Sunday Srv. 10:00am

 

761 Thornton

Post Falls, Idaho 83854

208.712.6171

 

Located just East of Wal-Mart, Click on the map icon below.


 

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 March, 2010

Greetings,


It has been a long time since I was trapped in a place because of too much snow. It was the winter of 1961 when I walked out of the army barracks to the parking lot and saw nothing but a sea of white. Up to that time, it was the most snowfall in Boston’s history. I had no idea that somewhere under the multi mounds of snow was my car. Traveling anywhere was not an option.


This year in Washington D. C. was, as the saying goes in Thailand, “same, same, but different”. Same trap, different snow. For four days after the Breakfast we waited for a break and were finally able to fly out at 7:00AM on Tuesday, just five hours before the airport was to close again. We made it to the airport in time, but only after having to remove our shuttle van from a snow bank. It took us 15 minutes of push, pull and rock. Our driver was snow-challenged, to say the least.


While the National Prayer Breakfast is much the same each year, seeing friends and making new ones from around the world and hearing about what God is doing, is always a blessing. This year was not different in that regard. But it was different in what I came away with. President Obama shared, as each President before him has done. He was decidedly more intense than his presentation last year when he had been in office only a month. He is learning what every new President learns….there is nothing easy in Washington!


The keynote speaker, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, was quite amazing. She was gentle, vulnerable, caring, challenging and refreshingly warm. When she walked away from the podium, I clearly had a sense of her that I never had before. She spoke of “…a bi-partisan group of women who prayed for me.” – at a time of great difficulty as the First Lady. A bi-partisan group with different political views, different social groups, different economic levels, different life experiences. She continued to speak of that luncheon and that group of women and how their impact on her still resonates today. They gave her a book with prayers and words of encouragement. It is one of her most treasured gifts from her days at the White House. Whatever your political persuasion, God looks at our heart and uses our brokenness to reach others. It is difficult to judge others when we ourselves are so needy and wounded. The older I become, the more the Lord shows me, how riddled I am with things that displease Him. Surely His unconditional love and grace keeps all of us moving day by day.


A long time overseas attendee said it best, “For the past 18 years I have had the honor and good fortune to witness her progress from First Lady to Senator to the Secretary of State….. I cannot but marvel at Mrs. Clinton’s becoming warmer, more open and accommodating.


Her messages of faith-based love and understanding to friends and to those of differing opinions, her sympathy and compassion for the poor and needy, her humility before God and man, her eagerness to listen to the small quiet voice of the Lord – all resonated with those in attendance. Her powerful speech caused her listeners to think anew how “to do all the good we can” which she so eloquently urged us all to do.”


Pray for Thailand. By the time you read this, the Red Shirt gathering to bring down the present government, in order to bring the former Prime Minister back into power, will be in progress. Regardless of who wins, Thailand will need your prayers continually.


There is much for which to be grateful. New opportunities within the Cambodian and Indonesian government are opening up. An arm of the Thai government was very pleased with the visit of Joe Marshall from San Francisco. Joe’s work among juveniles and urban youth in the U.S. and Africa is widely known. Kristina partners with him and is on his national board. Plans are already underway for his return next year.


Thanks, as always, for your continued prayers and support.



Home of New Beginnings


From three feet of snow to 90 degrees. It does make your head spin ---- and your feet swell! It doesn’t take much cold weather for us to realize we are no longer prepared for it. I am grateful to friends who are willing to loan their warm clothes for our foray to D. C. each year. The few extra days there were actually a gift. We were hotel-bound and totally held hostage by the beauty of the blanket of white, despite what we thought was pressing. Nothing to do but talk and read and enjoy the rest.


While it is always an enormous joy to see friends and family, to connect, catch up and enjoy the taste of American food again, our greatest joy is in sharing time with our daughter, Kristina. This time we were able to celebrate her completion of a Masters Degree in Urban Studies from Eastern University in Pennsylvania. She has completed intensives on campus two weeks each semester and enjoyed on-line classes the remainder of the time. We were excited to know the significant contribution she has made in East Palo Alto as well as in her course work, being the only one with stories that span her twenty years experience in an urban setting.


Ten days before we returned to Bangkok, Ann, my Thai partner, called to let me know that Beginnings was burglarized. At least two thieves came in the middle of the night and left with about $2000 worth of items. They carried off about $200 in cash as well as finished products and many, many yards of silk and Jim Thompson silk and cotton. All of the cheaper fabrics were left behind. They also took small tools. Our large commercial cook pots are missing and were probably used as carriers. One of our girls had saved for months to purchase a guitar and it was taken as well. Besides the items stolen, there was also significant vandalism.


After much conversation we determined we needed to spend another $1000 in repair, re-keying, replacing screen doors and securing the outside wall along the alley. The cost of this event was not in our budget!


Even more importantly the girls have lost the sense of safety they have always had at Beginnings. It takes the girls a long time to relax once they have left their former work and it is difficult to see them tense again. The thieves were on all four floors in both units. The girls are locking their bedroom doors at night and some are pushing furniture in front. Pray they will once again feel safe.


While that attack from the Enemy continues to be difficult, God has continued to encourage us in many ways. We have invited a 15 year old to join our family. Like most when they arrive, she is quiet, overwhelmed and frightened. We also have two other young women who are considering joining us. Pray for these three. The others are 20 and 34. Two of our girls who have been with us for nearly a year are attending baptism class and are growing rapidly in their spiritual walk. All of our residents (except our new one) have decided to follow Jesus. His promise of unconditional love is irresistible. They systematically devour His word several hours a day. Leena takes them through basic Bible understanding and gives them homework. They are nearly insatiable. It is so exciting to see their entire countenance change as they learn more of His grace.


Roy mentioned the Red Shirts (pro-Thaksin, the former ousted Prime Minister) rally happening this weekend. I can’t imagine protestors in America dressing alike. They are, obviously, disgruntled by the current government and have pledged to rally until this government collapses. Billed as the million-man march, they are now conceding there are about 100,000. There is the usual saber-rattling, and noise, threats and false claims of victory. All vehicles have been checked for weapons, though the police did not confiscate the fermented fish or the bags of rotted garbage. The event is probably somewhere in the back pages of the U. S. newspaper. I want you to be assured that we are safe. Our church has been cancelled and we are not near the site of the rally, though traffic will certainly be affected.


The greatest notice of the protest and noise, comes because we have gladly welcomed a very pregnant YWAM missionary couple to stay with us during this time. They arrived yesterday. Her due date was two days ago and the roads from their apartment to their hospital are all closed. Babies tend not to care about the local news so we all thought it better for them to stay here. How fun to be part of this! In the midst of all chaos, noise and protest, isn’t it just like God to bring new life, peace and joy ---- and certainly a distraction!


Thank you for your continued prayer and financial support! These stories, these victories, are yours, too.

Blessings,

Roy and Bonita Thompson