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.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Expand Youth Camp

Over the past couple years, my church in Oz (Drummoyne Pressie) has had the chance to work with the Subsiri Church in Korat. Unfortunately this year, they're not able to send a team over, but that hasn't stopped many past team members from having a heart for many in the church and those that the church is reaching out to, to get to know God more and more. A couple weeks ago, there was a Youth Camp 'Expand' that Subsiri Church were wanting to send their youth group to. However, the 450bht cost (approx $16 AUD at the time before our $ plummeted) for the 4 day camp was preventing some of the kids in going (if only camps were that cheap in oz!!). God in his goodness gave many back home an extremely generous heart and we were able to send over quite a lot of money to help pay the rego fees for some kids to go and also help with the transportation costs to get 28 people from Subsiri church over to the camp.

Here's a what Tong (the youth leader at the church had to say):
we had the great time in camp with 500 youth from around thailand. Worshiping God and Seeking Him is Highlight of the camp. Holy Spirit of God come among us and most of them have experience by that. We got great message from Youth Pastor in Singapore and India, Some of youth from my church received Jesus in camp. They are more hungry in God and he put fire in their heart to serve him. I feel very thank God for this camp. This is good time to meet pastor and old friends and new person and have time for 4 day to spend with God and retreat. I love to serve with the youth and love to see them worship and pray to God. I was cry many time in the camp because touching his love and see my youth seek God with all heart. That was great time :)

One of the kids there, Shem even posted up a video if you're keen to check out some of what happened at the camp Expand Youth Camp video Looks like heaps of fun! i'm hoping that maybe i'll get to join them sometime in the future if there's another camp

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Payao is a town about 2hrs drive from Chiang Mai. Our trip up there last week was awesome but it also felt like a whole other world of mission opportunity where i felt like i had lost about 8 months worth of language. Payao is where Png (a good thai friend and fellow worker in the gospel) is from - well, it's actually a muu baan (like a housing estate with a LOT of people is probably the easiest way to describe it) that's about 25mins from the main town of Payao. Png became a Christian a few years ago, and since has had a huge passion to see her family and friends from Payao also come to know God too. So over the past few years, whenever she's gone home to visit, she's never been shy to talk to them about God. Over the past few months, God has been doing some amazing things in the hearts of many of her family members up there, and recently several of them have decided to become christians! Huge Praise point!! However, unfortunately there isn't really a good church up there that Png feels confident to send them to. Being a 'smallish' town, many of the people there very rarely venture out of the Muu Baan, let alone allow others in. So it was actually really difficult for Png to work out what to do for them to help them to grow as Christians and give them an opportunity to meet and learn from the Bible. Png tries to get up there each week now, but feels unequipped to teach them the Bible. So that's why she was keen for us to go up and take a look and run a type of house group for them up there. It was really exciting to have an opportunity as outsiders of the Muu Baan to go in and have them allow us to teach them. It was a real privilege to be able to go there and be part of the first ever 'christian meeting' that any of these guys had ever gone to. There were 13 of us all up there that night, we sang some songs, John did a bible study with them, showed a short video, prayed a bit, and then dropped everyone back home (all of us in the one car of course). It proved a really interesting night though, as all of them up there speak northern Thai (which is actually quite different from central thai - which is what i'm learning). most of them can understand central, but can only speak northern, which proves interesting when you ask them a question but can't understand the answer, or the prayer requests they asking for. So obviously it was vital that Png was there too. All that aside, it was a great night, and even though it was hard to read the people there or gauge what they were thinking, Png told us that they are all wondering if we will be back this week, so i guess that's good :)

here are a few pics of the group as we met in someones one room wooden house :)

John & Png

Most of the group that i could fit into the shot

for those praying:
- pray for wisdom in how we can be involved with this ministry in the future - how often we will go up, what we will do with them etc
- pray for language so we can communicate with them better
- pray for all the new christians up there to build a solid foundation in the Gospel, and for all those who are interested in Christianity but not yet there, that God will open up their hearts to know Him

We ended up staying up there overnight, so spent the next day checking out a bit of Payao before heading back. It really is a pretty town with a huge lake and a few parks with various exercise equipment of which some i can't for the life of me work out what you're meant to do with it?!? :) haha

Payao Lake

had to include a self shot (haven't had one for a while)

rather weird 'rowing machine'??????

the heavier you are, the harder it is (not really)

ok, dodgy airwalker thing

a what the...?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

quick update

Just got back from a week and half holiday to Bangkok and Hua Hin with Denise, John & the kids. We had an awesome time chilling out, checking out some of the kiddie attractions in BKK (like the underwater world, kids museum - like the powerhouse museum etc) and then lots of beach and pool time. i'm sure that many of my thai friends will be rather appalled and by how 'dark' i've gotten (which isn't really that bad i don't think). Pretty amusing really.

with the kids

the view while eating breakky

However, even though away, i was able to keep in touch with a lot of happenings back here in CM too. Was chatting with my teacher one day and found out that one of the ex students Ju (real name Andrew) at the school passed away last week after being in a motor accident. He was an american missionary who was about 20yrs old. I didn't really know him that well, but we had gone for dinner a couple times with the teachers, we chatted at school and bumped into each other around the place. It was really sad news to hear, and for me a really big reality check as he had only been here for a few months more then me, had just finished his language learning and was really enjoying life here in CM and seeing what God had in store for him for the future. Needless to say, dying in a motor accident wasn't one of those things. Please pray for his family, friends who would have been really shocked and saddened by the news. Pray that even tho many of us don't understand why God would do this, that it is all part of God's plan and that somehow through this tragedy God will be glorified in it.

