Sorry there hasn’t been much in the way of updates these past few weeks. However that should be ok because many of you have gotten a phone call from us anyways giving you an update on our current situation.
First I am posting a video of something very strange looking a few weeks ago. This is called a spirit house. Most Thai people have these spirit alters built and put somewhere in their yard. The frequently places, drinks, fruit, and incense there to offer things to the spirits for good luck and protection. We know this is Satanic and evil, however here it is common and happens.
Recently one of our neighbors remodeled their home and this old alter was put on the side of the road. Normally they will have monks come and do some ceremony before removing these alters. When I was coming home one day I noticed this aura in the distance. What it was was a swarm of bugs just hovering in front of this alter. No where else, and really there are no reason for them to be there. It was all just a very strange scene but one thing is for sure when you see things like this it really helps you to keep things into perspective about what we are doing.
But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior. Philippians 3:20
For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12
To change gears, some good news is that just in the nick of time we got our paperwork back so we can head out for the long 9 1/2hr drive to Laos first thing next week to try to get our visa. What does add to the frustration of this process is that Thai law requires you to register your address with immigration within 24 hours so we must immediately head to immigration as soon as we get back to register our address. Please pray that everything will go smoothly because it is a very corrupt process. Anything can happen at these borders or embassies in the way of getting rejected or denied at the whim of the hour of the officer you are dealing with.
If everything does go smoothly (Lord willing) we will secure for ourselves a potential 1 year visa. While this is not a 1 year visa it is really a 90 day visa that gets extended 4 times so every 90 days we must go to immigration and get an extension and of course in these situations too you are dealing with the whim of the hour of the immigration officer that could cause you problems or deny you for any reason. Visa’s really are such a terrible thing to deal with here and that is the truth but we know that God has us where he wants us for the time being and that Satan tries to use things like this as a source of frustration and distraction to try to make us ineffective in our service to Christ.
However, we never let these tricks work. While these things are initially frustrating when it is done we cast these cares aside immediately and run the race with joy because ultimately we trust in God. Concerning ministry, for the most part we have been still spending this time with discipleship and preparing things for upcoming partnerships and outreach events. These outreach events have been put on hold temporarily because we have been busy trying to get our visa secured. We have also been trying to continue to look into ways that can possibly help us raise funds, work or business opportunities, securing visa’s, and continuing to pursue our master’s degree at the same time. These are things that are important because they will help ensure our long term vitality to serve overseas as long as God sees us fit to do so.
We would like all our supporters to know that must be wise to never take our current situation and you all as supporters for granted and we don’t. We are especially thankful to the few brothers and sisters that have stepped up, believed in us and what we are doing for Christ and who are making it possible for us to be here and serve Christ. As we spoke to our Pastor just the other day we mentioned to him that it is tough for us to be in a position like this because it forces us to humble ourselves and completely trust in God and the generosity of others to help us and that is not something I am used to. I grew up poor and never had a hand out any form of help from family, friends, or government. I worked my fingers to the bone and when I became a Christian at 21 years of age God started using that same hard work ethic to serve him. Please know truly how much we appreciate any form of support and if you do know us you know that we actually enjoy keeping in touch and actually knowing you all and being brothers and sisters in Christ to run this race together!
In Jesus name, Amen!