; and Matyu’s group looks like they may be checking I Timoti.
"Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered." Hebrews 5:8
We are told that the Captain of our salvation was made perfect through suffering, therefore we who are sinful, and who are far from being perfect, must not wonder if we are called to pass through suffering too. Shall the head be crowned with thorns, and shall the other members of the body be rocked upon the dainty lap of ease? Must Christ pass through seas of His own blood to win the crown, and are we to walk to heaven dryshod in silver slippers? No, our Master's experience teaches us that suffering is necessary, and the true-born child of God must not, would not, escape it if he might. But there is one very comforting thought in the fact of Christ's "being made perfect through suffering"—it is, that He can have complete sympathy with us. "He is not an high priest that cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities." In this sympathy of Christ we find a sustaining power. One of the early martyrs said, "I can bear it all, for Jesus suffered, and He suffers in me now; He sympathizes with me, and this makes me strong." Believer, lay hold of this thought in all times of agony. Let the thought of Jesus strengthen you as you follow in His steps. Find a sweet support in His sympathy; and remember that, to suffer is an honourable thing—to suffer for Christ is glory. The apostles rejoiced that they were counted worthy to do this. Just so far as the Lord shall give us grace to suffer for Christ, to suffer with Christ, just so far does He honour us. The jewels of a Christian are his afflictions. The regalia of the kings whom God hath anointed are their troubles, their sorrows, and their griefs. Let us not, therefore, shun being honoured. Let us not turn aside from being exalted. Griefs exalt us, and troubles lift us up. "If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him." —Morning and Evening
"I called Him, but He gave me no answer." Song 5:6
Prayer sometimes tarrieth, like a petitioner at the gate, until the King cometh forth to fill her bosom with the blessings which she seeketh. The Lord, when He hath given great faith, has been known to try it by long delayings. He has suffered His servants' voices to echo in their ears as from a brazen sky. They have knocked at the golden gate, but it has remained immovable, as though it were rusted upon its hinges. Like Jeremiah, they have cried, "Thou hast covered Thyself with a cloud, that our prayer should not pass through." Thus have true saints continued long in patient waiting without reply, not because their prayers were not vehement, nor because they were unaccepted, but because it so pleased Him who is a Sovereign, and who gives according to His own pleasure. If it pleases Him to bid our patience exercise itself, shall He not do as He wills with His own! Beggars must not be choosers either as to time, place, or form. But we must be careful not to take delays in prayer for denials: God's long-dated bills will be punctually honoured; we must not suffer Satan to shake our confidence in the God of truth by pointing to our unanswered prayers. Unanswered petitions are not unheard. God keeps a file for our prayers—they are not blown away by the wind, they are treasured in the King's archives. This is a registry in the court of heaven wherein every prayer is recorded. Tried believer, thy Lord hath a tear-bottle in which the costly drops of sacred grief are put away, and a book in which thy holy groanings are numbered. By-and-by, thy suit shall prevail. Canst thou not be content to wait a little? Will not thy Lord's time be better than thy time? By-and-by He will comfortably appear, to thy soul's joy, and make thee put away the sackcloth and ashes of long waiting, and put on the scarlet and fine linen of full fruition. —Morning and Evening
“A Psalm of David. Give unto the LORD, O ye mighty, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. The voice of the LORD is upon the waters: the God of glory thundereth: the LORD is upon many waters. The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty. The voice of the LORD breaketh the cedars; yea, the LORD breaketh the cedars of Lebanon. He maketh them also to skip like a calf; Lebanon and Sirion like a young unicorn. The voice of the LORD divideth the flames of fire. The voice of the LORD shaketh the wilderness; the LORD shaketh the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the LORD maketh the hinds to calve, and discovereth the forests: and in his temple doth every one speak of his glory. The LORD sitteth upon the flood; yea, the LORD sitteth King for ever. The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace.” Psalm 29:1-11
March 30. Today was a sunny day and a windy day. It was also a hard day and a good day. I’m thankful that the Lord is always good.
