Thursday, October 14, 2010

a Thai summer on campus

A lot has happened since my trip to Brazil last December. The biggest event was my tremendous privilege of working with P'Bow (in the far left of the picture to the right) this summer, one of the Thai staff in Campus Outreach Thailand. Every summer a few Campus Outreach teams in America send students, the Cross Cultural Project, over here to Thailand. This Project (the CCP) ministers to the Thai people with their staff partners for their summer break. Sadly, this year, the government problems in Thailand prevented the CCP from coming. Will (my friend and another MK who lives here) and I were planning on joining the CCP on campus, as well as Daniel Richardson.
Unfortunately, it seemed like there wasn't much hope for our plans to be on campus.owever, as we were soon able to see, the canceling of the CCP meant that the team only needed us more. Bringing Americans onto the campus is a huge help for the staff when they reach out to the new freshmen as it provides a great excuse for sitting down with random people and tons of conversation starters. Overall, Thai people generally love foreigners and are usually more receptive to a random foreigner than a Thai. So despite my disappointment at not having a CCP, I was excited to see how God's sovereignty had worked everything out for the best!

So my summer consisted of waking up in the morning and having a quiet time, doing a little bit of school, and then Will would drive me to the church where we would hang out or read while we waited for our respective ministry partners. Sometimes my team leader, P'Yute, would gather us together to have a quick prayer meeting and to talk about our ministries. Afterwards, P'Bow and I would hop on her little motorcycle and go on to campus. It was on her bike that we would discuss the plan for the day. On campus we would sit with a random freshman, or later in the summer with one of our previously established contacts. We would try to make plans during the day with the students to meet with them at one of their freshman activities, at the night market, or just for dinner that night. We would have a couple hours off before going back out that evening, in which time we would rest and try and call a couple of the girls we knew to see how they were doing. Thai girls love to talk on the phone!

Overall I was able to meet so many sweet girls. We met seven different gir
ls named 'May', which is also my Thai nickname, and three of these 'May's I was very close to. Things could get pretty confusing! To make things more complicated, we also hung out with two sets of twins! One of our girls was in a motorcycle accident and hurt her leg, but she is healing up nicely and is now able to participate in some of our church's many badminton events. One girl I was close to is named Ew, she is a runner and I was able to jog with her a couple of times. Ew had a scary experience one time when she went to visit her family. Her aunt took her to a witch doctor, who said that Ew was going to have bad luck and therefore cut her arm several times with a knife. Poor Ew was terrified, but thankfully one of the staff girls, P'Rung, was able to use this experience to discuss with her what she really believed in.

I am so glad that I was able to work with P'Bow as my partner, surprisingly as we talked we found out we had some similar background and we also had many similar interests that made spending so much time together easy and fun. P'Bow is still spending time with our contacts and trying to be a witness to them and share the gospel with them. Sharing with Thai people can take a long time because most of them do not know anything about the Gospel. P'Bow could really use your prayers as she pours herself into their lives.
Although I am not able to spend much time on campus right now because of school, I am still praying for the girls I met and hoping for an opportunity to see them again.