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Don and Leia Schulze
This book will help seekers to understand that there is a God who can be known, and believers will be challenged to know Him more!
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Supit's story is one of those that didn't make it into the manuscript of A Life of Miracles due to space limitations. However, it is one of the greatest of miracles as a story of God's sovereign grace and his love for people all over the world.
Chiang Mai city, sitting on the green banks of the Mai Ping river was called the Rose of Thailand because of it’s exquisite ‘old world’ beauty. A deep moat surrounded the walled ‘old city’ and I loved riding my motorbike on the road that went around the outside of it. The Thai people were very nice and the food was fantastic.
However, my family was not in Chiang Mai to make friends or enjoy the cuisine. God had called us to see Buddhist people turn to Jesus Christ and to establish a thriving church in this northern outpost of the Kingdom of Thailand.
After many months of working, praying, and everything else we could think of we were completely lacking in success. Unlike our time in Bangkok where we had seen nearly thirty wonderful young adults come to Christ, in Chiang Mai our ‘congregation’ consisted of my wife, myself, my two great teenage children, my interpreter and his wife, and Nang and Noi. Nang and Noi were a mother and daughter who were wonderfully saved in our church in Bangkok and moved hundreds of miles north to Chiang Mai to help us.
While Bangkok was full of young people who had left their country homes to seek jobs and education and open to new ideas Chiang Mai was, at the time, provincial and old-fashioned and unchanging.
One idea I had, far from original, was to develop relationships with young men from the Chiang Mai University by teaching them to improve their spoken English. We had lots of students, but no prospective disciples; English yes, Jesus no.
One afternoon as I was teaching the class to communicate by a simulated shopping expedition a figure in the doorway of the house we used caught my attention. The light behind that figure made it difficult to try to identify the person standing there. I turned my attention again to my students, but after several minutes I noticed the figure on the threshold that had not moved or even changed posture.
“Narong,” I said to my interpreter, “go and see what that person at the door is looking for.” I talked to my students in my awkward Thai while Narong had a chat with the mystery guest. As I watched out of the corner of my eye I saw him eventually lead her over to one of our tables and gestured to her to be seated. He returned to my side and shrugged his shoulders, shook his head, and smiled a slight, mischievous smile.
The class ended and we sent our six young university men off with another sincere invitation to visit our church service or Bible study, then we went to talk to our visitor.
Narong and I pulled up chairs across from a very pretty young Thai woman dressed neatly in informal business attire. She put her hands together in front of her face, palms and fingertips touching those of the other hand in the traditional ‘wai’ greeting and bowed her head slightly. “Sawatdee” (hello or good-bye) she murmured softly.
“Sawatdee, khrahp”, I responded. She was silent.
Narong said, “Pastor Don, this girl told me something funny.”
“I asked her why she was standing at our door. She told me she didn’t know why she was here. She said that she was just walking down the street on her way to a business appointment and she heard a voice behind her say ‘go into that house’. She said she turned to look and saw no one. Then she heard it again. She said she thought it was a spirit speaking to her so she was afraid not to obey. But, she stood at the door because she was also afraid to come in because she didn’t know what kind of place this was or even why she was here. So… I told her to come in and sit down.”
“Narong, I’ve seen something like this once before in my church in Phoenix. A young lady was riding her bicycle past our church and had a sudden, almost irresistible urge to park her bike and come into the church. She is now a true Christian.”
Narong nodded and became very serious, “What are you going to do?”
Narong had been a heroin addict and a rock and roll musician in the clubs in Bangkok. He had a powerful testimony of salvation.
“Narong, I’m not going to do anything. I want you to tell her how you came to Jesus and what He has done for you. Then ask her if she wants to pray with you.” I got up and began straightening up our classroom. I looked from time to time and saw Narong and the young lady deep in serious conversation. Then I saw her bow her head and again put her hand up in front of her face in the respectful ‘wai’. She and Narong were praying.
Narong eventually looked up and smiled, first at her, then at me. He got up from the table and led our visitor over to where I stood.
“Pastor, this is miss Supit! She is here, from Bangkok, on business. Now she is our sister in the Lord. She just prayed and now she knows it was God who guided her to this place.”
I greeted her again, this time as a fellow believer, and invited her to join us for worship on Sunday morning.
When Sunday arrived Supit was at Krissachak Chaichana (Victory Church) early. My daughter normally put the transparencies for our worship songs on the overhead projector. This particular day she was away visiting a mountain tribal village. I asked Narong to show Supit how to do the transparencies and to recognize the signal for when to change them.
As we began to sing one song I noticed that Supit had failed to change the transparency from the previous one. I looked at her and her hands were raised in the air and tears ran down her smiling cheeks. She looked radiant. The transparency that was still shining on the screen said, “Give thanks with a grateful heart, give thanks to the Holy One, give thank for He has given Jesus Christ his Son… Give thanks…” And she was definitely giving thanks!
After the service Supit and I had an opportunity to talk for a few minutes, through Narong, of course.”
“Pastor”, she said, “I am a Thai person, I never dreamed that I would belong to Jesus Christ.” She was beaming.
How wonderful! She had really given herself to God and Christ in her prayer with Narong… and He had obviously given Himself to her.
Supit was only able to stay with us for a few weeks then she had to return to her work inBangkok. She assured us that she would be fine, her relationship with Jesus was strong, she was reading her Bible, and she would witness for Christ and find a good Church with our help.
“Some plant, some water, some reap… but it is God who gives the increase” (another Church planter and evangelist called Paul, or Saul of Tarsus)
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