2018 was a very good year for us. Every year that goes by I (Chris) continue to resonate with what John Newton said in his old age: “. . . my memory is fading, but two things I remember; that I am a great sinner and that Christ is a great saviour.”
When we came to Thailand in 2014, we expected to stay 3-5 years. We are now in our 5th school year here. The Lord has provided for us, granted the children to have good friends and enabled us to really consider staying more long term as the school moves once again. Lois is going to travel to Taiwan in April to play for the Varsity soccer team and the boys have also enjoyed varying levels of success on the sports field. I (Chris) have continued to enjoy teaching, including US history this year. I also have many opportunities to meet with and disciple students and frame the religious studies curriculum. Ann has felt more settled this academic year, helping at school and being involved in various groups as well as house church.
At the same time, we have been liaising with a church in the UK with a possible view to returning to pastoral ministry. This is very scary. It will be much more of an adjustment to return to the UK than it was to come to Thailand. We may need to find four schools for the kids in addition to furnishing a house and beginning a new life. Whatever the decision, we will be returning in the middle of June to the UK after Sam completes his Science GCSE, and just in time for my Grandma’s 100th birthday!
The choice, for us, long term, is between a fruitful but challenging ministry in Chiang Mai and a fruitful and challenging ministry in the UK. To make such a decision we need the external call (from the church) corroborated by an internal call ( a sense given by the Holy Spirit, that this is the right path for us at this present time).
Would you please pray for us. We do believe that God responds to such prayers. We are totally reliant on him, knowing that our last experience in Church ministry was very difficult and painful. We still bear many scars from that time and we have many fears.
With lots of love in Christ
Chris, Ann, Sam, Lois, Joe and Isaac