Friday, June 30, 2017

Q&A about missions

About a month ago I was asked 5 questions about us and missions. Every once in a while we are asked to share, but the difference this time is I want to start posting our answers for others that would be interested. So here it is. A member from Calvary Baptist Church in Henderson, Tx asked these questions so she could share with a missions team they took to Dallas. This is the church I was saved in and later met my wife, Brittney. Lord willing Calvary will be bringing us our first team to help us in Thailand Summer 2018.

1.When did you first feel called to be an overseas missionary?

I remember what stirred my heart for missions. It was when I went with the Calvary youth group to Bogg and heard Josh King speak about missions there in the main sessions. A few years later I felt called to be a missionary when I went overseas for the first time. When I was about 19 years old I went to Thailand for the first time. We stayed in a buddhist temple in a village for a few weeks. We went to teach english and basketball with Robert Wallace. Maybe you have heard of him? haha Long story short, it broke me and my wife’s heart to see people who have never heard of Jesus. From that moment on God pressed hard and deep into my heart and mind a passion to return to Thailand.

2. How did you choose to country you would go to?
I don’t feel like I chose it, honestly... My wife, Brittney, went to Thailand first a year before me. She felt a burden for the work there. We were dating at the time (I knew I was probably going to marry her), so I wanted to check it out also. After going I felt the exact same way for the people. It crushed me. I feel like if I could have chosen a country I would have picked Mexico or something because it would be close to home and I could eat Mexican food all the time, haha. But, thankfully God calls and leads us. We are on His mission. He is the one with the plan and power to make it His perfect will come about.

3. What did you do beforehand to prepare to go (including education, previous trips, areas you served in beforehand)?
Education: I studied Bible at seminary. It’s not an requirement to be a missionary, but I would encourage it.

Previous Trips: Calvary did a good job preparing me for missions. I remember great trips with the youth group called City Reach. We went to Colorado and Pennsylvania. Those were good trips that helped me gain confidence in serving and doing outreaches. Also when I got to go to Thailand twice before we moved here (2009 and 2012) helped prepare me.

Areas I served beforehand: At Calvary I got to help out with the praise band, and teaching a Sunday school class. After that I was in seminary for about 4 years, and 3 of those years I had the opportunity to be a youth minister at New Hope Baptist Church. Working there helped me learn how to serve and love the church more, and put into practice the things I was learning in seminary.

4. What has been the biggest challenge living overseas and what has been the greatest joy?
Biggest challenge... really hard to name just one. Here are two: 
1) Missing family. Every two years we get to go back to America. It feels like a long time. We miss family so bad; especially, when there is a tragedy in the family or someone is sick. But, God gives you grace to get through it. He even helps your parents to get through it. It’s really hard on them. Some people in your family will understand why you are gone and support you. Others will think you are selfish wanting to live your life away from them, and they will try everything they can when they are on the phone with you to convince you to come back.

2) Second hardest thing is learning a language and culture. So much time and effort has to go into this, and it is so vital to your ministry overseas. You can’t tell anybody about how Jesus can change their heart if you can’t speak in their heart language. You can’t fit in or understand the people you are reaching until you get at least understand some of their culture. You see that and believe it more when you are living in a culture that is not your own. Learning the language and culture is really hard.. really, really, really, hard, but it is a must to be effective in cross-cultural missions.

Greatest Joy: would be telling people about God. Seriously, a lot of people we know and have had in our homes do not know a single Christian. We are the first! They haven’t heard about how this amazing world we live in and see everyday has an amazing creator. The greatest joy we experience is sharing the good news in this dark country. Thailand is 95% buddhist, 4.5% muslim, and only 0.5% christian. There is a lot of work to do, and it is our joy to be here doing it.

5. Any final words of encouragement you would give to a young person considering going into full time ministry or missions?
I have to separate the two because my answer would be different for both.

If missions: try it. Go on a trip. Ask God to help you know if this is something you can/should be doing. If you go and it’s not (which is ok!) consider it an answered prayer. It’s not a wasted trip because now you have gained experience, had your worldview stretched, and have a better idea of how you can support global missions. You will see the needs. And they will become more real to you. I think people who have been on mission trips are the best supporters missionaries have!

If considering full time ministry: I can’t say try it. You can’t just go try to be a pastor or youth minister. But, you can go talk to them! That’s what I encourage you to do. They will be more than happy to answer your questions and help guide you, and so would I. We all needed it at the beginning. You can always call/message me to talk more.

