Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Message in Red, Black, and Gold

Happy Independence Day! On September 16, 1975, Papua New Guinea (PNG) was officially declared independent from Australia. Just like in the USA, Independence Day in PNG is celebrated by food, sports, the waving of the flag (you can read more about the history of the flag here) and lots of patriotic colours!

While we were at the literacy course in Saidor, we had the opportunity to take advantage of this red-black-and-gold fervour to create wordless books that share the Gospel message through PNG's national colours! (Lest you think this is relegated to a PNG literacy tactic... I remember receiving this little book with the same colours and verses when I was a wee little girl in Sunday School. However, it did not link so slickly with the US American flag...)

So, thanks to some scissors, some glue, and a whole lot of clear tape (why glue and tape, you ask? Well, have you ever tried gluing something in the tropics? Humidity. Need I say anymore?), we made our own PNG versions of the wordless book!

First, the black represents sin.
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Rom 3:23

The red represents the blood of Christ.
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God's wrath through him! Rom 5:8-9

The white represents forgiveness and being washed clean.
She has been given the finest of pure white linen to wear. For the fine linen represents the good deeds of God's holy people.  Rev19:8

The yellow represents heaven and eternal life.

But the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Rom 6:23

Finally, green represents new life and growth as a Christian while on this earth.

At this point, we pasted the words to PNG’s national anthem and the national pledge.... our hope is that someday, the words of the song will truly be sung by hearts rather than just lips by all Papua New Guineans.

O arise all you sons of this land
Let us sing of our joy to be free
Praising God and rejoicing to be
Papua New Guinea.
Shout our name from the mountains to sea,
Papua New Guinea.
Let us raise our voices and proclaim
Papua New Guinea.

Now give thanks to the good Lord above
For kindness, his wisdom and love
For this land of our fathers so free
Papua New Guinea.
Shout again for the whole world to hear
Papua New Guinea.
We’re independent and we’re free,
Papua New Guinea.