Saturday, July 26, 2008

good things

I am amazed at all of the great things that have taken place here in Thailand --especially in the last week. I was expecting us to really just attempt to understand a little bit of culture and language while we were here. I really did not think that we would be able to do too much serious ministry because of language difficulties; however, some really exciting things have happened.
All of our college age interns have done an awesome job of making relationships and hanging out with different university students. One of the guys that they have been hanging out with went on a retreat with some other Thai Christians and decided to follow the Lord. He also is going to move into the ministry dorm --Praise God.
The intern girls and I also had and amazing time of ministry with the dorm girls that we live with the other night. We went to their regular small group meeting and had worship. I then shared some of my testimony, and we all shared how the girls had been a blessing to us. We then had a time of praying for them and washing their feet. It was amazing how the Spirit of God was moving there. We really did not even do that much, but girls were weeping and praying for one another. The presence of God there was astounding. I am so thankful for the opportunity to have been able to minister to Christians and non-Christians while we have been here. I have been impressed over and over again with the Thai Christians that we are working with and with our interns. Thank you all for praying for us while we have been here. We have been safe and we have had a great time (I also have survived living in a tiny room with all three kids and pushing a stroller with a child hanging on each side down busy Bangkok streets). Remember us on Monday night and Tuesday while we make the 26 hour journey back to VA.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


As well as imagining my life with a chimpanzee, as a child, I often used to fantasize about being a superhero -- what can I say, I had an active imagination. Little did I know that, my baby would have superhero strength and abilities.
Today I took the kids to the mall to paint a plaster of paris piggy bank. Of course the baby insisted on doing his own and holding a paintbrush while screaming, "mine, mine, mine," if I attempted to help him. My daughter actually has some artistic ability and was carefully painting hers, so when the boys were done throwing paint on theirs, I let my son walk while I pushed the baby in the stroller. I stopped the stroller a couple of feet from a fan ,and we watched my daughter painting, while enjoying some cool air. Then all of the sudden the metal frame went flying off of the fan, and the plastic blade broke apart, scattering over the floor. Then I realized what had taken place, somehow my baby, while being strapped in to the stroller, in a nano-second stretched himself up to the fan and stuck his finger in, and somehow this caused the fan to fall apart all over the floor. At this point, I checked my son and saw that the whole commotion had only caused a slight scrape on his finger. I was amazed, he had speed like the flash, the ability to stretch like rubber man and supernatural strength like the hulk. Unfortunately, the lady who owned the fan was not as impressed with my baby's super powers. Instead she started talking and talking to me in Thai and pointing. I gathered that she expected me to pay for fan blade. So, I just pulled out the biggest bill that I had and attempted to apologize in Thai.
It was not quite the family event that I had planned, but at least Jordan's piggy bank turned out nice. -- I'll post a picture later.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

it is not as easy as it looks

I am posting a few pictures of elephant riding. If you look at my face in one of them, I hope that you can see the pure grit and determination that I have to keep from falling right off of the elephant and taking my son and daughter with me. I have never really ridden any animal, but let me tell you, an elephant is not a smooth ride. It feels like standing on rope bridge in the middle of an earthquake, and having a baby on your back does not make it any easier.
It was a great day though. The team got to take a break from missionary interviews and enjoy some of the things that Chiang Mai has to offer.

The dream is over

All of my childhood, I had one huge desire --a chimpanzee named Marvin. Every birthday and Christmas I was sure that I was going to get a chimpanzee. I would lie awake at night on Christmas Eve and imagine waking up in the morning to my chimpanzee, Marvin-- I was even sure that I could here him chattering early in the morning. After badgering and begging my father forever for a chimpanzee, he finally told me that I could get one for a present when I graduated from college. I then continued for a few years to tell everyone that I was going to get chimpanzee named Marvin when I graduated from college.
Well, I can finally tell you with certainty I no longer want a chimpanzee. Yesterday, we went to the animal safari. My kids and I were taking a leisurely walk around the animal lake. They had these cool, little islands with animals on them. Then my heart skipped a beat as I saw the sign for the chimpanzee island. I looked over at the island, but he was resting under some bushes. When he noticed we were there, he came out of hiding. I was excited because I was sure that he wanted to wave at us and see us. As I was admiring him, he lifted up his hand, I held my breath because I was positive he was going to wave at us. As he opened his hand, a piece of wood with nails hanging out of it flew out of his hand and whizzed by my head with speed and strength that would make major league pitchers envious. -- A chimpanzee attempted to take my life at the Chiang Mai safari.
So, I guess my dad can be relieved --he no longer is in debt to me for a chimpanzee.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Loving others

