Off to a Great Start to 2013
Beginning January 2013, we officially launched a campaign to begin Bible studies across the island of Singapore. We are thrilled that we have been able to hold consistent Bible studies with new contacts since our arrival. Through our December tract distribution, we had the opportunity to meet Sun Ming and his wife Sarah. Since then, the Lord has allowed us to have Bible studies together every weekend near their home. I was so encouraged to receive a letter from them after our first few Bible studies together:
Sarah and I have thoroughly enjoyed our time of Bible study and fellowship with you and Susan in the last two weeks. Both of us were encouraged and enlightened by your clear teaching, in particular, your insightful illustrations and examples which made the lesson easy to understand. I especially like the way you made use of your iPad and even your hands to demonstrate and illustrate a particular point.
We have gained much from the last two sessions and God is speaking to our hearts in a personal way through the weekly lessons.
We want you to know that we truly appreciate what both of you are doing for us, investing your time, talents and resources in our weekly sessions which we find enriching and beneficial. Thank you very much, both of you! You have been such a blessing to us!
We enjoyed hosting our visiting friends from the USA over a pre-Chinese New Year dinner. Pictured from top (L-R): Josh Cox, Chantha, Caleb, Pastor Jack Cox. Bottom L-R): Matt Cretzman, Sun Ming, Carter, Sarah, Corban, and Susan.
Unique Circumstance to Answered Prayers
Every Monday evening, my wife takes our two oldest boys to a music lesson at a community center not too far from where we are currently living. This has been a wonderful experience. Aside from the positivity of the boys learning to read music and learning an instrument, it has proven to be a wonderful outlet for the boys and gives them time in a small class setting in front of another teacher. This is an event they look forward to every Monday! Recently, my wife returned home after a lesson and stated to me that the teacher strongly suggested we purchase a small guitar for Corban. We were so blessed to be given the guitar we already had from a wonderful church in North Carolina just prior to our leaving the states. However, the teacher suggested we still purchase a small one for Corban and even offered to let us buy from him there at the studio. This was necessary for Corban to practice at home. He was going to his lesson unprepared as our original guitar was too large for him. I thought about it for a few minutes after hearing the story that night and said, “Let’s just pray about it.” The following Tuesday morning, I received a call, which incidentally, I missed. Finally connecting with the gentleman that afternoon, he stated to me over the phone, “I was wondering if you would have a need for a guitar.” In that moment, I was confused, overwhelmed and blown away all at once. Politely, I questioned him, “May I ask how you know of our need for a guitar?” His reply was, “I knew you just moved here to build a church and the Lord placed it upon my heart to give you a call checking to see if you would like a guitar. I’m just obeying what I felt the Lord was telling me to do.” I told the man that we did have a very specific need for a guitar and that we would definitely love it. After chatting with him for a moment, I asked him where I might meet him to retrieve the instrument, he asked for my address as he wanted to personally hand-deliver it to our doorstep. At this point, we were not sure how he knew us or even had our phone number. In fact, the specific need was a small guitar and he had not stated anything about the size of the guitar he had. We had already purposed in our hearts that we would be thankful, no matter what! The next day he knocked on our door at the very time he told us to expect him. He walks in the door with the guitar in hand, pulls it out of the bag and lo and behold, it was indeed a small guitar, just right for Corban’s size. We rejoiced as we told him that just less than 24 hours before his call, our music teacher had strongly recommended to us that we purchase this very size guitar for Corban. He then preceded to tell us that he kept all of our information from our first tract distribution in December. He is a Christian and he was thrilled to see a church planter coming into Singapore to start more churches. We made a new friend that day through the providence of God’s tender, loving mercy. He showed us kindness and we were quick to praise Him for the desire of our heart that He granted to us. He continues to show His presence to us, daily and we are so thankful He called us here, brought us here and has stayed with us here, constantly watching over us and taking care of our special needs and even our desires.
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New Discipleship Meetings
The power of a small act of kindness. What we thought would be a kind act toward one person allowed us to make a lasting impression in the mind of a co-worker. In December, we were distributing a Christmas card introducing ourselves to Singaporeans in a particular area, where we believe The Lord would have us minister specifically. This has proven to beneficial in many ways. We are just thrilled to see how God blessed this effort and is using this effort on so many levels. We decided to give a gift to some of the people who work in our apartment complex. One of the employees here at this residence noticed what we did and approached us regarding this random act of kindness. He said, “I noticed what you gave my co-worker and I, too, am a Christian!” This conversation led to a new-found friendship with an Indian-Singaporean, named Kris, whom I am now discipling every week. Kris was involved in church years ago but admitted that he was away from the Lord. He has stated that he would love to be one of the first members to help charter this new church! He has been very faithful to join me weekly for Sunday service as well as a weekly Bible study.