Since arriving back, it's been great to have lots of family time in amongst the tasks of doing medical checks, sorting out paperwork for work visa applications, getting my old mobile number back, catching up with friends and getting back into life over here. It's been great staying at my sisters place cos it means that anything that they're involved in, I can automatically be a part of it. One such event was their recent family cell group party. The plan for the bible study group is that every 5th week of the month, they would do a 'party' where they could invite their friends along for a dinner. The did a muu-ga-ta dinner which you can see here.
For me, most of the people that came were 'new', so i had a great night meeting lots of people. I was encouraged to see some of the church people starting to form relationships with some of the non-christians friends that were invited along. A couple of the guys that came along were keen for me to teach them how to play the drums (my sister has recently bought a new electronic drum kit), so that was a great way to get to know people. I was really amazed by the openness of one of the girls that came along who had lots of questions about remarriage. It did force me to be thinking seriously about how to answer those questions here in this cultural context. Thankfully John was around to help answer things in a way that would be more appropriate to her situation as I didn't know her full background (had only just met her about 1/2hr before).
Going to church for the first time on Sunday was great to see and semi catch up with lots of people at church. There were way too many people to chat to in one week, but was nice to chat to those I could. That week, it just happened that my sister was doing a kids talk with one of the guys from church on the meaning of easter, and John was preaching on Ps2. Both were a really great way to challenge many of our Thai friends at church. Please be praying that they keep on growing in their understanding of the Bible and their faith.
I also started my house hunt this past week. I'm yet to find something that suitable, but some may argue that i should've taken this house
My niece Mimi was pretty keen for me to get it. I must admit that i was pretty tempted to put up with the dodgy kitchen that it had just for the laugh that it would give many of you back home. But i thought i might keep on looking. who knows, i might find something that is appropriate and even pinker!
We also had a chance to go celebrate my nephew James' birthday early as his birthday will be the first day of conference. He was really keen to go ride Segways, so i decided to give him and mimi a ride for their birthday presents. Needless to say they absolutely loved it and now want to save up for one.
Today ended up being a busy day starting the process in getting my work visa application started. Lots to be praying for - that there aren't any probs or hassles in getting it done. There's still another visit to the lawyers to sign lots of paperwork next week on our day off during conference (not my idea of a day off, but a necessary as they need to get everything sorted out before the National Songkran Holiday).
So, it now brings us to the easter weekend. I'm really excited especially about tomorrow night being able to reflect on Good Friday and the death of Jesus on the cross. We're going to have a big presentation at church which some of our church friends have been working really hard on to get the true meaning of easter across. As part of the presentation, there will be a bit of re-enactment of the crucifixion. That's meant that i've helped my sister create some roman centurion costumes this week. Thankfully things are so cheap here, that this costume has cost us all of $4 to make
It's a shame that we won't be around over the whole easter weekend due to our conference, but will be great to remember and celebrate the death and resurrection with our church family tomorrow night.
Please be praying for our Thai brothers and sisters to be truly understanding the meaning and significance of Easter. My hope and prayer is that you too will be doing the same. Praise be to God for his love, mercy and gift of his son to die in our place and rise again to conquer death so that we can have life eternal!