Saturday, May 26, 2007

Making a Difference… Vietnam
Rolled into ‘Nam looking out the plane window @ the old Quonset hut barracks made out of concrete that housed US fighter planes during the Vietnam war. I was just a teenager during those days and went to several funerals in our town of friends that came back home in a box. Remember I had a dream one night of going into ‘Nam with an arm load of Bibles…
When Jack Harris called and invited me to “donkey” some computers and hardware to ‘Nam I jumped at this chance. I know it would be a little risky but felt the peace to get up and GO! Jack and Sherry Harris have been ministering to the underground church in ‘Nam since ’91 and have been careful to not spoil the relationships built in ‘Nam so I was pumped to be invited to get in on this project. Jack is fitting into the next move of evangelism of digitally communicating the gospel. Together Jack, Sherry, Steve Smith and I brought in 11 computers, 3 external hard drives (one with the International School of Ministry loaded up), 3 video ipods, and forty six 1g USB storage devices to give to the leaders of the church in ‘Nam. Jack has asked us to partner with them to equip the church leaders in Vietnam with 100 laptops and video ipods. We listened to the testimonies of how the Lord had answered the prayers of these leaders by getting this technology and equipment to them. Church leaders across denominations (Pentecostals, Baptists, Mennonites, CoG, AOG, u name it) came in a moment’s notice to this meeting with nothing but a phone call that God had something special to bless the church with. Serious… no prior scheduled meeting just a call and we meet, drop everything you are doing and get over to this unannounced meeting. Whoa what dedication and trust among these leaders!
When we went to the meeting arranged to get these leaders together as I had been in ‘Nam for an hour. I love not wasting time… Daylight’s Burning… we went straight to the meeting and gave out the computers and equipment. I was jetlagged big time but refreshed listening to the joy of thankfulness coming from the pastors as they received the tools to communicate the gospel. Persecution of the church is still paramount in ‘Nam as one pastor spoke of the government taking his computer for the 10th time but God always gives him another. Another pastor humbly told this was the most valuable gift she had ever received in her life, another told of his prayer for a video ipod and the Lord gave him a laptop back as he had given his to a church leader headed to North Vietnam, another pastor told of his wife praying for a USB device for three months as her husband’s got broken but the amazing part is the 1gig USB is a month’s salary… slammed me as I sat stunned…Along with the 3 computers I got to bring into ‘nam was one in my closet that would not stay on by battery; it had been in my closet for 2 years in my eyes broken and unusable. We all no matter the culture or situation have things in our lives that seem broken and unusable but Jesus will open our eyes to use these tools for the gospel; Time to clean out our closets maybe and have a garage sale for missions? Yea… The leaders were rejoicing for the tools and I sat thinking how we have so much in our closest that can be used for the gospel. These tools will be used to bring the church in Vietnam to the next level of discipling new believers. We all expressed such a joy of fulfillment to be apart of blessing the persecuted church. I was so thankful for the friends in America that are dedicated to the ministry as to financing this trip and all the ministry we are doing in the 1040 window. I weep this early morning with a thankful heart to the Lord and for my pastor and board members, our intercessor team, financial partners and my wonderful family that entrust us to GO win the Lost, be a witness, make disciples, tell the good news of Jesus’ love for all mankind. Yea I am little emotional thinking of how God has brought me from a young boy dreaming of Vietnam to a missionary carrying the good news to the nations. Thank you for adding to the crown we all shall throw at his feet when we see him in Glory!

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