Saturday, July 12, 2014

THE light shines in the darkness

The night after I met Mar, the Christian woman at the massage parlor, we went back downtown to do more follow up and try to meet and share with new people. Still on a spiritual high from the night before, I was not completely prepared for the darkness that awaited us. 
The particular street we witness on regularly is always dark, but that night it seemed even more so. Almost overwhelming. Not only was the evil visible, but it was felt. With everyone we spoke to, there seemed to be a presence of darkness. One woman we met told us that she reads the Bible and likes Christianity, but she cannot become a believer because she has to keep going to the temple to make merit for her deceased father. Our whole team left feeling discouraged. Strange how a defeated enemy can make the appearance of victory. But "we do not fight with the weapons on the world. On the contrary, ours have the divine power to demolish strongholds" (2 Corinthians 10:4). There is a stronghold of evil here: in the false religions, in the spirit worship, and in the sin that is everywhere. But when Jesus came into the world, He shattered the darkness with the light of his glory. Our little lights now are just taking that glory into the corners where the darkness thinks it still reigns.
We told one of the amazing missionary women we work with about the intense feelings of darkness, and she offered a perspective I had never thought of before. When we go in, we feel the darkness. But what about the reverse? When we walk down the street, can they see light in us? Does the darkness feel the bright light of Jesus as we enter the bars? I believe it does, and the gates of hell tremble because "the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness had not overcome it" (John 1:5).

Friday, July 11, 2014

Change of plans

Sometimes the Lord answers our prayers exactly as we asked. Other times, He completely changes our plans to bring us even greater blessings.

After going downtown a few times now, I thought I had some of this figured out. As we prepared to go out, I figured we would go see those we had already shared with, and if we had more time or they weren't there, we would go find someone new to share with. Then we found out one of our translators was sick and couldn't join us. That's ok. My pen rai. We'll go back and see Oum since she spoke good English. We may can even say a quick hello to Ma'am, even though we would need a translator to get much farther than pleasantries.

We started walking down the street to find Oum, but she wasn't there. A little further down, we looked for Ma'am. Not seeing her at the bar, we turned around to see the back of her head following an old white man down the street. I felt sick and hurt for her.

On top of the swelling emotions from seeing Ma'am, now my plan A and B were both gone within the first few minutes of us being there. No one we know to talk to and no translator: now what?
Lindy, my partner for the night, had come to Thailand on a different mission last summer and connected with a woman at a massage parlor in her city, and just a few days ago she ran into the woman on our ministry street. So, we went to find J and see if we could share with her. We found the massage parlor where she worked, but she was busy eating supper with the other workers. We said hello and that we would come back shortly.

Not knowing what else to do, we did what we did to start with: we prayer walked. We prayed over the girls we passed, our other teammates as they shared, and for our conversation when we returned to see J.

We had told J we would come back for a massage. When we get a massage, we have the girl's full attention for a while and can share one on one. Business had been slow too, so this would be a small physical blessing for them. Lindy began to visit with J, and I met Mar.

Mar's tank and short-shorts looked much like the wardrobe of the rest of the street, and she told me right off that she didn't speak much English. Oh great. Will my whole time here be wasted tonight?  I had started to feel a little frustrated and discouraged after seeing Ma'am leave, and it was discouraging to have no one else that I knew spoke the same language. But I decided to make the most of it and talk to Mar as much as I could. 

Her English turned out to be much better than I first assumed, though not great. She told me about her three children, one of whom is my age. She did not look old enough to have a 19 year old, but most of these women don't look their age. We continued with small talk a little, then she leaned over and said quietly,

"If you are from America, are you a Christian?" Wow, Lord, she opened the conversation for me. I told her I was, and she smiled and said she was too. 

Other people here (rarely, but some) have told me they are Christian. When I ask how they became a Christian, they say they were born Christian, so when I asked Mar, I fully expected her to be a Christian by name only because her family claimed Christianity. But her answer completely shocked me. She told me her story, of course with some details not completely explained because of limited English.

