Thursday, August 14, 2008

A few pictures around the auditorium during the dedication.

It is hard to explain the wonderful feeling when you see so many people together whom you love and have had a ministry among. We had a small delegation from our former ministry in Nakhon Phanom, including one man whom I had trained for leadership now 78 years old and his family (including 4 sisters) as well as others from there.

We also had many of the fellow Pastors of the Rom Prakhun Fundamental Baptist Church Fellowship. Each one took about 5 minutes to share a word of blessing.

The singing was wonderful and the message from the word was a blessing.

What a wonderful time we have here with our fellow Christians!

This is a picture of just some of the Thai sweets prepared for our 135 or so guests. I am sorry that I cannot report on how good they were as they were gone before I got to one. But we had other treats -- of fellowship and sharing our hearts with all of our guest.

Here, Gail is welcoming the first of our guests at 4 AM in morning. Many battled monsoon rains driving many hundreds of miles to participate in the Church Building and Property dedication.

We praise the Lord that our property presently is completely finished, paid for, and tax free. The only expenses for the facility are our phone and Internet, and electricity (we have a well!).

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

First Report of Dedication Service

Gail and I are just getting home after sending our co-workers to the airport in Udonthani.

Today was the conclusion of truly a wonderful couple of days together with the fellow ABWE Thailand Team members in many ways as they also helped set the warm atmosphere for our Church Building and Property Dedication service. Many of them helped over the past few months in our evangelistic English classes and were a special addition to the event. Rick and Lisa Caynor's two teen age children are age mates with a lot of our English students and now great friends getting together. Truly lifelong friends now saved with a different spiritual status since they first came up and many of these young people who first came to study English here during the days of Evangelistic English classes, were not believers but now are saved, regularly attending our classes and publicly professing their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

As scheduled, we had our regular quarterly team meeting together on the day before the dedication with a great atmosphere of fellowship and encouragement and challenge. Later after adjourning the meeting , we had a relaxing evening, preparing the Church center, sharing meals together including lunch at KFC with not only a 20 percent discount on all the food, but lots of free food from the KFC manager and staff who have studied English with Caynors and us during the Summer ministries here. They were delighted to see the Caynors again at KFC as well. Daily rain for over a month and a heavy rain all night before did not dampen the spirits for our meeting.

Your could say the weather was actually "cooperating." In fact, monsoon rains made it almost cold all day making the meeting in our not air conditioned auditorium very comfortable. Our center was looking as pretty as ever since we have had enough rain to have a American institution, rarely found in Thailand, a green and lush lawn surrounding the Church property.

Our day started early with people trickling in from 4AM to 10 AM for the meeting. We cooked lots of rice soup for breakfast and had lots of good Thai food for lunch with plenty of fruit and Thai snacks donated by guests for the meeting.

Our "Building and Property Dedication" meeting included many presentations of the gospel in our "5 minutes per pastor" blessing time. Afterwards, one gentleman, Mr Kert, who came with BMM missionary, Eddy Weber, hoping to visit family locally, not only trusted the Lord after counseling with Pastor Soontorn from the Rom Prakhun Baptist Church in north Bangkok, but he also made a public profession of faith during the lunch hour. Those who were not saved including parents of English students, neighbors, and other friends, most certainly received a challenge to trust the Lord through these events.

Perhaps this was the ministry here's finest moment as Rev. Arturo C. Inion, the founder of the work here, now doing church planting in Bangkok suburbs and teaching in the Romprakhun Baptist Bible Seminary, brought the message for a group of 127 plus people (we had a dozen who sat outside the building on the entry who were not counted) who joined with the growing church group here. Fellow pastor, of the Suntisuk Baptist Church, Pastor Surasit Samarom, was the meeting leader and was like many others, brought to tears of joy witnessing this special event that the Lord had brought to fruition this day.

Other highlights included a meaningful Thai ballet created and done by our English students as they sang and preformed for the packed out center. The Thai ballet form presented is almost like sign language for the deaf, and not "dancing" at all, but a beautiful visual representation of the message of the song being sung, using hands to communicate, and includes picturesque actions such worship of the Lord on the throne, and bowing in prayer, based upon Psalms 19:1-2, and Revelation 7:15.

I had produced a movie detailing the 9 months of fire recovery and blessing of the Lord concluding with the precious verse, Isaiah 61:3, "To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified."

We have a beautiful place of ministry here now, completed, dedicated, and very useful in the church planting and soul winning ministry we are giving our lives for.