June/July 2015

Quietly Sharing One by One

grannyI was with my daughter Rya at our neighbor Yaay Phim’s (“Grandma Phim”) house. Grandma Phim has been a real person of peace for us in the community. She is always inviting us to festivals and she set up the once a week English teaching that I do for the kids in the community at her home. While I was at her house she looked at me and asked, “Why are you different than other foreigners?” I told her, “Because I am a Christian and I worship the Creator of the world.” She looked around and in a soft voice, “I like Christianity a lot.”

I asked her if she was interested in the Lord and she quietly told me that she and the teenage orphan, Youee, who lives at her house are both interested. Another Christian, Boom, has invited them to our OMF Isaan church camp in October and they really wants to go. Praise the Lord! This has brought so much encouragement to our family and to Boom as well. (Mark & Anne-Marie Bak, church-planting, Khon Kaen Province, Isaan)

Please pray for:

  • Grandma Phim and Youee, that their curiosity in the Lord would increase and they would know Him.
  • Preparations for the Church Camp in October – that many like Phim would attend
  • These kinds of quiet one-by-one witness to Christ would continue every day in Thailand, that many would be drawn to Christ.

Sharing with Cancer Patients

cancer“I heard the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ when I was working in a factory,” said Ms Canya. “Many of my friends would hide whenever they saw Christians coming to the factory. I was not interested in the gospel either, but I still listened.” After some time Ms Canya was diagnosed with cancer. She was not able to talk or eat. Her family took her to different places for healing: witch doctors, renowned religious leaders but none of them could help her.

When the Christians heard about her sickness, they visited her again. They prayed and shared the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ again. That evening Ms Canya accepted Jesus as her personal Lord and Saviour!

“I am so happy that the Lord found me in His perfect time. I thank God for the cancer because that led me to Christ, and now other cancer patients are coming to me to be comforted and be encouraged. Praise God that I am able to share my experience and above all I am able to share about the wonderful saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. I am so happy because I have found real joy in Christ.” When Ms Canya came to a church service for the first time she had no hair and was still weak. But she came to church faithfully, always with big smile on her face. She is still under medication but God is healing her. People who know her often asked her why she is so happy all the time and she answers that it’s because of Jesus. She was baptized a few weeks ago and has been a great encouragement to the church and also to the people who are going through cancer. (Khriedo & Nitho Peseyie, church-planting, Chaiyapum Province, Isaan.

Please pray for:

  • Ms. Canya to continue to draw close to Jesus and testify to her new life; for complete healing; for her family to be saved
  • Continued boldness of Christians to witness for Christ in Thailand, despite people not responding positively or avoiding at first.

Unable to Share Much (Yet!)

Before coming to Thailand I was brimming with excitement to share the Good news of Jesus with the Thai people. However, this passion hit a brick wall when I came to the realization that I cannot communicate this passion effectively until I can speak Thai. What can I do to share the Gospel with the Thai people in the meantime? This is the question that swirled through my mind. In the mornings I run past an area where small shrines have been placed next to a specific tree beside a river. I do not have to see where I am because I can feel a spiritual blackness as I come near this spot. As I run closer to this spot I pray for three things: God’s spiritual protection over me, the spiritual darkness to be broken and for those who placed the shrines there to come to know the Lord Jesus. One morning two months after we arrived in Thailand I ran past the spot without realizing it and without praying. I had not sensed the oppression in the place. The next day I took particular care to see why I had run past without noticing. To my amazement two of the spirit houses (shrines) had fallen over and smashed on the ground! A week later all the houses about 16 in total had been removed! I am still praying for the people who placed them there to come to know Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. I may not be able to speak enough words in Thai to share the Gospel, but I can still be a faithful servant channeling the passion for the Thai people to hear the Good News of Jesus in prayer and through my actions. (Bruce & Trish Bartleet, Lopburi Language & Culture Learning Center, Central Thailand)

Please pray for:

  • Language students at the Lopburi Learning Center to not lose their passion but channel it to pray, learning the language & culture well and building relationships.
  • Pray that God will glorify Himself and true worship will come to this land.

Sharing with Farmers

farmerBoth the church elder and I were on our knees, helping some ladies to dig out cassava roots. We were handing out literature packages and had stopped to give some packages to these farmers, too. We were invited to chat and then we asked them if we could help them. At the end of the day we got an invitation to come back. A week later we went for a visit together with some of the church members. But, what again were the names of these farmers? Where did they live? The only thing we were able to remember was that one of the ladies owned a white pick-up truck. That afternoon we prayed for God’s guidance, especially to find the white pick-up truck. After 15 minutes driving, the car resounded with hallelujahs: at the intersection entering the village we saw the white pick-up truck! The lady was just stopping there to get some groceries. When we arrived at her house, we met the other cassava famers again. That afternoon we were able to sing and tell about Jesus. At the end we were offered a delicious Isaan meal. We have been able to visit these people several times, especially one lady wants to know more about the Lord Jesus Christ. We have started chronological Bible study. (Sijmen & Annelies den Hartog, church-planting, Kon Kaen Province, Isaan)

Please pray for:

  • This lady & her husband: she wants to get to know Jesus but she is afraid that her husband in Bangkok won’t accept her interest in the Lord
  • Pray that the Chronological Bible study will bear fruit in their lives

Sharing Curbside

A couple of months ago, Tim met an elderly man on the street in front of the Tha Rua Church. Uncle Lamyai, in his late 70’s, expressed interest in knowing more about Jesus. As they sat on the curb and talked together, Tim was able to give him a booklet that explains the basics of the gospel. The next Sunday, Uncle Lamyai was in church, and the fellowship welcomed him and prayed for him. However, after that visit, his health went downhill and he passed away in early March without any of us knowing about it.

IMG_0466In April, Tim passed Uncle Lamyai’s house and his daughter invited Tim in to talk with the family. Before he passed away, Uncle Lamyai was always talking about the Tha Rua Church members and reading the booklet that Tim had given him. The family invited Tim to the 100 day merit making ceremony, to take place in mid-June. Tim explained that Christians can’t take part in Buddhist ceremonies (which they fully understood), but offered to say a prayer while the family is gathered for the ceremony. Uncle Lamyai’s wife was overcome with gratitude, even lifting Tim’s hand to her head, a show of very high respect, which Tim didn’t feel very comfortable with! (Tim & Brenda Noble, church-planting, Central Thailand)

Please pray for:

  • The family to be open to the Holy Spirit’s work, and for visits to the family to be effective by the missionaries and church members
  • Christian literature to be anointed by the Holy Spirit as people read it throughout Thailand.
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