- Paul & Faith Wyma
We love and appreciate you and would love to just sit down with a nice warm cup of cocoa and catch up on all your news! Our news has been very sparse as I have been dealing with another round of pain (from multiple sources) so my ability to sit and write has been extremely limited! Please know that we pray for you and thank our God for you! Thank you for your commitment to our partnership in this amazing ministry of reaching the lost for Christ. We want to take this opportunity to wish you God’s ABUNDANT blessings for 2013!
Everybody loves a good piece of cake, don’t they? Nice and moist — not too sweet and it melts in your mouth?! — But then there’s the icing! — Mmmmmm — you smear it on thick and creamy — and then you can top it off with slivered dark chocolate and almonds? Or maybe you’d rather smother it with fresh berries and then drown it in whipped cream? You take a really good thing and make it even “gooder”! J
THE CAKE — That’s kind of the way Paul and I are feeling about this era of our lives! We feel like we’ve got the “cake” (47 years in ministry) — God’s used the sugar and rich butter — whipped it good and mixed in the flour, leavening, milk and seasonings and whipped it some more. We’ll call those “ingredients” the ten years in the jungle with the Ayore people in Bolivia; the twelve years in Mexico and seven years in Paraguay in leadership, and now these last fifteen years in the States, serving on the Board. And then there’s been the fire to bake that cake and make it edible and servable! Binding it all together is God’s amazing enabling grace and faithfulness that He’s showered down on us in abundance.
THE ICING — But now we’ve gotten to the ICING on that cake! J Last week, Paul stepped off the Executive Board. It has been a pleasure and honor to be a part of the leadership team of New Tribes Mission. WE ARE NOT RETIRING! This change has been planned allowing for a smooth transition. Three years ago we moved here to Missouri and our time has been divided between the Missionary Training Center (MTC) and the responsibilities with the Board. Now, we get to do what we both LOVE to do — we get to pour our lives and hearts into training our young missionary candidates and to work alongside the amazing staff that God has here in this place. Paul will be involved in teaching more classes, and we will be even more involved in the member care aspect with our staff. What a blessing to be able to serve God in this way! We have loved every area God has led us into!
Of course, my “cake” analogy does have some flaws in itJ “The cake” is certainly not perfect! And God continues to “tweak” the recipe! J Every now and then He has to throw it back into the fire! Each of you has been a VERY important ingredient in our “cake” — our lives — and without your prayers and support it would have “flopped” long ago! YOU are the “icing” in OUR lives!!! Thank you SO MUCH for your continued prayers and support!
We’re so thankful that my pain level is more under control and it’s a blessing to be able to have the freedom to be as involved as my body allowsJ. The pain shots are effective for around three to four months and I’m able to have them up to four times a year — I’m due for another one soon. My prayer every day is that I will live above my discomfort and reflect Jesus through it all! Paul continues to do very well and we have so MUCH to be thankful for.
Pray also with us as we prayerfully take on additional ministries here at the MTC. There is an endless world of ministry open to us!
Thanking God that we are in the “icing” of our lives,
It’s amazing what five-and-a-half hours of
sleep can do for you! J Our trip to St Louis and back yesterday was an
“endurance trip”. I started out NOT feeling good and held my “running conversation”
with God out loud a good portion of the time! — poor Paul! J. We spent about
a half hour with Dr. Riew and four visiting specialists from around the world
and how we praise the Lord for this VERY qualified man! After studying
the MRI, taken a couple of days prior to my appointment and the six x-rays
taken that day, we are satisfied with the outcome. The bottom line, after
answering many questions and pulling and pushing, pricking and scratching here
and there he said “….how would you prefer living the rest of your life?