The family used to be Buddhist. Her father had two wives and 12 children (not sure of time line of all this-broken English). When Mar was a toddler, her mother and some of her siblings died. After the deaths, the living family members turned to Christianity. Mar told me how she refuses to go to work on Sundays because she goes home to go to church with her two youngest children. Her brother is a teacher or pastor. She also told me that she does not drink, and when customers call for "at home massages" she won't go out. To work on a street filled with every temptation imaginable, she tries to live set apart. 

She told me she is the only Christian at this massage parlor. The owner and other workers are all Buddhist. I can only imagine how difficult-- to be the only believer surrounded not only by people of another faith but also to work in such a dark area. 

I asked if we could come back and teach English and tell Bible stories, but she made it sound like the boss wasn't a fan of that. 

Pray for a door to open to share with Mar's fellow workers and for a softening of the owner's heart
Pray for encouragement for Mar to continue to live out her faith and have courage to share with the other women.  

She hugged me warmly when we got up to leave. I pray she felt as blessed by the encounter as I did.

So, the night was nothing like I had thought or planned it would be.  Some doors were closed for the night, but others were opened. Who knows, maybe Mar and J can be our connection to share the gospel with the entire massage parlor. I'm thankful for her testimony and for the time to get to know her, and I am hopeful that the Lord will open more doors to share there.

Just to top of my evening full of reminders of the sovereignty of God, a dear friend had sent me Ephesians 3:20, "now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we could ever ask or imagine…" I'm so thankful God's plans are much bigger and much better than mine. 

Thanks for the prayers! 


Treasuring and cherishing the One we proclaim

"Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! Let the nations be glad and sing for joy!" Psalm 67:3-4

What a proclamation. We see this verse often when the topic of missions arises. As Christians, we desire to see people of every tongue, tribe, and nation worshipping our Father in total surrender. But how can we proclaim this verse if we ourselves do not personally know and cherish our God? We cannot commend what we do not treasure.

We will never call out, "Let the nations be glad!" if we cannot say from the heart, "I rejoice in the Lord. . . . I will be glad and exult in you, I will sing praise to your name, O Most High" (Psalm 104:34, 9:2). Missions begins and ends in worship. - John Piper

Oh that we would "delight ourselves in the Lord" (Psalm 37:4) and be consumed with the fullness of His glory. Only then will we ever desire to go and make His name known among the nations.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

... Praying at all times in the Spirit

For the last week in June, JoyJoy and I hopped over to the Dolores River to meet up with the team there. On our first day in that barangay a few of us held a Bible Study with two women, one of whom was already a believer. Since she already knew and trusted in the Gospel, we asked her if she had shared the Good News with anyone lately. She looked a little taken aback. "It's hard to share. People don't really want to hear." We discussed the Gospel's implications for all people and why it's important to share, and challenged her to think of one person she could share with that day.

The next day we asked who she has gotten to share with, if anyone. She and her friend named a few people---husband, nephew, friend. That day we read the story of Jesus healing the blind man and talked about how you don't need all knowledge and extensive training to be a witness for Christ, but just a testimony of how He's changed your life. We again asked them to think of a few more people they could share with and encouraged them to share the Gospel as they shared their testimony, too. They didn't just nod or name a person they would share with; they said, "We will tell our whole barangay! We'll go house to house."

On the third day we met at our usual time and place for Bible Study, only they had filled the room with their friends and neighbors. Just like in Acts 10 our friend had gathered women from all over the barangay together that they might hear the Word of God. Nine or ten women listened as we presented the Gospel that morning--- glory and honor to God!

Still, I have never known the powerlessness of humans or the futility of our attempts at eloquence better than I did here. Over and over we reiterated that God is not pleased by our good works, but by our faith in Jesus' perfect, complete work on the Cross. Over and over they nodded along like they understood, but when we checked to see if they were following, nothing had gotten through. How can we have eternal life? "By being a good person!"

