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Making disciples among the unreached

Learn, and Then Learn Some More

Written By Merla Gogel, SEND Canada Mobilizer

Jojoe, a nominal Buddhist, had met Christians before but was never interested in Christianity. However, soon after meeting Caleb in Chiang Mai, Thailand, Jojoe expressed his desire to start studying the Bible. They began in the book of John. Jojoe was full of questions and his heart was open. Within a few months, he gave his life to Christ and soon after that was baptized. Caleb continued to disciple him.

Caleb was a student from Millar College of the Bible in Canada. However, his main purpose for going to Thailand was not to meet a program requirement; rather, it was to learn about missionary life!  

Learning Began Before Departure

The learning did not just begin once Caleb arrived on the field, it began even before leaving Canada. Caleb learned that God is his provider, both as he saw the financial support coming in and again when God opened the door for him to take a 1-month TESOL course in preparation for teaching overseas.  After arriving on the field, Caleb experienced God’s provision once more in a roommate, something Caleb had been praying for since the day he decided to go to Thailand!

Missions Is Not Glorified, It’s Just Doing Regular Life

Caleb taught English to university students and spent a considerable amount of time building quality relationships by playing games and ping pong, drinking coffee, and even learning Muay Thai (Thai Kick Boxing).  Caleb observed that missions is not some glorified life. It is just doing regular life and living out Christ, but with a different culture, language and people.  Because of this Caleb discovered that, in some ways, missions is not as difficult as one would expect.  

In other ways, Caleb learned that mission life can be more difficult than you anticipate.  It was difficult when he was away from home during Christmas.  It was difficult when he missed attending his friend’s wedding.  It was difficult when he was sick for a month, and also when he could not express himself so the landlord understood what needed to be fixed.  However, through this time Caleb learned that in spite of the difficulties you do not stop, and that just because there are hardships, it does not mean that God has not called you there!  Caleb says that he learned not to let these challenges slow him down but chose to continue in what he was given to do and enjoy life as he was doing it!

In addition to these lessons, Caleb discerned that one never gets to the place of knowing everything there is to know, particularly when it comes to ministry.  For example, one needs to continue to learn new methods of sharing the Gospel and ways of talking to people - things you should and should not say.  Also, it was important to learn to be humble and accommodating and adaptable - and to keep learning!

God Has a Plan

At times throughout the year, Caleb wondered why he was placed in Chiang Mai when there were other places in Thailand that needed more help.  Caleb learned that God has a plan which may not be evident from the very beginning.  During his 11 months in Chiang Mai, Caleb was part of a house church and by the end, he discovered that he had learned some of what it means to plant a church.  Also, Caleb realized that even if he was in that city only to be used by God to bring Jojoe into a personal relationship with Himself, it was worth it all!

Listen to a Podcast Episode “How Can I Know God’s Will for Me?”

Watch Video: "So You're Thinking of Serving in Missions?"

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Learn More About SEND's Work in Thailand


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