Come Help Us
Nine people from North Carolina and nine from California, a pastor from Cambodia, a couple from Bangladesh who serves with International Commission, a lady who leads the IC work in the Philippines and her niece, three IC leaders from North Carolina, and a new missionary couple to Thailand from California answered the call to help us March 23 to April 2. Seven churches labored together in the project—Calvary Chapel Baan Naam Khem Burmese, CCBNK Thai, CC at the Bridge Phuket, House of the Lord Church Khok Kloy, New Life Center Baan Naam Khem, Pak Ping Church Khao Lak and Santisuk Center in Takuapa. 315 people decided to follow the Lord Jesus during our 10 days of laboring together! In our village of Thachatchai we had 37 new believers and in the greater Phuket area we had 75!
I picked up Jeff and Jodie at the airport Thursday (Jeff is vice president of International Commission serving Asia) along with Barry and John who have been on many IC trips. We drove up to the Orchid Hotel in Khao Lak. Friday morning Pastor Achara and Pastor Manu from Pak Ping church joined Cindy and I as drivers of the three rental vans and our two trucks. We picked up 19 at the airport and Duke and Sunshine from our house. Sadly, Cindy's truck overheated and we had to transfer her passengers and luggage to the van I was driving. That evening Jeff, Jodie, and I returned to the airport to pick up the two ladies from the Philippines.
Saturday morning Barry and John (from North Carolina) came and shared their testimonies on God's Word for Today program on Happy Radio. We had breakfast in the village and Ohn invited many of her friends she had been witnessing to, to hear us and receive prayer. Eight of them accepted Christ! Wow, what a way to start out outreach!
Saturday afternoon we had our opening rally at Pak Ping church in Khao Lak and the IC volunteers and leaders were assigned to church teams. Maurine was assigned to Pak Ping church with it's preschool. I assigned Tom and Linda and Duke and Sunshine to work together with Pastor Joe and his wife Sara (all from California) at CC Baan Naam Khem. Late Saturday evening Jeff and I picked up the couple from Bangladesh. Starting Sunday morning Pastor Joe drove the van for those serving in Baan Naam Khem and Takuapa.
Cindy drove the van for those serving in Khok Kloy and our village of Thachatchai. I drove the van for those serving at Happy Radio and in the greater Phuket area. Hagen from North Carolina gave the opening message and sang at the closing rally also.
Sunday morning Vi shared her testimony on the radio and at church. Vi played the keyboard and Eldon sang a solo.
All Things Work Together for Good
Four churches who originally committed to help us with the project cancelled, but "all things work together for good for those who love God" so a new church start joined in and we had a team free now to travel into the greater Phuket area with Jeff and me as the leaders, and me as translator. My courage to translate and share the gospel in Thai more completely increased during the 9 days. Our team would fluctuate as the needs increased or decreased in the other churches.
We went to Songkla University Monday and shared the Gospel, New Testaments, and our testimonies with people in the cafeteria and in the Community College office, administration office, and the coffee shop. Then returned Tuesday and shared more in the coffee shop. Most of the students were on spring break but we still had many good visits. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday we went to Patong and had great success especially with the Burmese/Nepalese shopkeepers.
Saturday we went to our own village of Thachatchai where our team shared their testimonies, the Evangecube, and New Testaments with each family that was home in the police housing apartments as well as one other apartment. Six people accepted Christ there. Meanwhile, Cindy and her team from Magnolia Avenue Baptist Church of Riverside, CA conducted five days of house to house visits and on Saturday a Kid's Club where we had 33 in attendance. I took my team out to the airport to visit my coworkers there. I gave out many Testaments to taxi drivers, security, hotel and airline personnel. Barry shared his testimony with Tanny who works with Thai Airlines and has helped me to assist many passengers. She is still considering whether to follow Christ or not.
Sunday Eldon from Magnolia preached in my place, we had several new visitors. Joni sang a solo accompanied by Vi on the keyboard. We had our closing rally at 3:00 p.m. at Pak Ping Church. We had a great time of praise and worship celebrating what the Lord has done. Jeff brought the message and each of the seven pastors shared their thanks to their teams and the whole group for their responding to the call—to come help us in Southern Thailand.
Enroute from Khao Lak to Patong, a bit over two hour drive, I was called by Jackie, a French lady who has lived in Phuket about 11 years. She was quite distraught and lonely. She decided to call me after seeing our church website. We arranged to stop and meet her at a gas station just past the airport. She entered our air-conditioned van rental and poured out her heart, we led her to accept Christ and she plans to attend our church.
A young Burmese vendor in Patong was very receptive to the Gospel as I shared the Evangecube and explained the Gospel, and she accepted Christ. She was soon joined by a friend who could not speak English. I asked the new believer to help me, assuming she would translate as I went through the message again. But instead she shared the entire message herself in Burmese and her friend too was saved! I gave her my Evangecube, we gave her printed testimonies, and pens so she could continue to evangelize.
