I left Thailand at the end of March thinking I would only be back home in Singapore for a week, but due to the global pandemic, I wasn’t able to return to Thailand.
Although I could not be there in person, God has provided new and creative ways that I can still serve him, even if it’s from afar!
Through God’s grace, I’m still able to continue my internship with OMF through various online platforms. Since April I’ve been connecting with the Third Culture Kid ministry and am continuing to teach a group of girls dance and drama every week. My mentors have also connected me to a Thai Christian lady, teaching me Thai twice a week. From mid-June onwards, things will get slightly busier as the ministry my mentors are involved in – Sattha ministry – have organised an International prayer team. This prayer team is the replacement for the annual international sports team that takes place every July (which will not be taking place this year due to COVID).
Coping during these times…
There has been a lot of disappointment, stress, and anxiety to process during the past couple of months. Very much like everyone else, I expected this year to look very different. The anticipation and excitement to participate in cross-cultural ministry in Thailand was met with major change in plans and followed by disappointments.
However, as I looked back, I can really see that God has been holding my hand the entire time. Two weeks before I left for Singapore, my host family and I spent a week in South Thailand, surrounded by the beach & amazing sea view! I was helping out with homeschool week (a week where classes are organised and planned for homeschooled missionary kids to experience an in-classroom learning setting). I got to know two other amazing short-term workers from the Netherlands, and many bubbly and lovely kids! I spent my last week in Thailand with other OMF workers (Michelle and Cherlyn) in Bangkok. They were amazing hosts and even better friends. Inspired by Michelle’s amazing watercolour skills, I began to take interest in watercolour during my time there!
Coming back to Singapore, I have been able to stay with my family during the ‘lockdown’ situation which I have been so thankful for… Only recently my dad went back to Indonesia to continue managing his work there. Connecting and reconnecting with friends has never been so convenient in this day and age! The internet and different media platforms are another thing I’m thankful for. With friends reaching out, checking in, and praying for me, my metal health and spirits have definitely been lifted :)
On top of spending time with family and friends (virtually), painting and watching movies has helped to relieve stress and anxiety for me. And during the day and night, I set aside a few minutes to be still before God – be it praying, reading or listening. In these uncertain times, I know I can lean on a constant and faithful God.
What are some ways you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you usually spend quiet time with God?
–Tricia, Serve Asia Worker