Dave Gullett

a miscellanea

Our Praises to the Lord

Dearest
Supporters, Friends, and Families

First of all, we are so grateful and thankful for God’s blessings, grace and love in our lives. We would like to thank you all for all your supports (prayers, love, encouraging words and funds) in our lives since the beginning until today and then… Thank you so much for being with us in prayers and now all of us can give praise and glory to our God the Father in our Lord Jesus Christ.
We have seen the great work of God’s hands in our lives and others here in Indonesia… We do praise GOD for that!

June 14th 2008 is the day when we stepped out on our new journey together. We got married on that day! The day which God united us as one family. It was the most big and wonderful day ever in our lives. Seeing families and friends came celebrating together with us was so encouraging and blessed us so much… We would like to say thank you so much for coming and rejoicing and celebrating the day with us… We are learning to live as a family and doing ministry together now… Status and some things have changed in our lives. We do need your support in prayers for us that God will strengthen us as husband and wife, enable us to understand each other and love each other. Pray that we become increasingly close to God and be open to what He wants us to do and where to go to spread the Good News. Also, pray that through the difficult times we focus on God and God help us by providing the way.

Now, we are doing a cultural and language orientation for 9 university students who came a couple weeks ago with SEA Discovery. The orientation lasts for 3 weeks here in Jakarta. After the orientation weeks, we are divided into 2 main groups and will go to 2 locations, KT and PP. We will spend 3 weeks in those locations directly engaging with the local workers. During in the locations we will spend time interacting with the local people so that way we can learn deeper about their culture and some of their language. The goals of these trips are directly involved with the language projects, with learning the life of the field worker, getting know ourselves and God’s calling in our lives. Please pray for the preparation (our hearts, accommodations, technical things, and equipment, transportation, weather, and paper work), communication between the team with the local workers, and also the interaction with the local people. We are praying that our coming will be accepted well by the local people and we can be the blessing of God into their life, we are given boldness to share God’s love and Good news. Please also pray for our health and God’s protection. After the village living phase, we are going to have a debriefing phase for a week. This week we will use to process all what the whole team members experience in the locations by sitting, sharing stories and praying together. Also, this week will be used as team preparation going home (US and CAN). Then the SEA Discovery 2008 will be over and that means we can take a rest for a while J …. But soon have to start the next year SEA Discovery! Please do pray for the whole program of SEA Discovery will go fruitfully, well and smooth!
We appreciate so much all your support in prayers and financially so that we are able to do God’s work here in Indonesia.

During the orientation weeks, the participants also have home stay program with local family in Jakarta. They have been starting to live with their Indonesian families since June 19th. The home stay program lasts till July 3rd. The goal of this phase is that they are able to learn more about Indonesian and the culture together with the family and learning about Indonesian family ideals.
Please pray for the participants will have fruitful days and become blessings to the host families.

We are so grateful to God for we are living under God’s grace and love… We truly know that we cannot do anything without Him and His power in our lives. He is so good to us. This week is a week we can see how great and wonderful our God is. Why? Because He is the unlimited and stoppable God! His promises are true and He will fulfill them in His timing. Last Tuesday, June 17th 2008, was my final step for getting my fiancé visa. It was my interview day. Dave and I went to the US Embassy at 1 p.m. and we had to wait for my turn having the interview. There was a couple who had a long interview before me. The consulate asked them many questions and that took about 30 minutes. Be honest, we were worried and afraid of not getting the visa. But we gave all our worries and fears to God and trusting Him for every thing that would happen that day. Then after them, the consulate called my name and asked to go to window one which was a small room, different from with the couple. We went together in to that room. First, the consulate asked me to swear that all that I told him were right and that I was not lying. Then he started with how we met and when, then about how we got in touch to each other, asking where we are going to leave, asking about one of our friends who had once sent me a sponsorship letter in 2006, and about Dave’s job. After that, he asked us about our communication record which we didn’t have then. In our mind we were a little bit worry that he won’t believe our answers because we weren’t able to give him our emails and chatting record since 2006. Then he took some pictures from an envelope that Dave sent to the Embassy together with the petition letter last year. He asked me some questions referred to the pictures he showed me. Then after that, he asked Dave a couple questions about his job and salary. Then he went to the back room .We didn’t know what he was doing there but we took the moment to pray. In a few minutes later he came back again and asked another question to Dave about the sponsorships because they have standard minimum salary of the person who sponsor the applicant. Praise GOD even though the his sponsorship was at the minimum standard, he consulate had confidence in Dave (we can see from his face) that Dave will be able to sponsor me because he knew that Dave is an employee of a propane company. After having about 15 minutes interview, finally, he decided to give me the visa!!!! WOW! PRAISE GOD!!!! We will return to the US Embassy in Jakarta to take my passport with the visa stamp on it. It is a great blessing for us. We are running out of words to praise and thank God for all what He has done and for all the blessings that He has given through every situations and people in our lives. GOD IS FAITHFUL GOD! He has started and He will continue the work in believer’s life.

