Sunday, September 30, 2007

Joint Meeting in New Auditorium

Special Music by the Santisuk Baptist Church in our newly finished auditorium:

This Sunday, September 30th, we held our first joint meeting with our two church planting ministries here at our newly rebuilt home / church property. After church we had a nice meal with our guest ministry team, Ed and Carol Bowman who just arrived here to help us with finishing up some projects as well as an encouragement. They shared some in the morning service and enjoyed the fellowship here. We have plans for a ministry filled month in October, including special classes, English Evangelism with the Romprakhun Baptist Church, with the LIFE camp (an acronym for Learning Intensive Free English) May 15-18, sponsored by the Emanuel Baptist Church in Kalamazoo, Michigan and our fellow missionaries and churches here. Last year over 75 campers trusted the Lord at this camp. This year they are expecting 600+ campers. We will be taking four van loads of campers this year.
A week later, we will be participating in the Worker's retreat with our fellow pastors, missionaries, and Bible school students, this year held in Bangkok.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Our house is now nearly completely painted and we are starting on the garage, storage and apartment building where we slept for two and a half months after the fire. Here is a night picture of the newly painted front.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Soon returning to full ministry in Sawang Dandin

We did not want to take a "break" from our ministry here, but the Lord has given us a good reason to concentrate on other things while rebuilding and recovery. We are almost ready and excited to go back to work unhindered in our church planting ministry here. Here are some highlights from the last year of ministry.

Our work includes, intensive English Evangelism Classes, oversight of two churches in process -- The Sawang Dandin Baptist Church, the Santisuk Baptist Church, Camps, semenars, and special meetings. Though we were very busy in the time of rebuilding, we continued to serve the Lord leading the two churches here, doing evangelism, discipleship, baptizing believers and meeting regularly as church bodies. In the next two months, there is the annual school term break when we participate in the LIFE Camp, hosted by the Bangkhen Baptist Church, Christian Workers camp for the Romphrakhun Fundamental Baptist Church Fellowship, plus lots of team meetings--we are also planning to take a much needed rest for a few days away from home. Pray for our ministry here.

All tiled, painted and ready to use, almost

Here is Gail, gracing the new big "Great" room now finished except the door thresholds (being done today).

The woodgrain look floors will make our Church auditorium a lovely place to serve the Lord.

The outside is still needing cement work, painting and we will now be able to finish the kitchen. Electrical wiring is now done.

He Giveth More Grace
(One of our favorite Hymns-and an encouragment through all these days!)
He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater,
He sendeth more strength when the labors increase;
To added affliction He addeth His mercy;
To multiplied trials, His multiplied peace.

When we have exhausted our store of endurance,
When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,
When we reach the end of our hoarded resources,
Our Father's full giving is only begun.

Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,
Our God ever yearns His resources to share;
Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;
The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.

His love has no limit; His grace has no measure.
His pow'r has no boundary known unto men;
For out of His infinite riches in Jesus,
He giveth, and giveth, and giveth again!
--Annie Johnson Flint

2Corinthians 12:9 "And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."

Monday, September 10, 2007

Painting and laying floor tile

And David said to Solomon his son, Be strong and of good courage, and do it: fear not, nor be dismayed: for the LORD God, even my God, will be with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee, until thou hast finished all the work for the service of the house of the LORD. --1 Chronicles 28:20

One of the things that amazes me each day is the fact that we are not just building for ourselves, but this will be a place of blessing for the Thai people here. Many have come to this location to trust the Lord since we have lived here. We believe God will continue to use this place as his "House" for many years to come.

Each day, we get a little more done--it is so encouraging. We are of course tired out from four months of living in the middle of a building project. That is, we have had first hand experience at removal of a burnt out upstairs, eliminating the rubble, inital planning, aquiring help to rebuild, planning and building, and trying to balance a budget and purchasing of supplies and materials at a fair price. Some things had to be planned and "re-planned" as we went.

We had an idea in our minds from the start of what we wanted the building to look like -- but we have had to make lot of changes from then up until now. We were, blessed by the prayers of the Lord's people, to have the Lord supplying, workers willing and able to make the house/future Sawang Dandin Baptist Church, exactly the way we wanted it. The Lord has supplied the funds in amazing ways--His providence! He has strengthened us when we thought we would never make it. God has blessed the work.

Today more interior work was done: Here is our men laying floor tiles and painting the walls. One of my best friends and an age mate here, Mr. Bate (picture at the top of the Blog) has arranged my workers for me, including his son (painting on left), Bate (spackling a window edge), Mr. Phai (a master skilled worker, doing the tile down the middle first) and Phai's brother, Wong.

Our electrical is nearly done, thanks to a young man who has been under our ministry for many years, Matt. (Eating dinner with us in this picture). Matt has done a wonderful job. I also helped him learn a few tricks he never knew about such as three way switches, and so on.

Gail now has her office set up. Here she manages the books. She not only handles record keeping for our team, but for other ministries here in Thailand. Her new desk seems to fit her nook just right. Her old desk was damaged by two break ins before the fire and the fire and water of the fire trucks finished it off.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

The Great Room

This is a picture of the "Great Room" as Gail likes to call it. It now has a lovely suspended ceiling with wooden beams (covering steel girders used in construction). From the ceiling, we suspended decorative fans with lamps provided for by my friends of the Hazel Park Amateur Radio Club in Hazel Park, Michigan. My lovely wife is sitting on our old furniture (we need to replace this, we know!) with two dozen roses given to her today. Soon we will tile the floors with woodgrain ceramic flooring. One of our young men here from our Sawang Dandin Baptist Church is doing an excellent job on our electrical wiring. There is still a lot of little things to do. But we feel we can see the "light" at the end of the tunnel.