Good morning! At least it's a good morning in Bangkok! I don't have much time to write as the taxi is due to arrive soon, but wanted to give a quick update.
I spoke at the YWAM staff meeting yesterday afternoon and gave a message warning against grumbling and complaining based on Numbers 11. It was not the message I wanted to give--I had a couple of others I put together before coming that would have been a lot more fun! But every time I prayed about it, the Lord was quite clear I was to give that one. Like my friend Vicki said, it was akin to pastors preaching about tithing. Not a message they like to give necessarily, but one that helps us walk in obedience to the things of God. I told them if it wasn't a message of correction for them, and I hoped it wasn't, to receive it as a word of warning. I am utterly convinced that we have a spiritual responsibility to constantly submit ourselves to the Lord for correction, for guidance in the necessary housecleaning and instruction in greater obedience. If not, we are in danger of squelching the Spirit and rendering our witness ineffective. It is crucial for all of us, of course, but perhaps all the more so for those who have given their lives to be on the mission field. What good does it do to give yourself to His service if there are attitudes which prevent us from being useful to him?
There was such a sweet spirit in the room and the worship was so effortless and sincere I kept questioning the Lord's leading as to the message. Sam introduced me, though I've got to tell him to quit referring to me as their "old" friend (!) and did the translating for me. When I was finished Sam concluded by encouraging everyone to receive the message and lay it before the Lord to see what the Lord intended for them to receive. I was surprised to get quite a bit of positive feedback afterward, so felt reassured that I had heard from the Lord and been obedient to His leading. That always feels good!
We ate dinner and went to the airport to meet Jay's flight. We were milling around near the concourse entrance waiting for him to walk through. P & S asked me what he looked like and I was rather stumped as to how to describe him! The most unlikely men were walking through the gate and they kept asking "is that him?" I assured them I would recognize him when I saw him. For some reason I glanced over at Sam who was looking behind my back so I turned my head and Jay was standing right behind me! I nearly jumped out of my skin! He'd come out of a different gate and seen us standing there looking for him. It was SO good to see him! I'm really glad he is here and am looking forward to our time together.
He'd been up since 4:00 Wednesday morning so we went to bed shortly after we got back to the house. P & S talked with their daughter Rachel who is in Iraq, and she seems to be doing well and getting settled into her new environment. I'm sure it was comforting for them to hear her voice.
Jay and I are going to go to the "Grand Palace" in just a bit then do some other sightseeing before meeting P & S and another couple on top of the tallest building in Bangkok where we will eat dinner and look out over this massive, sprawling city. We will leave for Phi Phi Island on Monday and will spend three days and two nights there enjoying the beach and snorkeling in the clear, sparkling water before Jay leaves for home.
There are Internet cafes everywhere here so I assume I will be able to maintain the blog writings while we are there.
I have heard reports from several of you about the high winds the other night and the folks who were injured at Octoberfest as well as the heartbreaking news regarding the ORU scandal. Thank you for keeping me updated about all that's going on.
That's about it for now. As always, I thank you for your prayers!