Jenny from North Carolina and I shared her testimony and the Gospel with I believe 15 Burmese vendors in a huge covered area of souvenir and clothing shops, 10 of them accepted Christ. The following day we followed up with them and one Thai lady who was quite receptive but not ready yet to turn from idol worship. One of the Burmese men, had many questions. I spoke at length with him, giving him a survey of the Bible and questioning him to check his understanding, he was amazing. I believe God may call him to be a pastor and I told him so.
In the university coffee shop the second day. One Thai young man was sitting with five women classmates, as they finished their refreshments I offered them Jesus videos and New Testaments which they each received. The man told me he is a Christian already and about a Christian club that meets on campus. He spoke good English. I asked, "What about your lady friends?" He replied, "No, they are worship idols." "Okay" I said, "I want you to share your testimony with them and then ask them to answer these 10 questions." He said that he would.
Pastor Joe shared how much his team had helped him not reach new people but regather many of the people who used to go to CC Baan Naam Khem. Pastor Eh Kaw was also helped in his ever-expanding work amongst his Burmese people both in Naam Khem and in Khao Lak.
Opposed and Undecided
Seven beautiful Thai women sat outside a massage parlor in Patong, as they do every afternoon and evening, attempting to bring in more customers. We were in teams of two or three. So Jeff and his team had given the women Thai pocket Testaments, Jesus videos, and printed testimonies, and were beginning to share the gospel since they spoke good English. My team and the other team caught up with them here as the British owner of the shop came out and kept shouting "go!" Jeff said to him, "Our goal is know how we can have our sins forgiven and go to Heaven." The owner persisted and said angrily, you are loitering and better go now while you still can." I asked him, "So, you don't want your women workers to know how to go to Heaven?" "Go, go now!" He replied angrily.
In our presentations and in the printed testimonies we use 10 questions.
The Bible says, “That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus Christ and shall believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.”
The Scripture says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13) Do you believe this?...................................................................................................................................... Yes___No___
AN EXAMPLE OF PRAYER
Dear Lord, I know I have done wrong and need forgiveness. Thank You for dying for my sins and for offering me eternal life. Please forgive me of my sins and help me turn from them. I now confess You as my Savior. Take control of my life and help me live for Jesus. Thank you for coming into my life and giving me eternal life. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen. You can receive Christ into your heart if you repent and trust in Him as expressed in the prayer.
A number of Thai would answer yes to most or even all of the questions, but were not willing to turn from their idol worship, they just wanted to add Jesus. The first commandment in Exodus 20 says "You shall have no other gods before me." And that God is a jealous God. Joshua said, "choose you this day who you will serve." Jesus said, "You cannot serve two masters." In the Community College we shared with seven people in the office. One answered yes to all the questions, but when I asked him, if he was ready to leave his idols and only follow Jesus, he answered no. I tried to give an example of a husband being married to only one wife, but that illustration didn't work well, since he has three wives. Thankfully another one of the men working in that office did decide to follow Jesus.
Operation Andrew Works Well
Five months prior to the large team coming, members of participating churches each made lists of ten people who didn't know the Lord, shared with them, prayed for them, and invited them to church. In our village also Cindy and I have been serving, sharing, and praying for four plus years. Sowing the seeds of the gospel, watering, now it was harvest time. Now it was time to draw in the nets. On my list of 10—Pensi a local shop keeper and administrator of our Community Center/Church accepted Christ with Cindy's team. Barry, an airplane mechanic in Chicago, shared with my friend Prasong in the metal shop in Khok Kloy and he accepted Christ and said he listens to Happy Radio often. Noy who lives around the corner from us, owns the guest houses there, accepted Christ as Cindy, Ohn and three members of Magnolia shared with her. Tuum translated for Pastor Joe at CC Naam Khem one day but still did not accept Christ yet. Sam who she lives with was busy working the last 10 days. Amnoy and Oo at the radio station say they are at 70%, so they haven't accepted Christ yet, but are closer. Oo had left Amnoy and I prayed with him for his salvation and her's and the next day she returned home, happier than I have ever seen her. Wat, my friend who invited me to start the large Kid's Club in Khok Kloy was quite receptive as Hagen shared his testimony, but not ready to receive the Lord. Toon at the weed cutting shop in Khok Kloy was also attentive to Barry sharing his testimony and explanation of the Gospel but not ready yet to turn from idol worship.
Discipleship and Follow Up
Each of the seven churches have the names and phone numbers and some addresses of those who decided to follow Christ. They will do follow up with them. IC kindly provided a booklet New Believers Lessons and Wanta and I translated it into Thai. Many of those who made professions of faith in the greater Phuket area will be turned over to local churches in Phuket for follow up. We have 37 to follow up in Thachatchai and 75 in the greater Phuket area.
We need help, and help is coming. Yesterday I received an email from the YWAM Outreach department. A team of four women with a World Race Team from the USA and a Thai translator will be helping us April 6—29. Anosh from India who was on a previous YWAM outreach team with us will be coming to help us also at that time.
The two Saturday Kid's Clubs we hope to restart soon in the schools and our own club at church.
Dana and Cindy