March – As February drew to a close, we celebrated the Thai staff trainee graduation, a time in whcih all first-year staff “graduate” into full-time staff, having completed their year of training, before leaving Bangkok yet again for a wedding in southern Thailand. Paul, an Australian friend of ours who is also serving with CCC, married Chaa, a Thai national staff. The wedding was in Songkhla, Thailand. We made the 12-hour trip over two days for the wedding and then spent three full days on beautiful Ko Lipe, an island off the western coast on Thailand in the Andaman Sea. The waters were crystal clear and it proved to be a great time for snorkeling, exploring, and relaxing for us after a busy time of travels and conferences.
February – The middle of February brought the close of the semester for the Thailand universities and the beginning of six weeks vacation for the students before the summer term. For the Thailand Stint team, we began a series of conferences and travels, before preparing for campus again in April. The guys on our team went along with the Thai staff guys on a weekend fishing trip in the gulf of Thailand after a prayer camp during early February. After our fishing trip, we headed to Pattaya, Thailand for the East Asia Campus Crusade for Christ Staff Conference. This was an amazing gathering of CCC staff from many countries such as South Korea, Mongolia, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the really big East Asian country that CCC doesn’t say the name of, and of course, Thailand. There were more than 2,500 staff on hand, with the large majority being national staff from each of these countries. It was so encouraging to hear the reports of what God is doing throughout East Asia. I was truly blown away by the stories of His working in the big communist East Asian country. There are more masses of people trusting Christ for salvation there than at any other time at any other place in the history of the world! It is awesome to hear about how God has worked through allowing communist thought to create a spiritual hunger in people that can only be satisfied in Him. We left this conference praising Him for what He is doing in East Asia. We also joined with the Thailand National Staff Conference during February. It was a time of praising God for what He has been doing as well, as the growth of the church in Thailand over the last 5-7 years has been some of the biggest in the almost two-hundred years that the gospel has been in Thailand. We also discussed vision for the future of Thailand, and what we believe God’s vision to be. We had a lot of fun with our Thai staff friends, as the Thai nature is one of constant fun, joking, and laughter.
January – This was our last full month on campus before the end of the semester in mid-February. We held an evangelistic english class at Kasetsart University. It was a week-long event in which we invited students from all over campus to freely attend. Students love opportunities to practice english, so once again the Lord used our natural language to build bridges in relationships with students. We spent the week with them in class and then had an english party at the conclusion of the week. We shared the gospel with students there at the party and made plans to contact them again once the summer term begins in April.
March – As I post this, (March16th), we are preparing to leave for Vietnam to renew our Thai visas. This is likely the best country for us to visit with the possible war causing bad feelings towards Americans in neighboring Muslim areas such as Malaysia. Also, Cambodia has had major riots against Thailand, such as burning down the Thai embassy in Cambodia’s capital. So, Vietnam is our choice. Pray that there would be no trouble for us in obtaining a new Thailand visa. Also, pray that we would have a safe and healthy trip. Pray for our students, as they prepare to begin summer school soon. Trust God with us that He is keeping them firmly in His grasp and growing them and working in their lives according to His plan. Pray that we would have a good transition back into the campus life after our return from Vietnam and be able to meet up again with our disciples, and those other students who have shown evidence of God’s working in their lives in bringing them closer to receiving His free gift of salvation. Also, Jordan will be leaving for America in less than one month. Pray for him as he winds down and wraps up his two years here in Thailand. He will be joining CCC staff in America this summer, and thus will need to go back a little sooner than the rest of us.