In the past I confess that I've bought into the misconception that the bulk of what we do as missionaries is go out house to house, doing Bible studies and presenting the Gospel. We do this prayerfully, and it is a vital aspect of the work. But the Lord opened my eyes to see that the MOST necessary kind of work, without which all of our going is in vain, is the kind that happens on our knees. I left that big group Bible study knowing that if we didn't plead with the Lord to intercede and open their hearts to the Truth, we could go back all day every day and talk til our voices gave out and they would be no closer to salvation.

So, again, to all our our prayer warriors at home and elsewhere: stay in the trenches with us. And thank you.

  • Pray for the Lord to lift veils everywhere we go, that our friends would have eyes to see the Truth and the Beauty of the message we carry.  
  • Pray that we would be entirely dependent on the Holy Spirit, and not rely on our own strength or wisdom. 
  • Pray for salvation to fall on these rivers.

You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello

Since our last post, Bicol Teach and Heal teams have left their first location and entered their second one! Both teams left their locations with joy, knowing that there is a system in place to follow up with anyone who has been attending Bible studies or who has been baptized. Right before leaving, one team celebrated their barangay's fiesta (village's festival) with multiple, delicious pork lunches. The last day for the second team started off a little discouraging because they were unable to find many of the friends they had met, but finished the day by seeing everyone and having dinner and karaoke with their host family. God is good!
Team A's first location.

Team B's first location.
Both teams were a little discouraged after entering their new locations because we did not know nearly as much about our new location as we initially knew about our first locations. We started our ministries, unsure of where to go or who to talk to, but God has guided us and shown us His sovereignty. Both teams have had many Bible studies set up and have high hopes!

Team A's second location.

Team B's second location.
Prayer Requests:
  • that friends from our first locations continue to grow in their faith
  • that the Holy Spirit will help the Bible study participants understand what God wants to teach them
  • physical endurance (these new locations are much larger than the previous ones and require much more walking)
  • emotional endurance (the longer we are away from home, the more we miss loved ones)
  • spiritual endurance (we need to remember that God is always working, even when we cannot see it)

Going before the throne

I imagine it’s a lot like a pitch black room. One which your eyes never even adjust to, no matter how long you are exposed. Shadows never eventually arise in the darkness, and it seems like you are lost in the blackness. I imagine it’s a lot like a train going through a tunnel. It’s so dark you can’t even think straight and it’s almost like nothing around you exists.  

But then out of nowhere, a candle is lit. It seems to cut the darkness in half in an instant. And although it is still a dark place, the light is overtaking, nearly blinding the closer you are to it.  

The train breaks free from the tunnel into marvelous and white sun light. 

And I imagine this is what it looks like when we step onto Loi Kroh each night.
Light penetrates darkness. This is what I am absolutely sure of.

Love conquers. And I bank my life on it.
God is mighty to save. I believe that with my whole heart.

But as good as God is, and no matter how much we believe it, that street has recently taken a toll on us all.

I have never felt a darkness so heavy. I could have never imagined what this summer would look like or would feel like.

But lately in the midst of this heaviness, I have been blessedly reassured that as much as we feel the darkness…they feel the light. I hope that with everything I have.

The Lord has been teaching me a lot about prayer and about how little I trust. And I think it took this utter darkness for me to finally realize the position I am in with God.

I can go boldly before the throne as a daughter.
I can ask for specific things.
I can pray with petition as a daughter. 
And I can beg God to save the lost souls I have come to love. 

I am coming before the throne of my Father in a crazed, passionate, expectant kind of way—because I can.

And I ask you to do the same.
Imagine what would happen if we trusted more. If we prayed more. If we begged more.

As a team, we have shared the Gospel and fallen in love with 28 people. I am asking you to beg for them as well. 


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Sponge Theory

Throughout our summer in Zimbabwe, we've been able to spend time at a local babies home. There are around 20 children under the age of 5 living there. One day we took the kids outside to play. I was holding a child and he sneezed. He needed his nose wiped and I had no tissue so I used my resources. I found a leaf and told the kid to blow...never thought twice about it. 

