Questions and questioning ‘who am I?’
As a missionary in Thailand, I’ve been asked all kinds of questions. “Why do you come to Thailand?” “How much do you earn?” “Are you married?” “You mean you don’t have any children?” Even though I’ve just said that I was not married! Recently, one of my students asked me: “Are you a ‘Tom’”? Ouch!!
One of the first pair of students I taught English to were lovely girls, M and K. M dresses a little bit like a man whilst K is more feminine. Obviously they were in some kind of relationship – what Thai people call “Tom and Dee”.
One day I got a call from a lecturer at the university where they were studying. He saw M with a black eye. That evening, I met K and noticed that she had scratches on her arm and face. I asked her what happened. She said they had a big fight and have gone separate ways. In my heart, I thought “Praise The Lord!” I told K that she is a beautiful girl, that God loves her, and has a perfect plan for her life.
Nuch and Hong were another ‘couple’ who came to study English in my apartment. They were young working professionals. They have good jobs. Both are also separated now.
It’s becoming very common to see these same sex relationships among Thai young people. It seems normal, acceptable in the society. It’s almost become a culture.
But when I look at them I see a people who are empty and disillusioned. Many are from dysfunctional families, without hope and without love. There’s a deep longing for relationship. For them, it’s unthinkable that one could live alone, and be happy. That’s why I was asked whether I was a “Tom”.
Many of these young students think that plastic surgery is going to give them more worth and make them happy. They’re trying to find love, significance, security – but in all the wrong places.
What they need is to understand that they are fearfully and wonderfully made by a loving God and are precious in His sight.
Pray that more Thai young people will experience the power of Christ’s love and grow into a secure relationship with the living God. Pray that Thai Christian students will place their identity in Christ alone, knowing total satisfaction and complete significance in Him.