Ive decided to change how i do my newsletter a bit, so that's why those of you who get my newsletter by fb message got a link instead. I already put the newsletter in my blog, so hopefully this will save me a bit of time, and allow me to put links and picture galleries all in one place more easily.
This month was productive, and i actually got a lot done because of not having class. I do however hope that as i wrap up building related projects, and as Calvin gains more independence, that i can begin to reorganize my schedule and spend more time with thinks like tract production, song writing, evangelism, and video editing, including translation and subbing videos in thai.
We are doing well, Calvin is crawling everywhere and walking with guidance. He puts everything in his mouth yet hasn't got sick yet. It make me praise Gods design, that such a small fragile boy could be so strong somehow. When he touches electric chords, we decided to go ahead and swat his hands. He learned quick not to touch them, and even can distinguish my "don't do it" voice, and my praise voice, so sometimes he will obey with only verbal command, and when he crawls to play with something else he gets praise. I am reading a couple parenting books now during lunch, i think we got this.
Here in nst we are having another covid breakout, so i had to close class for now. I will try to use this as an opportunity to finish some unfinished projects around the house. Fangs shop is still doing well because of delivery options, so we are thankful for that.
I have done a few concrete pours but i still need to do a final pour to finish up fangs new cooking area. I got a bunch of electric work done, but still have a few things left to do this month. This building is very old, and the electric is kind of complicated. When i am finished with those, i will work on building new work benches with old oil drums which i got for cheap, these will have storage inside, this is important so that we can keep the front room clean and organized even when im in the middle of a project. Also provides potential additional income if i can make that work. The treehouse is finished and safe for kids (on top, underneath is almost finished) , so that should be something that contributes making this place inviting for both of our customers, and also should be a fun place for calvin to play. These things will take a while to finish because i limit the time i spend on them. I recognize that they must come after the ministry, but Jesus made things with his hands, his disciples fished, and paul made tents… so this is still an important part of contributing to the stability of my ministry here, and to providing for my family.
This month i finally finished the muslim tract, it is a big one, and took a while because fang had to check it, and so we had to work together on it several times. The tracts that are mainly scripture with little explanation don't take so long. I have no doubt this will be a valuable resource for thai muslims however. In addition i finished most of a tract on fear, and few more. Hopefully ill be able to get a few more short ones next month. I did get them printed, sewn, cut, and prepared for distribution. They look nice. I also started reorganizing the website so each tract gets its own page, and resources will be available for each topic this way.
Because of a new outbreak where we are, we are not going to be going out for evangelism til it slows down. Please pray we would find a way to be effective while we are not doing outreach. Obviously fangs shop is a great way, and i am considering putting some effort into online evangelism through social media, etc.
Thanks again for all your continued prayer and support.
Hi everyone, hope you are doing well, here is what we have been up to this month. Please keep us in prayer, that God would use us to bless Thailand with the good news.
I managed to get the side of the house almost completely finished, walls up, door created, and glass window installed. Will finish it with a concrete counter top for fang. I will be very glad to get this out of the way so i can get a host of other problems with the house fixed.
This month my primary ministry focus was finishing the Islam tract, which i got really close to finishing but not quite, we took off the last week of this month for passover, so ill wrap it up next month and probably make a tract about passover as well, in it I will explain the importance of the celebration for first century believers, and the messianic symbolism behind the meal. I know that these kinds of traditions have the potential to be interesting in a culture like Thailand, whereas we in the west tend to put less importance with these traditions and symbolism than maybe we should. I will also hopefully be printing tracts in bulk next month so i have plenty to hand out.
So last year I decided we would celebrate passover following a messianic guide i found. It was good, and served as a reminder of the meaning of sacrifice of Christ, and his resurrection, namely our deliverance from slavery to sin and death to freedom in him. We celebrated again this year as well. The day before we cleaned house, and the day after we set off for vacation in railay beach, krabi. It was a much needed break from work, made possible by the extreme discounts due to lack tourism right now.
Thankyou again for your prayer and support, i know it doesn't seem like there is much this month, but i guess thats how some months go. It is important to take time off for prayer and rest, and we did that this month. Thanks again.
Hi everyone, this is my update for this month, what we've been up to, and plans for next month. Thankyou for keeping us in prayer, and for your continued support.