We came back around a week later and took the kids outside again. That same child held up a leaf to my teammate's, Lindsey's nose and wanted her to blow. After laughing hysterically, I was reminded just how absorbant children are. I've often wondered this summer if the children are really understanding what we are telling them. We have told Bible Story after Bible Story and continued to tell them how much God loves them, but I have still wondered if they are "getting it."

This child reminded me that little eyes and ears are watching every move we make, and I'm praying they are understanding  just how much our Father loves them. I have also been reminded in 1 Corinthians 3:6-9 that the Lord is the only one who promotes growth. We can plant seeds and water, but only the Lord can grow.

Please pray for the Lord to grow in the children of Zimbabwe's lives. 
Pray they would understand that they are not left alone, they are not orphans because they have a Heavenly Father who loves them dearly.

-Ann Marie

Experiencing Sports

In case anyone has missed it, the World Cup has been going on for several weeks now. Since soccer is not common in our hometown area, we have been the clueless, country girls over everything soccer. The people have been very patient in explaining everything to us.

However, tonight we experienced a different sport, in a different set up. As we were exploring a new apartment complex, we noticed some people playing a peculiar looking game across a field. We decided to see what was up. We quickly found out that the game was cricket. None of us knew the rules (I did not even know what the equipment consisted of). So, we sat down and watched. We discussed among ourselves what could have possibly been going on. Were there outs? Were there teams? How does someone even pitch like that? This went on for quite some time before we got someone to tell us a little bit about the sport.
One of us realized what had just happened. We went into a new area, where we knew no one. We went to watch a game that we knew nothing about. We were clueless as to what was going on until someone explained it to us, then everything made sense.

This must be a small glimpse of what the internationals feel like as they begin a new life in the USA. Many are clueless to American culture. They are not less intelligent; they just need someone to explain a new culture to them. They just need someone to help them understand.

The Gospel will be shared many times over the next few days.
Please pray that people would listen and understand.

S Thai ESL Prayer Update

We've arranged with a couple of elementary schools to teach alongside their English teachers. I already foresee this being a good and fun opportunity. I am working with a woman named H. She is late 20's and a follower of Allah. Interestingly, she does not wear a head covering as most do, and she does not consider herself a "strict" follower, yet she is participating this month in Ramadan (A month-long Islamic holiday in which everyone fasts during the day.)  It is my hope that I'll have meaningful conversations with her in the remaining few weeks. 

This past month has been so up-and-down for me. There have been very fun days where we've fellowshipped with visiting missionaries, visited a gorgeous nearby beach, biked through a local "monkey park," and gone to nearby islands to teach at their schools and watch their sports tournaments. 

But there have also been days where I've longed for nothing more than to be back home with my family, Jon, my friends, and my church. Some days I feel incredibly encouraged by all that God has done, and other days I feel incredibly discouraged by the lostness around me. Some days it feels like the time has just flown since we've been here, while other days it feels like we've been here for years. 

Continue to pray for our team that we may be empowered by the Holy Spirit to share more boldly. 

We all feel as though we've grown so much spiritually and our times of prayer and evening devotion have been thought-provoking and encouraging, to say the least. Our supervisors have been wonderful! Please pray for them as they're working hard to adopt Thai twin two-year-old boys.

We appreciate your prayers and ask that you continue to pray for all the Kingdom work that's being done. 

-S Thai ESL Team

Our Battle is Not Against Flesh and Blood

Her name was Ate Em, and she owned a sari-sari store. We had just come from a Bible Study and were craving a mid-afternoon junkfood fix, so we stopped by her store. In between bites of Fudgee Barrs we asked if we could have a Bible study with her, and she nodded us in.