Dear supporters, friends and families, we are so excited to see what’s next God will do in and through the SEA Discovery Participants’ lives and all people lives, including ours, here in Indonesia.
We also would love to pray for you all if you have any specific prayer requests… We praise GOD for you all!!!

Well, that’s our update news so far and still on the journey with the Lord of lords and serving the King of kings ever…. We will keep in touch with you!
Let’s praise the Lord of hosts, all the creations on the earth and in the heavens!!!

Warmest regards,

Helen Maria, for Dave Gullett
http://www.prayforindonesia.com/

“The Lord isn’t slow about keeping his promises, as some people think he is. In fact, God is patient, because he wants everyone to turn from sin and no one to be lost.” (2 Peter 3:9, CEV)

Maybe this what parents feel….

when they send their kids off to summer camp, or off to college, or off to life in general.

A mixture of sorrow, hope, relief, and excitement? Or just relief? Or just hope?

Of course what Helen and I are feeling isn’t at all the same thing, but maybe just a hint of it. We are sending the team off to stay with Indonesian families for the next two weeks. And while the will come to the office each day for language learning, they will be one their own building relationships with their host and learning how to live, or at least trying to learn how to try to live, as an Indonesian.

Learning a new culture is a surprisingly difficult thing. We take our own culture for granted and hardly notice it or think about it until we are confronted with another.

And while often we encounter it first by noticing language or dress, culture runs deeper into how we think about life and our place in it.

Tourists, by definition, encounter culture but stop short of learning it…only about it. We need to help the team experience understanding and conforming, and not merely being a spectator to the sights and sounds and smells. It is not enough to notice the differences, they need to be able to accept them and emulate them. Which can be trying. This is not just to keep form offending people, but also so they can learn to relate to them and respect them.

Along with learning the culture, they will be practicing their language learning with their families and in the communities the families live in. And while we don’t at all expect them to learn all they might need to know to live here, we do hope they learn how to learn. That they learn how it is that they best go about learning the essential and basic things they need to know to live here. So when they go to the villages, or when they go someplace to serve in the future they have a good expectation of how it will be like.

And they need to be aware of their own cultural expectations, which one seldom thinks about, and how those expectation probably will often not be met. Or how they might be greatly exceeded.

For example, think about hospitality. In most Western cultures it seems that the individual is the most important ideal and that hospitality is a dying art. We do not tend to expect much from our hosts beyond the basics: Food, water, a place to sleep and maybe decent conversation. Often, especially when tired, we don’t even want anything beyond sleep, a shower and a continental breakfast. How many hotels in America have a conversation bar beside the cereal and toast in the morning? And when we visit friends our family (and maybe this is just my experience) don’t the guests often get the “extra bedroom” or the couch or the floor?

It seems to me that most of the Indonesians I have met, even on the street and in shops and restaurants, have hospitality stamped on their hearts. Often it seems like they feel obligated to show you the best about their country, even if they do not know you…and if you can converse with hem a little then you are a hero, or at least a new friend.

One of the guys on the team, Tyler, got some kind of stomach illness while staying with his homestay family. It was only a couple of days into homestay, and he was too sick to come to the office for class. So we thought it best if I went out to Pomulong, where the family lives, and check on him. Ian, another teammate staying there, came back with me and we arrived at the house just after lunch time.

Stepping into the house out of the bright sunlight made it hard for my eyes to adjust to what i saw, at first I thought I was mistaken. After all, I had imagined tyler to be curled up somewhere in the back near the bathroom waiting for his next episode.

And to be fair, he did have a rough go of it for a while. But when I first saw him, he was reclining on a couch in the living room, looking as content and relaxed as could be. With pillows and blankets and tea in front of him, and a young man massaging his feet. He looked like he was a a resort and having a wonderful vacation.

It turns out that the family Tyler and Ian are staying with owns several Reflexology clinics. I haven’t heard of this in the US, but it is very popular here. Basically, it is an intense massage method that seems to be therapeutic for many conditions. I don’t know enough to debate it, but from the look on Tyler’s face it seemed to be working wonders for him. He wasn’t healed, but the nausea and other unpleasantness had disappeared.

