Malones in Isaan Thailand - Working amongst the unreached of Isaan

Follow the adventures of the Malones in Thailand as we work with urban and rural peoples in the Isaan area in Thailand. We aim to share the Good News of Jesus with the Isaan and mobilise for 5 teams across Isaan. Previously, we were with the poor in Samut Prakan (part of Greater Bangkok). If you would like to work with us (short or long-term) please don't hesitate to contact us for more information.

23 February 2010

Neighbourhood offering to monks

Thailand is a country of festivals ..... never a month goes by and we see a festival of some description. Last month we witnessed a parade of monks coming through our area to give their new year blessing to the neighbourhood. Receiving this blessing from monks is very important to the Thai - from their perspective it will give them good fortune, protection from evil spirits and earn good merit - all part of a journey to earn their own salvation.

A neighbour prays over her offering for the monks

An official precedes the monk procession to collect a monetary offering from the neighbour

The procession of monks comes down the road calling into each house

Another neighbour shows respect while they receive blessing from a monk

All the 'goodies' collected are thrown into a ute accompanying the procession

Please pray with us for release for the Thai from the burden of making merit. We know that Jesus has made perfect merit for us that lasts for eternity and provides a free gift of salvation for all people.

06 February 2010

The Challenges of Cross Cultural Discipleship

We have been working with the kids in the slum community near our home for around 18 months now and were overjoyed to witness many of them pray to accept Jesus at our Christmas outreaches, as you may have read about previously. We have been even more overjoyed to observe in these weeks following, that some of them were really serious about the decision they made, and although they don't fully understand it, they are keen to learn more about becoming children of God.

Amidst the joys of following up some of these children and teenagers, it's also been quite a challenge and somewhat discouraging at times. These challenges include their haphazard attendance at our get togethers as they're often off staying at mum's place or visiting relatives in another community for the weekend, the distractions from younger children, their different world view and ingrained beliefs, as well as my feelings of inadequacy with the language barrier and the age barrier (I hardly ever worked with children in Australia!)

This morning we came to the question, are you confident you will go to heaven when you die? When they answered that they're not sure, it depends on how much good they do compared to how much bad, I realised how much their Buddhist world view is still ingrained in their thinking, despite the number of times they'd heard the Gospel. I was able to go over with them again the fact that we can never do enough good to get to heaven, that we need only trust in what Jesus has done for us...

There are two 13 year old girls in particular who I would love you to pray for. Their names are Bin and Wil. Please pray that God will continue to work in their hearts to bring them to a greater understanding of what He has done for them and of His love for them so that they will be able to pass it on to the younger children in their community, and so that the changes in their lives will be a witness to the adults as well. Praise God for His promise in the midst of my inadequacies: "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." (2 Cor 12:9)

Wil on the right with one of her little neighbours

Bin in her community