The Time of Mourning…
Wes cut his dreadlocks.
The Menya people of Papua New Guinea grow dreadlocks to mourn the death of a loved one, cutting the locks off when the “heaviness” has lessened. In order to relate to the Menya people, missionary Wes Chappell, who had lost his two cousins four years prior, grew dreadlocks.
Wes was mourning the death of his cousins, but he was also mourning for the Menya people. Many have died without hearing the gospel.
…Has Come to an End.
After completing language study, Wes was able to clearly tell the people that he is confident where his cousins are now. He told them that the time was approaching to share that message with them in their heart language. That’s when he cut his dreadlocks.
Since then, the team has translated some portions of Scripture, prepared Bible lessons, and prepared literacy lessons for teaching the people to read in their own language.
Now Wes and Penny, along with teammates Joseph and Elizabeth Osborn, are teaching the Menya people the message of salvation, starting at the very beginning.
Bible Teaching Has Begun!
And it really is the beginning. Before starting to teach in the book of Genesis, the team illustrated the reliability of God’s written Word over oral traditions using the old “telephone game” where one person reads a complex message and verbally passes it to the person next to them, and on down the line. At the end of the line, the spoken message was very different, but the written message hadn’t changed. Other teaching included some basic geography to help the people understand where the events of the Bible took place and where those places were in relation to Papua New Guinea.
They are only in the first month of Bible lessons, and God’s Word is truly touching hearts.
Today as we celebrate the Lord’s resurrection, let’s pray for the Menya people that they would soon be able to celebrate along with us as brothers and sisters in Christ.