Thursday, January 12, 2006

John's gone...Monks/Idols...

An awesome opportunity opened up for John to go to Chiang Mai with Clinton to work with another missionary who has been working in Thailand for 35 years! When the new year rolled around our team prayed and met together to discuss our plan for this year. We all felt that God was having us focus more on the villages near us and that we would be targeting them one at a time.

The first village is Ban Phrut - we have received many response cards from this village (from the tracks) and have been planning to go into this village with preaching, drama, puppet shows, an english camp and singing. So 2 weeks ago we made this decision and started acting on what we discussed. Clinton has been trying to go visit this guy up in Chiang Mai (who specific experience is in villages) for years but has been unable to but last week they called and said that it would be ok for him to come now. Clinton asked John to go and only by the grace of God - we had the $175 dollars need for him to go!

We do not have extra money every month - there are some months we're not even sure we're going to have rent...but this month we had the $175!!! And for the glory of God let me share the rest: after we spent the $175 we didn't have rent or money for bills...BUT Pastor Stan from Liberty Lighthouse e-mailed and said that he had a special donation for us this month...instead of the normal $54 they just happened to have $280 for us!!!! My mouth dropped open - God is good!!! Today I went and paid our water, electric, and phone and I was able to get groceries last night!

We also have 2 new partners - Tom and Betsy (Hello and thank you Tom and Betsy!!!) who sent in a one time gift that covers our rent!!! I'm just amazed! This month should have been a really tough month financially - but all our needs are met!!!

I realize in new depths every month the meaning of this scripture: (Psalms 8:3-5)

3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.

oh...ok...back to my incredible husband Chiang Mai...

John and Clinton will be with this guy for 1 week - he left last Monday so he'll return next Monday. The guy they are visiting normally sleeps in his truck or sleeps in a villagers home. He eats what is put before him and bathes in the that is what John and Clinton will be doing also. Or...they are doing...right now. I'm very excited because both John and Clinton were really excited about going and they are ready to see and learn what this guy does and how he reaches out to the Thai people in north-western Thailand. Would you be really excited to go and eat (in my experience) NASTY food (village food is normally very very primitive and rarely sanitary...tons of LARD and BONE)?

Well, when they return we are on a ridged schedule of going out to ban Phrut, visiting people who have responded from the tracks (over 70 in the past month!!!) and working diligently on dramas, puppet shows and english camps to bring to these draw their attention to hear the truth of the Good News...

I wanted to share something that happened this's not really that something happened - just an experience that I have never written about before although it happens often. This morning I was taking a shower and I heard the chanting of the monks up on the mountain. To some people across the world this sound is soothing....but it sends chills up my spine!!! As the chanting continued I just began to worship God and lift up His name...(here's where I'll loose some of you)...and I felt the heart of God and how it grieved Him that these people are worshiping this false god and idols. Everytime I see the Thai people bowing down at the shrines that are all over the city it really hits me hard.

In the bible you read about people worshipping golden images and worshiping false gods...but I never understood the severity or reality of it until I came here. In America most of the false gods (things we put before God in our lives) that are served are jobs...can you imagine most Americans bowing down before a huge gold idol and giving it food? Americans do the same thing - you just can't see the idol...and it's just as appalling to God...

READ THIS: Jeremiah 16:19-21

19 O LORD, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in time of distress, to you the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say, "Our fathers possessed nothing but false gods, worthless idols that did them no good. Do men make their own gods? Yes, but they are not gods!"

"Therefore I will teach them— this time I will teach them my power and might. Then they will know that my name is the LORD.

Well, I have to go - my boys are in need of my attention. Please keep John and Clinton in your prayers specifically while they are in Chiang Mai this week - I don't know if it is dangerous or not...I just know that 2 single female team members wanted to go also but they could not because it isn't safe for women to go right now...

Once again, thank you for reading...