We just got back from our beach holiday last night, and this morning are off to Payao for a 'short term mission' for the next couple days. Since this is the first time that we're going, we'll just be doing a small bible study with them and using the time to observe and get to know them and see where they're at in their understanding of the Bible. Most of them are REALLY new christians, who've never really had the chance to learn the bible yet, but are really keen. The other thing that makes it difficult is that most of them are also illiterate. Please pray for John and Png as they take the 'session' tonight and for those of us who help, that we can be an encouragement to them. Our hope is that in the future, we'll be going to visit them regularly and doing regular bible studies with them. please pray for them as they grow in their understanding of the Bible, that they will be able to grow to a maturity in Christ

Sorry can only be quick right now. Off to Payao....

Saturday, October 4, 2008

deb bai tiaw

So bright and early tomorrow morning, i'll be taking off for a week and a half on an 'official' holiday with Denise, John & the kids. We're going to head to Bangkok for a few days before heading down to Hua Hin for a bit of sun and hopefully surf (not that i'm really in that much need of sun :) hehe). Then when we get back, we'll be heading up to Payao to do a 2-3 day mission, before getting back to the routine of things here in CM. On one hand, i'm really looking forward to getting away for a holiday and checking out parts of Thailand that i've never been to, but on the other hand, i'm already missing lots of my friends here that i won't get to see for 2 weeks. I know it's only 2 weeks that i'll be gone, but it's enough to make me wonder what i'll feel like when i actually leave here to head back to Oz (whenever that ends up being). I'm REALLY going to miss everyone here then!! There's just so much happening right now and some great relationships that i'm forming with some Thai friends. To have the Davies just come (our new team mates), to not see my teacher for 2 weeks is actually huge - since i worked out over the past couple months we end up hanging out, chatting on the phone or online about 15-20hrs a week, even though official 'school' time is 6hrs a weeks. That's like the equivalent of a weeks full time work!! i wonder what she's going to do with her time in the next couple weeks......:)

There's also heaps happening with my cell group in trying to appoint a new leader. i've never actually experienced appointing new leadership for a cell group in the way that it's currently happening. Where rather then actually having leaders available and then forming a group, the group split and has left one of the groups fairly 'leaderless'. It seems that we're going to 'vote' for our new leader, which i'm honestly finding a difficult task to do. If i were to base my choice of leadership on ways that we have chosen leaders in churches i've attended in Sydney, i'd say there isn't anyone there who is ready. There are several who have lots of potential, but really need to be trained up first. So, it should be interesting. For those who are praying, please pray for the cell group leadership. For wisdom for the group as they choose, and also for the future, for opportunities to be training upcoming leaders, and not just trying to 'plug holes' and putting people in charge who just aren't quite ready

Also please pray for us as we head on holidays - for safe travels, lots of R&R, and good family time.

hopefully will get to update a bit while on holidays :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

ANOTHER case of dengue fever

Don't worry, it's not me that's come down with dengue fever, but poor Kim. It's actually the 3rd case of dengue fever in the past month with friends from church. Despite some really bad body aches and headaches in the first couple days, she's now feeling lots better apart from the constant ache in her left arm due to the drip and constant injections of medicine. Please pray for Kim as she recovers, that she will do so quickly and won't have to stay in hospital for too long.

However, the dengue fever has given her an 'extension' on doing her cell group sharing this friday. Personally, i reckon she should still do it, as we can all meet in her hospital room (she's in a massive room on her own) and in the next few days, she really has nothing better to do with her time :) haha the other option i'm encouraging is for the cell group to go visit her in hospital on friday night, then head over to the Holiday Inn hotel across the road for their friday night seafood buffet!! It's definitely THE BEST value seafood buffet that i've EVER been to! here's just a sample plate of what you can get :)

if you manage to come visit me over here and love seafood, i'll even let you take me out to dinner there :)

Sorry, got a little sidetracked there :) Back to Kim, please pray for her in her recovery from dengue fever, as well as for wisdom in her prep as she prepares to lead the cell group in the near future (yet to be determined).

In other news in the past week, have been doing a bit of stuff for Wycliffe Thailand of late, in helping with a bit of graphic design (yes, even that amuses me too cos i really have no idea what i'm doing), and being part of a team that's looking at doing some radio evangelism, through using people's testimonies as to how they came to Christ and how the Bible has impacted their lives. it's still early days yet, but it's also exciting to see Thai Christians taking the initiative to reach others with the gospel in ways that they've never tried. It's kinda interesting sitting in on meetings that i don't fully understand, but hopefully as time goes on, i'll start to understand more. It's been exciting for me though, to be able to show them some of the things that i've done in the past when i worked at TVS to get them even more excited about the possibilities of what can be done. Please pray for wisdom for Ajarn Chumsaeng, Pii Miu, Pii Tor as they think about the future of this project. Pray that i'll have wisdom in knowing how much to be involved and how i can be involved as well (they're keen for me to do as much as i can if i can).

anyway, thought i'd share some of the graphics that i've been doing for them tonight - they're needing a new foundation logo. What began as a logo looking like this

i've now done up a few options to look like this. Hope it's better :)