As most of you know, my wife and I served in a “Creative Access” country for 17 months. We love the country and we love the people. After spending ten wonderful days in Cambodia we flew into the capital city where we once lived. In this city you will find over 300 Buddhist temples like the one pictured above. Of course, the vast majority of them are much bigger than the one above. This temple, along with two others, were all within one block from where my wife and I used to live!
On Friday, which was our first full day in the country, I taught a two-hour session on “Characteristics of a Spiritual Leader” for our team and some of the nationals they are seeing raised up as spiritual leaders in the ministry. It was a great time. Immediately after the teaching, we went for a nice meal and some fellowship!
PLEASE PRAY FOR KOUMALY, DARATH AND THE REST OF OUR TEAM IN THIS COUNTRY AS GOD USES THEM IN A DIFFICULT FIELD TO REACH MANY FOR CHRIST!
Saturday and Sunday were busy and blessed. I had the opportunity and privilege to preach four times for a Youth Rally. We had well over 100 young people in attendance with three different churches and one village ministry attending the six services.
PLEASE PRAY THAT THE SEEDS SOWN DURING THIS TWO-DAY YOUTH RALLY WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT – FRUIT THAT REMAINS!
One of the many blessings during the two-day Youth Rally was to be able to spend some time with Lee. He is an Evangelist in the country and has been preaching for 17 years. He has no salary. He has no support. He, his wife, and children live in a shack. He lives by faith and ministers only with the scriptures and the Spirit of God. I was humbled, convicted, and challenged to be able to spend time with him and share the platform with him. Needless to say, it was a very humbling experience!
PLEASE PRAY FOR LEE AND OTHER NATIONAL PREACHERS WHO ARE DOING WHAT THEY CAN, WITH LIMITED RESOURCES, TO MAKE AN IMPACT IN THEIR COUNTRY!
Another one of the many blessings during the Youth Rally was to see how much one young Hmong man (Kong), who celebrated his two-year spiritual birthday during the rally, has grown in the Lord, and to see some of the fruit from a village ministry he started about a year ago. On a weekly basis, he will have over 100 children, teens, and adults attend a Friday evening Bible study. There were probably somewhere between 40-50 of his teens and children at the Youth Rally. From what I understand only one of them was saved before he started the ministry. Not bad for a year’s work!
PLEASE PRAY FOR KONG AND FOR THESE MANY YOUNG PEOPLE AS THEY GROW IN THEIR FAITH. PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THEM TO REACH THEIR OWN PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!
One of the tremendous blessings for my wife and I every time we return to this country to minister, is to be able to spend some time with the men and women we worked with while residing here. Every time I return here I will take a week and teach a few of the local pastors and future pastors that are being trained for the ministry. Monday – Thursday, I spent three hours each day teaching the group below, as well as preaching for them on Thursday evening and Sunday morning.
While preaching for Pastor Kampai and teaching in the Bible Institute, it was a joy to get to know Phat. He is 35-years old and spent 10 years in prison. While in prison he trusted Christ. He is now one of the Bible Institute students, loves Jesus, and is preparing for ministry!
PLEASE PRAY FOR THESE THREE PASTORS, THE YOUNG MEN THEY ARE TRAINING, AND THE CHURCHES THEY ARE LEADING. PRAY THAT THEY WILL MAKE A HUGE IMPACT IN THIS COUNTRY FOR CHRIST AND THE CAUSE OF CHRIST!
Our group from Pacific Baptist Church not only spent a week in Cambodia and had a boatload of ministry opportunities, including teaching in a school, but they arrived in this “Creative Access” nation a few days after my wife and I arrived. It was a blessing for my wife and me to be able to spend a some time with them, not only in Cambodia, but here in this country also. I was thankful to have the opportunity to challenge them on “Awakening to the Needs in this Part of the World,” in a special midweek service for foreigners only here in this country. 🙂 So thankful that my brother Pastor Joe, a few years prior to being hospitalized, got a vision of sending our young people to Southeast Asia every year!
PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE THIS TRIP TO STIR THE HEARTS OF THESE COLLEGE AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS FROM PACIFIC BAPTIST CHURCH!
While the vast majority of our group from Long Beach came straight over from Cambodia to this “Creative Access” nation, seven of our young men, including two of my nephews, first stopped over in Thailand to be with our team there. They were a tremendous blessing to the team located in the northern part of Thailand and working with the Hmong people. Of course, Tom and Sue Sutrick, along with their people, were a great inspiration to our young men.
PLEASE PRAY FOR GOD TO USE THIS TRIP TO THAILAND STIR THE HEARTS OF THESE SEVEN MEN FROM LONG BEACH. PRAY THAT BECAUSE OF THIS TRIP THEY WILL NEVER BE THE SAME!
My wife and I also had the opportunity to be with three different churches here in the capital city. Two of the churches are overseen by dear friends of ours, missionaries from the Philippines, and the other is pastored by a very dear friend, who is a national. I have had the opportunity to preach for him, I am sure, about 15-20 times, along with teach in his Bible Institute countless times over the past five years. What a wonderful week it was! It was such a blessing to be able to spend time with Lao, Hmong, Khmu, Bru, and Filipino people who love the Lord Jesus and are serving Him faithfully in a difficult country. The pictures below are from the three different Sunday services!
PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE ALL OF THESE DIFFERENT MEETINGS TO STIR THESE FOLKS TO REACH THEIR PEOPLE FOR CHRIST!
After one of the Bible Institute sessions, and one of the services, I asked a handful of folks the name of their home villages, how many households or families are in the villages, and how many households “profess to be Christian.” The totals are heartbreaking to say the least: 4,000 families or households. Only 66 “profess to be Christian.” If my calculations are correct that’s about 1.5 percent of the population in these villages that “profess to be Christian.”
While my wife and I were taking a walk, we saw this poster below. My initial thought was simple: We can get Coke, Pepsi, and Christian Aguilera to come to countries like this in the 10/40 Window, why can’t we get missionaries to come?
PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL SEND MEN AND WOMEN TO THIS COUNTRY, AND OTHERS LIKE IT IN THE 10/40 WINDOW, TO BRING THE LIGHT, LIFE, AND LOVE OF JESUS!
My wife and I thank you for your prayers, for your faithful financial support, and your faithful service for our King.
Johnny and Denise Esposito
“In the vast plain to the north I have sometimes seen, in the morning sun, the smoke of a thousand villages where no missionary has ever been.” – MISSIONARY ROBERT MOFFAT