Welcome to a new phase in the journey of building a school, loving a community and waiting for God’s kingdom come in Thailand as it is in heaven.Last week, the highway department informed our school (Chiang Rai International Christian School) of the need to build a significant road through our campus. While we became aware of the road earlier, the surveyor for this road assured us that the government deferred to schools and that the road would, at most, cut off only meters of our property. Fast forward to this week and the city’s change of plans. The proposed road now cuts through a major portion of our property and will require tearing down three of our four buildings (new elementary building, cafeteria/classroom building, and library). The fourth building will be meters from a large road. Uhhh…this is bad news.
The good news is you are a part of the encouraging body of Christ, and you pray! Recognizing the many down sides of this news, here are the positive realities that you can pray in…
1.) Pray that this highlighting of our small school will allow God to be glorified in how we choose to honor authority and live with our eyes fixed on Jesus.
2.) Pray that our conversations as teachers, administrators and students would focus on remembering all that God has done for us in the past while believing that He will continue to lead us and make a way where there seems to be no way.
3.) Please ask for God to give us favor as we interact with the Thai government officials and work to find a solution that both protects our school and allows for a new highway to be built.
4.) We are reminded that CRICS is only as strong as our teachers. Thank God for our teachers and ask God to give us the teachers we need next year, especially as we walk through these challenges.
As we continue to focus as a school community this year on the truth that Jesus is the Light of the World, please pray that we would be radiant as He puts us on a pedestal to shine in this community.
Peace of Christ,
I am proud of several of my friends who are working in Thailand. They are serving through different organizations in a Christian school located in Chiang Rai. Twenty years ago several of us were there together in Chiang Rai as part of a spiritual internship based in St. Louis. Part of the internship was focused on domestic missions work, and the other part exposed us to mission work going on internationally. That summer, the internship went to three cities in Thailand: Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Chiang Rai. We then spent a few days in Singapore. It was a great summer, transformative in many ways. Now, twenty years later three of the people who were on that trip are serving God with the work they are doing in Chiang Rai. The Chiang Rai International School educates missionary kids, other expatriate youth, and the children of Thailand by providing a high quality education in a Christian environment. Check out their website at Chiang Rai International School. Eric and Rutha Ebeling are in their first year serving at the school. Check out updates on their experiences on their Cross Timbers Ministry. Brent and Julie Pennington have been there for nearly a decade, and they have been instrumental in the growth of the school. Check out this article about their work at this ACU Today magazine article. I am thankful to God for their friendships and example as they serve him humbly on the other side of the world.
If you have wanted to serve internationally, I know the school is usually looking for more teachers. More information regarding serving in Thailand with CRICS is available on their website. I believe the school is in English, so learning the Thai language is not a pre-requisite.