With the pain and discomfort, etc., that you are experiencing right now — or
with your neck fused and being unable to turn and bend it?” Well — that
was a “no brainer” for me! My immediate response was — “STIFF NECKED!” J I lived that way
for almost a year after my last neck surgery — as I wore a “major”
neck brace for close to a year. I’m willing to live that way — if
that is what it takes to get rid of this pain.
so — on July 21st, we will return to St. Louis for a CT scan of
the neck and another Dr’s appointment. That means, I have 15 days until
we will likely find out the when, who and what of this surgery. He says
that the last two vertebrae need to be fused as I have not “self-fused” as
hoped/expected since surgery two years ago.
straw that”broke this camel’s back” (pun intendedJ) yesterday, was that I
lost my cell phone sometime in the morning — after leaving for St. Louis! L I think I wept
more over that silly phone than I did about the surgery!!! How silly we
are, aren’t we?! I’m just so “sad” that I’ve lost so many of my contact
numbers —- and I certainly don’t want to spend the money on a new
phone! We searched — made multiple stops retracing our steps on our way
home — I pled with my Heavenly Father and he said “no” — and so I’m praying
that whoever took it will be “smitten” with guilt and be MISERABLE until they
And, of course, my God’s grace is sufficient for this also!
you for praying for us yesterday!!! I know it’s the only way we made it
through the day. God is good — ALL the time! And each one of you is a precious reminder of
His love and goodness! We bow humbly before our God as we read SO many
“love notes” from you, telling us of your prayers and loving, sweet words of
encouragement. I ended my day talking with my precious sister
(Kathleen Rasmussen) around midnight — and as always — she was a huge
encouragement to me! We encouraged each
other “remembering the goodness and grace of our Lord”! How can we help but PRAISE the Lord?!
We are surrounded with seven of the sweetest grandchildren in the world who
love the Lord and desire to walk with Him! Plus our “kids”, Todd, Chelle,
Starr and Matt are absolute treasures! What a joy it is to have them
close by during this difficult timeJ!
God bless and encourage YOUR hearts today, also!
— They’re a challenge to crawl over, aren’t they? Everybody has them
— and they’re all unique. Yours are unique to ours —- David the
psalmist called them “enemies” — and I totally agree with him!
So for THAT reason I’m asking God to help me dwell on truth — and not
take one step over that wall without HIM. It’s just a wee bit hard
sometimes, isn’t it? However, we want you to know that by God’s strength
and enabling “….. we/you CAN climb over that wall”. Here we
are — back to PS 18:29 again. And it is STILL true today! .
We are anticipating another surgery on the only vertebrae left on my neck that
is not fused. The doctor thought it would “self-fuse” — but
it has not — and so the “fix” will probably be fusing the last
vertebrae at the base of my skull — which is where my pain is radiating from.
This past Tuesday we saw two Orthopedic specialists. One doctor for
the pain that has been increasing down my right shoulder and arm because I was
convinced that it was just “arthritis” (which my mom shared liberally
with me) — or connected to the pain at the base of the skull. This has been
going on for months but has intensified until I couldn’t ignore it anymore.
He sent me down for an MRI and after the physical examination — said he
thought it was my rotator cuff. Well I was basically sputtering with
indignation — convinced that he was way off base. After the 45 minute
MRI — I proceeded to the next appointment and met with the VERY qualified
spine surgeon — who I had started with when we first arrived here in
Missouri. After many interesting questions and checking me over, he asked
me if my “happiness” was dependent on whether or not I could get
“fixed?” I’m SO thankful that I could look him in the eyes and
say — “ABBSOLUTELY NOT! — If this is as ‘good as it gets’ —- then
just tell me and I’ll go home and live life like this — no problem!”
I told him I turn 65 in a few days and I’ve never done this before:).
Well — This doctor looked me in the eyes and said “….I CAN help you!
THIS is what I do all day long! I am a scoliosis specialist and I
take care of patients that have this very thing happening to them — you ARE
fixable” He also said that I should come back after my neck problem
is taken care of then we’d take this next step. I have an appointment
with in for the first part of September. So — this is the second level
of the “wall”.
Yesterday, I received the results of the MRI and learned that I have a
“severely torn tendon in the right rotator cuff” — “…and so
when can we schedule surgery, Mrs. Wyma?” So much for being tied
into the neck problem! I must admit I was having a hard time believing
that I would need a THIRD surgery! I still have a hard time even writing
these words. But what I DON’T have a hard time saying is “…. By my
God I can scale a wall! He’s proven it to me for 65 years —- yes — I
turn 65 tomorrow (Paul turns 66 this week) so now I can say that I’m
“legally ‘old” I PLEASE be shocked!!!:).
