Dear <<First Name>>,
What if you were the only Christian you knew? In Thailand, Christians stand alone. They make up less than 5% of the population (the number is even smaller for actual ethnic Thais). Many Christians are the only believers in their families and will be the only believers in their families for years, if not their whole lives. This is especially difficult for young Thais who find Christ in their formative years of high school and college. When they choose to follow Jesus, they are choosing to walk alone for, possibly, the rest of their lives. It’s for this reason that so many of them give in to the pressure they face from their family, friends, and culture, give up their faith, and return to Buddhism. This isn’t how Jesus envisioned his church.
Jesus only wanted one thing for his church
On the night before Jesus faced his greatest trial, he had just one thing on his mind for those whom he would leave behind. He knelt all alone in the garden and prayed so hard that sweat fell from him like blood rushing from his veins. He only wanted one thing from his Father for us: “let them be one”. Then he got up and went back to his disciples. He found them asleep. What did he do? He pleaded with them, “get up and pray with me.” He went back and prayed again. Then he found his disciples a second time. Notice that he kept returning to his disciples. Why was that? Perhaps Jesus, in his darkest hour, was yearning for that community and companionship that he knew would be the core of the church after he left.
Think about every teaching that Jesus had for his followers. What did they all center on? He made that easy, actually: love God and love people. What did Jesus tell his believers to do after he left? “Stay together until I come and visit you.” How did the first massive evangelistic crusade happen? People heard and saw the believers worshipping and fellowshipping together. They heard the message in their own language. They saw the difference in those people’s lives.
Our secret sauce
This is how we try to do ministry here in Thailand because it is, honestly, the only way to do ministry, especially in countries where evangelism is difficult. Our Thai and Chinese students who have found Jesus have found him through the ministry of inclusion. They discovered a group they liked being a part of. They found out we were Christians, and that's what made us different. They watched our lives and saw a difference. Then they heard the truth about Jesus from the friends they made in our groups. None of this would have happened without community.
Our first priority as missionaries is to develop this community amongst the Christians here in Thailand. We want to bring them together to help carry each other’s pain, secrets, loneliness, and joys. We've created an online video set that helps Thai Christians find solidarity in each other's stories and vision for their nation. We are working on easily replicable materials for churches and small groups to use in their discipleship and outreach. We spend our time and money on cultivating environments where these young Christians can form strong and honest relationships with each other. As we do that, we strengthen them and help them to turn their attention outward to see their friends, who are lost, alone, and hurting just like they were. When that happens, you have kids like Baifern, who became a Christian not long ago, but pulls together nearly 30 of her non-Christian friends for every party or movie night that we have so that they can meet some other Christians and find their place in the family of God.
By partnering with us, <<First Name>>, you can provide a home and mentoring to these young Thai Christians who might have been swept away by the currents of their culture. Today, we want to invite you to join us as a monthly partner. Would you consider making that commitment? You can help us continue to shape the future church of Thailand by being a crucial part of our ministry: a member of an impassioned and engaged support network that cares about the lost in Asia and keeps us on the field here every day. If a monthly commitment isn't a possibility for you right now, you can still partner with us through a one time donation of $15. Thank you for considering this request. If you'd like to give online, you can just click this button below to make a secure online donation (simply type "Andrew and Jacki" in the comments section).
Andrew, Jacki, August, & Reese Quinley
We love you and are so grateful for your continued prayers and friendship. If you'd like to talk about other ways that you can partner with us, please drop us line. We look forward to hearing from you.