I am sorry, but our web site is temporarily down. Until I can get it back up, the prayer letter at http://www.tenforthais.org/prayerletters/201301January.pdf
will be inaccessible Therefore, I am including a text only version below. When the site comes back up, I will email you. I am sorry for any inconvenience. Here is the text of the prayer letter:
When we wrote our last prayer letter in October, we never imagined that our life could change so much before we wrote another letter. As most of you know, we were involved in a terrible car accident on the way home from our son's wedding on December 15. Josiah, our 12 year old, and Sarah, our 9 year old, both died. The last 6 weeks have been so painful because we miss our children, but God has been holding us up through it all. We have had many moments of wanting to ask, "Why?" or to think, "If only…", but each time we have reminded ourselves that we don't have to know the answers to those questions. Instead, we can trust that God knows what is best for us, and that He will work all things together for good for us. We are thankful that both of them had been saved, and we know they are in Heaven where we will see them again.
We want to thank each of you for helping us during this time. We were amazed at the amount of cards, emails, Facebook posts, and phone calls that we received. Also, we know that people have been praying for us all over the world. We are so grateful to everyone in Thailand that came to the home going celebration. We were so blessed to have missionary families and Thai Christians come help us with all of the preparations. We are especially grateful for Ricky and Tammy Salmon, Tommy and Kung Tucker, and Watz and Amanda Dasantad. When the Salmons and Tuckers heard about our accident, the Salmons and Bro. Tommy picked up Matthew and Raht and began the long drive to find us. They drove five hours during the night on Saturday to help us. They stayed with us and helped us through all of the difficult details we faced the next few days. In the meantime, Watz took care of our church services here, and he and Amanda had the difficult job of informing our church members and even visitors about the accident. We were thankful to know that they were at our church comforting people that day. We also are so thankful for the people that filled in at Bangjak Baptist Church in Bangkok since the missionaries from there were busy caring for our needs that Sunday. We were so amazed at how helpful our church members were. A lawyer in our church immediately began taking care of all of the legal details, another family found a cemetery that we could use, and they and others helped for hours and hours. It was a time when we longed for our family members that are so far away, but the Lord sent our brothers and sisters in Christ to help us when we were in need.
We have been overwhelmed by the generous love offerings that we have been receiving. Family, friends, churches, and people we have never met began to immediately send money. Truly without the help, even the funeral would have been very difficult for us to afford. But God prompted people to give way above the cost of the funeral. We have been given enough money to meet all our needs. This has taken care of all the accident and funeral related expenses. It has provided gas and hotel money that was necessary for all of the trips that have had to be made to get the paperwork done for the death certificates. And it has given us the needed money to replace our wrecked car. We don't even know how to begin to express our deep gratitude for the financial help. Just saying thank you seems so small when so many people have shown love to us in such a huge way. May God bless each of you who have helped us!
We have been struggling with a 17 year old and 23 year old car. They both spent much time getting repaired. The better of the two is the one that was wrecked. We truly need 2 vehicles in order to pick up people for church. Thanks to the generous gifts, we are actually hoping to replace them both. We are about to purchase a used minivan. That will solve our immediate need. Now we hope to find something bigger for the larger route that we pick up. Please pray for us to make a wise decision with the money that God has blessed us with. Again, thanks to all of you who are making this possible through your prayers and gifts.
Usually December is our busiest time of outreach, but this year we had to cancel our Christmas programs in all 3 schools and at the church. Instead, we just had a simple service and a meal on Christmas. We had around 50 people come and it was a great time of focusing on Jesus' birth. This year we are more grateful than ever that He came and gave His life for us, so that we can spend eternity in Heaven.
Most of our church members and our community had never seen a Christian funeral. Josiah and Sarah were the first Christians to die since we started our church 6 years ago. Please pray for our church family here as they also are still grieving over them.
Please also pray for the many people around us who are asking questions about God as a result of our children's deaths. Some people have become more interested in Christianity. We have had more opportunities than ever to explain the Gospel to the people in our community. But sadly many have quit coming to church. One faithful teenager said that he didn't find what he was looking for here. Many children quit coming because they are now scared of ghost here. A couple that we had hired to pick up people far away for us, said that they can't pick them up anymore because they are scared we have bad luck and that they might have an accident too. Please pray for us to have wisdom in dealing with these difficult topics. We have explained over and over again that Josiah and Sarah are in Heaven, and that we can see them again. We know that God is in control and doesn't make mistakes. Although many people don't really understand or believe what we are telling them, one deaf lady got so excited when she realized that we were sure that we would get to see them again. She quit crying and started rejoicing! Though we miss them terribly, we are glad that our sorrow is mingled with joy because we know that we will have eternity in Heaven with them!
Please also pray for Richard's health. He had restricted blood flow to his ear in November. That caused stroke like symptoms including weakness in his left side. He is doing better now, but is still seeing the doctor frequently.
We are so thankful to have the prayer support of each of you. We have certainly been reminded that as we serve on the mission field, we are being lifted up in prayer all over the world. May God bless you!
“Come Unto Me”
At the moment of conception
A new life is begun;
And the sands of time start falling
As this earthly race is run.
Each life spans been determined
By God’s omniscient plan,
And each individual hourglass holds
Just that amount of sand.
Nothing can harm a single hair
Or hinder the breath that we take,
Except the will of Almighty God,
Who never makes a mistake.
Whenever He sends for one of us,
His message is perfectly clear –
God wants His child at home with Him;
There’s no need to fret or to fear.
Beyond the cause that robs us of
Our heartbeat and our breath
Lies the loving will of Him Who is
The Lord of life and death.
Death, the door to God’s holy city,
Though dark it may seem to be,
Opens for the heirs of salvation,
When the Master says, “Come unto me.”
© Mary Yingling
Yours for Thailand,
Richard & Kristi Guay