Last night I saw something that really shocked the senses. As you wake up this Resurrection Sunday to worship the risen Christ, here in the city of Khorat people are kneeling before the statue of “Lady Mo” and offering her garlands, gold leaf, incense, and their prayers. Mediums shake and tremble as they chew some substance that looks like “chewing tobacco” and lay hands on teenagers who kneel before them seeking a “blessing”.
A woman in a pink shiny suit fusses at some unseen thing and points in the distance as she mutters something to “it.” She has two knives and lays them on the head of a woman kneeling before her to “receive a blessing.” Other middle aged women surround her as they listen intently to what the woman has to say. Near the statue, a group is being led in prayers and chants, both men, women, and children. Even though it has just poured down rain a few minutes earlier, those who come to “reverence” the Lady of Khorat kneel in the water unaffected. Some put their faces to the ground as they honor her image. My son Brayden, with tears in his eyes, asks the simplest yet most profound question, “Why are these people worshipping idols”? I wonder the same thing.The day started with us talking about how we would spend the rest of our time here. We made a skeleton schedule and headed off for lunch. Most restaurants are out doors, so getting used to the heat is a must. Sweat just seems to trickle endlessly down your back in the middle of the day. Our lunch consisted of fried chicken wings, sticky rice and some type of Papaya salad with hot chilis, limes, tomatoes, garlic, sugar, and peanuts. We ate and headed back to the house for the boys to rest. The heat along with a lingering jet lag really did them in. They slept for hours in the air conditioned room at John and Sandy’s. I spent the day with Ben talking about life here and ministry. I have overcome the jet lag pretty quickly and feel used to the heat. Reminds me of a Louisiana summer so it’s not so bad to me. Jacqueline has been doing great and has really felt comfortable since we’ve been here. She has loved spending time talking with the missionary wives.As we walked through downtown at night, it seemed like every single Thai person stared at our mob walking down the street. 6 adults, 2 teens, 7 children in all! The blonde, brown, and red hair, the blue and green eyes are rarely seen in these parts if seen at all. People ask to hold our children and take pictures with them. It’s kind of strange, but actually is convenient when you are trying to eat undisturbed. Free baby sitting by the waitresses! All of the kids love passing out Gospel literature. You hear them saying “Jack Free” every two seconds as they pass out stacks it. People willingly receive it from their hands and read it. For many, it’s the first time they have read the message of Jesus.Today we will celebrate Easter together. We will worship the risen Christ who has defeated the power of sin and death. We will proclaim his reign over the town of Khorat, the cities of Thailand, and all of the nations. Join us! Thank you for praying. I hope to upload some pictures soon.