Tuesday, November 1, 2011

4 weeks to go!

Well, how time flies!
Only 4 weeks now until I return to Thailand.
I'm flying via Bangkok for the first time and the recent flooding isn't really inspiring exploration of the city, but I am trusting all will be receeded by the time we arrive.

Plans in Chiang Mai are coming together and the opportunities to meet with organisations and individuals who have committed to a similar wok to what I want to be doing are numerous.

I'm really excited that when we visit Mae Sot this time, I get to go into the refugee camps and visit Partners' children's homes to help run Christmas Parties. What a joyous experience to share in for the children living in such desperate circumstances.
I'm praying that the light of Christ might shine as we attempt to bless and encourage these young displaced children.

It's going to be an exciting countdown as I complete studies for the year and teach my final days over the coming weeks.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Time for another visit...

Well, the excitement is building as I prepare for another trip to Thailand.
This time with a friend in tow - Theresa, a budding photographer and filmmaker from my church. It'll be great to find creative ways for her to serve while we're there.

This trip is shorter than last time, but is aimed at developing my network in the Chiang Mai region. I have been enjoying the process of pursuing contacts advised to me and discussing with them how we might be able to collaborate while I'm there. It's so phenomenal to have the opportunity to hear the stories of people who have spent years doing what I desire to do - what a privilege to learn from the pros!

I'm also looking forward to meeting up with friends I made on my last trip, particularly the Thai staff at both Mountainview and Partners. They have become like family to me and I can't wait to spend time with them again. I am particularly looking forward to seeing one friend, John, who was fairly young in his Christian faith when I last visited. I'm excited to see how he's grown these past 9 months and have the opportunity to encourage him.

Once again God's provision has been so evident as I was given the finances to cover my flights - thankyou Lord! It is only by the generosity of others that it is even possible for me to be doing the work I feel called to. I am so thankful that I am surrounded by people who believe in me and the cause of Christ.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Missions Weekend

This past weekend my church hosted a cross-cultural mission focus weekend. It was such a special time of connecting with other mission minded people and raising awareness of the numerous acts of service that are happening with Cornerstone people at the helm.

On Saturday night, all of the current and future missionaries gathered together to share in a meal. I love that when you ask such multi-cultural people to bring a dish it turns into a feast for the senses and the stomach! There was much wonderful fellowship over the meal and we spent time praying over each others ministries and callings. I was so excited to hear the encouraging stories of what God is allowing to happen in some challenging places.

On Sunday morning the focus of our church service was on missions again. My beautiful church community rallied bakers, coffee-makers and cake-sellers to pprovide for and man stalls after the service where each of the missionaries were able to share about their work and raise some much-needed funds int he process. The generosity of my congregation was simply overwhelming! It made me so proud to be part of a church that believes in the work we are doing.

I was very grateful to make numerous sales of jewellery that was made by Burmese former-prostitutes who were invited out of a dark industry and given an opportunity at a fair skill and wage.

I also received two very specific words of encouragement which really helped me to find peace in the challenge I have been facing of late. Isn't it great when you get to see God's ultimate control over difficult circumstances?

I look forward to doing it all again sometime soon.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Last Friday night I had the privilege of talking to the teens at FUSION youth group on the topic of Global Poverty. I felt felt so under-equipped for the task, but they were so keen to hear what I had to share that it didn't seem to matter.

What I said was nothing profound. In fact I lost track on my notes and ended up scrapping them altogether!
What was really encouraging and inspiring was to see a bunch of 12 to 17 year olds listen, connect in small groups, and join back together to share what they had learnt. Some of the responses were somewhat typical.. "when I'm rich I'll give money to charity" whilst others were simply humbling and sincere... "I want to change my attitude about my life and how privileged I am", or "the best thing I can do with what I've got is to intentionally and passionately pray".

These kids have got it. If every person shaped an attitude of compassion and world-awareness as a child, then our furture would be one of great hope.

These kids make me believe for a bright future for those less fortunate.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

This week has been interesting as I've come across a number of seeming 'roadblocks' that have discouraged me but at the same time somehow inspired me to pursue what God has put on my heart with even greater vigour.

But better than this, I have received blessings in the form of funds for my flights (Thank you Lord for grandfathers!) and the possibility of a young, eager travel companion named Theresa who is super keen to explore the work happening in this region of the world.

I have tried not to let the difficult issues get me down, but would apprecite prayer that God would open my ears to hear what I need to and would provide a way where there seems to be blockages.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

As I go about everyday life, getting caught up in college assignment word counts and primary school playground duties, I often find it challenging to know what to blog.

Some things seems so insignificant, but for me they are definitely part of the amazing journey I am on.

So my aim over the next 18 months as I study, save, and prepare my heart for fulltime service is to more successfully share the non-so-significant parts of my journey.

Feel free to journey with me and hopefully we can learn together!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves;
defend the rights of those who have nothing.
Speak up and judge fairly,
and defend the rights of the poor and needy."

Proverbs 31:8-9