Kesara serves in Kep, Cambodia, in a unique ministry while partnering with a local church. She worships at “Koun Khmer Baptist Church”, which was planted about 15 years ago. The local pastor and church members call her teacher and indeed she is, as she leads a Bible study group at her house each Wednesday, and preaches at the church on Sundays once a month. But what does Kesara do when she is not at church?
She lives about 15 minutes away from the church by motorbike, renting the upstairs unit of a house from a non-Christian family that is very friendly. Their eldest son joins the Sunday worship and the Bible study. In the front of their house, the landlord and his wife sell hot coffee at 500 riels per cup (about US 10 cents) for regulars, mostly men, who will drop in each morning by six o’clock. Local news on TV and through the grapevine are served free with the coffee, prompting Kesara to see this time as an opportunity for the gospel to be ‘gossiped’ too! Boldly she asked for ten minutes on Sunday to tell Bible stories – they may be reluctant at first, but the TV is turned off and they listen. What may result from this group? It may be anyone’s guess, but as Kesara affirms, “God knows!”
She hopes and believes that things can develop the same way for her 4.30 am walking partners. Most of them are mothers and/or grandmothers, home-makers, workers of their own rice fields, stall holders – deftly handling multiple roles at the same time. On their energetic brisk walks, ignoring frantically barking dogs, braving dark nights, they pass on news as much as the men do. Presently Kesara is a friendly and accepted presence among them; perhaps, later, there may be opportunity for breakfast talks and more intimate chats. What may result from this group? It may be anyone’s guess, but as Kesara affirms, “God knows!”