December 21, 2014
It was a blessing to have ten folks follow the Lord in Believer’s Baptism during the morning service. The young man on the left is named PunLeak. He is in his third year of medical school. His schedule is very tight and he normally only has the opportunity to attend church on Wednesday evenings and occasionally Sunday evenings. It was a blessing to see him publicly identify himself with the Lord Jesus Christ. The young man on the right is named Ra. Ra has been attending the church for just over three years but just recently came to the conviction that he had never been saved. It was a blessing to see him obey the Lord as well. Pray for PunLeak and Ra to continue to be faithful to the Lord. As Ra walks with the Lord and grows in his faith I believe the Lord will use him. He is the grandson of a very well-known Buddhist scholar who has written several popular books on Buddhism that are still used as standard text books in the universities here in Cambodia. God has blessed Ra with a special ability to communicate. We need to pray that he stays close to the Lord and I know that God will use him in a mighty way to reach his people.
1Thessalonians 1:9 For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God. It is always encouraging to see new believers obey the Lord no matter what age they are but it was a special blessing for us all to see Grandma Long get baptized. Brother Sinath has been witnessing to her for some time and has patiently kept going back and teaching her how to know God.
Before she got saved she was a Buddhist nun who was trying her very best to keep the Buddhist law with the goal of having a good life after she was reincarnated. Because of the fact that our soul winners are thorough with their soul-winning she came to understand that she could not merely “add Jesus” to her belief system. (Syncretism is a significant problem among the Buddhist people of Cambodia and Thailand.) Two weeks before she got baptized she told Brother Sinath that she no longer needed to depend upon keeping the Buddhist precepts and she wanted to get rid of her book of laws that she has been so diligently trying to follow for many years and trust Jesus Christ alone for salvation. She gave us the book of laws and we gave her a copy of the Word of God in large print (size 16 font) that we produced a few months ago for the benefit of some of the older believers who cannot read the small print in the regular Bible. Please help pray for Grandma Long to grow in her new faith and allow her testimony to be a light that shines in the spiritual darkness that is all around her.
One of our faithful teens, Buth, wanted us to record a short video greeting and send it to you. He wants you all to know that he is grateful for your prayers and support of the work here in Cambodia. He often hears teaching and preaching on gratitude and he wants you to know that he is grateful to have missionaries here in Cambodia who have reached him with the gospel and who continue to train him to become a follower of Christ. You can click on the picture just above this paragraph to watch the video. After a short greeting from Debbie and I, as well as his greeting, you will see just a few scenes from after the morning service.
It was a blessing to be able to dedicate baby Sarah and her parents to the Lord during the morning service. The lady standing on the left is the baby’s maternal grandmother, Ya. She stood with San and Yom as a testimony that it is her desire that they rear Sarah for the glory of the Lord and as a promise that she would in no way try to stand in their way but would rather do her part in helping Sarah serve the Lord with her life. Please continue to pray for San and Yom as they seek God’s perfect will for their future.
This past week we completed our four month memory verse competition with the teens in Phnom Penh. They had to answer a total of around 400 questions. We are so encouraged to see around twenty of them remain in the competition all the way up to the end.
We recognized eleven of the teens who received an average score of 90% or higher for the entire four months. Two of the young people earned a score of 99.75%! We plan to go somewhere special with the top 6 winners on the evening of Christmas Day as a reward for their diligence. Eight of the eleven top winners were young people who were reached with the gospel through the Children’s Ministry.
It was a blessing to see so many children attend the Phnom Penh Children’s Ministry today. It is even more exciting to know that our workers are making an investment that will pay dividends for years to come as many of these young people are reached at a young age.
In recent months it seems that there has been an increase in vagrant and homeless children in our neighborhood. We saw this young man in our neighborhood this past week as we took the teens out for Sunday afternoon soul-winning. It is sad to know that there are many young children in Phnom Penh who are addicted to drugs and whose life consists of begging and stealing. In many cases these young people have been totally abandoned by their families and are on their own. Continue to pray that our Children’s Ministry will help not only get children saved but help them find the abundant life that Christ desires them to have.
Today was the second week of our new class for children ages 7-11. There were 38 in class today. We are very happy with this class especially because of the fact that it is entirely run by our nationals, all of whom were reached through the Children’s Ministry over the past four years. Veasna (in the blue shirt standing up front) is doing a great job leading his team of workers!
Borey and Linda are sharing the teaching responsibilities in this new class and they are doing a wonderful job. This is their first time to teach a series using picture flashcards. Today I stood in the back of the classroom for a few minutes and listened to Borey teaching. Those of your who speak Khmer might find it interesting to watch the short video clip of her teaching. Just click on the picture above this paragraph.
Last Saturday evening we enjoyed a time of fellowship in our home with some of the faithful teens. Continue to pray for these young people as the majority of their parents are not believers and they are standing alone for the Lord in their families.
Continue to pray for Mora and her walk with the Lord. Debbie continues to meet with her one-on-one on Wednesdays. Additionally, we try to go to her coffee shop every week in order to meet her co-workers. We have a number of folks at that coffee shop with whom we are building relationships.
Rada works at the coffee shop with Mora and claims to be a Christian. As far as we know he does not attend church anywhere and more than likely does not know the Lord. Please pray for us to be able to get closer to Rada and have the opportunity to reach him.
Sitha and Sambath are two more individuals with whom we are trying to build relationships. They are both in their 40’s. I am hoping that I will be able to meet up with them this week and take them to Burger King. They both said they would love to eat there. Pray that God will open the door for us to win Sitha and Sambath to the Lord.
Whether one is seeking to win folks on the foreign field or in the States, souls are normally won one at a time. I was reminded of this truth recently as I came upon this construction site. If you click on the video above you will see how the majority of buildings are built here in Cambodia. This particular building is made of brick and is two stories tall. The bricks and cement to build the walls are all hoisted up ONE BUCKET AT A TIME. I can only imagine how long it takes and how much work it is just to build one level.
It was a blessing this past week to be able to meet with some fellow missionaries sent out from Pacific Baptist Church of Long Beach. We met for two days of training and strategy. The folks in this picture are serving in three different countries here in Southeast Asia and are some of the best friends we have. We have had the opportunity of knowing all but one of these families for the past 25-30 years. We all learned so much from each other and were greatly encouraged through the teaching sessions as well as the fellowship.
Because of God’s grace,
Dave, Debbie, Joshua, Jeremy, and Jason
We always like to provide you with as much opportunity as possible to see what like and ministry is like here in Cambodia. It helps you to better understand how to pray for the believers here. It also helps you feel like you are a part of what God is doing here in this country through your prayers and support. Several weeks ago the city put in a new street adjacent to the property we are renting. For several days the street was blocked with sand and rocks. The folks had fun climbing over the sand in order to get into the building. Below you can see a short video of them climbing. Unfortunately by the time I thought of taking a video much of the sand was flattened down by our folks already so the mountain was not quite as high as at the beginning.