But this is what I want to encourage you with: look at the characters in the Bible. God called Moses, but Moses felt inadequate because his speech wasn’t good. Jeremiah said, “I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.” He was worried too about his speaking abilities and that he was too young. But God called them. God calls people who feel inadequate because they WILL depend on Him. They know they can’t do the job they are called to alone.

Take me for example. I was horrible at speaking in front of people. The worst grades I made in college was in “speech” and “preaching” in seminary. It terrified me, like shaking and about to throw up terrified, haha. But the good thing is it caused me to really depend on God. Since that happened I know it is only because of God I can stand before churches and preach, and now I’m standing before a church in Thailand preaching in Thai! Which is in itself a miracle.

Last advice I will share is if you can do anything else, do it. If you could be a nurse, teacher, or business owner, do it. One of the clearest signs that you are being called to full-time ministry is that you can’t see yourself doing anything else but that. It grips you in a way that keeps you up at night. It terrifies you. It’s scary to give into, but you must trust God. He can use you in ways you thought impossible! That’s how he gets all the glory. I will be praying for your trip to Dallas! Be brave, loving, and unashamed of the gospel.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Engaging Our Culture

A lot has changed since I (Brittney) wrote this but I wanted to share it anyway…

Funny story:
So in Thailand in almost every big parking lot you have to stop at the entrance and exit to get a card (sometimes you have to pay if you stay over a certain amount of time). Last week we were out for a family day at the mall and as we were leaving the parking garage, we started playing Toy Story on the DVD player for Josie. (It is in Thai) We pulled up to the lady and as we rolled down the window the first line plays of the move and the volume was really loud. (in English the line says “All right everyone, This is a stickup! don't anybody move!” but it is speaking in Thai and an old man voice) The lady’s eyes got so big and a really confused look on her face!! I cannot imagine what she was thinking obviously this young white guy (Brandon) was behind the wheel and surely that didn’t come from him!!! haha as we drove away we just laughed…oh the memories we have made!!

As you all may know we have been thinking and thinking about what Baby Lingle #2 will be named. I thought I’d share with you a few of the silly ones Brandon has come up with. He has been searching for English names that sound like Thai words…here are just few. 
Hugh sounds cute right…in Thai its the word for hungry! 
Jet…is the number 7 in Thai
Jep…means hurt or sore 
Juan…sounds like the word for ‘day’ 
JD… is what they call the top part of the temples 

**Baby boy has come already and we chose the name Judson James Lingle (JJ). 
You may be wondering if his name has any meaning or significance to us. Judson came from Adoniram Judson (1788-1850). He was a very famous missionary in Burma for almost forty years. He translated the Bible into the Burmese language that is still being used today. Brandon and him have some things in common. They have the same birth date (August 9), and they were the same age when they left for the mission field. And James is one of favorite books in the Bible. And JJ is easy for the Thai people to say. 

I just wanted to take a minute and thank everyone that took time to pray for our family and for Judson during this time. I truly believe it was the power of prayer that God had mercy on us and saved our son. So thank you for going before to God in prayer on our behalf! 
This may sound strange but I wanted to mention a good book if you have time to read, even if you are not in a parenting season, it was an excellent reminder of how understanding the gospel effects every aspect of your life (especially parenting). The book is called “Gospel-Powered Parenting” by William P. Farley. I was able to read this book right before on our son was born, and I know God used it to comfort me during the tough times. Some of the chapters discuss things like the holiness of God, having a healthy fear of God, and God’s graciousness. Even in such a dark time when Brandon and I felt alone and helpless not knowing if our son was going to make it, we still knew God is good. Never once did we question God’s goodness or faithfulness because even if we had lost our son, God is still worthy of all praise.

Engaging our culture:
This past week I was listening to a really good sermon on Engaging Culture. I just wanted to share some of the things I was reminded of while listening. 
The speakers name was Lecrae (He is a rapper that is Christian and reaching the hip-hop culture by engaging a specific people group). He began the message by stating that many of us don’t engage culture because we are scared of it, we often remove ourselves from it and stay in a safe place where we can be around people like us (Christians who only stay around other Christians). It’s comfortable, they think like us and we often have more things in common with them. We sometimes have this mind set that we don’t want to be around non-christians because they might “get on us” or rub off their sin on us. Lecrae makes the point that we are not going to be able to be engaged if we are avoiding them. He goes on to explain that things in themselves are not inherently bad, all that God made was good. He gave some examples (sex- inside of marriage is a good thing) but The Fall/ Sin contaminated things. Culture directs the way we think. He gave some examples of the stereotypes we have today where you see something that could be used for good but our culture has directed us to think it is probably evil. So we must find ways to engage the culture, how can we direct it in a good way. If we just live safe lives never engaging people, they will never hear the truths God has invested in you and me! Thats why we are here, as Christians we have a mission. Glorifying Him with every aspect of our life. 