We are doing very well, have had some hickups with the inlaws, but things should be back to normal before long. Calvin is growing stronger everyday, and I can honestly say i haven't been this happy since i was a kid myself. Calvin has ichy skin, so we are testing now to see if he has alergies to something or if its just the hot room he naps in during the day, so pray he is not lactose intolerant, i would hate for him to miss out on all that yummy pizza his momma makes. I let him sit in class with me while i teach, he behaves so well its strange, reacting with curiousity to every object i use in class, while not being too distracting to the other students. My hope is that he becomes so accustomed to this small group learning environment that he never misbehaves in class, then i can set up a class for him to teach later when he gets a little older. His attention span and patience seems to range between 30 minutes to an hour and a half on a good day that he gets his fill before class. We are still doing morning worship, and he is still loving it, some days he makes sounds like he wants to sing along.
Fang is inching towards needing to hire someone, slowly and surely. When we do, things might be tight until we start to sell more due to making more, and being able to take more orders, and make things quicker. Its a jump we need to make, but its frustrating trying to figure out when to make it. Pray for wisdom. The bakery continues to be a place we can chat with customers and form relationships that lead to gospel centered discussion. We just found out that a couple we talk to got married at the local church here, i think they rented the place, but are not christian, maybe his family is. We will ask them about it next time, and then plant some seed. The bakery is a perfect place for this kind of casual daily evangelism. I also got a couple new students, including a son of a doctor who was in the room calvin stayed in when he was first born. (when they thought he might have breathing problems). She was happy to see Calvin was doing so well.
I finished a card set, which is available on our website, you can see it under the card tab here in a day or 2 when i get it uploaded. they are verses which do the best to summarize the gospel in one verse. The idea being that even though it is short, they will read it, and will understand the gospel to some degree. These are convenient to hand out, and have our business card on the other side as well, so anyone can contact us. I also got most of the islam tract done, 90% written, all thai quran references put in, only thing left is to add scripture, translate explainations, and finish the last bit about the marks of a cult. I will finish this tract next month, then start on some less challenging tracts.
Still not done with that side area i wrote about before. I mixed concrete with my bare hands and got serious burns. They are mostly healed now, and i did get most of the concrete work done, just a little bit more brick laying, add an access door, a vent with mosquito netting, add the window, and pour the counter. Then fang wants me to paint the inside to make it look pretty. I might be done soon, then all the big machines go in that area, and the bakery on the inside will be neater, and less cluttered… also no gagging on deep fryer fumes.
Thankyou again for your continued prayer and support. If anyone wants to visit anytime, our doors are always open, just send us a message and let us know.
Hello friends and family! Hope everyone is doing well, and has started this new year on a good foot. We are doing quite well, busy but well. Here is a quick update about our work this month and plan for next.
Calvin is doing very well, his personality is really starting to develop and we are enjoying watching him grow up. There are a few things like the bumble bee, daddy sneezing and mommy kissing him that really make him giggle, and boy is he cute. One day he was crying when i put him down on the bed, i walked up to him and told him to yell instead, making the sound as an example… i kid you not, he paused a second, then screached a screach that hurt my ears, and he hasn't stopped yet, so it has become his go to method for parent calling. He really like music, and is starting to dance and bobble a bit, and also likes numbers.
Fangs shop is doing well, slowly growing her customer base. We started selling roast beef, which was a hit, and I started drying and bagging fruits to sell to make a little spending cash for myself.
Got a few tracts done, this time in both languages, and i also went back and uploaded the ones from last month, and added pdf versions for all the tracts, so that when you download them, you have fonts, and all the formating is still correct. I might focus my energy on one major one next month, like the islam tract, its gonna be big, and difficult to get things correctly worded. (I want thai muslims to read and understand, so lots of parenthesis, and explanation)
Church is at home, just us for now, but we keep inviting others to join us. I am still working on the bilingual hymnal, not done yet. We are happy doing church this way, being aware that eventually we will grow, but we are also aware of the dangers of not being involved with many other believers, so we continue to pray for opportunities to be involved when we can, though we are limited with where we can go with Calvin. As far as tech goes, i know its not as important, but it is a useful tool, the computer system i have set up with the projector promises to be a very engaging tool for preaching, worship, and even bible trivia.
We want to start doing evangelism like we did before Calvin, but with Calvin. I have revised and added to my verse cards we hand out. I am calling them the "verses that are good enough to be considered a seed planted" cards… meaning verses that encompass enough of the gospel that people might follow up with a visit to bible.com, our site, or come in for a sandwich, or even contact us about our church meetings. Pray for us that we can be consistent and run the race of endurance.