The father of the family had brought on of his employees back to the house, Especially for Tyler because he felt terrible that Ty had gotten ill while staying at his home. By the next day, tyler was back on his feet and on his way towards being his regular self. eventually both Tyler and Ian ended up with two or three Reflexology sessions during homestay and most of the rest of the team was a little jealous of them.

Indonesian hospitality can be surprising, and to be honest at times overwhelming, but it is a defining characteristic of the people here and is often wonderfully refreshing.

The Scripture says those who follow God are blessed to be a blessing.

 

And we usually think we are the ones that God will use to bless people here.

The reality is that it is us who are blessed the most, I think.

 

 

 

 

 

The first thing you notice….

When you step out of the car is the mass of people hanging around the doors outside baggage claim at the airport here in Jakarta. Especially if it is busy time of the day for arrivals. The people mulling about aren’t expectant friends and family, or even stranded passengers…they are there to make money.

They do this by selling watches, papers, drugs, drinks, or by forcibly trying to carry ones luggage or arrange a taxi. They throng around arriving passengers, vying for position, scrambling for a sale or a fare.  Especially Westerners…Shouts of “Mister! Mister!”  “Taksi, Mister?” carry over the bustling sounds of the crowd punctuated by the public address system announcing the latest flight.

Weaving ones way through the crowd is a challenge, particular if you are a westerner yourself. A few waves of the palm of ones hand and a few strong refusals eases this a bit, and Helen and I position ourselves at the best spot for greeting the last two members of this year’s team and for steering them clear of the waiting pitchmen.

We’ve arrived late on purpose…factoring in the time arriving passengers usually take for getting through immigration and customs and for collecting ones bags. After a few minutes wait we see Fletch and Lauren step out from the gate. After saying some Hellos and grabbing some lunch we grab a taksi and head for the Guest House (GH), where George and the rest of the team, who all arrived a few days earlier are waiting.

The drive there, which can be as quick as thirty minutes in the middle of the night, takes us 2 hours. Construction and heavy traffic conspire together to keep the meter turning until it tops out at over 200000 rupiah when we arrive, which is about $20 U.S.

After getting the two new arrivals settled, we begin to get settled ourselves, moving into a small apartment at the GH which will be our home for the next 3 weeks during the Orientation and Language Learning Phase of the trip.

After moving in, a meeting, and dinner with the team we turn in…completely exhausted. Its the day after our wedding, its been a long week filled with so much to do and because of a schedule change we have cut the honeymoon short (very short) and gone to work today.

When we tell people this they seem surprised, shocked, concerned or impressed. Which is a little weird. And while I suppose it is unusual, is there a better beginning to a marriage that should be built on serving God than, well, serving God?

I don’t mean to sound self righteous or super-spiritual. Its just that Helen and I were involved in thia work before our marriage and plan to be involved for our whole life, so why is it so strange for us to beginning where we already feel called to be? 

And by “where”, I don’t mean Indonesia…I mean a place where we can be used by God to serve others. 

Which should be anywhere. For us, it is here and now, as newlyweds, helping to share what God is doing in Indonesia with the hope that some of this team will be led by God to serve here, too.

And as we impact the lives of the team, we hope to impact the lives of the Indonesians we meet. Whether it is the people in the office working on all the behind the scenes administrative tasks that keep things going. Or if it is the national workers we meet in various places. Or people in churches we visit. Or the people in the village, or on the bus, or working at the stand we buy dinner from.

God can use us to encourage them, to bless them, to challenge them and maybe even convict them…

The Father desires all to come to worship him in spirit and in truth. Everyone.

From the guys selling stuff at the airport to the government officials to the schoolteacher teaching in the middle of nowhere to the disheveled man on the bus….God loves them all.

The other day, Helen and I were riding one one of the buses, going somewhere and an older disheveled man gets on and stands in the middle, and begins to expound on something in Indonesian too quick and complicated for me to follow.

And this isn’t at all unusual. Often when you ride a bus here, whether the low end Metro mini or the comfy air-conditioned feeder bus, there are people you get on and off all the time singing or reciting poetry or playing instruments or even preaching to make money.

And there are also people getting on to sell almost anything, from snacks and drinks (which I sometimes need) to combs and hair clasps (which I never need). It gets to the point you tend to tune them out as a habit.

But there was something different about this guy that felt different. He was polite. And he wasn’t preaching the majority religion. He was just talking about life. Telling his story. I didn’t understand much, so Helen translated some of it later. Then as he was getting off he had a sort of sorrowful look in his eye and said something that I wish I had understood at the time. He said something to the effect of “I am not sure whether I am going to Heaven or Hell”. 

That is why we are here.

That is why you are where you are.

Because people need Jesus.

