My son David reminded me that it has been awhile since I put anything on this blog. Well right now in Tokyo it is the height of the cherry blossom viewing season. Well this one lone cherry blossom tree does not do justice to awesome beauty that can be seen throughout the city, it does give a uniquely simple taste of this special time of year.
Yesterday was the first time I had seen one of these vehicles. It seems that seven eleven has added home delivery to their services giving a whole new slant on the term convenience store.
As the team left on Thursday, I find myself here at the YWAM Chiang Mai hospitality house. It is an awesome facility. Teams will usually arrive here when they visit Chiang Mai, get their orientation and then move on to their ministry location. Our team stayed here when they arrived.
This is what the rooms look like on the second floor where our team stayed. Just before our team left a team from Indonesia arrived. They moved on already and a new team from Tauranga arrived at 05:00 this morning.
On the second floor there is a wall map of Thailand showing every operating location for YWAM. This is truly amazing. Quick comparison;
Thailand population 67,000,000 Lovations about 88. Japan population. 127,000,000 YWAM staff about 88. PLEASE PRAY FOR JAPAN!!!
This is an awesome location and I am glad for the privilege of staying here.
We went to the MKL school two days in a row. The nice lady standing next to Aogu was our helper. She spent the first ten minutes trying to recruit us to come and work full time at the school! The kids were way too cute and I think we all had fun even if our ESL students were challenged and stretched a bit.
Overall, I felt that this team worked very well together. I sure hope we can do more iDTS schools in the future.
Having lived in Japan for awhile, I often hear the phrase. “Never miss a sunset” here at Sila Home our team girls were staying in the house that had the best view of the sunrise every morning. We would meet on their porch each day shortly before sunrise for our breakfast. It was special for me to participate in this with the Japanese students of our iDTS.
As Chai Pra Khan is over two hours north of Chiang Mai, the nights are much cooler. I had only packed for warm to hot weather, so I had to purchase this rather nice jacket for those chilly beautiful sunrise mornings.
Actually we are staying in Chai Pra Khan, which is about two and a half hours north of Chiang Mai. This home is run as an orphanage and every Sunday they have a worship service. Our team shared a few songs and two of them gave their testimony during this time. I had already got a head start on doing one-on-ones. As this was a smaller team I guess things went rather quickly.
I joined the team for their outreach at a local church over an hours drive from the compound. We did songs, played games and shared a teaching on how God takes all our mistakes and makes something beautiful. This was an original idea from one of the team members.
While Miki shared the story in Japanese, Derick translated it to English and Noona then renderd it in Thai. Each team member then held a paper heart, as the story progressed and Miki explained how we hurt and break each other’s hearts, the team members tore up their paper hearts into small pieces. These pieces were all collected into one big bag.
These small pieces were mixed together and then glued to a new sheet. When each sheet was filled, with the help of the children, then they were cut out and a beautiful flower was the result.
I was very impressed with the creativity of this team as well as their musical talents.
After the session we took time to pray for the pastor and his work. Even though they have many obvious needs they gave some food to us before we left. Thai people are awesome!!
I stayed my first night at the hospitality house in Chiang Mai. It is an awesome property and the hospitality was equally wonderful. Managed to get some laundry done and prepare for the three hour trip to where the team was staying.
I also met a team from New Zealand in the morning who had also just arrived. They blessed me by inviting me to eat breakfast with them.- they cooked the breakfast. Later Sheila from the base explained how I would be getting up to join our team. She was highly appreciative of our team when they were there and made a big point of telling me! Yeah team you did a great job.
The plan was for me to get a taxi ride to the bus station, then board a bus for Chai Pra Khan. The taxi driver would then phone the base and let them know what bus I boarded so they could let the team know what time I would arrive. So far so good.
I arrived at Chai Pra Khan as planned and got off in front of the local seven eleven store. However there was no one there. I waited about half an hour then had to access my mobile roaming data service to send an email to our team and the base to let them know. Fifteen minutes later I checked email again. No reply!! And no one was there to meet me. So I sent a second email. I was hot and a little tired by now.
About ten minutes later a nice local man saw me sitting on the ground outside the seven eleven store, felt sorry for me and went in and bought me a bottle of water. Before I could finish the bottle Micaela and Aogu came walking down the road. It turned out that today was everyone’s day off and they were at a local coffee shop just five minutes walk up the road. YES! Finally I met up with the team.
The flight to Bankok from Manila was very awesome. I was in business class which meant I had all the room I wanted with some to spare. I also got to spend about an hour in the Thai Air Airport lounge with free snacks and drinks while waiting for the plane to arrive.
Bankok to Chaing Mai was a much shorter flight, different airplane but still business class!! My luggage took awhile to come but thankfully nothing was missing and there was a nice Thai man waiting for me, who whisked me away in a Jeepney. My final destination that day was the YWAM Chiang Mai hospitality house. I mean this place is amazing – sorry no pictures was too tired. Had a good shower and went to bed.
For me this was the scariest thing during my time here in the Philippines. It wasn’t the food, the heat, the bugs or the interesting driving system. It was the reckless electric wiring that was everywhere. Inside and out. In all three locations. Not sure why it never bothered me on previous visits, but here it is. Enjoy!!!
Today will be our last day in Angeles. We began the day with a debrief of the outreach last night. While some of the students had felt uncomfortable on the streets it was overall a very positive experience for the team with several good personal contacts and invitations to today’s event at the base. Surprisingly many of the people they met were confessing Christians, including girls working in the bars who asked for prayer that they might be able to get out of this kind of work. There were some street vendors who were Christian and even another group also reaching out to the girls in the bars. One lady, a Christian who is like a mento to many of the younger girls that come to work in the bars has led several of them to Jesus. She was quoted as saying “What should I do? The Pastors will not come to these girls and I am able to help them. That is why I stay here”
Actually only two ladies came to the event, others who had hoped to come were busy renewing their work permits for the night clubs and it was taking longer than expected. We had an ice breaker, Sam shared his testimony and Hannah taught on freedom in Jesus. After that we split into twos and prayed for each other. Ate ice cream and then took a group photo beautifully photo bombed by one of the resident cats.