Monday, July 16, 2012

In the Middle

We've had a very busy last few days. In preparation for a visit to an Ahka village on Saturday and Sunday, we had to hand wash our laundry in advance, pack an overnight bag, prepare all our ministry supplies, AND pack all our remaining luggage for relocation (To save money, we vacated our rooms while we were gone. It doesn't make much sense but we saved the money.) The visit to the village involved a one and half hour drive up windy mountain roads. 

At the Ahka village, we had a good time playing with the kids (Kids just love balloon animals.) On Saturday night, Kevin gave his testimony, we performed our "Lamb of God" mine, and Alisa–with the help of others–taught "Making Melodies" and "Deep, Deep." On Sunday morning, during the Ahka worship service, Esther gave her testimony (in Mandarin!) and we prayed for the sick. Kevin, Caleb, John and our missionary, Peter, got to sleep on the floor of an Ahka hut under mosquito netting. What an adventure!—we tossed and turned all night. 

The church was built on a side of the mountain. In fact one wall of the church IS the side of the mountain. When the rain came during the middle of our Saturday night youth meeting, water ran down the side of the interior wall. These are the steps leading to the church. >>>

Here's a long, drawn out metaphor: At the village, there was a tremendously steep hill between the church and the village where we stayed overnight. On one side of the hill it was about a 50-degree grade, and we had to climb this hill to get to the church. On Saturday night, it was raining when we had to walk to church—steep, muddy and slippery. On Sunday it was about 85-degrees (F) and humid when we had to make this hike—still steep, and hot. Along the way there was an intersection, and it was here we stopped to catch our breath. It was only the halfway point. We still had another 50-yards to go. 

Entering our second week in Thailand, we still have an uphill climb, and there's still work ahead of us. The excitement of being in Thailand and the initial surge of energy have lowered. The heat and humidity of summer monsoon season have become irritating. We return to the school for our second round. We're halfway. We are only in the middle. But as we eventually made it to the summit of that hill—a bit weary and worn—we know that God will deliver us through the rest of this week. He's been answering a LOT of prayers, and we're frequently seeing how he's creating situations that encourage and bless us. Though decisions are hard to come by, many students are very receptive and open to hear the great news of Jesus Christ. 

Please keep praying for us. Kup koon krup. 

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