Thai Tempo December 2018
“Teacher, how do I become a Christian?” was the question asked by a young lady named Prae who is in her third year studying law at Walailak University. A little surprised by the question and before I could gather my thoughts, Prae and another classmate of hers named Daa asked another question: “Teacher, can we come to a church service or do we need to be Christians to come?” These were the questions that were asked after only teaching a few English sessions to a group of law students. This particular English group came about when we were recommended to a law profes-sor at Walailak university, who was looking for native English speakers to help her students practice English. Little did we know what God would bring about by serving the students in this way and opening up our home to them as well.
David&Lila Chang, ThaSala, NakhonSriThammaraat province
– thank for these opportunities the Lord has brought about
– the right words and understanding hearts when Changs answer questions the students ask and pray for the Lord to reveal Himself to the students when they come for Bible studies or visit a church
– growing interest in the Gospel among the students and faculty
– Christian students at the university to share their faith with other students, inviting them to Bible study groups
A Thai version of Acts 8 – hearing the Gospel on a journey
In the taxi from the airport to the OMF mission home I talked to the taxi driver named Wisdom. After I had answered his question “What are you doing here in Thailand?” he wanted to know more about God. When we had arrived at the mission home he accepted the invitation to continue our conversation there without hesitation.
Recently I had several conversations with him by phone. We have studied the Bible and it seems that he would like to follow Jesus. He works 7 days a week, has huge debts and that weighs him down. But he says he wants to trust Jesus. He has told his wife and children in Isaan that he wants to follow Jesus and he took all the religious things out of his car like Buddha statues and amulets, without me even mentioning it. He also said he would like us to share the Gospel with his family so we hope to visit them in Isaan soon.
That is such a precious moment: You just sit there and watch how God is revealing Himself to this man.
Sijmen&Annelies den Hartog, Manchakhiri, KhonKaen province
– Good ways to build up father Wisdom in his newfound faith
– Father Wisdom to find other Christians/a church or cell group where he lives so that he will be encouraged by Christian fellowship
– His family to respond to the Gospel, too
– Readiness of missionaries and Thai Christians for occasions like this and the Lord to prepare people for an encounter with His Gospel
Jesus must have looked like a slave when he washed the disciples’ feet. How can we be servant leaders like Jesus asks us to be? In the Thai culture where hierarchy and saving face are so important values there is often a great distance between leader and follower. So working together in teams with Thai people, helping new leaders to grow, and value the people under one’s care requires quite some consideration. A few points we came up with in our team:
- making decisions that benefit the people in our care,
- passing on honour, power, and belongings,
- encourage and help others to reach their full potential,
- to believe in others and rejoice with them when they are successful – even more successful than oneself.
Leaders who serve in this way will create an atmosphere of love and acceptance and people will be encouraged to use their god-given gifts. We pray that the Lord uses us to foster a servant leadership style among the Thais, just as Jesus asks his disciples to be servant leaders.
Stefan&Brigitte Keller, Bangkok
- unity and encouraging relationships within the urban poor team
- the team in helping each other to become/be servant leaders and in mentoring Thai Christians in the slum areas to grow into leaders too, using their god-given gifts
- people in the slums to see how God accepts and values them, wanting to grant each one the honour of being His child
- pastors all over Thailand and students at Bible Seminaries to become/be such servant leaders not seeking their own honour or status but help each Christian to grow and use whatever gift God has given them
churches in Thailand to be places of acceptance, love (John 13:35), and forgiveness not of “religious performance” and seeking honour for oneself