Some things have funny beginnings! After living in West Paakphanang for almost a year, we have finally started an English club. In the past, we had regularly offered English lessons to the neighbouring children and students in our community, but nobody seemed to take us up on our offer. Recently, we had an associate missionary (Leah) from Canada come help homeschool our boys for about 2 months. One evening we invited her over for dinner, and as Lila and Leah walked through our neighbourhood afterwards, one of the neighbourhood girls, Phiw, came up to Leah and asked if she could teach English to her sometime. Knowing her well, Lila jokingly inquired in Thai, “How come you have never asked me to teach you English?” Little Phiw responded, “Because you can speak Thai!” (We joke that perhaps we speak Thai too well. Not true, of course!) Because of our Asian faces, many Thais get confused when we say we are from the US and can teach English. Dave has even been asked to teach Chinese Mandarin a few times already!
As a result of little Phiw’s request, our English club was born and has been going on for 8 months now. The word has been spreading in the neighbourhood and almost every week we have had a new child join us. Every Thursday we have some review time, an English lesson with handouts, some singing and games, and we end with a Bible story or parable. Some parents and neighbourhood adults have also shown appreciation for what we do, and we pray that God will open doors into these families for us to build a relationship and share the gospel. On a recent visit to Thaasala, a Thai pastor serving there shared with Dave that he first heard the gospel through a neighbourhood English club just like ours. It has been said that many who turn to Christ as adults heard the gospel first as children. May you pray with us that God will use this English Club to bring about eternal fruit for His kingdom.