Budding Friendship - South East Asia

Monday 13 Jun

Mike shares how God is opening doors for new relationships. 

"Towards the end of April, I began to feel quite weary. Sometimes during my language classes I was struggling to recall a word I had learnt only a few minutes earlier! I decided that I needed to take a few days break to give my brain a chance to rest.

So, together with a local friend, I spent a long weekend exploring a neighbouring island. In Australia, we would usually call ahead and make concrete plans of where we would stay each night, right? Not here in South East Asia! The friend I was travelling with had a friend who lived in a town on the island we were visiting. We just rocked up at their place one evening and they welcomed us in warmly. This kind of hospitality is the norm in South East Asia.

It turned out that my friend’s friend (we’ll call him Sam) had a very similar story to mine. We were both born and raised in a small regional town. We had both graduated high school in 2009. And we had both done studies in the area of linguistics and language teaching. The only major difference was that Sam is from the majority religious background while I was raised in a Christian context.

Long story short, we had a great time visiting some beautiful places near his village. I felt mentally rejuvenated after returning home and was invited to return whenever I needed another break! A  few weeks later, Sam and his father came to the island I live on for  a  routine doctor’s appointment. I was able to visit Sam and his father in hospital and then over the coming days we spent quite a bit of time together. We drank coffee together. We visited a cultural festival and ran into his uncle who he hadn’t seen for years. We had dinner at his auntie’s house. And we chatted for a couple of hours about his desires to see local languages restored.

This relationship is just starting. But it has started well. There are also several other young men like Sam who seem open to relationship."

- Mike, Intercultural Worker in South East Asia

Pray with Mike
  • Give thanks that several local people seem interested in developing relationships. This isn’t always the case, and I don’t take that for granted. Pray that I would be able to discern which relationships to intentionally invest in and which ones to keep at a distance. 
  • Ask that the Holy Spirit would be working in the hearts of these young men. Specifically pray for a breakthrough in Sam’s life. Ask that my language would develop to the point where I can begin to have deeper spiritual conversations with these guys.
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