Hello From Indonesia!
After much prayer and preparation, we have finally arrived in Indonesia! It was quite a long journey with our sweet Willa. Miraculously, she was such a good little traveler and we are so grateful for the smooth journey here. We spent a few days in Jakarta and then made our way to Salatiga to begin language school. We were warmly welcomed by our MAF teammates. They prepared a house for us and did so much to help us adjust and feel more comfortable in this new environment. We were reunited with friends that we had met previously in Idaho, and are thrilled to get to know more MAf families that we had not met before.
As new parents to Willa, full-time language study students, and adjusting to new culture, we sure feel as if we have a lot on our plates. However, we are feeling much more at home now and we pray that as we continue to learn about the language and culture we will feel more settled here in Indonesia. As Canadians born and raised in the prairies of Saskatchewan, the heat has been difficult to adjust to. We have never been more grateful for air-conditioning!
We have been studying Bahasa Indonesia at IMLAC, however, our instructors come to our house and we study at home for the time being. Jonathan has class in the morning and then Melissa has class in the afternoon. Soon, Jonathan will be going to the school while Melissa will still learn from home in order to take care of Willa.
As part of our schoolwork, we are required to go out and meet and chat with Indonesian people and then write about our experiences. As you can imagine, the first few weeks we had some very awkward encounters as we had very little vocabulary. We did a lot of charades in order to communicate! Our neighbors have been very hospitable inviting us to chat during the “social hours” here. In the late afternoon, many people are outside on their porches chatting with neighbors. The people in our neighborhood have been very patient with us as we slowly learn the language. It has been enjoyable getting to know them and become friends. There have been some gunny language blunders as well! Thankfully, we are seeing improvements in ourselves everyday.
Our first week here, Melissa was startles to find a large spider in the toilet bowl! Since then, we have discovered many unexpected “roommates.” Many ants, geckos, and the pitter patter of rat feet ensure that we are never alone in the house! There are bat nets in the trees around our place, various fruit trees, and a lot of chickens and roosters that make sure we get up at the crack of dawn. It sure is different than the Saskatchewan prairies!
We have yet to find out our base assignment in Papua, but as of now, we know that following the completion of language school, we will be heading to Sentani, Papua for Jonathan to receive some flight training for an undetermined amount of time. For the time being, we are focused on learning the language and understanding the culture here!
Since arriving in Indonesia, we have met so many people that have shared stories with us about how the work of MAF enables them to live and serve here. Because of MAF, so many other ministries and organizations are able to impact the lives of the people of Indonesia!
It truly warms our hearts that we are able to be a part of something much bigger than ourselves! Thank you for the part that you play in making this journey possible for us. As we continue to prepare to serve the people in Indonesia, we are so grateful to have our team standing with us.
Praise and Prayer
- Praise for a smooth journey here and that Willa did incredibly well on such a long journey!
- Praise for receiving our student visas for out time here studying at IMLAC.
- Praise for the team of people praying, supporting, and encouraging us as we adjust to life on the field.
- Prayer for adjusting to life as a family of three, and balancing our studies with new parenting.
- Prayer for adjusting to a new culture, environment, and language.
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. 1 Peter 5:10
In his love,
Johnny, Mel & Willa