The inside of her house was dark. The light over the living room didn't work, and outside angry grey clouds were shrouding the sunlight. Everything was dim. We'd heard thunder rumbling in the distance. As we began the study, the dense clouds outside let loose. Out here where houses are made of bamboo and tin or thatched roofing, the sound of raindrops reaching the earth seems to be amplified. It s nearly impossible to carry on a conversation when there is heavy rain, and this particular afternoon what we got was a torrential downpour.

We read the Bible passage twice, voices raised over the storm, and asked a simple question: What do you remember about the story we just read? No answer. So someone recapped the story, and asked again. Who was in this story? Her eyes squinted and her brow furrowed. She said she didn't understand.

The rain, impossibly, started pounding even louder. Our Filipino teammate scooted her seat over next to Ate Em so they could hear each other. As she did so she looked up at us for half a second and said "Pray for us.  For her." But we already were. She pulled out a bridge illustration and began sharing the Gospel. As she did so both she and Ate Em started coughing, and had to keep turning their heads aside to let it out. Meanwhile there was no indication that any word said was registering with Ate Em, but we sat there a while praying silently as our teammate labored against all the odds.

The darkness, the crescendoing rainstorm, the coughing, the total blank stare---all ominous reminders that truly we have an Enemy who does not want the Gospel to be proclaimed or understood. I felt like I was seeing the spiritual battle manifest itself in the physical realm.

  • Pray with us that his strongholds would be broken down.  
  • Pray for Ate Em, that the Word of Truth that was shared with her might even now take root in her heart and transfer her from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of Light. 
  • Pray for others like her, whose eyes have been blinded, that they would see. Only the Holy Spirit can make that kind of miracle happen.

To all of you on the homefront and around the world fighting with and for us on your knees--thank you. I hope you know how vital you are to the Mission.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Plan A... Plan B... Plan C... God's plan

Upon my arrival in Thailand, I expected to teach English. I didn't know exactly what context that'd be in, whether we'd be teaching in schools or doing private lessons, but I didn't realize that my team would end up doing so much more. We got off to a slow start. None of the schools my supervisors had intended us to teach in really seemed to need our assistance. So Plan B was to open up the English Center during the week, with the idea that we would teach kids English, art, and music in the evenings. We opened it up, made signs and everything, but surprisingly we never really saw many children come during that time. Fortunately, God opened up another door for ministry. 
One night, my two teammates and I went and participated in an outdoor aerobics class that we'd walked by several times before. The women there seemed very interested to practice the little bit of English they knew with us and wanted to know more about us. And even though we were hopelessly horrible at aerobics, we got to know some of them by spending time out with them afterwards. One in particular is F. Her English is very good, and immediately she indicated that she'd be interested in us coming to teach English to the youth & the staff at the Juvenile Detention Center where she works. 

Our supervisors were thrilled to hear about this open door, since they've wanted to go there but never known anyone connected with it. We don't teach English to the boys (ages 13-19) as much as we try to entertain them. We had no idea we'd end up performing so many songs and directing so many games and activities for a bunch of troubled youth, but we enjoy it and can already see what fertile ground this ministry is. This past Friday, one of our supervisors was surprised when several of the boys started asking him questions about Christianity. Most people here think Christians and Catholics are exactly the same, so they asked him about the sign of the cross. He explained he doesn't do that as Catholics do, but he was able to share the meaning of the symbol of the cross. Pray that these boys will continue to have a desire to learn more about the reason behind the cross.

I also didn't realize how much we'd be teaching adults. From the beginning, we've found a number of adults (our age and up) with broken English interested in learning to speak better. So in the mornings, we opened the English Center to teach English to some university students who are home for the summer. This has been such a wonderful ministry. God has literally broken down the language barrier and has brought us people who can speak some English and who want to learn from us. We can communicate so much to them and share with them about our faith. Pray for opportunities for us to share the Good News with the students in our English classes.

Wrecked by Grace

Its funny how the Lord can teach us things twice. Sometimes even just more than in a single instance, like in the day to day. The same truths that wrecked my heart and changed my life last summer are wrecking me in a totally new way.

