Thank you for praying for us out here in Southeast Asia. The Lord has blessed tremendously! The last two months have brought many salvations, new visitors, baptisms, and a wonderful spirit throughout the services. Each week people accept Jesus as we go soul winning on three different days of the week, plus Sundays. Follow-up visits are made, and Scriptures are given out. Over the course of the last seven weeks, we have seen more adults, more children, and, most recently, more bilingual Burmese families attend. Karen, Thai, and Burmese are the prominent nationalities in our area.
For International Baptist Church Nong Phlap, we have two services each Sunday, a discipleship study each Tuesday, along with a Wednesday night service. Because of the work schedules of our church members, we see different groups attend services on the days they are able to attend. The church will often see a weekly total attendance in excess of 130 different people coming to learn and grow. Some come to all four services and others less than that. Bro. Pong and Bro. Star have been extremely faithful to the work of God, never missing a service or a scheduled preaching time since our June 7 launch. Together we put pressure on ourselves to do things right as a young church, but we have a lot of fun serving the Lord together, working, praying, and seeing God answer prayers. We had a special day at the end of September, preparing for possible bigger days in the future. That bigger day in the future came on December 20, 2020.
We had been praying and planning for several weeks leading into the Christmas service. Decisions were made that we would have an all-day event for our people, including activities for both adults and children, two different meals, and three different service times. Bro. Pong, Bro. Star, and I would each preach a service. A third bay was rented for the day, and land was cleared for activities behind the church. Through the sacrificial giving of our people, generous quantities of food and gifts were purchased. Going into the final week before December 20, we hoped and prayed for at least 200 different people on that day. Wow! Our asking and expectations were much lower than what the Lord had in mind. There was a total of 381 individual people who attended the services throughout the day. Praise the Lord!
As an added bonus, the weather was just perfect, much cooler than normal. We were able to seat people outside, on the stairs, upstairs, anywhere, and everywhere—nobody was too hot. A recently donated speaker helped everyone hear. The Gospel was clearly given, and over 20 people were saved. In between the services, we had a gifting treasure hunt where the kids and teenagers could find colored rocks and redeem them at tables that matched the color of their rocks. On each table was a wide mix of gifts, some more for children and others more for Mom and Dad. Basically, the kids felt like they were Christmas shopping for their families. That day, colored rocks were worth something. I saw kids enjoying their presents the way you and I would enjoy opening gifts on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day with families—super happy. Shortly after this spirited event, the men played soccer at a field about three miles away. We had over 40 players, with an equal amount of people in the stands. It felt like a public event. The day ended with a final service and another abundant round of food. People were so well behaved and joyous. Many children, families, moms, dads, and neighbors were encouraged and edified. We just praise the Lord for His goodness! Please pray for those recently saved and for more people to be reached in 2021. Thank you enormously for your prayers, encouragements, and generosities!