May 15, 2011
We have had a very busy last two weeks. We continue to pursue several new prospects but seem to be hitting resistance from all different fronts. Several of the folks who have expressed interest in the Gospel are now seeming to turn away from us. Some have discovered that we will not pay them to “become a Christian” and so they have stopped coming. For others it seems like the cares of this world have chocked out their interest in the things of the Lord. That being said, our auditorium was packed for both services today. Tonight we experimented with changing the configuration of the chairs in order to try and fit more people. Please continue to pray for the many different prospects that we continue to follow-up on.
Lord willing, we will be starting a Sunday afternoon children’s ministry at the end of this month. We began workers training yesterday with 8 key leaders. We could have started a children’s outreach several months ago but chose to wait until the nationals had the burden as well as the ability to run the ministry. We had a great time of instruction yesterday as we taught on the responsibilities of being a children’s ministry worker. We will plan to have two more weeks of training before we start the ministry on Sunday, May 29th. It looks like we will have around 20 workers who will be helping with this new ministry. We will likely have to put a limit on how many children they are allowed to bring or we could be overrun with people and that would be counterproductive. One of the workers, Theven, has already begun to bring some children from her neighborhood. We are planning to begin the children’s ministry each Sunday at 2:00. Over time, we will see which children seem to be really learning and interested. We hope to then begin finding a way to incorporate those children into the Sunday morning service as well. Please pray for the new children’s ministry.
No doubt some of you have heard of the group in the States who have predicted that the Rapture will take place on May 21, 2011. There have always been groups who have tried to set dates etc… and we are somewhat accustomed to that type of thing in the Unites States. However, for the people here in Cambodia it causes great confusion. This sign is prominently posted above a popular market near our church. Many of the people in our neighborhood have seen the sign and some have asked about it. This sign says that “the Bible guarantees that May 21st is Judgment Day.” This type of thing causes so much confusion and no doubt the devil would like to use it to negate the message of the Gospel and the importance of people turning to Christ to be saved. It remains to be seen what long term damage this message could cause here in this country when May 21st comes and goes without “judgment” taking place. Then again, the Rapture could happen today! We need to be ready. There have been several different fringe groups from various parts of the world who have brought their false doctrines here to Cambodia. More than a decade ago a charismatic group came here and promised to heal everyone… Tens of thousands of people gathered into the sports stadium to be healed. When they finally understood that the preacher was a fraud they began a riot and the police had to escort him out of the country. Just three years ago a female charismatic “preacher” from America brought a large delegation here and caused great confusion. She also claimed that during the two days she was here that 50,000 Khmer were saved. So needless to say – Cambodia has had her share of confusion from various groups who claim to be Christian.
This coming Tuesday morning we will begin holding a weekly prayer meeting at 6:30 a.m. at the church. Several people have expressed an interest in being a part of this new ministry. We hope that it will just be one more thing that will help to disciple the new believers.
Because of God’s grace,
Dave, Debbie, Joshua, Jeremy, and Jason