How does someone get caught up in the amazing growth of the Christian Church particularly in parts of S.E. Asia? It is not something that you aim to do but it easy to see in retrospect that there was a plan all along – it was God’s plan not mine.
As happens so often, my involvement in Asia Focus began with the telling of a story.
The story tellers were Pastor Noel and Meg Noack, who have a real heart for overseas mission. They had returned recently from a trip to the Plas Prei Training Centre in Northern Cambodia. They told their story of a visit to this outreach centre which aims to educate bright young Cambodian girls who come from backgrounds of extreme poverty at a church mission festival. As the story unfolded, they inspired me to join the next group of visitors to northern Cambodia.
On this same trip to Cambodia, I was privileged to visit another small Lutheran community near the Vietnam border which opened my eyes to the amazing power of the Gospel to change lives in a country so recently devastated by the recent Khmer Rouge slaughter. This church was led by young, vibrant, inspiring young Christians, all recent converts from Buddhism, together with a handful of elders who had somehow survived the slaughter of so many of their own families. And so I was gradually drawn into the work of Asia Focus and came to appreciate the blessings that flow from this grassroots volunteer group of people.
Story telling is the power of Asia Focus –the telling and retelling of stories of lives transformed, of communities of faith growing, of ordinary Australians like myself walking hand in hand with our brothers and sisters overseas, and so becoming part of their story as well.