So how do we engage culture…
(1)get to know the people you are trying to reach (example: don’t talk to someone just to try to evangelize them, take interest in them show them you care about them and that they matter). Learn their language (this isn’t just for Christians in other countries! I remember when Brandon and I first got married we come from families that communicate and speak in different ways…matter of fact we are still learning some of those styles! lol).Bottom line…Be interested in people. 
(2)Another way to engage culture is to Love the people. Don’t just see them as projects, they are souls that matter! 
(3) And lastly Rehabilitate the culture/ Redeem it. Go and paint a picture of what it looks like when Jesus changes people, go love people that don’t expect to be loved! All this to say ….It’s a process, but we must engage our culture!
Here is the link for the sermon if you have time I challenge you to listen to it. It’s a good message for all Christians not just pastors and missionaries! 

Now after hearing all this I was trying to take it in and make applications to my new culture we are surrounded in. As I was thinking some of the things that came to my mind were times when  I feel scared to let Josie see and observe things in this Buddhist nation. Sometimes even scared to engage some people in fear that they may try to teach Josie their ways. I am scared when I let her play with the kids at the playground and she sees their Buddha necklace and wants to wear it.  As a matter of fact shortly after I listened to this sermon Josie and I went for a walk and as we passed a spirit house in our neighborhood, a lady was out bowing to it, and the next thing I knew I looked at Josie and she was copying the action of the lady (she is at that age where she copies everything we do). My heart was burdened for this woman and I quickly began explaining to Josie we do not do that and that we only bow to God. (It’s so important to take times like these and use them as opportunities to share the gospel with Josie.)
I had a similar experience a few weeks ago, I shared in our newsletter about the Thai New Year ceremony going on in our neighborhood. Many of our neighbors had gathered to pray and ask blessing from a monk for the new year. As Josie and I were out walking we passed by and as we stood to the side I was able to talk to some of the people about what was going on. As we left we kept walking out of the neighborhood out to some of the street venders and when we arrived one of the people noticed Josie only had one shoe on. l started to get upset, how could I have not seen her lose a shoe (she had just got them in a package my mom sent because shoes her size are hard to find here). Before I got too worked up about it, I saw it was the perfect opportunity to show Josie we have a God that hears our prayers unlike what we had just observed the people praying to these dead gods. (It seems so small and insignificant) but i stopped and prayed with Josie that the Lord would help us find her shoe. Sure enough on the way home we were looking and looking and there it was randomly place near the road. We praised God! 
As fearful as I am about this culture directing our thoughts (it’s a dark place here, sometimes it can feel like we are the only Christians for miles), I am reminded that Jesus came and dwelt among us in order to reach us. And what an Amazing God we serve, if I can display even the smallest picture of Christ to the people around me it’s worth it! By no means do I plan to take on any of these practices that the culture teaches, but I do hope to engage and interact with the culture in such a way that the people are reached for Christ!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Where We Live

Here are some pics I took to show you what the area we live in looks like. This was around 7:00am so you can see the masses heading to work. It was a cloudy morning. 

This is the main street we live on.

This is the side street you turn on right before you enter our neighborhood. The buildings you see to the right of the cars are restaurants and coffee shops. We go to these places often, and have made a lot of friends on this street. 

This is the canal between the main road and the small side street. The Boat you see is a restaurant that serves noodles.
When I was out taking pics, I saw a group of monks out collecting offerings. You can see the man in this picture making merit.

This is a everyday way of life for the majority here in Thailand.
This is a "spirit house" that is attached to the office in our neighborhood. It's a statue that people pray to and give offerings.  
Here is Josie playing with other kids on the play ground in our neighborhood. These two girls playing with her have been extra sweet to Josie. They love her. 

Monday, January 25, 2016

Summary of Furlough

Here are some pics and stories from our time in the States (September - January 2016). We had a great visit with friends, family, and churches. It was a sweet time to report about our work and progress here in Thailand to the churches who support us, and spend time with family and friends during the holidays. 

