24 November 2010

Wun Khawp Khoon Phra Chao

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I have so much to be thankful for on this "Wun khawp khoon Phra Chao." (That's literally translated as "Day to thank the Lord) This being thanksgiving week, here's what I'm thankful for this week. Not that I'm not thankful the rest of the year. On the contrary, I am so-oh blessed there's too many to list. So... I'll stick to just this week:

- My sweet husband. He had to fly to the States for a funeral but he made sure I had a full 1,000-liter tank of water and 17 more filled jugs so I don't have to do much water run while he's away for a week. And he mopped the floors too! So thoughtful and so caring.

- On Monday, we celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary. I am thankful that my husband is also my best friend. 

- Jenni Starkey, our friend and co-worker. She kept the boys for us for two days so Ed and I can go on our anniversary date.

- The little things that God orchestrates because He knows what's going to happen ahead before we even know, like.... Ed was able to get a seat on a flight to the US just a little over 24 hours before he had to check in. You know how hard it is to get a seat this week, Thanksgiving week??? The lady at the counter asked Ed how he got a ticket because the flight was fully booked!

- Our frequent flyer miles through Delta Air. Ed's round trip plane ticket was less than $400! He was told that the regular price would have been $1,700!!!

- Jenni already planned to take the week off of language school this week before we learned about Pastor Tim's passing. Jenni has been a big help to me while Ed is away.

- Magic Jack! So we can call the States unlimited for free. If you don't know what it is, just Google it. Ha!

- I am rejoicing over the salvation of a dear girl who finally made it right before God regarding eternity. My heart swelled after I heard the news.

- I got to see a friend from college that I haven't seen in 15 years. I am so encouraged by her love for the Lord and heart for missions.

- Pastor Tim Nyhuis. He was Ed's youth pastor since Ed was about 10 years old at the church where he got saved. He was Ed's friend, mentor, and spiritual father through the years. The man had literally seen Ed through teens years, military, college years... ever since he first knew Ed! They talked on the phone only a few weeks ago. So thankful for a man of God who poured out his life on Ed and the many people that God entrusted to him through the 33/34 years he had been at Hartford Federated Church in Hartford, Michigan.

See? I told you, I have a lot to be thankful for, and that's only for this past few days. Tomorrow, Jenni, the boys, and I will travel to Bangkok to celebrate Thanksgiving with other American missionaries. Looking forward to food and fellowship! Happy Thanksgiving again!

08 November 2010

How To Be Nice To Others

A few weeks back I was reading Luke 6:27-45 and found this really good list on my Bible's footnotes. This is just straight from my Scofield Study Bible. I can't improve more on this one so I'm just going to type it word for word.

Tell the truth when testifying about your neighbor. Exodus 20:16
     Do no covet anything that belongs to your neighbor. Exodus 20:17
Love your neighbor as yourself. Leviticus 19:18
     Don't move your neighbor's boundary marker. Deuteronomy 27:17
Don't take your neighbor to court. Proverbs 25:8
     Don't visit your neighbor too often. Proverbs 25:17
If someone forces you to go one mile, go two. Matthew 5:41
     Pray for those who persecute you. Matthew 5:44
Do good to those who hate you. Matthew 5:44
     Love your enemies. Luke 6:27
Bless those who curse you. Luke 6:28
     If someone takes your cloak, give your tunic too. Luke 6:29
Give to everyone who asks of you. Luke 6:30
     Lend to others and don't expect anything back. Luke 6:35
Don't judge. Luke 6:37
     Don't be a stumbling block to others. Romans 14:13

I found myself feeling guilty for NOT doing most of what's on the list. The Holy Spirit gave me a new light to that Luke 6 passage as I was reading it that breezy, dewy morning. It is nothing but Jesus' commands for ME, as a child of God, so that I may show HIS love to others.
  ♬ In my life, Lord, be glorified, be glorified.
In my life, Lord, be glorified today.    

04 November 2010

Q & A: My Spiritual Journey

OK, this is going to be scary. Mainly because I'm going to be opening my heart a little bit wider than I am comfortable with. Oh, I don't have a problem with that - when face to face. It's different when you're doing it online because you'll never know who's reading. You can't see the other person's facial expressions and response to what you just said.

There's a lady who's blog I've been following. Ashley Sisk did something like this on her blog to share a little bit about herself. I wanted to do it to but focus mainly on my spiritual journey. I trust that the God of grace, mercy, and love will encourage your heart as you read. So, here we are:

One: When did you become a Christian? I realized I was a hopeless sinner and that I needed a Savior. I asked Jesus into my heart sometime after I turned four. I don't remember the exact date but I can still vividly remember the events surrounding that rainy afternoon when my mom shared the Gospel with me.

Two: Was there a time after that that you thought you were still headed to hell? Oh yes! I asked Jesus to come into my heart several more times until I was in sixth grade and just gave everything over to the Lord.

Three: If you can turn back the clock, would you undo something? A definite yes. Not just something, though. Several things, actually. Sometimes, Satan still tries to put guilty feelings in me and tempt me to forget Christ's work and sacrifice on the cross. Thank God for His love and forgiveness. Whew!

Four: How were you as a teenager? Oh no! Bad! Attitude, lying, self-worth struggles, feeling unloved, seeking all other things other than God, troubled friendships, and the list goes on. I can sum it all up in 1 John 2:15-16, "Do not love the world or the things of the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world - the desires of the flesh, the desires of the eyes, and pride in possessions - is not from the Father but is from the world." I didn't know how to love others and who I am in Christ because I didn't love God.

Five: Was there ever a time when you wanted to call it quits as a Christian? Yes. I thought things would be easier away from God. But the more a got away from God, the more I didn't have peace and joy in my heart. Several mature Christians saw and understood my predicament and reached out to me in love and in prayers. I thank God for using them to rescue me back to Him.

Six: What was it like growing up as as Pastor's kid? Hard. Partly because there was a verbal expectation of how I should behave because I am a PK. Partly because I rebelled because something was expected of me. I didn't really understand what it is to just please and honor God from the bottom of my heart.

Seven: Did you always want to be a missionary? No. In fact, when I was in Bible college for one year, I gave my life to God for full-time Christian service during missions conference but specified to God in my prayer that He ought to call me to serve Him just in the Philippines, nowhere else, especially not in Thailand. Ha!

Eight: How did you end up being a missionary in Thailand? I was serving at a church in the Philippines, the same church I attended while in college. Half way into my second year of full-time work there, I sensed that God was calling me to Thailand. It was weird. I would wake up in the middle of the night and "see" myself teaching kids in Thailand! I was very happy and content with my ministry in that church so I was perplexed. Six months later, I was on a plane to Bangkok with my Aunt, Miss Marina Cagas, who's been a missionary to Thailand for 35+ years now.

Nine: What are your favorite books other than the Bible, of course? Oooohh! I have so many. One book that I keep going back to is "Instruments in the Redeemer's Hands - People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of Change" by Paul D. Tripp. It's a counseling book but I find myself needing it over and over again. One I'm currently trying to finish is "The Cross Centered Life" by C.J. Mahaney. I have several books on my mental list that I'd like to read next. I love to read.

Ten: Since there are 10 questions here, can you name ten people who have been helpful in your spiritual walk? My hubby, of course. My papa. My mama. Nan Mosher. Connie Ceballos. Romillas Necesito. Levi Layos. Took Hammond. Lisa Caynor. Robert Mullen.
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