January 31, 2008

Thailand Soap Opera Controversy

Primetime TV in Thailand is filled with soap operas. Needless to say, I don't watch much Thai TV. Anyways, one Thai soap opera made it all the way to Fox news in America. I haven't seen the soap opera but the video just makes you want to shake your head.

You can see the video here:
War of Angels

Sorry, I tried to get the video on my blog but for some reason I couldn't find the html on Fox News.

Oil Shortages

There has been a lot of reports about the increasing price of oil and the possibility of oil shortages in the future on a lot of North American news stations. However, this problem has already hit Thailand. However the problem is happening with motor oil, it is happening with cooking oil. A couple weeks ago, word got out that the price of oil was going to increase 10-20 cents per litre. This is big news since oil is a staple cooking ingredient here, Thais don't use margarine or butter to cook. After news got out, everyone ran to their local store to stock up on oil. To make matters worse, retailers stopped stocking their shelves with oil because they would be able to make more money once the price officially increased. All of this put together has led to bare shelves at your local grocery store. It is hard to find cooking oil. I never thought that this would happen in my lifetime! I hope the price increases soon because I need to eat!

I like this

Been reading the book, Lead like Jesus. The book is pretty good, however I really liked this quote, figured I share it with you.

If you want to make God laugh, tell Him your plans.

Being humans we always think we have our lives and our futures under control but really don't. Any plans that we have that we've thought up ourselves are of no value. Ask God to lead you in every aspect of your life!!

January 27, 2008

Happy 60th!!

We wanted to wish my dad a happy 60th birthday. It is hard to believe that you are 60 already. Time flies when you are having fun. Thanks for everything you do for us and the great support you are to us and our ministry. We look forward to seeing you when you come visit this year!

Need to Reload??

Although the Pacers are doing better than what most experts predicited, they still aren't wowing anyone, most notably me. They are now about 7 games under .500 and unbelievably are still holding onto 8th place in the Eastern Conference (shows how bad the East is). They lost to Miami today, who hadn't won a game this year. I don't think Indiana is going to scare anyone even if they make the playoffs. Maybe it might be time to start thinking of positioning themselves for the draft instead of being mediocre at best for the next few years.

January 25, 2008

Geographically Inept

I have always considered myself a little bit of a geography buff. Call me crazy but I always enjoyed studying geography in school, memorizing all those provinces, states and countries. Name a country and can pretty much tell you where it is located.

During my visits and stays in America, I always thought it was fun to ask the American people what the captial city of their neighbor to the north was. I got all kinds of answers and on a rare occasion, someone got it right. I figured since Canada and the US are neigbors, people should know our capital city especially since Canadians have to memorize all the American state capitals (why are Tallahasee, Sacramento and Albany capitals anyways?). It baffled me how people didn't know. However, today in my Bible class, something happened that made me flabbergasted (don't know how to spell that). I asked my 3 students to name the 4 countries that border Thailand. All of them have lived here their whole lives. With all of them working together they got 3 of the 4. The couldn't remember that Cambodia along with Burma, Laos and Malaysia, border Thailand. I couldn't believer they didn't know that.

As a result, we are going to start studying geography. If God called us to play a part in seeing the gospel reach all nations, how can we do that if we don't even know that countries like Luxemburg or Rwanda exist? We can't pray or go to a country that we don't know exists. I'm excited, it should be fun!

Hopefully I can ace my own test!

January 24, 2008

Tale of the Tape

Today we took Owen to the doctor for his two month check-up. The doctor told us that we have a very healthy boy. Here is how Owen is measuring up after 2 months of life.

Weight - 6.5 kilos (14.3 pounds) - that makes him heavier than 94% of all other babies.

Height - 63.5 centimetres (25.4 inches) - that makes him taller than 95% of all other babies.

No one believes that Owen is only 2 months. He is already into clothes for kids aged 3-6 months.

2.0689 Months or 9 Weeks Old



Owen turned 2 months on Tuesday and today he turns 9 weeks, making him 2.0689 months old today too. Now I see why people count weeks more than months, much easier to count. The first pic is a pic of Owen and Mawn (great grandpa in Northern Thai). Another is him showing his neck strength. The last one is just plain cute.

January 22, 2008

WOW! I can't believe it.

I had a funny thing happen in one of my English classes today (at least I thought so). This class just started last week and they are pretty basic. They are 4th year marketing students at a local university and will be graduating soon. They want to study basic conversational English and help them with interviews (many companies interview in English although you don't really need it for the job).

Over the past 3 classes we have been studying Present Simple Tense. An example of a Present Simple Sentence is - I work - in case you didn't know. Today,I figured I'd ask some questions that one might expect in an interview. So I asked the first student a Present Simple Question: What skills do you have? She was taken by surprise by the question, thought for a moment and came up with this brilliant answer: I speak Thai. I couldn't believe that a Thai person knew how to speak Thai. The whole class thought it was pretty funny and didn't stop harassing her for the rest of class.

January 18, 2008

Guy Smiley

Over the past few weeks, Owen has been perfecting the art of smiling. At the beginning, he smiled pretty much for no reason. As time progressed he began smiling after a good burp or fart (who wouldn't) and now he starting to smile more at Mommy and Daddy, especially Mom.

January 15, 2008

finished FINALLY!!!!

