International Ministries

She Has Chosen What Is Better

March 20, 2015 Journal
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“My dear Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed.  Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”  -Luke 10:41-42 


It was a day of celebration from beginning to end. A group of 5 were busy in the kitchen, preparing lunch for 120.  Flower arrangements flanked the stage.  Family and friends, pastors and board members waited patiently.  As morning sunshine broke through the haze, the joyful worship songs began.  The graduates were trying to sit still, but their skittish excitement couldn’t be contained. They wore neatly ironed school uniforms, while other participants were decked in tribal array for the occasion.  And graduation went off beautifully.  The speaker gave an inspiring message. Enthusiastic prayers were offered.  Videos of gratitude prepared by each graduate were shown while she hid an embarrassed smile behind her program at seeing her face up on the screen… larger than life! 18 girls graduated from high school this year and 17 of them will continue on to university on a New Life Center scholarship.  They will be majoring in programs such as hotel and tourism, marketing, Chinese language and Bible.  There were also 6 associate’s degree graduates and 15 university graduates in attendance.   Graduation is quite an achievement for any young person, but particularly for tribal minority girls who have endured what they have in their lives.

After graduation, we enjoyed lunch together – rice with chicken and potato curry, clear noodle salad with bologna, cilantro, and veg, and clear soup with pork, celery leaves, and egg tofu.  After we bid our guests farewell, the staff and residents piled into 6 vehicles and went out to the park for the afternoon.  Every seat in my new van was taken and towels were thrown in the back.

 The Op Khan National Park is a forested area with a natural gorge.  A clean stream runs through it, making for the perfect swimming hole.  First in the order of service was the baptism.  What a joy it was to baptize 8 precious girls who had made a commitment to follow Jesus!  After the baptism, the girls sang while I changed into dry clothes.  Then I gave a short devotional teaching on the meaning of baptism, and we celebrated communion together.  After worship, we ate fresh banana bread the girls had made.  Then we all ran down and jumped in the cool stream to splash and play!  We even made a conga line in the water!  I can’t imagine a more perfect day.  

?The resilience of our New Life Center girls never ceases to inspire me.Despite tremendous social and family pressure to abandon their studies and abandon Jesus, the young women we work with have chosen “what is better”.  And because of that courageous choice, the world will be a different place for them than it was for their mothers and grandmothers.  The cycle of poverty, abuse, and exploitation has been broken, impacting generations to come! 

Thank you for your prayers and financial support that enable me to be part of God’s life-changing ministry in Thailand!   Love, Kit