As I have mentioned before, we have very little space in our room where we are staying. The kids and I usually stay back when my husband goes off with the rest of the team, but I can't be stuck in our room, and if the baby is napping we have to be somewhere else. I usually take the two older kids downstairs to a community room and attempt to do some schoolwork with my daughter. The downstairs room is accessible from the street and open on three sides. A mentally handicapped woman and her daughter live very near the base and often come around. Any of you who have been around an 18-month old (especially mine), understand that the morning nap is coveted time. You don't want to talk to anyone. I always think it will be a time when I can relax and hang out with the older two. However, as soon as I get downstairs with the two older kids and sit down with my drink, the lady and her daughter see my kids downstairs and come over. Not only do you not want to talk to anyone during the morning nap time, you really don't want to attempt to communicate in a language that you can't speak. I caught myself feeling so negative when she came over the other day. Fortunately the Lord convicted me very quickly and showed me His heart and love for her. This is exactly the type of person that Jesus wants me to love and serve. As the Bible says, "Whatever you have done unto the least of these, you have done unto me." It is a privilege to be able to love her and mumble a few words of Thai with her, give her a pair of earrings that I am making, teach Jordan to share her colors with the daughter, eat our snacks with them. I can actually serve and love Jesus by loving her.
It is so easy to get annoyed because we have a schedule, we have our time, we want a break from people, we are at the end of our patience with our kids, etc. It is sometimes difficult to push beyond those annoyances and our selfishness to love other people, but it is always so much more rewarding to love others and Jesus

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I can do something

I am so happy, I was actually able to accomplish something today besides pushing my stroller with two kids hanging on the side all around Bangkok. Today, I was invited to teach English at the slums to some children. It was great to be able to work in my gifting and not even have to worry about language barriers. The children all had a really good time, and I really enjoyed being with them.

One of the biggest dilemmas I am going through right now is what to do about my coffee lady. She and I have gotten quite close, I am not really sure how since I don't speak Thai and she does not speak English. This is the deal, I am allergic to caffeine. It gives me horrible migraines. I tried to pretend like I wasn't get headaches from it, but I am. So, I went with one of my Thai friends who speaks English so, that I could see if she offered anything without caffeine -- no such luck -- chocolate, tea, lattes, and coffee. I feel like this is my opportunity to love her-- do I put up with a caffeine induced stupor so that I can hang out with her? I think that I am going to try the chocolate route and see if just every other day with chocolate I will be OK.

I am not going to write my normal novel because the mosquitoes are eating my alive.

Below I am going to post pictures from our trip to the Thailand border to Laos.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Although, I often think that this journey would be so much easier without three children under 5 , they are the greatest blessing of the trip. All three children are getting really used to the university students that we live with and all have picked up a little Thai. My daughter obviously has been hanging out with me (I am a pro shopper) because she grabbed some stuff that she liked at the mall and asked that lady how much it was in Thai. The baby can say fish in Thai, but not in English. He has also learned"Hello" and "Thank You." My son is also doing great and trying to speak to everyone in Thai.
So, I have had to struggle with getting the children to sleep on trains and motels. I have had to chase the baby down sidewalks, remove him off of tables. I've picked up juice and food off of every inch of our tiny room and washed clothes at 11 pm so that my daughter could have just the right leggings. Despite that fact that these things often slow me down, my children bring so many opportunities to meet Thai people and to bless others. My boys love hanging out with other people and will talk to all of the Thai people. I always hope that the Thai people will see Jesus in the way that I love my kids and allow others to play with my children without being over protective. Despite the fact that my daughter is more introverted, she has made friends with a few of the university girls that live at our house. I know that it is a blessing to them to have her come and hang out with them. They say that quality time is one of the best ways to show love to Thai people, so I am glad that my kids are accomplishing that.
Tomorrow night, when I travel 12 hours on a train at night, I will remember how thankful I am for the friends that my kids are making. I will be grateful that I have made contacts because of them. I will think about the people who work at stores and stands and speak to my children by name whenever we walk by. Although, I have to plan my days differently because of having children, they share love with others in a way that I can't.

Now, I always like to share something humorous that happens because of living in another culture or learning another language. I can't say a lot of things that I want (I can't really say anything that I want to), but I really want to reach out to the girls at our house. So, I decided that I would pray for the girls, especially for the ones that didn't have a relationship with Christ. So, last week I decided to spend some time praying for a girl that I was sure needed Jesus. Whenever I thought about it, I would ask God to bless her and to touch her and I would pray that the other girls would reach out to her. Well, on Thursday, I found out that she actually is a Bible school student, I hope all of my praying blessed her anyway. I used to think that I had the gift of discernment, I am not so sure anymore.