I already tried to extend my visa once but was missing some papers from the bank… note, the bank statement needs to be issued on the day of your visa extension, not 2 days before. But we have everything planned out, and should get my visa extended for 1 year.
Thankyou for your prayers, and support. Our heart is to see the gospel reach the hearts of the people in this province.
First of all, merry christmas to all, and happy newyear. I hope everyone had a good time with family and friends.
We had a great holiday, and calvin has been trying to talk more than anything else. He is making vowel sounds and trying to mimic us, as well as responding to speech, and trying to join in the conversation when he hears someone talking. He entertains customers, both mine and fangs. He has started laughing occationally while awake. He has laughed in his sleep several times, but a couple weeks ago he started hickuping and i teased him, and he thought that was the funniest, poor boy trying to laugh and hickup at the same time lol. He loves christmas lights, especially the blinking ones. Calvin enjoys his gifts. Yesterday when singing in the morning, Calvin mumbled along every time i started to sing, so i think its his attempt to sing which is cool. Calvin has started to push himself up into a crawling position but hasn't figured out how to crawl yet. He also hasn't been able to repeat that roll over he did a month ago, but it looks like he is getting close. He scratches habitually, its kind of funny. He scratches fang and i as well.
Business is doing ok, and we are able to pay our bills. But both of us are going to have to focus on promoting our businesses so that we can grow even in this tough economic time.
I got 1 tract completely checked and translated, i will upload that in 2 languages this time, another has about 3 things i still need to translated before its done, 1 that needs to be completely translated, and 1 more i thought id have done this month but i didn't. I might be getting slightly faster on average, but not nearly as much as id like. I woke up way early this morning to get a headstart and that helped a lot, i will probably start doing this regularly so i can get started before noon. The tracts take time mainly because of sifting though scripture to do with a particular topic, organizing them in the way that makes the most sense and will be the most helpful, and then going back and organizing them by order, and relavence, and then translating the verses (copy and paste) and then translating the headings, and explainations (takes more time). I spend maybe 2 hours to 3 hours on the days i have some free time, but other days i just can't make time. I hope i will get more time as Calvin grows older and becomes more independent. But i got done what i could, and i learned a lot while doing so, so im thankful.
I finally started finishing the side of the house for fang, it is an area i added a concrete counter outside of the window in the storage room, right behind her kitchen, it is a "mess zone" where she can deep fry and cook without having the smoke come inside where the customers are sitting, however, it is still not enclosed, so everything we place out there we have to take in in the evening. I have been working on using some boards i salvaged from the roof replacement, to enclose this area, and im almost done, so a few more days of work and it should be done, and i can add the door for breathing, and add the glass panel for a window, and then pour the final concrete finish for the counter when everything else is done. Ill add some shelves too. After this is done, im sure i will have more time for other things. But having this dedicated area for all fangs cooking machines out of the way is important. After im done with this, i can begin with construction of some additional shelf space in the storage room for storage of bulk products like flour, oil, vinagar, drinks, and anything we buy in bulk, this will also help fangs work.
We have met some new friends who are moving here later, and they want to join our group on saturday, so thats great. For christmas, i got a computer i can look up to the projector i already have, this is good because my current computer is not compatible, but i dont want the projector to just sit there, i bought it for showing christian movies in the village back when i lived in the country, but now i don't use it. I will use this computer almost exclusively for the church and ministry, and maybe my class from time to time when it comes in handy. Having a projector that works will really help during worship. One of the projects i have on my list, but im waIting to finish right now is putting together a bilangual hymnal that has only the good hymns ;) , and in both languages side by side. Ill make a slideshow or something with it when im done, so that it is easy to view from the projector. And our friend who will join us has affirmed us in our desire to meet every morning… how thats going to work… we're not going to rush it, but going about it prayerfully, hoping that God makes a way. (and God has already done such because my son is ussually in a wonderful mood in the morning, as long as we have a bottle waiting for him.)
Thanks again for your prayer and support, and merry christmas from Calvin, Fang, and I.