 

Visa Update

Hey Everyone,

Helen and I visited the American Embassy this morning to have all of her visa documents reviewed. This is a necessary step before we can schedule the interview to apply for her visa to return with me in September.

After gathering all the needed things over the past few weeks, we were still a little nervous about whether we had everything and everything in its place.

We got a late start and traffic slowed us down so we arrived later than we intended, but thankfully there were only a few people at the embassy today (maybe 75), often there are hundreds.

After the worker reviewed the documents for several agonizing minutes (she had sent the lady in front of us home), she gave her approval. (Amen, Hallelujah, Woohoo)

We have to return to the embassy on Monday for Helen to be fingerprinted and on Tuesday for the interview. Please pray for this because these were the only available dates and it conflicts with classes we are teaching for Discovery. We need to find someone to fill in for us those two afternoons.

Also please pray for the interview. It is not at all a sure thing. Pray God directs the heart of the consulate and that we give wise and true answers. And that Helen is granted a visa. If she is rejected, we have to wait 30 days and pay the fee again ($131). We do not want to lose the money and by that time we will be in the village, so it becomes far more complicated.

The approval today was such a blessing that it is hard to think of the potential negative, but I want to be honest with all of you. It is a long difficult, fragile process getting a visa to the U.S. here. Again, please keep on praying.

Thank you all so much

-Dave

Update for May…a few days late

Hey Everyone,

 

It only occurred to me just now, sitting here sipping a cappuccino (my first coffee in days) and catching up on emails from the last several days, that it has been a month already since I last saw America.

 

It is really hard for me to believe, the time has truly flown right by. Helen and I have been busy both with the final preparations for our wedding (in just 12 days…woohoo) and for the arrival of this year’s Discovery participants.

 

And while both Helen and I have been hampered a bit lately by sickness, and I admittedly have taken longer than before to adjust to life here, things are going very well. There are only a couple of wedding details left, and they should be (we pray) no problem. And while there are some hitches in the Discovery plan yet, there is still plenty of time for God to show us the way. 

 

Our week in Singapore was wonderfully refreshing, and we were able to reconnect with some friends from Indonesia studying there with another organization. And we met some new friends as well. All are believers, and we had great times of fellowship. We did play the tourist as well, and I hope to post some pictures soon.

 

Our first week back in Jakarta was spent both with Helen’s family and in the office. On that Sunday, Helen was asked by one of the leaders of a national prayer movement here to interpret for a visiting speaker from Sri Lanka, and she let me tag along. It was a long day but one full of blessing. The speaker was so encouraging and the two services were powerful. We also had time for Helen’s Bridal fitting and for me to get measured for a suit (yep a suit).

 

The Tuesday of our second week here was a National Holiday, so the office was closed. We spent it with Helen’s parents, traveling to Bogor to see the Botanical Garden and Presidential Palace there. We spent Wednesday in the office and Thursday at a cafe working on Discovery. Because of the travel time to and from the office (about 2 1/2 hours) we have been going in once or twice a week, and working from home or a nearby coffee shop otherwise. This saves us both considerable time and money.

Over the weekend, we were able to meet with some students from Atma Jaya University (Helen’s alma mater) about BTM and in the evening met with on of her prayer supporters and friends from America. It was the first time I met him and it was a wonderful time.

 

This past week was hectic…too hectic. On Monday, Helen had her physical exam and vaccinations for her visa. Tuesday, she had to go see a local government official about wedding paperwork, so we worked from here. Wednesday she went back to the clinic to pick up the paperwork, I went to the U.S. Embassy for more paperwork (the first of at least 3 visits). And then it was off to the office. After work we intended to have an evening together, and that’s when the sickness came in full force. Thank you all for praying…it has been a tough few days for her, but she is much better. I, too, had a bout of something unpleasant, but am doing better as well.

 

This week is a crucial one for us, as we need to wrap up all aspects of the wedding before the participants arrive, and we need to finalize some plans for Discovery.

Also, I will be speaking at Helen’s church on Friday evening, and then moving to the Guest House at the office after church Sunday, so I can be in the office all next week.

 

Feel free to drop Helen our I a note if you want, or if you are curious for more detail. I hope to post some more about our days online soon, but we have plenty of time to correspond, even though we are not online everyday.

 

Thanks so much for all your prayers…

 

-Dave

 

 

 

Please pray for…..

-Continued healing for Helen and I

-Finishing all the Wedding Preperations

-Finishing all the pre-trip Discovery Preperations

-My speaking engagement at Helen’s church

-Travel for both George and the Participants

-George’s health as he continues his treatments

-Visa Process for Helen