Me giving a report and preaching at New Hope (our sending church). For the four months we were in the states we visited different churches every week. It was nice to see people who have partnered with us in this mission, and get to share with them in more detail of what has been going on in our lives and what we plan to do next. We were really blessed by our visits. Some churches did way too much for us and spoiled us when we came to visit. Also while we visited we gained a few new supporters, and people that said they would pray for us and the work we are doing!

Josie had to adjust and learn a lot of things. The car seat was one of them since we don't have a car in Thailand. It took a little while, but now the car seat is used as a wonderful tool to get her to sleep. 

We were living out of a suit case for 4 months. 

It was fun showing Josie all the sights that make good ol' East Texas different than Thailand.

Here we got to introduce Thai food to our good friends. It was neat to watch their reaction, and we were happy they liked the food. The food was good and authentic. We got to meet the Thai cook. 

And of course we ate a LOT of Mexican and BBQ food while we were home (and Chick-fil-a). I think we should be good-to-go for awhile. 

Brittney and I got to celebrate our 5 year anniversary. Plus we had childcare! So we really had a great time relaxing and spending time together. 

Josie learned how to walk! So as you probably know, the fun really begins! 

Took Josie to a Fall Festaval 

Found out B is PREGNANT with baby #2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We all had fun with family. Josie enjoyed playing with her cousins. Now that we are back in Thailand, these two are confused. They want to see each other and play, but don't understand how far away Thailand is... 

Had a blow out on the interstate. Thankful for God's protection. It could have been really bad. Oh, you like my white-look-like-I'm-going-into-space-suit? I have a good father-in-law. It was packed in the car just incase of something like this, because it's hard to work on a car in your Sunday clothes. 

Christmas Parade with grandparents (AKA Meme & Poppy)

We had a nice Christmas with Family. We missed the last two, but I think we made up for it with this one. It was such a sweet time. 

We had a gender reveal party to find out if baby #2 is a boy or girl. Well... it's a BOY! 

Had a good time of prayer with our family before we left to come back to Thailand. Saying goodbye is so hard... we love and miss them so much already. 

so there you have it... We are now back in Thailand and Josie is stealing the show. She gets a lot of attention, and we use that to our advantage to meet people with hopes of getting to share the gospel with them. Right now we are in the process of getting ready to move to a new house and location. We move January 26th and we are excited to get to work learning the area and meeting people. 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Halfway Through Our Furlough

Wow it’s hard to believe we’ve made it halfway through our furlough! 
We have had lots of mixed emotions. It is hard knowing the time is going so quickly with our families, but we are also looking forward to getting back to our new “home” in Thailand. It has been weird being back  home but not really feeling at home. I will always remember the words a sweet friend told us, ‘the airplane is bittersweet… a missionary is always happy to go one way but sad to leave the other.’ As hard as it is to be away from family and familiar things, we really do miss Thailand and the things God has in store for us there. It has been challenging around family we want to be sensitive to them but also want them to know we are excited and have a passion to be where God has called us and desire for them to be excited also. 

Just wanted to share a few reverse culture shock experiences: 

-While in Asia being an air hostess is a very respected job and one must meet very high expectations to qualify for the job, therefore they are very kind and helpful throughout the flight. But as soon as we switched to American flight we instantly noticed a difference (not sure if our hostess just had an off day or different culture) we were very shocked by the behavior of them!

-Coming out of the airport Brandon was surprised by the strange look of certain cars we hadn’t seen that brand or model in a while. 
-Then of course when we got into my dads truck we were surprised by steering wheel being on the other side of the car. 
-Josie girl had a little bit of shock when she had to learn the car seat!! Lets just say there were some very long and loud road trips. Thankfully she adjusted pretty fast. 
-Brandon and I were a little scared to drive at first. Just the shock of getting used to everything being on the other side of the road…all the speed limits and rules to  remember.

-At the first restaurant we went to we ate some good home cooking (something like chicken fried steak or something like that can’t remember exactly) and I, not even thinking about it, found some “spicy” seasoning sauce on the table and just added it to my food and began eating. When the waiter came to the table he asked “did you add this sauce to you food?” I said yes. He said he had never seen that before lol. Anyone in Thailand can appreciate this, its just habit to season your food.
-We forgot about refills (very few places do this in Thailand lol)
-The refrigerators here are HUGE!