Hi everyone, hope you are doing well. This year has been a very strange year, and i want to encourage everyone to stay in God's word, and practice thankfulness in your daily prayer, this is how i am staying joyful in the midst of very stressful times. I feel like things are moving faster and faster as time goes on, and soon we will loose control and crash, but lets remember that things do have to get worse, but what the devil means for evil, our great God means for our good.
That being said, this is an update into our life and ministry here in nst, and our plans for next month and the long term.
Calvin is strong, and developing quickly, he is smiling all the time, and even making speech sounds which he makes then waits for a response, when i repeat his sound, he makes a new one, and it goes on for 4-10 sounds before he gets bored. I decided to go ahead and teach him phonics, i know its a bit early to learn to read, but he has wonderful attention, and smiles as i make the sounds, so i think he can begin to learn now, and it will come back soon, could speed his language learning, which we do need to do since most bilangual kids speak slower. I wrote a few songs for him, i will tidy them up, and have them on my website in the future with sheet music. I plan to continue to put scripture to old hymns and keep them coming, no more than a few a month however, so that i don't overwhelm myself, and make sure i have enough artistic freedom to tweak and even rewrite. I trust he will be singing scripture as soon as he can talk.
I figured I would give everyone an update about my wife, since some friends wanted to know how she was doing after the pregnancy. Simply put, she is doing great, and Calvin is bringing her a lot of joy. She didn't experience any postpardom depression, or anything like that, and we both sleep well at night. She is working hard, and the bakery is doing well. We should have the rent paid on time this coming month, and thats really refreshing. Fang is really going to be a wonderful mother, and I am very thankful i married her.
God is training me up slower than i would like, but i trust it is all part of Gods plan, and these trying times are only good for me, God's rod keeps me safe from the devil, and more dangerous pits. God has seemingly opened doors for me to minister with many people back home, people i haven't thought about ministering to before. Its as if i am being told to minister with those you know, in the language you are fluent in, as part of your learning process to minister people you don't know very well, in a language you are not fully fluent in yet. So please pray that i would be faithful with God's direction here.
The tracts are coming, i think i finally got a bit of a system with it, but the system needs tweaked. I need to step back and put them all in english too for one, and then i need to categorize some of the tracts, and create a versioning system so i can update them from time to time, i will also have them on the site, each will be displayed for download on the homepage, and will eventually have an individual page for viewing as well. I want to have a place where people can fill out, or upload their own as well, so that in the future, as this grows, we can have more people working on this, and i'll just focus on formating, printing, and cutting. This month i finished the tracts on eternal damnation, and the trinity, they will be up soon after formatting. I started a tract on islam which takes a different approach, in it i address first the verses in the quran which talk about the bible, (they speak positively), second, i provide proof that the canon we have today seriously predates islam, and conclude that the bible we use today is not corrupt or the quran would have said so, then i finish off with the false teachings of islam one by one, answered by scripture, presenting verses more gospel centered at the end, and conclude with a call for faith and repentance. This tract will take a while, but ill keep working on it. I also started a tract on prayer and thanksgiving (which i hope to address how to pray, with an emphasis consistent with scripture on thanksgiving in our prayer) and i also started one on fear and peace.
We hope to start traveling to church on fridays again now that calvin is a bit stronger, it might be a bit difficult at first, but i think it is important to be a part of it if we can. I also am wanting to have worship and scripture reading daily open to anyone, here at the shop, early in the morning, maybe 7 or 8, so folks can join us for half an hour before work. I know this won't work for all people, but i want to try to add this to our normal weekly meeting. We hope that if we can make it a daily thing, scripture based, and only have a sermon on the sabbath, then we can really grow together, and hopefully quicker. Its still something we are praying about, so please join us, that we would have clarity on how we can do something like this.
Thanks again for your prayer and support, we are truely thankful!
Hi everyone, hope you are well, here is my newsletter for october and plans for november
Calvin keeps supprising us, today he managed to plank on both arms, and legs, yesterday he was smiling all day, and made a few noises that seemed to be attempts to speak. He sleeps long at night, and doesnt wake us up in the middle of the night at all, he only crys when he really is hungry and can't wait anymore, then he kicks and hits like crazy. He is very aggressive, which i hope means athletic. I could not have asked for a better son, God is good.
The Bakery is running well, and we have been reopened for about a month now, lots of customers, and Calvin is the star of the show, loves to be around people, even smiling sometimes. My class has got a few return students, but things are still slow, so keep this in prayer.
