All of Grace

Do you ever have those moments when yet another imperfection in your character manifests itself and you feel completely disgusted with yourself?  I’ve been experiencing that a lot lately. As the full impact of my condition hits me, a feeling of brokenness and utter humility overwhelms me. How could God use a vessel like me? So many cracks… this feeling, almost in the same moment, is replaced by a heart that seems it must burst with gratitude. I AM a cracked, subpar vessel yet God STILL uses me! Anything I am able to do for God, anything I am as an individual, is always and forever will be a direct result of His grace in my life. If I try and trace the minutest part of who I am today back to its source, without fail it leads me to one place: pure grace. As God tenderly redirects my vision from myself to Himself I desire simply to sit back, enjoy the viewpoint, and praise Him as He does the work of rooting out the parts of me that cause me to shudder. I invite you to sit back and take in the view as I share with you a little about what God’s grace is doing here in Thailand.

January 5-14, I was given the opportunity to attend a health summit in Muak Lek, Thailand along with 3 other members of the Khon Kaen Church. The seminar, led by a wonderful woman named Mrs. Choi (founder of the Bethel Health Sanitarium in South Korea), was spirit-filled and utterly blessed. The information we gained there regarding how the health message fits into the big picture of the Gospel was invaluable. All of us who went came back on fire to share the message with the people of Khon Kaen. Upon my return home, I went to catch-up with Ma Kom. She immediately noticed a difference in me and asked how it went. I shared with her what I could, considering our language barrier, but something communicated effectively because she immediately said she wants to learn what I learned at the program and wants to do exactly what I did. She has many different maladies and seeing the difference the program wrought in me gave her hope. I was a little nervous how she would take what I was about to say next but after sending up a silent prayer I began reinforcing to her the bottom line of the program: God is the ultimate Healer and He calls us to follow the simple guidelines He gave us in His Word for optimal health. She responded to my explanation with a smile and stated that yes she understood and wanted to learn more! Since I could not explain everything in Thai I told her I would come back the next day with a friend. The Pastor of our church, Pastor Apisit and his wife Jaew (both of which had attended the seminar in Muak Lek), were graciously willing to accompany me to her house the next day to explain to her the details and the focus of the program. After they briefly went over the concepts of how to eat and the different methods of fasting used to produce optimal circulation in the body, the rest of the conversation (lasting more than an hour) was filled with the Pastor and his wife sharing with her the power of God.

Ma Kom has told me before that although she is Buddhist, she also believes in my God but has not really ever prayed to Him. As I sat there hearing the Words of God being shared with her and filling her home I just marveled at how amazing God is. I would never have guessed I’d be watching this take place before me, from the first time I met her riding her bike in our village. She listened, she shared, we prayed, and blessed her and her home before leaving. I ask all you who are willing to lift her heart up in prayer that she would have a thirst to know more about our Father.

Secondly, I have been utterly blessed by the friendship of Grandma Pai and am so grateful to see how Miriam and Morriah (my two roommates) have taken her under their wing and are reaching out to her in so many ways as well. Besides taking her to the market when she needs to go and inviting her over for meals, all three of us have begun to walk with her after her meals to encourage after-meal exercise. She is a diabetic and seems quite interested in our healthy lifestyle. She even accepted an invitation to join us for potluck at church so she could try our vegetarian Thai food served there! The next Sabbath I was preaching and invited her to come hear me. She accepted and spent the day with us at the church.  During that time, our church was beginning a weekly initiative to teach all our Pilipino church members the Thai language as a way to mobilize more of the Pilipino congregation to mission service.  As there are about 20-25 students studying Thai and only 2-3 teachers, there was a call for more of the Thai church members to help out in the classes. Guess who was there to hear the appeal for more teachers and is now a regular teacher, helping to mobilize missionaries within our church? Grandma Pai of course…and she’s not even a Christian yet!

Praise God for how He works in people’s lives and hearts. I can tell without a doubt He is working in the life of Grandma Pai and am thoroughly enjoying watching it all.

Family and friend, this is all of grace. I have nothing in which to boast save the cross of Christ and its power to move on hearts…and use very, very broken and cracked vessels. I continue to ask for your prayers as I am daily seeing the evidence of them in my life and in the lives of those around me! 

Comments

Praise God for His amazing grace! Thank you for your humble reminder that God can only do His work in me if I am willing to be broken. And you might be surprised to find out when you come back how much the knowledge that you have p*****ed on to your Pop regarding the health message has already blessed many here.  Love you.  Tia Luz

By Luz on February 28 2018, 9:33 pm

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