Once again — we are brought to the truth that God IS in control — He
absolutely knows all about it and He has shown me in these past few weeks that
I CANNOT keep going like this. After FOURTEEN surgeries over the last
twenty-two years — I was quite “done” with them — but God said
“no” — my grace is going to carry you over these new walls.
And so he WILL. He has NEVER failed us — and the way we feel is
— “how can we help but TRUST him”. Thank you for praying us over
all the walls that we have encountered down through these past 45 years!
In the last letter we talked about “redefining and
reevaluating”. And right now we’re taking one step at a time.
We do not for see retiring or making any “career changes” at
this time and the doors are wide open to us here at the Missionary Training
Center! However, HOW we carry out these responsibilities may change a
little as we face the future. Paul will remain on the Executive Board and
we are looking to the Lord to the future for each area of our lives.
How can you pray?
1. that I can sleep for more than four hours a night. The
pain is waking me up and I cannot sleep during the day.
2. for all the added financial implications
3. for God’s love and grace to permeate every conversation with all
the doctor’s we encounter
May God continue to give YOU courage over YOUR “walls”!
Leaders are constantly called upon to evaluate progress
and redefine objectives. We are constantly doing this in
our personal lives also. Often events and changing realities prompt us to stop
long enough to do this.
I recently returned from a trip that took me to Mexico and then over to Sanford, Florida.
I witnessed motivating progress in God-honoring areas. I saw maturing believers
entering into life with their own people group resulting in drawing people to
our Lord Jesus Christ. Young people, graduating from High School with a love
for God, determined to live out their Christian life. Our Granddaughter, Briana
Arnold is one of those. I totally enjoyed being present for her graduation and
the events surrounding that. I saw leaders making difficult choices that will
enhance our relationships with others of the body of Christ, as we serve Him
In Sanford, Florida I participated in several days of
meetings in which we examined and gained understanding that will help us as we
continue to reach unreached people groups in the most needy parts of this
world. We know that God has given us increased understanding that will result
in changes that God desires to see in me and Faith personally and also changes
we need to make in how we prepare people for missionary service. So we are evaluating
and redefining a number of areas.
Nearly a week ago I returned home to find that in my absence Faith
also has been evaluating and redefining. During this two
week trip that I made, she discovered her physical limitations more accurately.
When we’re here together, I’m able to help her in various ways that reduce the
work-load for her, which has masked her real condition. We have three doctor’s
appointments with specialists scheduled, two of which are next week, to check
out some rather alarming symptoms that she has. She is in constant pain in her
head, neck, and extremities, constant tingling down her arms, hands, legs and
feet. She loses her balance easily. All of these are getting worse. She says,
“These are now ‘screaming’ at me.” God knows what He is doing! WE
TRUST HIM COMPLETELY — and we covet your prayers! We know that God is in
complete control! We are resting in this truth. She will see one of the TOP
spine surgeons in America in
St Louis on
July 5th. Pray with us for God’s wisdom in discerning what is
going on. We need to find out what is causing these symptoms.
These changing realities in Faith’s physical
condition are causing Faith and me to reevaluate and redefine
our objectives. We earnestly desire that you be a part of this. We will keep
you informed as we gain understanding from the medical specialists. Pray for
1. That God
will give the doctors wisdom to identify the cause of these symptoms.
2. That God
will indicate the correct solution with the least negative side effects.
3. That Faith
and I will honor God before others as we experience all that God has ahead for
4. That God
will lead us together with you in regard to what changes we should make in our
lives and ministry.
We are both content with whatever God has ahead for us. Thank
you for being an important part of our lives!!!
