June/July 2016

“All in His hands”

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Trusting in our mighty God’s perfect sovereignty was the theme of our annual OMF Thailand field conference. Over 100 adults and about 80 children enjoyed the Supalai resort, some excellent teaching sessions and fun activities together. Well done to the South Thailand regional team and many others who helped organise! God gave us a great time with one another and ministered to us through our keynote speaker, Rev CB Samuel.

Praise the Lord for his goodness and grace to OMF Thailand. We see this in myriads of ways, from the financial provision, health and safety, the normal functioning of visas/work permits, prayer letters sent out in various forms, to learning Thai language and culture, evangelising and making disciples. The Bangkok Home, the Pines, the FHQ office, Daniel Training and church planting work in our regions has carried on day after day over the past twelve months. Because so much of this is functioning effectively it can be overlooked or taken for granted. But I want to point this out as a significant part of this past year – ordinary life and ministry! So, let’s thank our God who was over all, in all and though all. And let’s appreciate each other for faithfully doing needful things so OMF Thailand functions and accomplishes its mission and vision.

The gospel is preached, people are converted, new churches are established, and leaders are trained. Thank you Jesus!

Mark and Becky Leighton, retiring field directors.

“All in a day’s work”

This morning in church at Prabaht the chairs were full. Among those attending were two unbelievers, a first time visitor who is a Christian man coming out of a recent divorce, three or four young men who are living double lives though they hardly notice it, at least ten people struggling in marriages, two men who have recently put their faith in Christ (Jawp and Joe, a soldier), a handful of Christians who have a muddled understanding of the gospel at best, and others who are wonderfully growing in Christ despite various scars and sorrows.

From Isaiah 40 I preached (less effectively than I should have) about the comfort Christ offers, and how that comfort is connected to the glory of Christ, we chit chatted over lunch sitting on the floor, we talked to individuals one on one; more than once as the afternoon wore on we sat in small groups for counsel and prayer (hearing about a past mistress tormenting a current wife with a non-christian man in the middle, about an alcoholic husband who ends up rolling in the dirt and who says he believes in Christ but isn’t handsome enough to come to church, about a leader in the church whose husband struggles with an angry inferiority complex that leads him to leave church after ten minutes, etc.).

We tried to reach those unacquainted with Christ, we tried to understand words we don’t know yet, looked up scripture passages to share, tried to be transparent about our own lives, watched the downpour outside together, played Jenga with the few young men who couldn’t go home because of the rain. It was a full day! But it all felt like “scrambling through” to us! By God’s grace may it bear fruit, but pray that we will have greater proactivity in the face of the steady stream of opportunity that arises…such as when we pulled into our driveway after returning from church!

There were Blah and Unif waiting unannounced outside our door. They are a needy pair of teenage girls indeed. Unif lives alone with her mother in a shack of a home, though her mother is seldom there. How struck we are today by the request Unif made: “Can we make a birthday cake for my Mom?” So Anne and the girls have been down in the kitchen for over an hour now. I just returned from market and the cake’s aroma reaches down the entire lane leading to our house! We need some time to debrief this long day once the girls leave. But more than anything we need time alone with God, time of Spirit-aided prayer that will hone our discernment and equip us for the things God brings to us.

David and Anne Sheahan, Lopburi

Please pray for:

  • God to answer prayer for a “new thing, a great thing” in Prabaht church and to overcome opposition.
  • Jawp to develop in his faith and sense God’s hand upon him, especially as his parents do not appreciate this and are expressing dissatisfaction.
  • God to quell the storm being caused in the church by the ongoing adultery of a current member with the former pastor.
  • Transformed lives and deliverance from evil for Blah and Unif.

“All in 115 degree heat”

kids campThe Laat Yao church sponsored 11 children to attend a Christian children’s camp in central Thailand. Of those 11 children, 9 were from Buddhist families connected to the church through our English clubs or Sunday School. 3 young people also helped out as ‘big brothers and sisters’. Praise the Lord! The 120 kids had a great time and heard about Jesus and His love for them. We had a great week and the kids loved asking me to play badminton with them, after lunch in the scorching heat!

Amy Cottle, Nakhon Sawan

As a ministry team, we have felt the need to be more committed in prayer, and several days a week a few of us have gone to the church early in the morning to pray. At the same time we have felt the strong spiritual battle that we are in, with relationships being under attack and small issues becoming big challenges. We would really value your prayers that we would fully depend on God and rely on Him for our strength each day. Please pray particularly for our co-worker Jattupon who is often frustrated by the church members, as she longs to see them mature in their faith and in the way they relate to one another.

Chris and Sarah Keiller, Nakhon Sawan

Please pray for:

  • the children from kid’s camp to come to know the Lord
  • wisdom and good time management as Chris, Sarah and Amy make future plans for English teaching and other outreach activities
  • the Lord’s encouragement for Jattupon in shepherding His flock in Laat Yao district
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