From Fear to Fierce
Photos and story by Jonathan Lau
Our 2014 Sattha team in Thailand was 18 strong with team members from Thailand, Singapore, Taiwan, England, Ireland, USA, and Canada. Our numbers and diversity grew as the team travelled and partnered with local churches and other OMF missionaries from around central Thailand. To me, Thailand seemed like a spiritually fearful country, where children and adults worship and sacrifice to spirits in order to appease the spirits in order to avoid hardship and misfortune.
An important part of our time together was spent in teambuilding, planning, prayer, and Bible study. One afternoon, we took turns reading from the book of Acts out loud in our native languages: in Thai, Mandarin, Taiwanese, German, Swiss-German, and English. I was reminded of the amazing grace God has on all people of all nations, and was encouraged by the way he uses believers from all nations (Matthew 28:19) to come together in worship and devotion to serve for His glory. I remember listening to a local Thai team member who had accepted Christ just a week earlier. He had been a dedicated Buddhist previously and even spent months training in a monastery. Normally, this shy, quiet and gentle man was soft-spoken and timid, but as he began to read God’s word, he read in a voice I had never heard. Bold, undaunted, and steadfast, he read God’s word with such confidence that I was reminded of the truth and hope that God speaks through His word, and the authority our God Almighty has over all things, physical, spiritual and otherwise. And it is in His authority that we can have the utmost confidence. Through Christ, our Lord shatters the grip that fear and other things of this world have over us—so that we may experience true peace, joy, and love that can only be had in fellowship with God.