So much has happened since our last official prayer letter. Since then, several e-mail updates have gone out to many of you, informing you of our progress and activities. Nonetheless, there are still a number of churches not on our e-mail list, making this latest letter of great importance.
Our family was able to go to India for some time this spring. We felt the timing was important, due to the poor health of Suni’s father. I was there during the month of April and preached at least 20 times in various locations. These included churches, open-air meetings, a wedding, and four times on a local TV station. We saw 24 saved in public meetings and other uncounted hands in one other meeting. Family time was important, as well as the opportunity to observe some ministries that we support financially.
From January through July of 2012, there were 25 professions of faith due to personal soul winning, not including the public group decisions in India. Each one has its unique story. Here are just a few:
• Milton is a man from Liberia who made an obvious effort to attend the English-language section of our church until he moved too far away. He responded to the Gospel at invitation time during one of our services. He was consistently the most generous in his offerings, as well as verbal expressions of gratitude to us for the ministry of the church.
• Savat is a mother of two, living in difficult circumstances. Her relationship with church and with us has been on and off. Although at times we wondered about her, she always seemed to surprise us with evidence of her faith. This faith moved Savat to introduce us to one of her coworkers named Vi, knowing that we would introduce Vi to the Saviour.
• Joseph and Jerusha are our two children. During the Sunday morning Bible lesson in church this past January, the Spirit of God prompted my children to ask about salvation. Although they had prayed with us several times in the past and knew the right answers, it did not appear that they had received the “Spirit of adoption.” But the morning after this last time, they both rejoiced about their decision without our prompting.
• Are we making any difference? Sometimes we all wonder. The following are not actually salvation decisions, but they do show God is at work. Two of our favorite former Bible Club students, Theoun and Piseut, had stopped coming to our program for various reasons. When I heard that they ended up at another children’s ministry, I was greatly encouraged.
OPPOSITION AND OPEN DOORS
Many Cambodians face a difficult choice when it comes time to accepting Christ. Vattanak is a man who understands God’s requirements very clearly, should he become a Christian. He told us plainly that he hesitates to make a final decision, fearing to cause division in his strong Buddhist family. Only the Spirit of God can quicken souls.
Yet in spite of this, God’s truth is marching on. At one market nearby, there are over 1,300 stalls, each with a different seller. We have been going there every Friday morning, giving tracts to the Cambodian sellers, as well as to the multitudes of tourists who come to shop.
A missionary going on furlough asked me to teach in his midweek Bible study. This is in addition to our own midweek service, held on another day of the week.
God has enabled me to make contact with some Jewish people here, which is part of an organized effort to reach this small but vital community in Phnom Penh.