1st Anniversary of the Church!
We celebrated our church’s first anniversary this past week, and praise the Lord for what He has done in this past year. We saw people saved, baptized, and growth both numerically and spiritually.
The first year as a church was exciting. Working with people that have never heard is one of the greatest joys about the mission field. It is thrilling to work with people so eager to learn.
But this is also the challenge. There is so MUCH to learn, it is a slow process, and we are starting from so far back. Thailand has been steeped in false religion for so long, the fruit of these lies is woven deep into society and people’s thinking.
But we see the Gospel bring more freedom every day. Each day we say, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage” in a different way. As we wonder together at God’s work for us, they are liberated a little more every day from the burden and shame of religion to live in the freedom God has given us.
This Sunday we had a young guy come for the first time with a lot of questions. He has already been a monk for two stints in the past with the intention to make merit, but when I asked him what he learned from those experiences, he answered – it is burdensome. He has been coming every day this week to our Bible studies and is making progress. Pray for him that he will continue to seek the One who gives rest to our souls.
In the past year we have had over 500 attend our english classes, over 200 people attend our services at some point, and from that, 50 have stuck around and were in attendance this past week. With the steep learning curve of our first year as a church, a new language, and new culture, we are praising the Lord!
God is using the testimony and work of people in the church to see the work progress. I am always proud of how eager they are to share the Gospel and work in the ministry.
We finally started livestreaming our services and pray that it will be a good opportunity to get the message out. Our first service already has had 170 people view it, and even though many only tune in for a short time, we are excited to have another hook in the water that gives more an opportunity to hear.
We already have had a visitor come from the streaming and its not even Sunday yet! They came because they heard and wanted to be at our Bible study!
We are still lack $9000 in order to set up a foundation here, which will be our legal footing for all future ministry here. It’s a big deal. Please pray for the Lord to supply this need.
Yours for the Gospel in Thailand,
Philip & Lori Bassham
(Claire, Grace, and Emma)