God is watching over us!
We have had problems with flooding in our sub-division for several years, and the water would run down our road like a river but it never made it all the way into the house. But it kept getting worse and we knew that someday we would probably need to move. However, we hate moving. So we kept putting it off until some future date. But it took a different reason to motivate us to move.
|A 7-11 store near Blessing Home|
Last month, Thailand Methodist Mission experienced growing pains when we had a missionary meeting. Our numbers of missionaries and mission interns serving with TMM grew to the point that we could no longer fit everyone in our small house, which is what we have always done before. So we had to move the two day meeting to a hotel with a large suite but this was a temporary solution that was not sustainable.
So the next week, God led us to a house that was large enough and very affordable to serve as the TMM Mission Center, where we could host meetings with missionaries and with Thai pastors and leaders. The TMM Mission Center has been a great blessing and has allowed us to host meetings here rather than travel constantly.
Last week, we had severe flooding in Chonburi and Pattaya. Blessing Home and the TMM Mission Center are both on high ground and were not flooded. However, our old house was severely flooded. If we did not move to the TMM Mission Center, we would have lost everything!
A Special Request
Each year churches, church groups, and individuals have taken special offerings for large needs and projects with the Thailand Methodist Mission. One of the growing pains that our mission has is that we need a mini-van. At the present time we have a sub-compact that has been the workhorse of the mission and still is. But we need to be able to take teams of missionaries, interns, and volunteers around to the many ministries of TMM throughout Thailand, and we frequently must rent vans which can be very expensive. Owning a mini-van would allow us to focus more funds directly with ministries to Thai people and less on transporting teams.
We ask for all churches, church groups, and individuals that pray for and support Thailand Methodist Mission to take up special Christmas offerings and donations and help us to buy a mini-van. We need $24,000.
If you would like to donate for this special project, write “VAN” on the memo section of the check or on the special designation field on the online giving form.
P.O. Box 56
Mannsville, KY 42758
Or give online at thailandmethodist.org
We are called to be pastors for those who serve sacrificially.
We have had the privilege to host many meetings and overnight stays at the TMM Mission Center, and it is an honor to host and serve those who serve sacrificially. The TMM Mission Center is a place of healing and refreshing for Thai Pioneer Pastors who serve on the front lines in very lonely and difficult places that have not yet been reached. Many Thai pastors have sat at the dining room table in tears talking about how difficult life is for them, and that it meant the world to them to come to the Center and be refreshed and to know that there are Christians in the States who love them, pray for them, and support them in their work for the Lord.
We also have the privilege of being pastors to the missionaries and mission interns who serve with TMM. When we go to recruit missionaries, we speak very straight and let them know that TMM missionaries serve in the most difficult of places and circumstances. This is not the life for those who want comfort or who want to be surrounded by fellow Christians who can speak the English language. TMM missionaries are called to shine their lights where it is darkest, to serve in places where the need is most dire.
We tell Thai pastors and leaders that the most difficult facet of life for TMM missionaries is Sunday mornings. All TMM ministries are Thai ministries. That is our focus and purpose. So the worship services are always in Thai language. Which means that the for the first 2-3 years, missionaries will understand very little of what is being sung, preached, and prayed for in the worship service, until their language skills are strong enough to be able to fully partake in worship.
All of us are used to being spiritually fed on Sunday mornings at worship service. We have the joy of singing worship songs, praying fervently, and hearing the Word of God in preaching, and these all fill us up spiritually. But TMM missionaries go to church on Sunday for the first few years and do not yet have the language skills to understand everything. So they must sit and look at the joyous faces of the Thai Christians as they worship. They must watch others being fed spiritual food while being on a “spiritual fast”. We tell the Thai pastors that this is like being invited to a nice restaurant with a group of people, and then you are told you must enjoy watching other people eat but you cannot eat yourself (even though you are hungry). And there is joy in watching others eat spiritual food and being filled up. But it can also be lonely and difficult.
It is in this context that Sherri and I serve as pastors to the TMM missionaries who devotedly serve Thai people with great fruitfulness. TMM missionaries meet each month at the TMM Mission Center for a time of refreshing fellowship, passionate worship, and learning and reflection. It is a time that is very much needed, so they can go back to their places of service and fulfill the call that God has placed upon them.
So please keep the TMM missionaries and interns in your daily prayers, especially on Sunday mornings.