Happy New Year! It seems like 2022 flew by quickly. It’s hard to believe that this December 30 was the anniversary of our arrival in Thailand three years ago! We are so grateful for all God has done this past year, and we are excited for what He will do in the future. God has been so good to us, and He has used you all to be a blessing and help to us as we serve the Lord in Thailand.
One of our prayer requests this year was for both of us to teach at least one lesson in Thai by ourselves. It happened sooner than I was planning, when my translator was unable to come to church one Sunday, and I stumbled through the lesson with little time to prepare. Since then, I have taught in Thai a handful of times, mostly reading from my notes, but I still have much to practice and improve upon. In November, Brittany taught the teen girls in Thai without a translator for the first time. It took much study and preparation, and we know that your continued prayers for our language studies make a difference. We are also continually working on witnessing in Thai without the aid of a translator and trying to answer questions or different responses people may have. It’s a little more challenging when we have to go “off script” with our Thai, but we thank the Lord for opportunities to tell the Good News in another language!
During the holidays is a time that we often miss our family back in the U.S., but this year we were blessed to have my parents, Greg and Kathy Beil, come visit us for two weeks at the beginning of December. It was extra sweet because it was the first time that they got to meet our son Archer, who was born in Thailand. We loved sharing our home and ministry in Thailand with them. One Wednesday during their trip, my dad and I were able to go out with some staff men to visit some church members from the Nong Phlap congregation. A group of the Karen church members work at a recycling business, and while visiting them there, we met the Thai manager of the company. She was very kind and was familiar with the church, but she did not know where she would spend eternity. Star and I were able to take time to share the Gospel with her. After listening intently, she decided to place her faith in Christ to save her. I believe the faithfulness of the hardworking employees was the good testimony that planted the seed for her to be receptive to the Gospel that day.
Though Christmas is not widely celebrated in Thailand, it is becoming more popular every year, but not for spiritual reasons. It was great to be able to use this time to tell others about the meaning of Christmas—Jesus Christ. By God’s goodness, over 250 people came to church Christmas morning, received a bag of rice, and heard the Gospel. I was able to preach that morning on “Who Is Jesus?” in the Christmas story, and at the end of the message, our Thai pastor preached an extended invitation to receive salvation. Many trusted Christ that morning, and a few visitors returned to church the next Sunday. Our European neighbor took us up on our invitation and came to church for the first time on Christmas Day with his Thai wife and thanked us for sharing the true meaning of Christmas for the many who have never heard.
As we start the new year, we look back at what God has done and look forward to what He will do. Please pray for more laborers from within Thailand and more missionaries to preach the Gospel faithfully in this needy country. We thank you for serving God wherever you are and for being behind us as we serve Him. May God bless you all this year!
In His service,
Jonathan Beil Family