About 4 years ago, the highway circling the city of Chiang Mai was torn up in order to change all the intersections into underpasses. That way, traffic would flow much better. At first I thought this is gonna be great!! As soon as the intersections were torn up, the workers proceeded to work really hard for about a month. Cranes, bulldozers, tractors, you name it. But after the hole in the ground was big enough ensuring that no one could cross at any intersection, the workers took a break. Not for Christmas or any other holiday, the workers took a break that lasted for 2 whole years.

I still scratch my head and think why? Rumor has it that the companies were given 4 years to complete the construction. Since the underpasses would only take 2 years to complete, they could take a 2 year vacation. It makes no sense to me. Why tear up the road and force everyone to make u-turns to get where they want to go if you aren't going to complete the intersections as quickly as possible? But that is a questions you just don't ask. When you live in a foreign country, you learn not to ask why sometimes because the answers usually never satisfies.

Now that the underpasses are finished, I'm satisfied. Now we can actually get somewhere in a half decent amount of time. Just wish it would have happened 2 years earlier.

Next problem.... what to do with all the motorbikes/scooters???

January 10, 2008

A Great Trip to the Village

This past Monday-Wednesday I made my first trip to the village in a couple months. I was able to visit Mae Hoi, the village where our Bible School is located and after that I went to another village in Mae LaNoi where Lemuu, one of the missionaries sponsored by Antioch Baptist Church here in Chiang Mai, is serving.

I had the opportunity to teach there for 3 hours Tuesday morning, 2 hours Tuesday afternoon and another 2 hours in the evening, all of which had to be translated from Thai to Karen, the local dialect in the village.

Lemuu asked me to teach on the local church. However it became clear that after we looked at the purpose of a church in Matthew 28:18-20, they didn't have a concept of making disciples. I spent the morning teaching about salvation. I emphasized over and over that in order to be saved one must repent and put their trust in Christ. After 3 hours I asked if they understood and the answer was no. I came back in the afternoon and taught for 2 more hours and asked if they understood and again the answer was not really. Over supper I prayed that God would help me make it clear to them. In the evening, I again taught on salvation and as we grew to a close, I asked the all important question, do you understand and some said yes. I then asked those who understood what they needed to do and one man quickly answered, we must do it. I asked do you think this is truth? He quickly answered yes. I asked do you think this truth comes from God or from me. He replied, "from God". I then asked if anyone was ready to repent and put their trust in Christ. Another man in the crowd quickly put up his hand. As we closed, I asked those who wanted to make this decision to stay and the rest were free to leave. Praise God, 3 men stayed and put their trust in Christ.

Please pray for PawnChai (far left), DoeWaa and PawnChai (right of me) who made this important decision. Also pray for Lemuu as he disciples them and continues to teach the others about salvation.

Some Village Pics


Been Awhile

It's been a while since Owen made his video debut so I figured as he turns 7 weeks old today we'd celebrate by posting a video. Its a lot cheaper than buying a gift, plus he still not interested in a lot these days. The best part of this gift is that people all over the world can enjoy too.

January 06, 2008

Standing Room Only

Today, one of my dreams and I think the dream of every missionary or pastor happened at church today. When all the kids came down for morning worship (the kids have Sunday school during adult Sunday school and during the preaching part of our services), we didn't have enough seats for everyone to sit down on. As a result, some of our young adults had to stand in the back. Counting everyone, we had 46 people in attendance which is a new record (outside our special Christmas outreach) during the song service, we had 46 people present. I thank God for that and for answered prayer. One of my New Year's resolutions was to make a more concerted effort to pray for the growth of our church. We had 13 first-time visitors today. One of the weaknesses of our church is that people don't really invite their friends. Today we had 5 of our regular attenders bring a friend, more than any other Sunday that I can remember.

January 03, 2008

Quotes and Stories

Over the past few months, I've been reading some books about preaching and they recommend recording or inventorying all the good quotes and illustrations you get from different sources. However they don't really tell a person how to go about doing that.
In one of John Maxwell's books, it seems to me that when he is finished with a book, he gives it to his secretary and she goes through the book and copies everything he has highlighted or noted into some kind of system. Unfortunately, I don't have a secretary that can do that and I am pretty sure others of us don't have that luxury either, so I was wondering if anybody has a system that works well for them. How do you go about recording good quotes and stories? If you have any advice, let me know.

January 02, 2008

Hello New Year!!

Instead of saying Happy New Year, Thai people say Hello New Year. As I reflect on the year the was, have been really seen God working in our lives and in the lives of those we minister to here in Thailand. We rejoice over those who were saved and those who were baptized over the past year but like I told our church last Sunday, I believe that God wants to do even greater things in us and through us in the year to come.

With the start of the New Year, I have decided to make some New Year's resolutions, something I have never really done before. I am also planning on making a change to the way I've been preaching. Over the past year, I have been preaching through the book of Matthew and doing a couple of short series here and there. This year I am going to try to do more topical series. I haven't really preached this way before so it is going to be a challenge. We are starting the year off with a series of sermons called "Doing it for Each Other". Last week we talked about loving one another, this week we will be talking about encouraging one another. Other topics in the series are serving one another and praying for one another. Although I don't have a computer person to make some cool logos like some of my friends in the states, I pray that this new series will make our church stronger.