Tonight's thoughts are from Zach.
Our second last day in Thailand was spent exploring the different ways in which different people are trying to reach the outcasts in the Bangkok area. The ways in which people are not only trying to lead people out of the darkness of hopelessness, of worthlessness. Coming alongside people that society has thrown to the outskirts and making them valued, making them feel like they have something to offer, giving them a friend in a world where most people won’t even give them a smile. We spent the first half of the day with an Australian family who has spent the last thirteen years of their lives living in the largest slum in all Bangkok. They run a thrift store there where they employ people who need work but also people who desperately need to feel like they have something to offer, people longing to feel a sense of worth. We went to an organization run by YWAM that works with homeless people for the second half of the day. The organization does not seek to end homelessness they just want to give them a friend, a person that enjoys talking to them and a person that does not cast them to the side. Both people face an incredibly tough battle but both are successful in making people feel loved, making them feel like if they died tomorrow the world would notice.
At the second organization we met a man named Joe. Joe is a seventy one year old retired landscaper from Ohio. He has no secondary education; he has only been in Thailand since February and has no other experience in long term mission work. He speaks almost no Thai and he is having a very hard time learning it. In the few hours that I got to know Joe there was nothing really about him that made me think “wow what an impressive guy” or even anything that made it seem like he was qualified for the job. However the only qualification God needs is for us to say "yes". An ever-impressive God does not need impressive people. He does not even need qualified people. He just needs people to say "yes". There are probably a thousand people more qualified than Joe in Ohio alone but they’re not the ones who said yes. There are people with more education, people with more charm, people with more biblical knowledge, and maybe even people who already speak Thai but they are sitting at home somewhere in lazy boy having little to no effect on the world. It doesn’t matter if you are the most qualified person in the world if you don’t say "yes" to God none of it matters. Joe didn’t come to Thailand with his wife seeking some kind of new adventure, he came here seeking God and you best believe that God is going to do amazing work through Him. His life will have a far greater impact than the most impressive person in the world that refuses to say "yes" to God. Sometimes I think Abraham was quite a bit like Joe, not all that impressive but out of the people that God called he was the one that said "yes", the one that actually went. That’s all God needed to change all of history and that is all God needs to change Thailand; people like Joe who just say "yes".