Kudjip, Papua New Guinea: It was toward the end of 2009 when my wife Susan and I had lunch with Melanesia South Pacific Field Strategy Coordinator, Harmon Schmelzenbach.
After lunch I shared that I was ready to move on from Radio Ministry. Pastor Daniel Eka, a national leader, was doing very well with the radio ministry and I had been feeling unrest and was needing something else, of course I did not know at that point what it would be.
During our conversation, Harmon asked if I had ever thought about doing a Course of Study, leading to ordination. Well, that was a big no! I had never thought of myself working towards ordination. I told Harmon that I would pray about it and I did for awhile. But I never felt like I heard or felt any direction from the Lord.
One day the thought came to me, “how could this be out of the Lord’s will for me. Shouldn’t all of us be working to learn more about Christ, studying the Bible.” It would help in my preaching as I had opportunities to share in churches here in PNG.
This began the journey of working with my home district (East Ohio) and Geneva, Principle of MNBC, who helped me review the courses, determining those that I would need, and which ones could be taken here at Melanesia Nazarene Bible College and which ones would need to be taken online.
I received a local minister’s license from my home church, New Philadelphia, and the studies began. Over the next two years I worked to complete the requirements leading to ordination. I have appreciated very much, the encouragement and support of Harmon, and the many others who have been an integral part of this journey.
This journey has been a lot of fun and a privilege that I have greatly enjoyed, especially being able to take classes with our PNG Bible College Students and Michael Chapman, another missionary here on the Field.
If you had asked me five years ago if I thought I would be an ordained Elder in the Church, I would probably have chuckled and told you, “I don’t think so.” Now, this scripture comes to mind, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9
The Lord’s will is an adventure! I have no idea where it is heading or where He is leading, but His will is all I want, even when I don’t understand it. In April of 2013, Harmon asked if I would consider taking on the position of Field Church Development Coordinator, and this is the work I am currently involved with. It is both fun and at times, challenging. It will be interesting to see how God uses this new step in my life as I work to train, encourage, teach and support our leaders across the Melanesia and South Pacific Fields.
Bottom line is this, I could not do this in my strength, only in God’s strength; I could not do this without the incredible support of my wife, kids and family, along with the faithful friends the Lord has blessed me with, who have encouraged me all along the way!
Rev. Jeff Myers was ordained along with Rev. Samuel Wamine, Rev. Francis Walepo, and Rev. Paias Pele, Ordinands from Papua New Guinea, on November 15th, 2014, at the Hagen District Assembly. General Superintendent Dr. David Busic officiated and thanks to technology, Jeff’s parents were able to be present at the ceremony through video connection.
Jeff and wife Susan (missionary doctor at Kudjip Nazarene Hospital) have been serving in Papua New Guinea since 2001. You can view their profile here.