That's how awesome our God is; how He can take a piece of scripture that we've read countless times or a reminder of His unchanging character to captivate our hearts again and again. 

Last summer I taught English in universities and hung out with high school and college students: playing sports, shopping, and doing a lot of eating. It was such a fun summer. Most days, although exhausting, were overall pretty easy. Friendships came naturally and many were very open to the gospel.

The Lord used last summer to teach me so much about His grace. Not just the grace that He has shown me in granting me salvation, but His daily grace. So I starting counting: writing down all the gifts that God graced me with as I went through my day to day life. Gifts like a good cup of coffee, an encouraging conversation, a smile from a stranger, getting to try a new food, or an afternoon rain shower. 

Simple things that God gives us daily to remind us of how great a Father He is. Gifts to show us of His unchanging and never failing love. 
I counted and the Lord amazed me. My eyes became so opened to His goodness and His tender love for His children. I realized how much I took His blessings for granted. I saw the selfishness in my own heart, how I thought that I deserved the things that He has graced me with. 

Counting changed me. It changed my attitude. It changed my outlook on life. It changed my view of God.

And last summer it was easy to believe this truth. It was easy to count. It was easy to be thankful. It was easy to see His abundant grace while hanging out with friends and laughing and eating. Counting came naturally and God's grace was evident everywhere.

This summer, however, has been different. Because its been hard to find the joy in the midst of so much pain. Its hard to find encouragement while being surrounded by so much evil. Its hard to smile, as you walk down the streets, passing beautiful girls waiting to be bought. Its hard to be happy when you see girls that you have built relationships with, being led to hotels by Western men. Its hard to act unfazed when you pass ladyboys being treated like objects. Its tough to watch old married men shoot pool with our young girls, not even ashamed enough to take off their wedding ring. 
Read more.....

Tests & Trials

This last week has been an interesting one. We spent two days in the mountains, a 9-hour bus ride away from the city we stay in. Some nationals led us through some steep and winding trails for a total hike of about 12 miles. It was an exhilarating experience, as the areas we hiked through made it seem like we were in a painting. It was very beautiful.

Upon returning to our city we met with John. We had planned to disciple him some and ask him about being baptized. We felt like these were the proper next steps as he had seemed to show genuine belief and had been reading through the book of John on his own as well. 

We discussed some questions he had about things he had been reading in John, and then we begin to transition to the story of the Ethiopian eunuch. After I told the story and explained what it meant to be baptized, I asked him what he thought about it. He said it sounded interesting. We then asked if he was interested in being baptized.  This is where we received a shock. He said, "Oh, no no, I cannot be a Follower.. I just want to learn more about Jesus Christ because I believe his teachings will make me a better person!" I was dumbfounded. We had been so sure that he had understood everything clearly, and we had repeated over and over that nothing could make one good enough for Paradise. Something just hadn't clicked.

The next day we met with a girl named "Morning". Our female team members had shared with her a couple weeks ago, and she had appeared to make a confession of faith. By the end of that meeting, however, we had discovered that she was in the same boat as John. She simply wanted to learn more about Jesus Christ because it interested her, and she found it to be a "good story."

Needless to say, this week our spirits have been dampened. Last week we were under the strong impression that 3 of our local friends had come into the Family. Now we know that two actually didn't, and we are meeting with L, the third one, in a couple of days. It is our fervent hope and prayer that he is a true Brother. Please be in prayer for John and Morning, that Father will continue to work on their hearts and help us to not get discouraged. Also please pray for our upcoming meeting with L, and that we will truly be able to help him grow! 

Also please be praying as several members on our team aren't feeling great. We are feeling emotionally exhausted, which makes it incredibly difficult to share with local friends. Cross-cultural conversations take energy! Please pray that the Spirit will give us strength as described in Isaiah 40:31.

