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, July 31, 2009

Gospel 'Box' Skit

A few weeks ago, our church had a medical mission trip up to Mae Dang. Whilst there, we ran a kids program and came up with the following skit that enabled all our Sunday School kids to help present the gospel too. We were really proud of our kids in doing so, that we got them to redo it again at church the following sunday. So here it is. Sorry that it's a bit wobbly and hard to watch at times, and hopefully the subtitles make sense and don't have too many typos :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

How misunderstanding just a few words in english can change a Bible Story

I never really thought about how a story can be misunderstood (and become quite amusing) just by mishearing, or translating incorrectly, a few key words. The past few weeks we've been going through a story fro the Bible, Mark 10:46-52 to teach some simple english. After our first read through the passage and attempt to translate the passage, we ended up with a few funny results. The original story goes like this:

Jesus Heals a Blind Man

A large crowd followed Jesus as he left Jericho.
At the same time a man sat by the roadside begging.
When he heard that Jesus was passing by, he began to shout, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me."
Many people told him to be quiet but he shouted all the more, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me."
Jesus stopped and called the man to come.
He threw his cloak aside, jumped to his feet and went to Jesus.
"What do you want me to do for you?" asked Jesus.
"I want to see" the man replied.
"Go" said Jesus, "your faith has healed you."
Immediately he received his sight and joined the crowd following Jesus.

After hearing what our friends heard or understood various words to be, the 'understood' version of the story would've gone something like this:

Jesus heals a Blythe Doll (you can check out what a Blythe Doll is here)
A large crowd followed Jesus as he turned left (or is it right?) into Jericho
At the same time, on a Saturday, an man was at the roadside baking.
He was hurt that Jesus was passing by, and he began to shower. 'Jesus Son of David, have mercy on me'
May people told him to be quiet, but he showered all the more. 'Jesus Song of David, have mercy on me'
Jesus told the man to stop it and collected the man.
He threw his coke aside, jumped to his feet and went to Jesus.
'What do you want me to do for you?' asked Jesus
'i want to see' the man replied
'go' said Jesus, 'your face is healed'
Immediately he received his sight and joined the crowd following Jesus.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

bai Pai (went to Pai)

So if FINALLY got to go to Pai, a town about 2 -2 1/2 hrs out of Chiang Mai. It's a place where everyone always say they want to go, but most have never been. So last week, there was a 2 day public holiday on the Tuesday and Wednesday. I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to go there since usually weekends are a no go with church, cell group and church music practice, then during the week, most of my friends have to work. So the midweek public holiday was awesome, since we could go somewhere overnight and take our time and feel like we actually got a break.

However, i didn't think that i'd have to battle the problem of 'rain' and the issues it brings up with many Thai's who just don't want to travel or go anywhere when it's raining, cos it's too dangerous! So even tho we had discussed and planned it for 2 weeks before, we didn't know if we didn't actually make the final decision until the tuesday morning whether or not we'd go. Unfortunately the indecision meant that 7 of the 10 people that were going to go pulled out, but that's cool, it meant that i was able to have a really good time with Jai and Ang, 2 of the teachers from school.

It was a great time away to rest, see more of the countryside and more importantly, i had some good opportunities to chat with Ang about the gospel as we drove to the 7hrs all up (we took a few detours on the way - not cos we were lost like in the past, but to see hot springs, lookouts that were so foggy we could only see about 10m in front of us).

Here are a few happy snaps from the trip:

3km to Pai

view from our room at Pai

me & nong Jai

Day view outside our room

Night view outside our room

is this sign banning 'odd' days

check the view at this lookout

this mountain reminded me of the mountain at the beginning of Indianna Jones

the chocolate waterfall from Willie Wonka's chocolate factory at the hot springs

the path to the hot springs

at the hot springs

At the chinese village in Pai

With Ang at the chinese village

the manual ferris wheel at the chinese village

132km back to Chiang Mai
the manual ferris wheel in action

Monday, July 6, 2009

Mission to Mae Daang - July 6

Today, our church went on a one day medical mission trip to Mae Daang, a small village about an 1 1/2 north of Chiang Mai. Most people might know this village cos they end up going elephant riding, bamboo rafting, or white water rafting there. But unfortunately today, none of those things were on the agenda at all. Much like our trip to Mae Tia in December last year, we went there as a medical mission (it helps to be in a church with lots of drs and nurses). While people wait for their check up, there's a group of people who are using the time to meet the town people and share the gospel with them. For me, i've usually ended up on the 'kids team', helping run a kids program for all the kids that come along.

Since midday yesterday, the rain hasn't stopped in Chiang Mai, so there were doubts on whether anyone would even turn up, and for those of us running the kids program, where we'd do it, as we were counting on doing it outside in the garden, as the church building in Mae Daang has one room, which was being used for the medical checkups. Even when we got there, there were only a handful of people, and it felt like the team from church was going to significantly outnumber the town people that went along. But as time went on, praise God, that there were probably about 50 or so adults and kids that came along :)

In the kids program, we have just finished going through Acts with the kids and helping the kids understand and know how to share the gospel. So the timing was perfect in getting the kids to help be part of the gospel content of the kids program. It was REALLY exciting when were trying to practice and get them involved at church yesterday, to see them all volunteering to be a part of it, and be really excited to help. They all learnt their 'line' and did a fantastic job. We're hoping that the kids will be able to do the skit they did in front of church on sunday so all the adults can also get a chance to hear the gospel, and be encouraged by the kids and what they've been learning too.

We haven't had a full chance to debrief and hear about all the different opportunities that people had to share the gospel, but as i looked around the room during lunch, and looked through some of the church photos, it was really exciting to see church people engaging in conversations with the locals and taking the opportunities they could to be sharing the gospel.

There's so much more that i'd love to share about today, but will leave it there for now :)

Here are a few photos from today, if you want to see more of the 'official' photos, you can check out the church website Grace Church Mission Photos

the team with the locals

playing games with the kids

the gospel skit with the kids - 'God made the world'

gospel skit - the kids watching

gospel skit -' we need to decide if we'll follow jesus or not'

gospel skit -' we need to decide if we'll follow jesus or not'

the kids from the village

John & Ajarn Jazz sharing with the locals over lunch