SERVING IN: Thailand, Asia
MINISTRY FOCUS: Church Planting, Evangelism
Bill and Julie both received a call from the Lord to preach the Gospel in Asia.
In 1991, after ten years of marriage and ministry in the States, God opened the doors and they moved their family to Thailand. They began in the central region where they spent their first seven years learning the Thai language and working with a team to plant Grace Bible Church.
In 1998, they moved to Northeast Thailand and began River of Life Church Planting and Evangelistic Ministry in the city of Khon Kaen. Starting with their outreach team and a few neighborhood boys, they started meeting in a rented facility. They trained their team and worked together with them to win people to Jesus and disciple new believers. After the church was established, they began reaching out to villages surrounding the city. Thus a new ministry was born.
In 2013, they began working exclusively in the villages. Groups began to form as a natural and effective way to disciple believers. Now, they oversee groups that meet in homes and a team which is made up of village believers who work alongside them to evangelize and plant new groups in the rural areas. They are very committed disciples and have a passionate desire to follow Jesus. They come back reporting what God has done. The miracles, the baptisms, the new villages being reached- all point to the fact that they could be on the cusp of a movement among the Northeast Thai people.
We began to ask “What If..”
Bill and Julie have four grown children and two grandchildren.
Isaac, their eldest, is a missionary with Globe International working in Thailand, along the Burma border. He supports a Burmese church and school for children. He also does recording work for Burmese; worship music and audio Bible recordings.
Updated prayer requests:
As we prepare to return to the states for a furlough time to see family and supporters, we are happy to report that we finished the Bible Survey Studies. Each team member received a certificate. They have been so dedicated and faithful to study the Word with us each week. Please pray for the team as we are entrusting the ministry with them and trust God.
At this time, it looks like there has been no new Covid cases in Khon Kaen for several days and everyone is very happy to hear this. The villagers seem to be less afraid and have started to assemble again. We were very encouraged on Sunday to see a number of people come back to the morning meeting. Also several people were calling to ask for us to come visit them as well. We feel that we may now continue with the work as usual.
In January 2020, just before we started getting reports of the Covid 19 outbreak in China, we had a special meeting at Mrs. Lum’s house in Laat Naa Phiang Village. We look back now with such fondness at being able to meet with no restrictions or hinderances. What a blessing we had! Who would have ever even believed that we would experience what we are seeing today? But God has done great things for us. He is always at work! We are so thankful! It is most encouraging to us when we hear reports from our team members who serve in the various villages. We are so amazed at the testimonies of God sustaining them by His great grace and healing many sick people.
Last month we mentioned our desire to dig a well for Mr. Sum and Mrs. Gaan. Thank you to everyone who helped with this project! The well was dug and in addition, a solar panel was installed to provide electricity for the well and land. It was so thrilling to see the water bursting up out of the ground! Now they are able to grow their crops just in time for the dry season.
At the beginning of the year, the restrictions on meeting in large groups have been reinstated in our area of Thailand. There was an outbreak around Bangkok and many of the provinces are on alert. Instead of meeting at the House of Prayer, we are worshipping together in small groups in the fields of anyone who wants us to come.
Throughout the year our team regularly brought testimonies of people being healed through the Name of Jesus. Several people who were bedridden and could not care for themselves have recovered and are able to walk and work. One person that had been cheated out of money had the money returned after prayer. One demon oppressed young man was delivered from hearing voices taunting him. Family relationships were mended through the mercy of God.