Jan. 13-16, 2015. By 5 a.m. we were in a taxi on the way to the airport and praying that our faithful God would give us favor regarding the weight issue and safety during the flight. As we arrived at BKK and made our way to the check-in desk, we kept wondering what would happen. Our concern was not for ourselves but for those who God would impact with GPHC and the ultimate impact on unengaged and unreached people groups. At the counter we optimistically placed our two suitcases and the box on the scale. To our thrill and amazement, the weight was 59.6 kilograms--- just under the 60 kilogram limit! We were filled with praise and thanksgiving for such a perfect answer to our prayers.
Arriving at Chiang Mai Airport, we retrieved our bags and that special box of manuals. Through our registration and communications over attending the conference, we expected to be picked up at the airport. We waited for an hour, and then decided to take a taxi to the hotel. After checking in at the front desk and getting the bags to our rooms, our next task was to purchase large envelopes that would hold the manual, a CD, letters of introduction and instruction and our brochure. We then would pick up the four cases of manuals that “A” shipped to our “Timothy” at the TKBC. In addition to the things listed above, the CD contained:
· God’s Plan for His Church (the interactive version that allows persons to complete the manual on their computer.
· The Seminary Course, God’s plan for His Church, Foreword by David Hesselgrave
· Letter of Introduction
· Letter of Instructions for completing the manual
· Four Books
o Church Planting Movements by David Garrison
o Missionary Methods, St. Paul’s or Ours by Roland Allen
o The Spontaneous Expansion of the Church by Roland Allen
o The Challenge of Missions by Oswald J. Smith
· Several articles by Ralph Winter: Finishing the Task
· A current list of the Unengaged and Unreached People Groups by Joshua Project
· Brochure of New Foundation International and our calling cards
Let me emphasize that all of this is provided FREE to every attendee because of the generous support of so many. For any of you who have been part of this, WE SAY THANK YOU!!
Tim and I first went down to Central Plaza where we knew there was a stationery section in a department store that would have large envelopes. We also went to a printer who copied the two letters and printed the entire Seminary Course in order to display this at the conference for anyone interested in using it in a Bible College or Seminary. While we waited for the printing to be done, we headed to the stationery store and got a bite of lunch (Pizza Hut no less!).
After getting in a taxi with the address for Brother "W", we hoped the driver would know the area where he lived. The problem with having a visual memory of streets and landmarks is that we cannot give directions by street name. We showed the driver a map and pointed to the hospital that was near the address, but that was only a partial help. At one point, the driver stopped and we called our brother who was able to give our taxi driver clearer directions.
I felt it was important not to rush our visit with Brother “W” by just picking up the boxes and then leaving. He has given so much of his life to carrying the Gospel to the Karen in northern Thailand, and now in his late seventies and limited in what he can do, we wanted to spend a little time encouraging this messenger of the gospel. We sensed his disappointment in not being able to go as he had before and his mind giving way to ‘lesser things’. But his love and joy in our fellowship was very sweet. He wanted to take us back to the hotel with the four cases of manuals, but he could not find his driver’s license and had the wisdom not to take a risk. His pickup truck would have been perfect for the task. “W” decided to at least take us to a main road nearby where we would be more likely to find a taxi. Within a minute or two he had hailed one. The next challenge was negotiating a price because of the heavy cases we were bringing with us. We have learned after many times and many trips that negotiating too hard can cause the taxi driver to just drive off for more revenue with someone else. Thanks to Tim’s quick thinking, we avoided losing this taxi truck that could do the job and paid what he asked for. When we arrived at the hotel, the driver seemed quite satisfied and even helped unload our cargo.
Our next challenge was getting our loaded cart to the other tower of the hotel and the third floor. Pushing the heavy cart up a steep ramp on the first floor, we found an elevator that took us right to the third floor and very near the conference room. We stowed the cart against a wall so we could get settled into our rooms and then come back to assemble the packets. With a short night before, I took a nap and then headed back to the conference area and began creating a system for stuffing the envelopes. Tim joined me shortly after I started and between the two of us we had completed over 120 packets before heading to our rooms for the night. Praise the Lord for all the small “59.6” events that made things like this possible.
Stay tuned for the next entry. God continues to show Himself faithful for HIS GLORY!
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