November 20, 2011
To God be the glory, Great things He has done! Today we celebrated the one year anniversary of Pacific Baptist Church of Phnom Penh. Things were very hectic to say the least. It is hard to believe that the church is already one year old. The Lord has done so many wonderful things in the lives of those who are a part of the church over the past year. We were very blessed to have at least 410 folks in attendance this anniversary weekend! There may have been a few more. Our people were very surprised and excited. We do not, as a rule, set numerical goals, but for the anniversary Sunday we were hoping for 350. Thank you for praying and helping to support this ministry. We look forward to what God is going to do over the next 12 months.
The most exciting part of the day was to see how the national believers joyfully served the Lord by serving others. Several of our young adult ladies woke up at 4:00 this morning and began cooking for our church family. I preached for the morning and evening service but all of the preaching for the children’s ministry today was done by two of our national men. One of our young couples shared a very moving testimony during the morning service. Ra, one of our faithful Cham believers, led in the opening prayer this morning. Our young men’s choir sang “There is a Fountain Filled with Blood.”
I have been trying to reach out to Sina for some time now. I have had the opportunity to sit with him and explain the Gospel but he has not accepted Christ. I believe that he is weighing the cost of being a follower of Jesus Christ. Sina is the chief of his village and would be under a lot of scrutiny if he were to become a Christian. We are thankful that he came to our anniversary service this morning and was exposed to the testimonies and the preaching. Please pray that Sina will be saved.
It was a nice surprise to look out while I was preaching this morning and see Swiss and his wife, Ran, sitting in the congregation. We were able to help influence Swiss several years ago but have not had much contact with him over the past 3-4 years. He heard about our anniversary Sunday from one of our members and drove one and a half hours on a borrowed moped in order to be a part of the service. It was a blessing to hear how God is working in his marriage. He is presently being discipled by one of the faithful men who is a member of New Hope Baptist Church here in Phnom Penh. Pray for Swiss and his family as they have some important decisions to make in the future in regard to their family living situation.
Each Thursday morning at 7:30 I have a special time of discipleship with Mrs. Vong Socheath. She is the high ranking government official that accepted Christ several weeks ago. Debbie and the ladies in our church normally disciple our ladies but in this case I have made an exception and have chosen to work with her personally. Before we started studying this past Thursday she told me that she wanted to quote some verses that she had memorized. I was very surprised to have her quote, almost word perfect, the entire chapter of James one! Not too bad for a new believer who is 70 years old! I asked her what her secret was to memorizing. She told me, “It is easy if you have a heart to do it.” Ouch! I plan to have her quote these verses in the near future in front of the entire church. It should help to take away any excuses that our young adults find for why they can’t memorize.
This morning we had two first time visitors from the country of Myanmar. (Burma) They are working for a local NGO group here in Cambodia and were invited to church by Miss Eng. As I got to know them after the service, I asked Phwe if she had ever been to a Christian church before. She replied that her entire family in Myanmar is Christian. I asked her how it was that her family came to know the Lord. She told me, “There was a missionary who came to my country and shared the Gospel with my great grandmother. She accepted Christ and from then on my entire family has followed Jesus.” She said, “The missionary died but he is very famous in my country. Did you ever hear of a missionary named Adoniram Judson?” WOW! Adoniram Judson was the first Baptist missionary to take the Gospel to those who were referred to, in those days, as the “heathen.” He served in Burma from 1813-1850. Here we are in 2011 and we are still meeting the fruit of that missionary endeavor. If you have never studied about the life of Judson, it would be well worth your time to research his life and ministry. As a young man he felt the call to obey the Great Commission that was given by Jesus to take the Gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth. After making this burden and calling known in a public meeting, he was met with this cold response: “Young man, sit down; when God is pleased to convert the heathen world, He will do it without your help or mine.” Some “church leaders” of his day referred to him as “a most miserable enthusiast” for even daring to express an interest in taking the Gospel to another country. Perhaps God is working in your heart to do more for the cause of missions and world-evangelism. People around you may not share the same vision that you do. That is okay. They will someday have to give account for how they lived their own lives. Consider the following thoughts that were written by Jusdon:
A life once spent is irrevocable. It will remain to be contemplated through eternity…..If it has been a useless life, it can never be improved. Such will stand forever and ever. The same may be said of each day. When it is once past, it is gone forever. All the marks which we put upon it, it will exhibit forever…. Each day will not only be a witness of our conduct, but will affect our everlasting destiny. (in regard to rewards in Heaven) No day will lose its share of influence in determining where shall be our seat in heaven. How shall we then wish to see each day marked with usefulness! It will then be too late to mend its appearance. It is too late to mend the days that are past. The future is in our power. Let us, then, each morning, resolve to send the day into eternity in such a garb as we shall wish it to wear forever. And at night let us reflect that one more day is irrevocably gone, indelibly marked.
Please help from for the following prospects with whom we have been working: Sina, Baco, Mlop, SreySu, Vinin, Vannarith, Rha, Rady, and Sophath.
Here is the link to our 1st Anniversary video. http://vimeo.com/32618731
Because of God’s grace,
Dave, Debbie, Joshua, Jeremy, and Jason