Archive for May 30th, 2010
I took my shoes out of the shoe cabinet one last time. It is going home day.
Two incredible weeks that will forever leave an imprint in my heart and a connection with people I will never forget. For me, the ritual of the shoe cabinet — out each morning, in each evening — sums it up. We’ve done the best we could, given our hearts to our readers, and have in place plans for ongoing contact and also a follow up plan for each of our readers. They will not be dropped. Now it is trust time — trust that those who walk with them next will continue with them on their journey, trust that the Lord will continue to work on their heart, and trust that the relationships we have begun can last across unbelievable cultural differences.
So say a prayer for us as we journey home. This will be a long day with meetings with the new interns who will take over for us. A good bye lunch with my friend and reader Tom. And hard good byes with our Thai and Chinese readers at the zone.
We’re taking the shoes out of the shoe cabinet one last time and will head home with the dust of the Thai streets on our feet and the precious concern for our readers in our hearts.
What a blessing today has been. Five different churches met in one location to worship the Lord. Having been in Chiang Mai 15 years ago when the church was first planted, today was a great victory.
I was also blessed to sit between two of my readers. Candy was on my left reading out of Chinese Bible, listening to a Thai preacher, being interpreted by an English speaker. On the other side was my friend, Tom. We talked about the meaning of the Lord’s Supper, discussed what was being said, and had a good time together. The highlight for many folk was the Gospel choir that Samuel Cook put together to sing a couple of songs. As soon as they got situated, Candy said, “There are 7 nations in that group!” She was excited. As I thought about it, I was not only excited, tears formed in my eyes. It took me a little longer to verify what she had immediately realized: this was Samuel Cook and the 7 Nation Gosepel Choir!
We had people from our Payap Christian Zone from Japan, Singapore, USA, China, Malaysia, Thailand, and Australia!
Two other of my readers prepared a delicious Chinese dinner for me. They had to walk a long way to the store, bought the vegetables and meat, walked back, and then cooked the meal. What a special treat and what a touching kindness. On top of all of that, I had a special sessions with two of my readers. Thankfully I kept my composure, but it wasn’t easy. My how precious people can become to you in a few short weeks.
As soon as I finished my last session, we went to the Night Bizarre, but I visited with Robert Reagan the whole time. Then we had our final evening dinner together with Robert and his wife. This was a great time with great food and great friends. Afterward, we all piled into our room and watched the returning home video and filled out our forms. It’s now 1:00 a.m. and it’s been a long day, so say a prayer for our safe return, but please … please pray even harder that the seeds that we have planted will take root and bear fruit in the precious lives that God has led to us.