Praising God for the Little Things
“I have heard of a good old woman in a cottage, who had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water. Lifting up her hands, she said as a blessing, ‘What! All this, and Jesus too?’” This was a direct quote by Charles Spurgeon from well over 100 years ago. Yet, as I visited the Lahu village of Huay La Bong this past week, that was the exact sentiment these people left me with. Through connections made only by the Lord, I had the pleasure of meeting with a retired man here in Chiang Mai who was a builder by trade. He expressed his desire to volunteer his time in any village that might need help with a building project. At the time we talked, I knew of no one. Then the following week we visited Huay La Bong for their Thanksgiving Celebration and found out that they were about to begin the process of erecting a new structure they could meet in (they currently meet under a metal and bamboo covering outside the pastors house). But, they needed help with the planning process. They don’t have all the funds to put up walls and have a floor but the church has saved enough to put up concrete beams and a strong roof and they are excited and thankful for every little step. They will still need to put up block walls and add a concrete floor....someday. However, they are happily moving forward and thankful for the Lord’s provisions thus far. It’s such an encouragement to see everyone pull together to help in a way that glorifies the Lord! And it was an absolute honor to help them begin the process of the construction on their new building. Please pray for the church at Huay La Bong!
Reaching the Lost
A remote Karen village just north of Chiang Mai asked me to come preach this past Sunday. I jumped at the opportunity and was blessed to spend the day with them. I preached on the love of God, which I pray was an encouragement to this church. After service, the pastor’s wife prepared lunch for us and we ate on the ground (Karen style) right outside their house. Omelet, rice, green beans, and eggplant filled our plates and our bellies and we were thankful for the time of fellowship that allowed us to get to know them better. We spent another couple of hours visiting with people in the church and hiking up to see where the pastor climbs a rock cliff once a year to gather “jungle honey” which supplements his income as a pastor. During our visit, we learned that there were ten Buddhist families in the village that were still unreached with the Gospel. I asked if we could meet with them and the pastor quickly offered to walk me around the village so we could visit with each of them.
We hope to return in a few weeks to spend more time with these unconverted and look for an open door to present the Glorious Gospel. Please pray that the Lord would do a work in the Karen village of Pha Lia!
What a blessing to get to hold our first month of Preacher’s Training in the new ministry building in MaeAi! Good lighting and fans are certainly an unnecessary luxury but I assure you we were greatly thankful for both! I taught the men on Prayer and dug into the parable of the Sower and the Seed. We had a smaller group of men due to it being harvest season here in Thailand but the men that attended were hungry and eager to learn!
- Pray earnestly for the ten Buddhist families in Pha Lia. We plan to visit them again in a few weeks and hope to have the opportunity to more fully share the gospel with each of them! - Thai language study. I am thankful to have Bee Shield (our Thai interpreter) working with me who not only has turned out to be a fantastic coordinator and interpreter, but also pushes me to use my Thai more regularly and helps teach me about the Thai language and culture throughout the day as we work and travel. - This month I am excited to begin a bible study with a couple of young men. Please pray that the study will glorify the Lord and will grow as He sees fit! - When we go to villages we always notice there is a shortage of Bibles and hymnals. Additionally, we would like to have plenty of Bibles and literature available to hand out to the Thai people we meet and have the opportunity to witness too. We would like to start a fund specifically for purchasing these as there is a need. If you, or someone you know, would like to give towards this specific need please send funds to our sending church and in the notes write “Villandry: Bibles/Hymnals” For HIS Glory, Matthew Villandry