August 10, 2014
We had a great weekend in all the various ministries here at Pacific Baptist Church. Please continue to pray for the outreach to the deaf community here in Cambodia. The deaf are currently categorized as an unreached people group in Cambodia. This does not mean that there are no believers in this people group. It simply means that the number is so small as to not even register. The Joshua Project indicates that there are “few if any believers” in this group. (http://legacy.joshuaproject.net/people-profile.php?peo3=19007&rog3=CB) Miss Grace is being used of God to help reach these folks. It has been such a blessing to see the group of deaf folks growing. Several of them have indicated that they are very interested in the gospel but, at this point, it is difficult to determine if they truly understand. Pray for Grace, Sina, and others who are trying to learn Cambodian Sign Language so that they might reach this community for Christ.
Please pray for Somphors and her salvation. She is one of the deaf ladies who has been attending the Sunday morning services. Last week she requested that we take this photo. It was great to see her gather some of the children around her to take this picture. I believe that she is beginning to feel welcome and at home here at the church. (The deaf are an isolated group here in Cambodia and seem to have very little significant social interaction with the hearing world.) The enemy has been working overtime to try and scare her and others away from the truth of the gospel. The deaf community here is very much held captive to superstition and the lies of the devil. In recent days there has been paranormal activities taking place in the lives of more than one of the deaf folks’ lives as well as several of our church members. We believe that the oppression is directly related to the soul-winning efforts of the various ministries here at the church and perhaps specifically related to the outreach to the deaf. This morning after the service Somphors told some of the workers that she is determined to follow Christ no matter who else does. We are not certain that she understands salvation yet. Please pray that Grace and the other workers will have wisdom to communicate the gospel to her.
Today Chinese people all over the world offered sacrifices to the spirits of the dead. (ពិធីសែនក្បាលទឹក) This festival is one of the largest, if not the largest, Chinese festivals all year. This holiday is connected with the belief in reincarnation and has its roots in Taoism. The rituals involved in this festival go back thousands of years. Those who participate in this ceremony seek to pacify the spirits of those who have died but have not yet been reincarnated. It is believed that on this special day the spirits leave hell and meet with the living to eat a meal. Paper replicas of houses, furniture, cars, clothing, jewelry, and money are burnt in effigy hoping that the spirits will receive these items. A lot of pressure is put upon the children to participate in this festival. Early this morning and throughout the day many families could be seen standing in front of their homes burning these papers in an attempt to help those who have died as well as in an attempt to gain merit for themselves.
“B” is a Chinese-Cambodian young man who was saved through the soul-winning efforts of folks in the church. He comes from a wealthy home and has parents who are very much involved in the occult. Yesterday at men’s prayer meeting he asked us to all pray that he would be able to get out of the house Sunday morning without his parents asking him where he was going and without trying to force him to participate in the pagan festival. Although “B” has been saved and is growing in the Lord, he has yet to inform his family that he is a Christian. We, of course, do not encourage anyone to keep their faith a secret from their family. All of this classmates at school know he is a Christian and they mock him on a daily basis. He is trying to get the courage to tell his family he is a follower of Jesus Christ but he is convinced that when he does they will absolutely prohibit him from associating with us. I have the privilege of meeting with “B” for one-on-one discipleship every Tuesday afternoon. Please pray that God will soften the hearts of his family and that “B” will have the courage to reveal his faith.
Thank you for praying for the building offering to help complete the church building in Prey Bang village. (The Prey Bang church is the third church plant and is located two hours from our Phnom Penh church.) It was a blessing to see so many folks get involved and truly give with joy. The vast majority of the offering was given by the nationals and in many cases was given sacrificially. We still have a little more money coming in the next few days but the total at this point is around $510. It was especially a blessing to see so many of the children bring their offering to help build the walls and pay for a cement floor. We believe that the Prey Bang church will be used by God to reach the many villages that surround it. Please continue to pray for the believers in Prey Bang village as well as the workers from Phnom Penh who faithfully go to Prey Bang village several times a week to hold services, disciple believers, and share the gospel.
Tola and SreyPouv are representative of so many of the children who are a part of the ministries here. SreyPouv (12 years old) is so faithful to all the services here in Phnom Penh. She also participates in group soul-winning. She comes from a very challenging home-life and it is likely that the only positive influence she has in her life is the influence of those here in the church. Please pray for SreyPouv’s family as they are presently experiencing some difficulties in the home.
Debbie continues to teach piano to seven folks here at the church. Three weeks ago we began having Jason and Justin play a second piano during some of the congregational singing. It has been a good experience for them to be able to play the songs without having too much pressure on them. We are excited by their diligence and progress!
It was a year ago this weekend that we had the funeral for Borey’s mother. (https://goodnewsfromafar.wordpress.com/2013/08) We basically have custody of Borey due to difficulties in her family. Borey’s father, Rom, has been attending most Sunday morning services for the past year but has not accepted Christ as of yet. He seems to be under conviction during each service but refuses to turn to Christ. Please pray for Rom to be saved soon. He is living a life that could very easily result in an early death.
Because of God’s grace,
Dave, Debbie, Joshua, Jeremy, and Jason