So the way that my team and I have been preparing for our off days and getting to update our blogs is usually by going through our journal entries from that week and writing the blog entry down on paper before going to the internet cafe. That way, we can spend more time talking with our families and stuff and less time trying to come up with our blog update on the spot. But this week, every time I sat down to try and write my blog out, my thoughts got jumbled up and I couldn’t focus on one thing that I wanted to write about. There’s way too much to say about what God is doing here and the ways that He is revealing Himself to the people here and to our team.
My heart is continually breaking for the people here more and more each day and every day and new person here touches my life in a special way. I wish that I could share with y’all every way that God is showing up here, but that’s just not possible. I’d like to thank each and every one of you that take the time to read this and pray specifically for me and for the people here. It’s SO neat to think that your prayers, being prayed literally halfway around the world from here, are being answered and being seen by my team and I.
Within the past two and a half weeks of being here, I’ve witnessed both God and Satan in ways that I never had before. Spiritual warfare here is no joke. The Thai people take dreams and visions so super serious and the enemy uses that to his advantage. Just the other day, a new Christian in the house next door to us told about dreams she was having in which the spirits were telling her to rebuke Christianity. Pray for these people, especially the new Christians in the area, that they would be strengthened through Christ and would be bold in their new faith.
Also in the past week, my team and I witnessed a Buddhist funeral in the community. I can’t even begin to describe my heartache as I saw all of the idols present at the house and all of the people burning incense and asking the spirits for blessings. It was so different from any funeral experience I’ve had in the States. With this one, there was no doubt in my mind that the middle aged man that died did not go to Heaven. The people here are utterly and completely lost. Not because they have decided to choose Buddhism “instead of” Christianity, but because they haven’t been told about Jesus, the Gospel, and how they can be saved. Most people here have heard of the term “Christian”, but they don’t know what it truly entails. All they associate it with is Americans, and all they know about Americans is what they see on tv shows or in movies, which we all know does not contain Christian content. With this being said, the funeral experience is something that I will never forget. It is something that I hope fuels passion in my heart each and every day for the lost people in this world; not only in Thailand, but in America too when I get back in August.
Continue to pray for all of the families we will live with this summer and the ones that we have previously lived with. The family we have been living with for the past week has become curious in the Gospel and in Christianity,PRAISE JESUS! We have watched the Jesus film with them and been through the EvangeCube with them together with our “supervisors” in this area. They have been asking questions more and more and the daughter of the family has been asking us almost every day to sing worship songs with her! It’s been so amazing to see God work in the lives of these people just by us living with them. (We still barely speak Thai and they barely speak English, but we get by.) Please please please continue to pray for them, especially as we move out and there is a strong possibility that Satan will attack as soon as we’re gone. Other prayer requests include:
– Random medical issues on our teams. Nothing serious, but even the slightest annoyance can be used to hinder our ministry.
– Our new host family for this week. Pray that God would use us to shine His light in a dark place.
– Safety as we will be traveling to go on vacation for a few days next week.
– Pray against discouragement on our team. Pray that God would continue to draw us close to Him and close to one another for support and comfort.
– Continual heartbreak for these people here. Pray that we would never lose sight of what we are here to do. Pray that God would equip us and that we would allow ourselves to be used and moved by the Holy Spirit.
Lauren is serving through One Mission Students in Thailand this summer. Continue praying for her and other students serving this summer.