This past September I had the opportunity to travel to Thailand to work alongside and encourage pastors who are persecuted for their belief in Jesus. All of the pastors I had the privilege to work with had traveled to Thailand from other surrounding countries. Their stories and faith really inspired me.
This week I received a email that was very encouraging. I pray that this story will also inspire you!
Story of a village Chief and his wife, who both accepted Christ
On November, 18-20th, was our last border seminar in the central area where there are 80 pastors and evangelists who came from 10 provinces. At 7 p.m. was our time of worship service, testimonies, and revival messages. However, there is a pastor named T.W. He came from the Vietnam border, which it takes him 2 days, 2 nights on the bus in order to get to the place where we held the seminar!
Pastor T.W. had a wonderful story to tell us about this ministry that he is overseeing in his district. There is a village named L.N. The head pastor does not know how to read and write, but he has an assistant to help him. The pastor, who does not know how to read or write, did come to our border seminar in September of 2015.
At the L.N. village house church is always being persecuted by the village authorities and village police who oppress them. They kept the 12 Christians for not adding more believers for the past 15 years. Yet, early November this year, the authorities were not able to prevent this from happening. When the wife of the chief of police of the village accepted Christ into her heart, she took her children to attend the church. This made her husband very angry and worried. The reason he was worried because he was afraid to get kicked out from being the chief police. He will also be punished also because he cannot prevent nor control his wife from being a Christian.
The Chief police decided to beat his wife, treat her harshly, and threaten her at times by shot his gun in the air to scare her in order that she would stop believing Christ. He then went to the head of the village to get advice of what to do with his wife. The head of the village said that he has to force her more strongly, beat her more, threat to divorce her. The Chief did all these things but his wife still did not renounce her faith! Then he went to the Chief police in his district to get advice from his on what to do. The District Chief police said the same thing as the head of the village but added that his wife must stop being a Christian or many people will follow her, especially when people see that you cannot control your wife in what she believes. People see that your wife is willing to endure your threats and beatings to follow Christ.
The village Chief police decided to go back to the village. As time went on, he went crazy. One day, he took his gun and shoots the sky many times around the village to release his stress, anger, and to show that he did not know what to do with his wife. Then the village head man got mad at him went to the District governor to get counsel on what to do with the chief police’s wife about her not renouncing her faith, and her husband shooting his gun in the sky and cursing. It has caused unrest and concern for the people in the village.
There was a wonderful answer from the District governor. He said, “Let them be Christians, do not forbid them anymore! Today, it is different from 20 years ago.” The head of the village told the district governor that if we allow them to be Christians, there will be lots more willing to accept Christ. The District governor replied “Let them choose by themselves.” The village headman said, “The house church that they are holding worship service is also too small.” The governor answered, “Let them build a new church building.”
When the chief police of the village heard that the district governor allow them to freely believe Jesus Christ, he was excited and immediately accepted Jesus Christ! Then, a total of 14 families followed the police chief of the village, in accepting Christ! The families have been waiting a long time to have this freedom, and now God is good to them! Right now, there are are total of 27 families and more than 200 members. Is this not a wonderful story of what God has done to lead these 15 families to his Kingdom?! There are many villages that need this freedom!
Well, we have to thank God for the chief police’s wife for her standing firm in her faith in Jesus, and willing to suffer for Him and enduring her husband’s treatment. Otherwise, this wonderful thing would not happen. Now they want to build a new church building, but they need help.
Pastor T.W. said, “When they got approved by the governor to allow them to become Christians freely, they immediately called me to go help them lead those 15 families to Christ! I could not go because my motorbike was broken because it was really old. It takes 9 hours walk from my village to their village. No truck is able to go but a motorbike. They told me that they will come get him, and in a few hours, someone came to get him.”
When Pastor T.W. arrived in the village, there is was joy when they saw him. The Christians told him about the good news of what God has done to have freedom to accept Christ. All of them gathered in one place and let Pastor T.W. preach to them and led them to Christ. How can we imagine the atmosphere when the 15 families accepted Christ?
Pastor T.W. told us that they demonstrated from their excitement and joy by killing pigs and many chickens to welcome him to show their thanks for him coming to lead them to Jesus Christ. He said that one morning there were 7 families that invited him to come and eat breakfast at their house to express their joy in their new salvation, which they have waited for a long time.
At the seminar, we gave more radios to Pastor T.W. so that he could give to the new believers to listen to the Khmu FEBC program. Thank the Lord that God can use a pastor who cannot read or write to do the work in a miraculous way and for Pastor T.W. to oversee them.