-Everything is so spread out here
- When we first arrived seemed like the sun went down so late.
  • now it goes down earlier because of the time change, Thailand doesn’t have daylight savings time.
  • We were surprised how dark it gets, several times we ran into things at the house. We were not used to pitch dark (in the city there are always some kind of light shining).

Other Random things:
-Brandon was surprised by the cost of the first Sprite he bought from a gas station $1.50!! in Thailand you can go to the 7/11 and get one for 17Baht (about $0.50) 
-The time zone, at first we kept thinking at weird hours we needed to get our emails and phone calls done. Because time difference sometimes we would have to stay up late or wake earlier to take care of things back in the states.
-The money is different, in Thailand each bill has a different color! 
-Walmart/stores in general were HUGE when we first went in, it was really overwhelming how many options there were. The baby aisle blew our minds! lol we are used to just a limited amount of choices.

Some things we’ve been doing while in America:

-Visiting family! We have been bouncing back and forth from house to house staying and visiting with as much family as we can while we are here. It was neat to see family meet Josie for the first time. 

-Visiting Friends! It has been so nice to get to see some of our friends while being here. 

-Visiting churches! We have every Sunday and sometimes other days of the week booked with churches morning and night to visit and report to! We are so thankful for this opportunity, it has been such a blessing to visit with everyone so far and look forward to the ones coming up. 

-We celebrated Josie’s first Birthday! She LOVED cake!!! i had to pull it away from her lol

-Eating LOTS (probably too much) of Barbecue and Mexican and all kinds of ‘Texan’ food.

We will be returning to Thailand January 5th. 

Friday, August 7, 2015

Our First Furlough

Brittney, Josie, and I will be leaving Bangkok, Thailand September 1st and flying to America. We will be in the States for 4 months. I wanted to write a short description of some of the plans, goals, and possible struggles we will have while being in America.

I want to start off by apologizing now before we even meet again for anything we do that seems weird or rude. That might sound silly for me to do, but I think we both might found out quickly after meeting why I’m doing this. Brittney and I have changed a lot since we have been in Thailand. Our role as missionaries is to adapt to the culture we are serving in just like Paul did so that we can be effective and accepted here (1 Cor 9:20-23). We have been doing this for the past 2 years now. Are we Thai? No. But, I would say that we are now becoming a weird/unique mix of both Thai and American cultures. There are things that the Thai people do that we like (and don’t like) that have become a way of life for us. Just a few examples of that is our eating habits have changed. We now eat more spicy foods and usually eat rice at least once a day, and sometimes for breakfast. Also we have adapted to the climate here. Its very tropical (hot) pretty much all the time. Some of our friends and places we visit don’t have air conditioners. So we have adjusted to not needing that, and sometimes now just run a fan at home. I say all this because we know we are going to freeze being home during winter time haha. Another thing that you might find strange about us is how we talk. Brittney and I have learned as much Thai as we could being here on our first term. Sometimes we will be speaking in English and just randomly say the next word in Thai. Also, this has happened to, we will be talking and come to a word in English that we can’t think of but we know it in Thai. That is a weird feeling. Another thing that will be weird about being in America is not being the minority any more. Also just being able to speak English all the time and everyone understand each other easily. I won’t have to form Thai sentences in my head before trying to talk to someone or be nervous about answering or making phone calls in a different language.. There are many other things but this will be enough for now. Our family and friends will point out many more things to us I’m sure the first few weeks we are with them.

Possible Struggles: 
So we have changed a lot, but so have our friends, family members, and supporting churches since we have been gone. I have heard this can be difficult and leave a missionary feeling left out. When we visit with our family and friends they will be talking about things that have been happening and we will feel left out because we weren’t there. A lot can change in a few years and I think that is going to be weird to see, because we still imagine “home” being like how we left it. 

Also little things like trying to drive on the opposite side of the road again will be a challenge at first. We don’t have a car here in Thailand yet, but I have been driving my motor bike in Thailand for a while now. Brittney and I will also struggle with trying to communicate to people what its like here in Thailand. It is so hard to describe what life is like here and the spiritual darkness to someone who has never been. It’s not their fault, we know that. I remember the first time Brittney went to Thailand (Summer 2008, one year before I had the chance to visit), and when she got back how hard she tried to explain to me all the things she experienced. I couldn’t understand. I didn’t see all the big Buddhist temples, people worshiping spirits in trees and in statues ext like she did. So that is going to be hard for us; especially, in a short church service to explain what has happened, whats going on, and what we are going to do. But we will try our best, and I know our supporters will do their best to follow along and understand all these foreign things we talk about. 

