Monday, December 6, 2010

My Arrival

I have been in Thailand for one week now and it has been a busy week at that. I jumped right into ministry with my brother- teaching English, Life Group with the college, Children's Church in the poor area, and Sunday church.

But let me catch you up in more detail.

On our way to the San Francisco airport and while waiting to check in I had butterflies and was getting anxious. 'What am I doing?' 'Am I ready for this?'. But I had to stick by the truth that I know- God has called me there and He is going to give me the grace and protection I need. After we went through security and found our gate, the anxiety was gone and excitement started to set in. And when I landed it felt like I was home (one of the many).

It was so wonderful to see my brother, sister-in-law, and 2yr old niece- it had been a year since I'd seen them. Their dog, a Shih Tzu, immediately remembered me from 2 years ago when I lived with them for 6 months, so now I have an ever-present, constant shadow. =) It was my niece's birthday the day after we arrived. She is quite the 2yr old if you know what I mean ;)

She has this amazing Shirley Temple curls- even
though no one on our side or my sister-in-laws side has curly hair.

Birthday with Dad and Mom
clearly neither of us were ready for that
Lalita watching Dora, me watching Facebook ;)

On Wednesdays my brother volunteers teaching English at a local country high school that can't afford a foreigner speaker. He teaches 10th, 11th, and 12th grade. So I will be joining him from now on. I got really close to the teachers last time, so they are all excited for me to be here and take me everywhere with them.

Thursdays is life group with some college students- mainly 3 Freshman girls. We met them 2 years ago teaching at the high school, they were 11th graders. They started going to church /Bible study at my brother's at the end of the year. Now a year and a half later they are professing Christians who have been baptized. It is just so amazing for me to be able to see them from first introductions to now, fully believing and knowing the creator of the universe. They are such sweet girls who have either been miraculously healed themselves, or have prayed for others and seen the healing-- causing them to fully believe. They have never seen that in Buddhism. They have renounced their cultural and family belief by taking this bold step but have now entered into a personal relationship with the living God. It is so very precious to see!!

I shared with them about my time in Africa and the healings I saw increasing their faith in the God they know now. They seem to know very little about African culture, so they enjoyed it very much- discovering the similarities between their cultures.

Saturdays is Childrens Church or Young Club down at the beach in the poorer district. There's no building or home they can meet in, so they just meet outside near the water. The kids are absolutely adorable. They start off by reciting their memory verses. 5 girls stood up and recited it right off- it was so wonderful to see. The kids reminded me of Africa- they probably own only one pair of clothes and maybe, maybe no flip flops. But their smiles are bright, even if their teeth are rotten. They listened attentively to the Bible story told by my 8 month pregnant sister-in-law.

Story Time

Intently listening to Daniel in the lion's denQuestion and Response... who was listening?
Game Time
Heading back home, til next week!
On Sunday we had church at my brother's building. They are able to rent a 4 story building downtown for only $120/mo. Amazing deal... that's Thailand! Having all this space allows them to house YWAM teams and other ministry groups-- such a blessing to them. Church includes about 5 people. One is an older lady who brings her 8yr old son. She said when she was growing up as a Buddhist, she always knew she was made by some higher god- not Buddha- and she was searching for him. When she was told about Jesus and God she knew right then, that is the God she's been looking for, and fully committed her life to God. She is so eager to learn about God and Kingdom principles. Another member is a 6th grader whose older cousin in one of the college girls. She fully believes in God and healings. Her friend had some mental disabilities, so she prayed for her and she was totally healed. She is the epitome of child-like faith. It is so wonderful and encouraging to see. The college girls live on campus and it is too difficult to make it to church- so for this season the two groups have to be separate.

We will be having Christmas parties soon and everyone should be able to meet together- that will be fun and exciting.

My niece, Lalita is quite the entertainer and dreamer. She is learning both Thai and English and in this confusing deciphering between the two stage, she has come up with her own medium- which is extremely adorable. Every now and then actual words will come out in the mix- Elmo, apple, etc.

Here she is in front of church preaching the sermon,
as my sister-in-law, Pook, prepares for worship.


Emily Yeatman said...

I so enjoyed reading your blog and reading what ALL the Lord is doing! Wow... you're going to be a busy woman! Your little niece is ADORABLE!! And the pictures of those girls and kids captured my heart. I can't wait to come visit Thailand! God is good! You look great and you can tell... "your home"! How amazing. So excited you get to see the birth of your new niece or nephew. How sweet of Jesus to set that up! LOVE YOU!!

I am going to try to comment on your blogs because I know i LOVED reading comments from people knowing that they read it. :)

Love you! Can't wait to hear your voice tomorrow night! miss you housemate!

mary said...

How exciting! I loved reading about your first week in Thailand - what a busy life you have :) Your niece is precious, and I know she is going to love having you there. God has amazing plans for you sweet girl.

Our move to C has been delayed just a little. We should be "next-door neighbors" to you in late February. We love you dearly!

Mo said...

So good to see your face! I've been thinking of you so much. I wish we could have hung out a bit more at my wedding...I was a bit pre-occupied;) I love you and can't wait to follow your life via blog and skype (I hope!)