Welcome to PlaaPlaaPlaa!

So you may be wondering why PlaaPlaaPlaa? What are those strange fish symbols above? What is ปลา and what does it mean? In short, this is a blog site, so surely there's going to be plenty of rambling. Unfortunately BlahBlahBlah was already taken, so I had to settle for the 'Plaa'. But there's actually more to it then just ramblings. The first fish symbol is actually a Christian symbol meaning ICTHUS - a greek acronymn which means "Jesus Christ is God's Son, the Saviour". The other strange letters you see in the last fish is actually the thai word for fish which funnily enough is pronounced "Plaa". So when you put it all together, this site is going to be my ramblings in telling people about how Jesus Christ is God's Son, the Saviour in Thailand (with plenty of good stories about food in between). Happy reading.

Friday, August 31, 2007

So why go to Thailand on mission?

since i started this blog part way through my preparations in heading to Thailand, i thought i'd rewind the tape a bit and give a bit of background to why i've decided to go to Thailand on mission.

For my whole life (and i suspect for a lot of other people out there) the question isn't so much 'why go?', it's probably more 'why shouldn't i go?'. about 5 years ago, my sister and her family (the Dicksons) moved over to Thailand as missionaries, and whilst i was fully supportive of them going, i came up with plenty of excuses as to why that would never be me heading over - 'i'm not good at learning new languages' (eg i had to repeat Chinese school Kindy 3 times before i quit), 'all my friends and family are in Sydney', 'there are so many gospel needs in Sydney still', 'i'm a single female, how would i cope overseas on my own', 'i haven't done any formal theological studies' and the list just goes on.

One thing i did always promise myself though, was to go do a short term mission trip with the dicksons in Thailand, so that i could have a better understanding of what they do, the people they work with etc. So Dec 06 that opportunity came, when a group from my church (Drummoyne Presbyterian Church) went to Thailand for 3 weeks to work with the Dicksons in Chiang Mai and a local Thai church in Khorat. And boy did my whole attitude change to overseas mission. Suddenly every excuse that i had ever thought up became irrelevant. Sure it's frustrating not to be able to fully communicate, but i was starting to get a handle of the language, even after 3 weeks. Besides, charades and pictionary can really get you places, and it's amazing how FOOD can break down all sorts of barriers. We had a night out at a restaurant with our language helpers (who spoke about as much english as we had Thai if we were lucky) and that has to go down as one of the most memorable, fun, humourous nights that i've ever had. i could always work hard and get over the language thing.

And the whole thing about my leaving my friends and family behind - well, that still saddens me, but there are a whole lot of new people i'd be missing out on having a relationship with if i didn't go over. How lucky are we now to just be a phone call, email, skype - or now my new fav iChat away from each other. i know it's not the same as hanging out, but it's not a good enough excuse to stop me from going right now.

And not having done any formal theological training? as i spoke with the dicksons and went to churches and met Thai Christians, i realised that even me with no formal theological training had a much greater understanding of the bible then many of the Thai's and dare i say, even some of the missionaries over there. it made me realise how much i've taken for granted the great bible teaching i have received my whole life. It scares me now to think what is being taught to the Thai's. I've always been taught to build on a firm foundation and not to build your house on the sand. For me, that firm foundation is on the gospel and on the Bible. How can Thai Christians build on a firm foundation when those who are teaching them what it means to be a christian don't seem to even have that foundation?

So the question now is not 'why shouldn't i go?' but rather 'why shouldn't i stay?'. And the answer to that is: there are about 65 million thai people out there who need to know about the God of the Bible. i know that our God who created this world can do anything and work miracles and i hope that he works a miracle in me in sharing my life as a Christian with the Thai's. i can't just sit back and hope that they'll be zapped by some bolt of lightening that will help them understand the Bible (even though i know that God could do that if he wanted).

Friday, August 24, 2007

Thailand 08 Info Night

For those who are local and are keen to find out more about what i'll be up to, i'll be having an info night on:

Date: Friday 28th September
Time: 8-9.30pm
Where: Drummoyne Presbyterian Church Hall
63 College St, Drummoyne

Supper will be provided.

It'll just be a casual night where i will share some of the highlights of the ways that God has been opening doors so far, some of the ministry opportunities i hope to be involved with next year and even ministry opportunities i don't yet know about, what happens when the year is up and ways that you can be a part of it all.

i hope that you can make it along, not only because i'm really excited about sharing it with you and want you to be as awed as i am about how amazing God really is, but also so i don't have to repeat it a hundred times - actually, i doubt i'll get sick of sharing it. :)

if you can make it, it'd be great if you could email me so i can get an idea of how many to cater for.

If you can't make it, no worries. hopefully i'll get round to updating this blog to fill you in on all the details that you miss out on, or even better, we'll get to catch up soon and i can share with you in person.

Off to Thailand in '08

I don't even know where to begin this blog, so how about i start with some fast facts:

1. I'm heading off to Thailand on the 5th December 2007, starting with a 3 week mission trip with my church (Drummoyne Presbyterian).
2. Rather then coming back with the team, i'll be staying on in Chiang Mai, for at least a year (if you don't know where Chiang Mai is, check the map on the right)
3. In my year there, i'm hoping to do a variety of things that will ultimately help people understand what it means that 'Jesus Christ is God's Son, the Saviour'.
4. I'm heading over with a Christian organisation called Pioneers
5. I have a great group of family and friends who are partnering with me in this journey
6. God is awesome, and i can't wait to share with you all the things that happen which prove that.
7. I have lots of stuff i still need to do before i go.

Over the coming months, the hope is to use this blog to keep you updated on all my plans as they unfold, so you can share in all the highs and lows and be a part of this journey with me from the start.

So please do stay tuned and visit this site regularly to keep up with the latest.