The picture above is the famous Mekong River. I took this picture on our recent trip to the “Creative Access” nation that my wife and I lived and served in for 17 months. We lived about 300 yards from the river.
From China to Vietnam, the Mekong River is the lifeblood of Southeast Asia. It flows through six different countries: China’s Yunnan Province (47 million people), Myanmar (54 million people), Thailand (68 million people), Laos (7 million people), Cambodia (15 million people), and Vietnam (95 million people). That’s just under 290 million people that can be found in these five countries and China’s Yunnan Province.
For nearly five years now, my wife and I have lived and served in three of these countries (China, Cambodia, and Laos), we have also had the opportunity to assist our team in Thailand on a few occasions (I will be there at the end of this month), and we have had the opportunity, on one occasion, to minister in Myanmar. Other than Vietnam, none of these countries have more than five percent of their population professing to be “Christian.” Vietnam has nine percent professing to be “Christian,” but most of those would be Catholic. There’s a great need for more laborers in these countries.
PLEASE PRAY THAT THE LORD OF THE HARVEST WILL SEND MORE LABORERS TO THIS PART OF THE WORLD!
Near the end of December, my wife and I travelled to the “Creative Access” nation where we served our first 17 months in Asia. We were there for a week. Our primary purpose for being there was to meet with our team and discuss the possibility of our relocating there for a season to assist with discipling young leaders, possibly starting a Bible Institute/Ministry Training Center, and a few other tasks that would enable the ministry to move forward, reach more people, and nurture the folks they have. Our secondary purpose for going was to attend the wedding of two of our young people. It was a great wedding too, even if a few cows tried to “crash the party.” 🙂
WE COVET YOUR PRAYERS ON THIS POSSIBLE MOVE!
While there, my wife and I celebrated my birthday, Christmas, and our Anniversary. Our team even surprised us with a Birthday/Anniversary Celebration during a Christmas Eve celebration for the church family!
As always, while in this country, I had the privilege and joy to speak for our team, as well as for another church that I have been preaching at for seven years (even prior to surrendering to go to the mission field). My wife and I also treated the factory workers of this church family to an early Christmas dinner – Pizza!
PLEASE PRAY FOR THE VARIOUS MINISTRIES IN THIS CREATIVE ACCESS NATION AND THAT THE SEEDS THAT WERE SOWN WILL BRING FORTH FRUIT!
As I mentioned in our previous update, the weather here has been cold, but the work of God and the fellowship of His people has been warm and sweet. It is such a joy to be able a part of what God is doing here-even if it may only be for a short season.
My wife and I love these folks and I am enjoying meeting with a few of the men on a one-to-one basis weekly, to be able to teach a handful of the men every Tuesday, to occasionally preach for our main services (we are having the Nationals do 75 percent of the preaching), to teach the teens a couple times a month, visit the sick and dying, and have folks (saved and unsaved) over our place on a regular basis. In fact, we overdid it this past week. We had folks over five-of-seven days. My wife is a super blessing! 🙂
PLEASE PRAY THAT GOD WILL USE OUR MINISTRY HERE TO MAKE AN IMPACT IN THIS CITY OF SEVEN MILLION PEOPLE, PROVINCE OF 47 MILLION PEOPLE, COUNTRY OF 1.4 BILLION PEOPLE, AND EVENTUALLY AROUND THE WORLD!
A FEW ADDITIONAL PRAYER REQUESTS:
- Pray for God’s presence, power, provision, and protection in our lives.
- Pray for Peng Li Mai who has terminal cancer
- Pray for God to bless our six present house groups (potential future churches).
- Pray for those in leadership here at the church as we are beginning to train our folks including our leaders to disciple others.
- Pray for Zhang Lun, Li, Richard, Andy, Peter, and Liu Hong (and their wives), as God continues to mold them into the men and “leaders” that He wants them to be here in China.
- Pray for a few of our single young ladies (Cubie, Lily, Aslyn, and Christine).
- Pray that God will help us to reach more teens and faithfully disciple the teens we have at the moment.
- Pray for Maggie and Hu Ying’s salvation!
- Please pray for our teams in Laos, Cambodia, and Thailand.
- Pray for my upcoming trip Thailand (end of January) to be with our team for a time of ministry and fellowship.
- Pray for Dick and Trish Baucum to have a fruitful furlough.
- Pray for our ministry in Laos, as we consider assisting them in developing a discipleship ministry and culture and starting a Bible Institute.
Denise and I want to thank you for your continual and consistent prayer and financial support. We also want to thank many of you for taking the time to read our update and praying for the specific needs. We love and thank God for you all!
“The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions. The nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we become.” – Missionary Henry Martyn