Blessed Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you. We send our love and thanksgiving from joyful hearts during this holiday season. We continue to praise God for you because of your faith and love expressed towards us in encouragements, support and prayers. Thank you!
The church that meets at our home continues to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. We have been reading through Luke and discussing what we are learning about Jesus—His characteristics and His mission to save people…and then, what this means for each of us. The neighborhood children continue to come for a special kids worship in song and scripture too. Please pray that Vanna, Tony and Kosal might be saved.
The church of Christ in Cambodia held its first annual church camp at a lovely patch of God’s creation on the Cambodian coast of the Gulf of Thailand near the town of Srae Ambel (which means salt field). Our Cambodian brethren chose the topic of “Qualities of a Strong Marriage” for the first camp. We are confident that all were encouraged by what we learned concerning what our Lord has designed us to be as husbands and wives under His Lordship. (See elsewhere on this blog for more info and photos.) Pray for strong Christian marriages throughout Cambodia.
Harding University Asia has come to join our work for a number of years. This year the timing was perfect for them to spend the Lord’s Day with us. The men of the group led an encouraging worship of song, prayer, Word, communion and offering to King Jesus. We send a hardy thanks to all of these young servants of the God Most High. Praise God!
Harding University Asia then spent a day blessing the children of several of the SNACK villages. We held a special program of fun, games and the SNACK for the children. We are confident that all had a very good time. Thanks to HUA for the very generous donation to the work of blessing these precious children. Remember these children in your prayers.
With the help of the brethren at Central Church of Christ in Stockton, CA, we have launched a new website for the SNACK Program. Central continues to rejoice that every dollar donated to SNACK goes directly to the work in Cambodia. All administrative costs are paid by the brethren and there are no foreigner salaries for this work. Check out the new website at snackprogramcambodia.org. Pray with us that this website will help get the word out about what the Lord is doing in Cambodia.
After sharing the Gospel of Luke with the students at the Cambodia Bible Institute, CBI took a break for the annual Water Festival. This was when we all attended the church camp together. Now, Dennis is sharing a course on Spiritual Formation. It is really a blessing to see us all grow from this material originally put together by Sunset International Bible Institute’s Truman Scott. Thanks, Truman! Continue to pray for the students of CBI.
As we have noted before, we receive some students at the Bible school who are not yet Christians. While studying Luke together, two such students said they wanted to be baptized, yet wanted to wait for the church camp so they could be baptized in the sea. Khemrin was able to do this at camp, but Makara got sick and couldn’t attend. So, when we all got back from camp, he was also baptized into Christ. Praise God that all of these disciples are now part of the family of God. Please pray that these new brothers will grow to be steadfast leaders in the church.
Sandy and Cindy Detherage have been key mentors from the beginning of our walk with the Lord. We were treated to a recent visit by them as they came to encourage and build-up the body of Christ in Cambodia. They helped with worship, SNACK, servant leadership training, and a brief break for us from the work by a trip to Siem Reap to see the World Heritage Site temples of Angkor Wat. We offer strong praises and thanksgiving to God for sending us these two precious servants. Thanks also to High Pointe for sponsoring their trip. Will you praise the Lord with us?
The Advanced Missions Class at Sunset International Bible Institute in Lubbock, TX recently invited Dennis to teach two class sessions on Missionary Giving, Church Planting and Disciple Making via Skype. Dennis enjoyed reconnecting with his alma mater and sharing these lessons with the new missionary students. We pray these lessons bear fruit in their ministries.
As has become our tradition here in Cambodia, all the American missionaries joined together on the Saturday after Thanksgiving to have our own meal and celebration of thankfulness to God. While there was no turkey or football, we all enjoyed the fellowship together. Thanks go to the anonymous donor who funded the meal. We all praise God in thankfulness for His abundant blessings on us.
One of our SNACK staff who is a graduate of CBI married a fine Christian girl at her home in the countryside. Please join our prayer that God will bless their union with much love and many children under His Lordship.
Even though from time-to-time we all get a little bit of this sickness or that bug, we remain healthy and full of zeal for the work the Lord has put before us. Dennis teaches at the Bible school, assists with leadership of the church and oversees the evangelism component of the SNACK Program. Sharon stays very busy with caring for the family’s needs and leading the SNACK Program with tenacity and love. Our Cambodian daughters, Theary and SreyKhuech serve the family, the church and SNACK while attending university, studying banking & finance and nursing. And that little puppy we showed you in a previous newsletter is now nearly full-grown, playful and loves to travel. Please pray that we all stay healthy for the work before us.
We will travel to Texas from December 20 through January 13, spending the holidays with family and friends and meeting with the churches in Keller, Kingsland and McKinney. We will have some free time to catch up with you if you connect with us via Facebook or email. We will post a temporary phone when we have one (we are hoping someone can help us with this by putting us on their family or business plan). Hope to see you soon. Please join our prayer that we might encourage and build-up all.
Please know that we love serving King Jesus, His church and the people of Cambodia as we serve as part of the family of God far away from you. We appreciate your love, encouragement and support. More than anything, we covet your prayers for the fruitfulness of our work. Please join our prayer that all we do will glorify God, increase the Kingdom and serve His church.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Eternal love and blessings,
Dennis and Sharon