Prayer Letter - January 2021
Updated: Jan 17, 2021
สวัสดีปีใหม่ (Sa wat dee pee mai) Happy New Year!
The Lord has brought us through another year and we are looking forward to what He has for us in 2021.
Earlier this week I journeyed through the mountains to speak to the church in Faa Suai (“Beautiful Sky.”) This LiSu church has been without a pastor for two years. It is a blessing to see their faithfulness in spite of the lack of pastoral leadership and oversight. They have been meeting on the large, covered, dirt porch
at the village leader’s house. A couple of the hill tribe preachers have been making monthly trips over to preach the Word to these dear brethren. I was surprised to see a crowd of about 50 people there on Wednesday. Christians from several other churches came to the service and fellowship. They welcomed us with such warmth. It was a good time thanking the Lord for the blessings of this past year and committing to Him this coming year.
December 20th was a very special day. We had a service here in the morning in English. Then in the early afternoon we had a Gospel service with 4 lost Thai adults in attendance. They have been attending for several months and are very attentive. Then in the evening I had the privilege of preaching to the “Iglesia Bautista de la Gracia”. This is a Sovereign Grace Independent Baptist church in Ferrol, Spain. Brother Igor Dovzhyk, a missionary from the Ukraine, is the pastor there. What a joy to be with these dear brethren. It seemed as if we were truly together instead of half a world apart, connected only by Internet. Each of the members greeted me and asked questions about our ministry here. Then we sang hymns (in Spanish of course) and then I preached on “The Believer’s Wealth in the Person of Christ” with Brother Igor interpreting for me.
I have been having a lot of repairs on the 2004 and 2013 Nissan pickups lately. This will show up on the next two financial reports. That is not surprising considering where we go and the kinds of roads on which we travel. But we are very thankful they have been repairable and get us where we need to go. My philosophy about vehicles: don’t get rid of old friends until we have to bury them. “Drive them until they die.” And Susan and I pray the same for ourselves, “Let us serve our Master until we die.” I also was able to renew my car and motorcycle licenses this month. It was a little bit of a shock to see that they were both good until my 75th birthday. A long way off, I thought. Wow, that is in just a little over 5 years. Time flies! We are thankful to the Lord and to you who support us so we can have the transportation we need for the work.
I yearn to be back with the brethren in Myanmar. According to their communication to me, it is mutual. Since the Covid situation we have not been able to teach there. They are continuing to reach out with the Gospel to new areas even in this time of great crisis. They also have established a Preachers’ Training there with some of the teachers using notes from the series I taught in our Mae Ai Preachers’ Training.
Many of our open doors here in Mae Ai to proclaim the glorious Gospel have come through our Saturday children’s Bible class (like Sunday School) and through the evening English classes for the neighborhood. We have had between 25 and 35 children every week. It is such a privilege to minister the glorious Gospel to these dear little ones. Susan’s evening English classes also have given opportunity to proclaim the Gospel. One of the families attending on Sundays came from there.
The Lord willing, we will be having a Preachers’ Training one of the latter weeks of January. I am looking forward to seeing so many of the preachers at one time again. We now fellowship with 19 churches among the LaHu, LiSu and A’kha tribes. Please continue to pray for these brethren and for our outreach to the Thai, as well as to the Hill Tribes.
Thank you again for your prayers and your continued financial support. May the Lord bless you!
For Christ count everything but loss…