So many of us never know where our commodities like tea, coffee and cocoa come from. Even more so, we never stop to think of the processes it takes to reach our mugs or tea cups! Those on mission in many parts of the world are privileged to meet those who provide for us . . . and when we return as missionaries each time we walk up and own the aisles of our large supermarkets we smile inwardly knowing that many weeks ago that many items on the shelves were still in the hands of local villagers in the remotest parts of the world.
This young woman is from Pangia, in the Southern Highland Province of Papua New Guinea, and each day, unknown to us, she continues to pluck the cherries off the coffee trees, tip them onto a plastic to remove the skins by hand (see how uses a river stone to take the skins off) so that the coffee bean would be freed to be dried in the sun and then roasted, bagged in copra and transported miles on non- existent roads to the nearest weighing stations and paid a pittance!
This October we are celebrating an Extraordinary Month for Mission and its stories and information like this one makes mission all the more worthwhile. We returned missionaries can share what people do in the villages thousands of miles away from our big thriving, affluent cities. We put a human face on people who work for us and who are also Christians and belong to us in so many ways, not only by the produce they provide, but also by their faith and hope that we miles away across the world, are praying and remembering them in their poverty and need.
As we enjoy our next coffee or cuppa let us remember women who “clean” our coffee beans and pluck tea leaves daily for us to simply sit back and relax!
Please pray for all missionaries and Mission around the World
World Mission Day – Sunday, October 20