Ed and Sue Danneker

Never Too Late

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We were out doing errands in Bangkok on Thursday morning when Nun's call came through with the news. Noot, she explained, had been in a coma for more than 20 days. Her family had decided to take her off life support, expecting her to die right away. To everyone's surprise, she kept breathing on her own. It had been several days now. The family had done all the traditional ceremonies already. Everyone thinks she's holding on for something. "The friends in the market here asked me to take my group to visit her," Nun continued, "they know Noot came to church on occasion. Maybe she's waiting for us to visit her?" We told her we'd be back in the afternoon to visit her. Meanwhile, Nun called our missionary colleague, Hydie Aguilar, to visit Noot with her that morning.

Noot had been coming to cell group and later to church off and on since we started outreach in Baan Paeo four years ago. She responded to the invitation to receive Jesus as her Savior three or four times over the years, only to fall back into her addiction to drugs and disappear for a while. When she was dry, she seemed hungry for Jesus.

That afternoon, I went with Nun and Bale (another church member) to visit Noot. Nun was excited about the morning visit when she took Hydie to see her. "A tear rolled down Noot's cheek when Hydie spoke about Jesus." Otherwise, she was unresponsive. I then spoke to Noot, encouraging her to repent of her sins and to remember that Jesus can and will forgive her and that it's never too late to commit her life to Jesus. "It doesn’t matter if you come to true saving faith years ago or for just a few minutes. Jesus will welcome you to heaven," I encouraged her. We saw just a slight response with her eyes. We prayed for her before we left.

Saturday morning during worship practice, Nun came and told us Noot, only 48 years old, had passed away the night before very peacefully. The family had arranged for the cremation that evening following a traditional Buddhist funeral at 7:30 pm. "I asked permission to have a Christian ceremony for Noot at 6 pm. The family welcomes us!" Nun exclaimed. So, we quickly made plans. Ed began working on what he'd share. We started contacting the church members.

That evening at the Buddhist temple, Noot's husband, daughter and six friends joined the church members for the memorial service. A microphone was set up for us so everyone else at the temple could hear what we were doing. "Amazing Grace" and "Nearer, My God to Thee" were led by Bale, her sweet voice loud and clear over the PA system. Nun shared testimony about Noot's interest in the Lord even though she fought so much sin in her life. Ed then shared about the thief on the cross and how Jesus can forgive even at the last moment of your life, if you repent and trust in Him. We gave everyone who joined us some Christian literature. I encouraged Noot's daughter to come to church to find out why her Mom has hope in Jesus. Praise God – never too late.

JESUS HEARD NONG BAW'S PRAYER
"Does anyone have something to thank Jesus for? the cell group facilitator asked. Nong Baw's hand shot up, "I'm thankful Jesus heard my prayers and let me come home again!" "What happened?", I asked.

Nong Baw, now in fourth grade, was the only child attending the small cell group gathered at Nun's hair salon that Friday night. Nun began to fill in the story. "You remember before you left last year, Nong Baw's relatives were trying to get him to live with them in another province more than an hour away. At first, Nong Baw agreed after that first weekend visit when they fed him well, promised him a cell phone and let him go to church. We had a farewell for him and everything. But then Nong Baw changed his mind. His great grandmother Ba-Tim who has raised him from birth, was thrilled he chose to stay with her and his great grandfather. Well, these distant relatives kept trying to entice Nong Baw to come and live with them. So Nong Baw agreed at the beginning of the Thai summer school break for another visit." (The Thai summer is from mid-March to mid-May.)

"Yeah, but it wasn’t how they said," Nong Baw added. "They gave me very little to eat, no cell phone, and made me work. I couldn't contact my grandmother. When she called to see if I was okay, I had to say "yes", or they would beat me. I couldn't escape. I prayed to Jesus and cried every night in the shower."

Jesus heard Nong Baw's prayer for help. Grandma Ba-Tim somehow knew on her own that all was not well. After the Thai summer was over, she made Nong Baw's birth mom (her granddaughter) go and get Nong Baw and bring him back to her.

"My friends here said I was a fool to go a second time. But I thought it was just for the weekend." Nong Baw said. "But Jesus heard my prayers and let me come home again."

His distant relatives pretended they wanted Nong Baw to live with them as a son, but they only wanted him as a worker. They had him lift heavy water jugs eight hours a day for those two months at their water processing factory. "I only got a break for lunch," Nong Baw said. "Did they pay you?" I inquired. "Yes, 60 baht a day (about two US dollars a day)." "And that children’s meeting I had attended was not a church. They did not teach anything about Jesus!", Nong Baw added.

I was horrified that this kind of thing could happen to Nong Baw. He had been part of the Saturday Kid's club from almost the beginning. He's the most faithful child attending church and comes to cell group when it is near his home. He loves Jesus and now loves Him even more.

Psalm 10:17-18 "You hear, O Lord, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more."

Praise and Prayer requests - August 2019

1. Praise God for His help in settling into the house. The task has been a bit daunting, but we are 80 percent finished. We hope to have the church members over later this month for a time of fellowship and dedicating this house to the Lord.

2. Praise God, it looks like we have enough money to purchase the car. Thank you to all who donated to our vehicle fund. We need to wait until the new model cars come out at the end of August or beginning of September, because the one we hope to buy is out of stock. Pray that God leads us in the purchase and provides a good car that will serve us well.

3. Praise God also for helping us start right back into ministry. We had to quickly catch up with all that has happened in the last year. The church has grown significantly and there are many people to follow up. Ed has started discipling Nong Baw and Nong Bam, both in fourth grade. They both truly believe and want to grow in their faith. Ed also began working with Bly, Nun's teenage nephew. He has been away from the Lord for about two years but wants to start over. Pray for Ed as he begins to disciple Nun's two adult sons: Frame and Bawn, both starting out in the faith.

Meanwhile, Sue has jumped in with the ladies. She has also been hanging out with Bale and Manao, our two most stable teenagers. They both serve on the worship team and help Sue with the children. They are burdened to see other teens come to faith. My kid's club has become more of a middle school/junior high group. Pray for wisdom as "my kids" have grown over the four years I have known them. These are precious (and crazy) times to be able to help guide them through the teenage years. Pray that they each truly put their faith in Jesus.

4. Praise God for our mother church! Pastor Sukprasan has been helping a lot, especially with the worship team, as we wait for Sittichai to finish his summer internship with YFC and begin a nine-month internship at the church at the end of August. Pray that God continues to raise up the Thai leadership for this church.

We deeply appreciate all your prayers for us. God is building His church in Thailand in answer to prayer! Thank you also for your faithful and generous support to the Great Commission Fund of The Christian and Missionary Alliance. These funds supply our living allowance and ministry funds. We appreciate all you do to help us financially. You can go to the giving link on this website, type in our name and select "support." Or you can give to the GCF through your local C&MA church.
Love in Christ,
Ed and Sue Danneker

Thailand

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Updated: August 15, 2019

Status
Field Assignment
Country of Service
Thailand
Address
28/2 Pradipat Road
Soi 13
Bangkok 10400,
THAILAND

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