-Hide & Seek Team

Mid-summer break.... Africa-style

After our team of 8 plus 1 rode with all of our luggage for 5 hours, we finally arrived at Victoria Falls to experience some of the most adventurous and crazy things that many of us have ever done! 

We danced, played some drums, and had our faces painted as we had dinner and tried many exotic foods, and tried the Mopani Worm which is like a giant caterpillar (of which we had to eat 2 of so that we could get a certificate). 

We then crossed a bridge over the falls into Zambia to do some crazy activities such as zip lining from Zambia to Zimbabwe, bridge swinging that included a 77 meeter free fall, and bungee jumping of which we free fell for 111 meters towards the Zambezi river. And yes, I bungee jumped! Way to step out of that comfort zone? 

We then went of to visit the falls, and I will tell you this- I have NEVER seen something so beautiful that even could closely compare to the falls. After spending two nights at the falls, waking up each morning to monkeys, warthogs, and impala in our back yard, we packed up and headed to Hwange National Park. We went of a REAL safari for three hours and saw hippos, crocodiles, giraffes, elephants, wildebeest, and an ostrich! We left that next morning and arrived back in Bulawayo to have a 4th of July celebration with some friends! It has been such an eventful week, but so amazing all the same!


Once upon a time in Camiguin..

Our sweet friend wrote a blog for me to share with you all. I hope you enjoy it!

Once upon a time in Camiguin there lived a pretty mom and at the same time a dad to her children because the father of her children worked so many miles away from the Philippines where she lives. Before I forget she is Ate Maricel for long... That's me. 

I have 3 children named Christian 12, John Alfred 9, and a cute little girl Amiah Ace 6.
One day, I think 9th day of June if I'm not mistaken... I was shocked of the shouts of almost all the children in the elementary school just beside our residence shouting "Hi, Hello!" repeatedly. 

I'm wondering "What's that mean? Let me see who is inside in that white service truck." I cannot see it clearly because they were just passing by and by... then that day I just heard a news somebody told me: there's a group of foreign ladies including their translator who chose to visit our place for about two months. And they are staying at the daycare center. Their team is called Nehemiah Team.

On that day, I said to myself.. "Oh man this is my time to shine. haha. It's my time to let my American language out that I hide in my cabinet for a long period of time. That might get rust already."

And that's the reason I go almost everyday in the place where they stay. Because I want you to enjoy your staying here even if i know you're not that comfortable in your situation, the hardships you encounter, there's no bed and there's no air conditioning and mostly poor water supply so we must go to fetch first so that we can have water to use. But I also know you guys have that heart to survive behind your back, there is God. Continue on man!

Monday, July 7, 2014

When you grow up??

I asked the kids what they wanted to do in the future...this kid said that he wanted to be a pastor!   God bless this kid! 

Pray for those God is encouraging through Peng this summer... pray for fruit that will remain!

Tell Me a Story About Jesus

"Can you tell us a story about Jesus?" This was the beginning of a conversation I had with a child this week. Last week, I tried to tell them a story about Jesus, but when you have twenty kids outside playing in the grass, it is hard to keep their attention. This week, one of the girls remembered that I had mentioned Jesus. So, as we sat down to begin "storying", she wanted to hear about Jesus...

"What kind of story do you want to hear?" I asked.
"A story about Jesus."
"What do you want to know about Jesus?"
"I don't know, like how he died?"

"Yes, I can tell you how He died...." Thus, this was the beginning of the Jesus conversations in the apartment complex. I told them about the birth and death of Jesus. Then, the girl wanted to hear more about this man. I told the story of the feeding of 5,000. I told the story of Jesus calming the sea. We talked about him being a great teacher.

Most of the children would listen for a few moments, then run off and play. However, one little girl, about eight years old, stayed back and listened. She was digesting the stories and asking many good questions. She does not yet fully understand the Gospel, but the doors are wide open for discussion with her and several others within the complex.

Please pray for...
  • Continued open doors in the apartment complex behind our home.
  • Understanding for the children that are listening to the Bible stories.