Thank you, Creator God, for the gift and beauty of this new day. Help me trust. Help me focus on what is important. Bless the work I do this day in this place.
Soon after arriving in Papua New Guinea, I learned a great new word in Pidgin: bagarap! The exclamation is used to describe an unexpected and unpredictable situation or the expected and predictable demise of the well-planned day: “Em bagarap!”
Bagarap! is a useful word to know as I learn how to accomplish things in Papua New Guinea. For example, I recently inherited responsibility as Pool Car Coordinator to manage the care and utilization of the church partnership’s shared cars. Each Monday morning, with hope more than confidence, I say to myself and to Jonah, our young driver, “It’s a new day! It’s a new week!” And then, well, bagarap happens.
“Thank you for the change; where’s the receipt?”
“Thank you for the receipt; where’s the change?”
“Please remember to lock the padlocks at night.”
“What happened to the Nissan’s taillight?”
“The insurance and registration on the Nissan has lapsed?”
One morning, as I sat anticipating the bagarap of the day ahead, my husband said “look at what I saw this morning when I opened the kitchen curtains!” He pointed to the vine crawling up our back staircase and there, in resplendent beauty were gorgeous lavender azaleas. In my distraction I had missed the beauty right under my nose. My gasp was a prayer of gratitude.
ELCA missionary Nancy Anderson serves in Papua New Guinea with her husband, the Rev. Rod Nordby.