International Ministries

Chocolate or Caramel

June 1, 2014 Journal
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Dear Partners in Ministry,


Greetings from a stormy Ban Luang.  The summer storms are causing fantastic sound and light shows, and we have had a couple of hail storms.  Storms usually bring power outages—grrh!


Chocolate or caramel?

I never was very good with choices and always wanted everything. Last month was like that.  Thai New Year, Anna’s farewell, and then Easter all seemed to merge together. How do we teach? How do we celebrate? 

Thai New Year is a big time for celebrations. The government declares three days of national holidays, and in the north we party for nine. At the same time it was Easter for the two house churches here in Ban Luang, it was their first Easter, their first time to celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus.   And, yes, it was Anna’s last week.

We had parties, teaching, communion, water pouring and string tying, and somehow it was all very meaningful.  We honored Jesus, we honored Anna, and we gave honor to local customs, modifying some, but we were seen to do the right thing culturally.


He is Risen and we are excited!

We are continuing with the post Easter stories by popular request.  These stories have captured people’s imagination, and they want to hear more.  We were a little disappointed when we turned up at a house group recently and found only two people there.  But then we discovered that three of the four missing attendees were at the hospital.  They had planned to be at church, but circumstances had them at the hospital.  We visited and shared again the message of the resurrection with them.  So in the end it turned out well.


Lung Paan and his wife Mae Suepun are people who came to know Jesus’ compassion through Anna’s ministry.  Lung Paan used to wear amulets for protection but now relies on Jesus.  He has a number of health issues but constantly talks about the peace he has in Jesus.  His wife Mae Suepun is equally enthusiastic.  They enjoy sharing the stories of Jesus in their home group.


Good news, bad news

Larry has been granted a permanent residence visa for Australia, making it possible for us to move to Australia at the end of August as planned.  The bad news is he has to activate the visa before our planned date. The good news is he got a really cheap special so will make a short trip this month. I hope his arms don’t get tired from flapping.  J


Now we face the not-so-happy task of packing up our life of 28+ years in Thailand.  Even though we have been involved in many parts of Thailand, we still seem to have accumulated a lot of stuff.  We plan to go through a few cupboards and drawers each week to reduce the panic at the end.  Larry keeps an eye out at these times, retrieving stuff from the recycle bin. The first things to be packed are our photo albums preserving precious memories of our Bangkok and Chiang Rai days.  The Ban Luang era is digital and a lot easier and cheaper to ship.   J


Out with the old and in with the new.

Petina will arrive this weekend.  After just two months of language and cultural acquisition she is making her move to Ban Luang.  We have set up a language tutor for her, and even though she will also teach English for a few hours a week, her main task will be to learn language and culture.


Again we say thank you for your prayers and support as we see Jesus proclaimed.


In Christ love,


Larry and Jan

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