It has rained on and off for a little while, it’s not much yet, but it is a good start. The creeks are still low, and the gardens are not totally wet; but some of the greens are starting to grow again, and it is so good to see how the Dinangat people are helping each other out. Some have more sweet potatoes and others have more greens and so they are able to exchange food, which is so encouraging to see. They don’t have a lot but they still thank God for everything they do have!
The Dinangat church is currently studying the book of Galatians. The Bible teachers are learning to write their own sermons and last Sunday one of the men did a wonderful job as he taught from Galatians chapter three. We are saved not because of our own doing or because we are some kind of special people doing something right. No, we are saved by His grace alone because of His great love; pure grace, when we accept it by faith. So it is not about us really, it is about His great name. His name is to be glorified, Jesus Christ!
Very soon the Schlegels will celebrate Christ’s birth with the Dinangat church. There is much we can learn from the Dinangat believers. It is not about the food (since there isn’t much of it at the moment) and it is not about how we dress (since that is not important among the Dinangat anyway!), and it is not about gifts (since that is not tradition in the tribe!). In Dinangat Christmas is about HIM, Jesus Christ, Saviour and Lord who delivered us from the debt of sin.
Unfortunately, the believers are also going through some hard times. Due to some bad choices they are going through a ‘learning and growing phase’ right now; problems in marriage, children who don’t listen to their parents, negative talk about other people etc. But Christ came for sinners, not for the good. And so Ralf and Elli want to celebrate Him all the more this Christmas! Jesus came to us; for He knew how much we needed Him!
Ralf, Elli and Mimi are getting very excited to get to see Naomi and Rebekka again next week. They are joining them for Christmas break. They will spend three weeks together as a family! They are super excited!
Thank you so much for your prayers for Dinangat!