The first day of school. School bell rang at 6:30, telling the children to get up and get ready for school. Vinet and Maura came around 7:00 to look after the door. They also dug up and cleaned some ripe kaukau from the garden. Gibson came early and started cutting grass. Second school bell rang at 8:00, and school started at 8:30. Parents came to school as well.
We talked about the school calendar and schedule, some things the children will be doing in school, what good education is, the purpose for laws. After the parents were dismissed, the children had a recess. Then we had just a half hour for each class, instead of the planned 55 minutes. We also shortened English class to have a birthday party for Ephraim. Yesterday I made a cake, and we had gotten some cordial in town that we mixed up this morning. Note: Many people here in the US think of cordial as an alcoholic beverage. The cordial talked about here is not an alcoholic beverage. It is a sweet, rather fruity flavored drink. Can't think of anything that would really be like here in the US. It is very delicious.
I forgot to put the rice on the wood stove this morning so it would be ready for dinner. So we had our sandwiches for midday meal, and I fixed the rice and vegetables this evening.
After nap, Tomas came, and he and Daddy got the other window put in. I worked on lesson preparations for tomorrow. Serah came around 3:45 or so — swept floor, did dishes, and prepared greens for tomorrow. There were lots of dishes, especially cups, because she had to wash all the plastic cups that were used for the birthday party. And because she didn’t come in time to work before school this morning, there were dishes from an extra meal.
This evening, most of the men are here again working on translation.
March 31. Last day of March. No rain again, though lots of clouds and fog and some mist this morning.
All the children were around very early this morning, long before time for lotu. Vinet and Maura raked grass. Serah did laundry. I set up and printed out copies of Owena Acts 12 this morning for the men to work on checking. It was nice to have a little more time for quiet time and other things this morning.
When the kids came down for school, they wanted to play ball and jump rope. So I let them do that for a few minutes before they came in for class. They seemed to be having a good time, and everyone seemed in good spirits for school today. There was good participation and enthusiasm the rest of the morning.
I asked the children questions about the preaching to see if they were listening. They did pretty good in answering. We went over our school motto, school verse, and school song. Then we started math class. (No tokples class today, and lotu took the place of their Bible class.) We finished lesson one today in math.
After a little break, we had English class. That was fun, and they did well. I quit a bit early, as I didn’t want to give them too much new at once. I believe I enjoyed today.
We both took a long nap today. I didn’t even realize I was that tired. This afternoon was spent looking over their math worksheets and preparing for tomorrow’s lessons. Spent a little more time this evening preparing also. Gave my helpers a bit more responsibility today, helping the students to give out the books, papers, etc.
This evening, most of the men are here again to work on translation.
"With His stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5
Pilate delivered our Lord to the lictors to be scourged. The Roman scourge was a most dreadful instrument of torture. It was made of the sinews of oxen, and sharp bones were inter-twisted every here and there among the sinews; so that every time the lash came down these pieces of bone inflicted fearful laceration, and tore off the flesh from the bone. The Saviour was, no doubt, bound to the column, and thus beaten. He had been beaten before; but this of the Roman lictors was probably the most severe of His flagellations. My soul, stand here and weep over His poor stricken body.
Believer in Jesus, can you gaze upon Him without tears, as He stands before you the mirror of agonizing love? He is at once fair as the lily for innocence, and red as the rose with the crimson of His own blood. As we feel the sure and blessed healing which His stripes have wrought in us, does not our heart melt at once with love and grief? If ever we have loved our Lord Jesus, surely we must feel that affection glowing now within our bosoms.
"See how the patient Jesus stands,
Insulted in His lowest case!
Sinners have bound the Almighty's hands,
And spit in their Creator's face.
With thorns His temples gor'd and gash'd
Send streams of blood from every part;
His back's with knotted scourges lash'd.
But sharper scourges tear His heart."
We would fain go to our chambers and weep; but since our business calls us away, we will first pray our Beloved to print the image of His bleeding self upon the tablets of our hearts all the day, and at nightfall we will return to commune with Him, and sorrow that our sin should have cost Him so dear. —Morning and Evening
“Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee before the sons of men!” Psalm 31:19