The Weight of the Mission (December 2021)
I was reminded today of how weighty the mission here in Thailand is and how great of an opportunity we have to reach people with the gospel who are truly "far from God." Liz and I have been working at the international school here in Chiang Rai part time. I have been filling in for two Bible classes this month because a high school teacher resigned, and the Bible teacher needed to sub for a few of his classes, leaving me to sub for him. Today, I did a Christmas lesson with the sixth graders and showed them the video below titled "When Santa Learned the Gospel."
The conversation that followed reminded me of the parable of the seeds and the soil. There were some kids who were so uninterested in the video that I had to put pressure on them just to answer any questions. But there were a few other kids, all Northern Thai (a people group that is still considered "unreached" based on the fact that less than 2% of them are Christians) who were really engaged and interested in what the video was communicating about the gospel. Some of these kids told me that their families don't celebrate Christmas at all, but here they were reading about the birth of the incarnate Christ, and watching a video clearly explaining the difference between works-based religion and the gospel. It was hard for me not to tear up as I watched this short video with the class and prayed for them, especially since that was around the age that I was converted.
This evening, we also had our first Bible study with Noon. If you have followed us over the years, you have probably heard her story. She came down to Bangkok and helped us during her school break when Liz was pregnant in her third trimester and we were both working at the international school there full-time. She asked us if we could start doing a Bible study once we got back to Chiang Rai and we were just able to start today.
We sang a few songs and I taught a Bible lesson. I am weird, in that the smaller the group, the more uncomfortable I feel teaching. I also hadn't taught using Thai in over a year (a year in which I lost a few brain cells because of chemo too), so it wasn't the most smooth I've ever spoken, but I believe God used it to encourage our hearts. Noon asked me to teach about why bad things happen, so we are doing a 3-part lesson: God's Original Design and the Effects of the Fall, How Jesus is Building His Kingdom Now, and What Heaven Will Look Like When God Brings Full Restoration.
I have to admit that I often struggle with the feeling that I'm not doing enough. I feel like I should be able to finish a graduate degree, lead a weekly Bible study, start multiple YouTube channels, be an online entrepreneur, write a book, be a present dad to a 2 year old, be a great husband, spend time doing evangelism, and study multiple languages all at the same time. God has to keep reminding me that doing a few things well is better than trying to do everything halfheartedly.
Better one handful with tranquillity than two handfuls with toil and chasing after the wind. (Ecclesiastes 4:6)
Today was a reminder for me that God can use the little I am capable of giving him to bear eternal fruit.
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