I have a couple tracts put together but not translated yet, one on the trinity and the deity of Christ (i was inspired by the way the bible actually explains these concepts, and how easy they are to understand, sometimes its best to let the bible speak for itself), and another on eternal damnation, because the buddhist concept of hell is not eternal, so i thought this was a subject that might be useful to cover, also considering the 7th day adventists do not consider hell to be eternal, and we have a lot of them here in this city. I want to address them differently than i address the jahovah witnesses, or the mormons, because the number of heretical beliefs is significantly less, so i can correct their false beliefs one at a time instead of collectively like i have the with jw tract.
I have also been working on some resources to go with the new city catechism that fang and I translated when I was still discipling her, found out that another church in bkk has made some major revisions to the translation, which i am thankful for, so i will be updating it soon as well. (He also has videos which go with it, which is awesome)
We usually go to church on friday, where a small group of believers meet to study scripture and worship, and then on saturday we open our house to anyone who might come to study and worship with us, however that has been quiet for a while. We are praying about ways we can get that jump started again, and grow our group. One thing i am sure of is that worship should be a daily thing we do personally, but after talking with a thai leader in the northeast whom i greatly respect, i truely do believe daily communal meetings is actually ideal. So with this in mind, i have been worshiping with calvin every morning, and when we have disciples again, then I want to open our doors early before the bakery opens for daily morning worship and scripture reading. I dont think this is a time for teaching, but mainly a short time we can worship communally and listen to scripture before we start our days. Part of my concern is how easy it is for me to get distracted and skip devos in the morning, and i know local christians are no different, by spending this time together, we can hold each other accountable, and form good habits. Calvin loves it, and i hope he will become a little worshiper.
All temporary funds have been provided, and i am set to go here in a few months. Thankyou to those of you who provided this support, and thankyou to those who considered, i am very thankful.
My stress levels are apparently dangerously high, and it is causing various health problems from stomach problems, to sleepyness, to general anxiety, a brother suggested i spend time in biblical meditation which seems to help a little bit some days. Keep me in prayer that i can figure this out, so that i don't crash. My son is certainly a breath of fresh air, and my anxiety relief, a hope for thailands future (can you tell i have high hopes?)
Thanks again for all the love and support. Thanks for keeping us in prayers.
Calvin is doing well, and i think the best word to describe him is strong, very strong. I think we might have a body builder son, or a marathon runner.. or something, his legs never rest, he is always pushing, and if we lay him down on the bed he pushes himself all the way across the bed with his legs in an instant, so we have to keep a close eye on him. He is getting kind of fussy when we put him down, and doesn't go to sleep easily, but he does sleep for 6-7 hours at night, which is great for his age. If he starts crying and fang is not ready to feed I will sing hymns, and he loves that, the louder the better. Everyone is a worshiper, and the simplest thing i can do for Calvin now is teach him the Shema, to love God and worship him with all his little heart. I dont know how much he understands, but i trust this is the right direction. So I know this is the time to finish putting the bilangual hymnal together. I started it a long time ago, and like so much, i haven't had time to finish, so i'll do that so we can use it, it will be quality time for both of us.
At first i thought i wouldn't have much time to work on ttt, but i was able to work on the website, got a bit of that translated, and set up a blog i will be putting these newsletters in with additional pictures, and links, and you can feel free to share the blog with your friends if you want. I also created verse cards to save money with the printing, and these have information about my english class, fangs bakery, and our biblestudy group on saturday, with a phone number, and a bible verse on the other side with bible.com so people can do some searching on their own. These cards are really easy to print and make, so i will be providing the cards for printing and a link to the card puncher that i use to cut them out, this makes for a very good system, and neat clean looking cards that cost very little to make. I plan on being intentional about handing these cards to everyone i come across, should be a great conversation starter, and a way to share the gospel without scaring folks. (locals seem a bit shy, so im hoping this helps)
Visa Extension- please comment with your contact information and i will get back to you with the details about how you can help.
Thanks to everyone for keeping us in prayer and supporting us, things have gone very well for us. Don't forget to follow the link to the blog. Thanks again.
My name is Kaison, my wife is Kritti, and my newborn son is Calvin, we are a missionary family living in Nakhon si thammarat Thailand for the longhaul. I want to start blogging regularly but pretty sure the posts will be pretty random about things i think are not being covered at all, or family related updates. So follow along and leave a comment, i love comments, thankyou.