No doubt the biggest struggle will be leaving family again. We will fly out of Dallas January 5, 2016 to return to Thailand. This time our family will also have to let their grand-baby go. They will just have got to really know her and get attached. Please start praying now for them to be comforted and given grace during that time. 

Our Plans: 
I better move on to sharing about what we plan to do. Here are our main objectives: Rest (we will have family to help out with the baby), be debriefed at the missions office, Re-energize physically and spiritually (maybe go to a Christian conference and concert), Spend time with family and friends, visit churches each Sunday that support us monthly, take care of some personal business that we can’t do while being in Thailand (hospital care, insurance, banking, etc), do some shopping, eat a lot of foods we miss, celebrate Brittney and Josie’s birthdays in October, Brittney and I will celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary by taking a mini-vacation, and we will all celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas with family!!! Also during all that making time each day to study and improve our Thai. You can even ask us if we are doing that to help hold us accountable. I’ve heard its very easy to not study and regress in language proficiency while on a long furlough. We don’t want that! 

Our Goals: 
We have been praying a lot and planing a lot to make this furlough an effective one. Brittney and I both want to use our time wisely while in the States. Our goal is to complete everything we have planned and then some. 

We want to give a clear and faithful report to the churches and meetings we go to. We want our supporters to know what we have done in Thailand the past two years, and what we plan to do when we return. We will be talking about our ambition and strategy in starting a church in the Northern Suburbs of Bangkok.

Thanks for reading. We look forward to seeing many of you soon! We will share our schedule of churches that we are going to visit once that is finalized. Brittney and I can’t express how excited we are to see everyone! 

Sunday, June 14, 2015

First Time to Teach in Thai

Today I hit a big milestone! This morning I taught a Sunday School class and I only spoke in the Thai language. I have been preparing for 2 weeks for this lesson. And more than that, I have been working hard at this language for almost 2 years so that I could do this! I'm so excited that I'm finally getting to the time where I can start teaching about God in Thai. Don't get me wrong, I still have A LOT to learn. My pronunciation wasn't close to perfect, nor was my tones, sentence structures, and other things. But, I believe God used it. I was so thankful for people in the class being patient with me as I was trying to share in their language, and after it was finished they encouraged me a lot with their kind words. God definitely blessed me with a good experience and I'm looking forward to teaching again next month.

God has really answered our prayers! I'm so thankful for our supporters and friends that prayed for me. I really had a peace going into this. For me this could have been easily the most terrifying thing I have had to do in Thailand haha. That might sound strange, but its true. I get nervous sharing from God's Word in English. If I can get nervous sharing in a language that I don't even have to think about and I know exactly what is coming out of my mouth, imagine how I could have felt today in a language that is still difficult for me. God blessed me so much. Could I have done better? probably.. But I'm thankful I survived and I really enjoyed sharing with them. It was really nice to talk directly to them and not have to depend on an interpreter.

During the time I was sharing I had a few out-of-body-experiences... Sound weird? I mean, I kinda stepped back and heard myself speaking in another language and people around me seeming to benefit from it. That was cool! I can't really explain how that felt, but it was interesting. It was like I was on auto-pilot and I stepped back to observe what was going on and how I sounded. I never stopped speaking and I didn't have to think about what I was saying. During that time I could hear myself and really observe how people were reacting to what I was saying. It was neat.

The topic of discussion was "Praying Without Ceasing." We talked about the importance of it, what it looks like, how it can deepen our relationship with God, and shared together some methods that we can use to go about doing it. It was fun. I feel so blessed. I pray that God continues to help me in this language so that I can communicate clearer and deeper each time I get the chance to teach.

Here is a snap shot of my notes. If any of my missionary friends read this you can see how I decided to structure my notes in both languages. Basically I wrote down the sentences and words in Thai that I needed to work on. When I was speaking and got in a bind I would just look down and read what I wrote in Thai. 

Videoing myself practice the lesson before I taught it helped a lot! I recorded myself probably a dozen times or more to find out where my trouble spots were in the language. It also helped me gain speed and helped me speak smother I think. I'm not going to lie, it's kind of painful to actually see yourself and hear yourself, but it was helpful to know how I really sound. It was interesting also to see how I move my mouth and do things with my facial expressions when I came to words and things that where more difficult for me to say.