BIG hugs from us to you! J
Paul and Faith
I have recently returned from a trip to Florida to help my Dad move in with my sister and brother-in law (Dan and Debbie Huntting). I also needed to help him dispose of all his other belongings and all household furnishings, so that we can rent the house. It was definitely a very busy the days. The hard thing was disposing of all the many items that held many memories for Dad. He found it difficult to decide what to do with some things, so I took over that responsibility. He took all the things that he wanted over at Dan and Deb’s, and then I disposed of the rest. Some things the family wanted. Other things I took to the NTM Mission Barrel at the Home Office. Other things we took to Good Will and still other thing we put into the trash. We put a few things on the street to be taken by anyone that wanted them, but that wasn’t very much.
You may wonder what caused this change to take place for my Dad. Well, it started what he got sick with a flu sometime back. He became very weak and one day when Debbie went over to his house, to take him some food that she has prepared for him, she checked his refrigerator and freezer and realized that he had not been eating much of the food that she had been sending home with him. She also noticed that his coloring was not good—he looked gray. In talking to him she realized that he felt real weak and was even depressed. Naturally this concerned her and she invited him to go home with her until he got to feeling better. Well, to make a long story short, he got over the flu and three weeks later he still hadn’t moved back home. I talked to him various time by phone and he told me that Deb and Dan had invited him to move in with them. Each time I talked to him I could sense that he kind of liked living with them and having Debbie fix his meals or leave them ready for him to heat in the microwave oven when she had to be gone.
We appreciate Dan and Debbie inviting him to move in with them. We realize that he now needs to be with one of us. He shouldn’t be living alone any longer. Now he has those things that he needs and some of those things that he wants to have around him, but he doesn’t have a whole household to be concerned with. Both Hunttings and Dad will have some adjustments to make, but I’m thankful that he can be with them. Thank you for your prayers
Hello Dear Friends,
In recent days, we are witnessing the participation of many churches and Christians in the objective of communicating the gospel to those that haven’t heard. I just returned from a trip to a country where representatives from 26 churches held a missions conference to understand better how to establish churches among the indigenous people in their country and round the world.
Up until recently they had left this task to the foreign mission agencies. However, now they realize that the Great Commission” was given by Jesus to the church and they are aggressively engaging.
Each morning we listened to tribal church leaders reporting about the expansion of the church in their respective language group. They are reaching out establishing churches in other villages. I taught a session each day on the values we must have if we are to accomplish what God has given us to do.
Another person highlighted the necessity of learning the culture and language of the people with whom we work, in order that effective communication takes place. He used many examples from the culture of the people with whom he works to contrast the stark differences in the way we interpret the world around us and the ways we relate. Isn’t it a great joy to be part of this process?
We are witnesses to the fact that churches around the world are obeying the commandment of Jesus to “God into all the world…” This includes the tribal churches that we, including you, have been involved in establishing. We are living in exciting days!
Faith and I want to thank you for your participation with us, in this great privilege. Your financial support is a wonderful blessing to us and we could not be doing what we are without you!
As I sat and visited with these believers from several tribal groups and visited with Pastors and leaders from many churches in that country, I saw a more complete representation of the “Church, the body of Christ.” I wish that you could have been there with us!!!
Healing is taking place. We’re happy that the pain is more controllable. Physical therapy is helping and she’s gaining strength. The swallowing has improved and also the strength of her voice. Thank you so much for praying for us. Little-by-little she is doing more.
Rejoicing in What He is Doing!
Paul and Faith Wyma
Faith slept better last night. Her coloring is much better – her pain level still quite high – thank the Lord for medication that helps in this area.
Right after her surgery we thought that she could swallow, but she couldn’t. Since then we found that she can’t. Please pray that she will be able to do so by Monday morning. If she can’t swallow by Monday, the doctor will put in a "tummy tube" so she can take nourishment.
Words cannot express enough how much we have appreciated your prayers for her – thank you! She has said many times that it is the Lord that has given her the grace to even go through surgery again.
Thanks too for the MANY, MANY notes that we have received from you – the body of Christ is so amazing – not only has it encouraged us – but it has been a great encouragement to Faith. Kathleen and I have read these to her – it makes her weep for the outpouring of such love and prayer for her. Thank you each one!!!
Not sure yet when we will be able to take her home – next week sometime.
