I will try to hit on just a few things but it might end up a long read.
As I write the sun is up and it is warming up the day. Been cold and windy here the last few weeks. Cold for us anyway. Swimming weather for Minnesotans.
I was up at 4 this morning fighting with a big pest. He even charged me once to show me who was the boss and after I had just given him a bunch of banana’s. I finally had to throw a banger at him to get him to mind. He walked off into the forest and started eating vines instead of looking around our kitchen for food. He has been causing a lot of trouble around here lately. I think it is time for that big elephant to move on.
Thanks to many people out in the northeastern part of the states I have a truck that is way too nice. Yes too nice. I will try to explain my heart. I was looking for a good truck with NOT a lot of whistles and bells. I did not need or want them. To be honest I have realized I always looked down on the missionaries that drive around in top of the line vehicles. God is humbling me. I wanted a stick to save fuel. When searching the want ads I by passed the automatics. I did want electric windows. I usually drive with the windows open to save on air conditioning and fuel. During the rainy season I am constantly reaching across to the passenger widow to roll it up then down again when the rain stops. Dangerous! I am cold blooded so the heat, if not unbearable on the open road is ok. I needed low miles because of the huge amount of driving we do. The old truck has 435,000 miles on it and still going. The new one has 43,000miles on it, which is like new for a diesel. So as I am searching for a truck for many days I kept tabs open in my computer so I could bounce around and compare them. The one that caught my eye was up in Chiang Mai 12 hours away. I was planning to fly up there, buy it, then drive home. In the meantime I made an appointment to see another vehicle on my list. Down in Pattaya a mere 2 ½ hours away. Phimpha had been praying about my choices and she said I needed to buy the one in Pattaya and it was from the Holy Spirit. I hate when she does that. It takes away all my choices. I cannot go against God. But then the night before I went down I was looking at it again and seen it was an automatic. Now I was really confused. How did I miss that after looking at it several times over the course of many days? I told her I did not want an automatic. The next day she came back with; “Well God is telling us to get it.” So I went down to look as I had talked with the man in length on the phone. We had built a small friendship.
Power windows good, power locks ok, power mirrors, hatch cover over the box that is part electric. Dark color I did not want as it shows dirt. I have better things to do than wash it a lot. LCD screen for Maps. Back up camera. And worst of all automatic transmission. I kept shaking my head when I seen it and after a while he said what does that mean you do not like it. I said no it is very good, just way too much for me in accessories. We went and sat down for a coffee. I was not even wanting to test drive it. After an hour there he said at least try it you came all this way. So I drove it. Very comfortable but seriously not wanting it.
After the test drive we sat in it and just talked. I left telling him I would look at the one in Chiang Mai before making a decision. Oh! And the price he had on it was undervalued quite a bit. He did not realize it was too cheap until after he had posted it. He said many had wanted it then he told me the problem. He had to wait another week till his partner came back from England to sign over the title. I went home that day and the next day talked to Phimpha about it. She said I was just sitting here before you walked up and God told me again to take it. Now I had no choice. God had told me many times to buy what I did not want, so I called the owner and told him we would take it and sent him a deposit. We made an appointment with him and his wife and Phimpha and I went down to see if we were comfortable to pay for something without a title yet. We met at his home and after a few minutes Phimpha said we would take it today and pay him in full. So did God want us to have that truck just to humble me. I do not know yet. The saga is still unfolding. God works for the good of All. He cares not what vehicle I have He looks at how to save lost souls.
As I was driving home and wondered what this button was for I pushed it and the side mirrors folded in. I laughed so hard then began to cry. I said God, what are you doing getting me something I am so embarrassed to own. It is too nice for me. But, the backup camera is great so I do not have to worry about backing over a kid or toys. The LCD screen is good so I do not have to keep grabbing my phone for Google Maps. The radio works. I need to get some Christian music on it. The electric mirrors are nice because Thai’s are short and they are never right for me. It has the biggest back seat for the model so I can remove it to get a lot of rice in there.
I did go north to deliver rice the next week. Loaded 700 kilos of rice inside the cab and it was not full yet. It drives so nice. I did 16 hours the first day and was still not that tired. It is a real pleasure to drive.
But this is the picture I get that is killing me. I see a man in a very expensive car drive up to a homeless man and with a very expensive suit on, get out and hand the homeless person a 10 dollar bill. How am I supposed to deliver rice and things to the poor in a luxury truck? I am still processing that.
A New School
We have opened a school just across the border in Cambodia. It is in the area of Poipet. It is a border town with a lot of poor and children begging on the streets. They surround anyone crossing into Cambodia from Thailand. We currently have 39 kids and 12 of them are the street kids that beg. We do not charge the kids to come to school so I am sure the numbers will grow beyond the size of the small school. The school is certified thanks to a man named Chi Sanit. He has a master’s degree and did all the paperwork for certification and built the rooms for the school. He teaches in a bible college but did not have the funds to hire teachers and open the school. That is where we come in. We currently have two teachers hired at 5,000 baht each, a month ($143.00) and we pay for utilities. It is only a half day school so as yet we do not feed them. We want to have the homeless children stay at the school but we need to divide the one room because the teachers are not from the area and sleep there as well. We also need more school items but it is a work in progress. We opened it on faith. We have no idea how we can possibly keep it going but we know it is from God so we stepped out on faith as always. We lent money from friends the last two months to keep it going. If anyone has a burden and would like to commit to helping with it lets us know. Lately is has been a huge struggle just for the ministry we currently work. Please keep it in Prayer. We know God is able and wants to bless His children by giving all of us a chance to be a blessing to others.
We have another big commitment coming up in 3 weeks. It involves working as part of a team to host a Christian music festival in the center of Pattaya. The sex capital of Thailand. They have been doing it low key for 10 years now. This year they asked Phimpha to join and help them as they have been so overwhelmed yet have such a burden from God to continue with it. Phimpha prayed about the many conferences and meetings that we are a part of or host ourselves and she was counting the number of people reached or saved. God said something like this. I do not count the souls in relationship to money spent. It is not important. What is important is even one person giving their life to me. He said He does not look at things as we do. His way is much higher than ours and we are to just keep doing what He calls us to do. He will do His part we do what He tells us to do.
End of discussion. It is not good to argue with God.
So our part is to pick up the musicians at the airport that are arriving from around the world and to put them up for free at a hotel for the time they are here. Yea right! Good one God. You need to make it happen. Pray for us people. They start arriving on the 16th of March. Thank God He gave me a good truck for it. Now I just need fuel and a place for them to sleep.
The one picture is from a drone (Courtesy of Jon Wood and crew) and those of you who have been here will recognize the place.
The two young ladies are the teachers. Keep them in prayer.
Prayers for just about everything today. From strength, to safety, to knowledge, to endurance. You name it we can use it. Let the Holy Spirit lead.
Your Friends in Christ