Much love and blessings, Under His Wings,
Paul & Faith, Todd & Chelle, Matt & Starr
Faith and I want to thank you for praying for us regarding Faith’s surgery today. After working on her neck for about 6 hours, the doctor let us know that he was able to stabilize and repair her vertebrae through the front (the throat area). Previously, He was planning to put rods in the back of her neck as part of this procedure. He chose not to do this and is trusting that what he’s done will fix the pain, numbness, shocks, weakness and alignment. He put in two plates, fusing six vertebrae. We thank God that this surgery is over! He told us that the recuperation time will be considerably shorter. She will heal faster since he didn’t need to open up the back of her neck. He said that her bones are soft so she will need to wear a neck brace for a couple of months. She has been moved from ICU to Step-Down ICU, where she will spend the night. The length of time she will need to be in the Step-down ICU Depends on how quickly she stabilizes. Another point for praise is the fact that she can talk, however weakly, and swallow although with considerable pain. We are so thankful for the fact that Faith’s sister, Kathleen Rasmussen, is here and so is our daughter, Starr. Starr has been recuperating from bronchitis in El Paso for almost a week and as she was feeling better, so called to see if she could be of any help. I assured her that if she could come; her mother and I would be most delighted!!! She needs to be out of the pressures of living in the tribe for a time, so we all see this as another part of God’s amazing love to allow us to be together at this important time. I have found having Starr and Kathleen being here to be a tremendous help to me emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Todd and Chelle are hoping to come and visit tomorrow. Thank You for your prayers and love! Resting In His Grace, Paul for Faith too
In 2007, a village in Papua New Guinea heard the gospel, joyfully accepted it and many of them began worshipping the one true God who alone is worthy. Now these same believers themselves are beginning the literacy and gospel outreaches that are needed to reach the other 2,700 people who share their language. Amazing!
What is more amazing is that prior to the literacy program and the gospel presentation in 2007, they had been illiterate and in complete spiritual darkness. Because their language had never been written down before, they had been trapped in their tribal superstitions and were ignorant of the message God had passed down for them in the Bible concerning the gospel.
In 2004, as we moved into the village and began the process of language learning we were so thankful for training we received through the NTM training centers. In this village, there was no dictionary to turn to. The people couldnʼt tutor us as they themselves were unaware of the patterns in grammar and phonetics that made up their every day way of communicating. Even the way they thought and interpreted life was completely foreign to us. We were completely dependent upon the Lord to open our minds and show us how to proceed.
M. David Sills in his book, The Missionary Call, he quotes Ralph D. Winter, “God cannot lead you on the basis of facts that you do not have.” We saw this to be so true as we began the process of trying to understand the culture and language. The Lord did not give us ideas and plans from thin air or mystically come and inspire us. The Lord used our minds and the time we invested into being learners throughout the training as the substance to work with as he guided us through the Holy Spirit to do the work that He had sent us there to do.
Everything we learned in the training was crucial. All the little sounds we were hearing in the tribal language needed to be analyzed and written down into understandable symbols. The grammar structure also had to be analyzed so we could understand what was being communicated. When it came time to write an alphabet, we were able to use the training in forming new orthographies that we had received. It was not easy, but again, the Lord prepared us in advance with the knowledge required and then brought all the information back to the forefront of our minds when we needed it.
Sometimes we get so busy in what we are doing that we forget to stop and look back and remember how the Lord has worked in our lives to equip us for the work He is doing through us. In light of that, we want to stop and thank the Lord for the great cross-cultural mission training we received through New Tribes Mission. We want to especially thank the staff that works at the training centers for the time they give to equip new generations of missionaries and for passing on their life stories and examples to those of us who are able to take and apply those principles to our own new works.
We are also thankful for those who prayerfully and financially support these trainers and teachers as they work stateside. Their jobs may not be taking place on foreign soil, but they are no less impacting the world of tribal missions as their thoughts and ideas are spread throughout the world as they are implemented by the NTM students in many countries.The Lord is truly using them to give missionaries the tools they need to take the gospel to the ends of the earth.
-Written by Bill and Kelley Housley, serving with NTM in Papua New Guinea.
You can receive their updates by requesting them at firstname.lastname@example.org.