“Fear not to go forward as you are engaged in the Lord’s work, and go on this distant mission at His command; it is your privilege to plead the Saviour’s promise to be present with you. While you feel your own weakness and unfitness for so great a work, forget not the strength of His Almighty arm. Live near to Him, and you will have nothing to fear.”– Walter Lowrie, 1846
In the last month, we have been praying for God to open up doors in our neighborhood for us to share the Gospel. Though we had been having one of the neighborhood children come to our house often prior to praying for an open door, since then we’ve been having seven kids come to our house on a regular basis, which is a little stressful some days, but is an amazing opportunity to love. We really believe God is entrusting us with this as we didn’t go seeking these kids out- rather they came to our door and we welcomed them in. Continue reading
At the beginning of the month of May, I (Amy) recently had an opportunity to meet up with one of the ladyboys I had mentored when I had lived in Pattaya in 2010. May is now living in Cambodia, his home country, so it truly was an unexpected treat when he reached out to let me know he was in Bangkok and would love to meet up. Continue reading
We recently had a new student join Dton Naam. He comes in each day with bright eyes and a gentle, yet enthusiastic heart. When it came time to meet with him the first time for English class, we quickly realized that his English is already quite good. We decided to get a book to read with him, thinking it may mean one-on-one sessions as his English is more advanced than our other students. Continue reading
Last night I (Matt) went on an with another local Bangkok ministry into the Sanam Luang area of Bangkok near the Grand Palace. During the day the Grand Palace and Wat Pho draw some of the biggest crowds of tourists in all of Bangkok. After these well-known tourist attractions close for the day and the sun sets, this area is a notorious gay prostitution area where Thai men come purchase other Thai men.
Well third time’s the charm? We are currently on our third itinerary to Bangkok and trusting that this time we will actually be getting on a plane on the intended date!
The New Launch Plan
Our airline contacted us a couple weeks ago letting us know that there was a change to our original itinerary that would have only given us 30 minutes to get off the plane in Taipei onto our next flight to Bangkok. Since that won’t work, our best option was to push our departure back to April 7th.
We will be arriving in Bangkok early in the morning on Palm Sunday and later that week we will join in the Thai Songkran festivities as the whole country will be shutting down for a three day water fight.
Here’s what we are hoping for during our first couple of weeks in Thailand:
- Get settled in to our apartment, explore our neighborhood!
- Get our phones, internet, etc. set up.
- Visit language schools to determine which one we will be attending and get enrolled.
- Do some orientation at the Dton Naam building.
- Begin getting to know our team.
What is Songkran?
Songkran is the celebration of the Thai New Year. The festival is a joyous time for the Thai people, but also a highly spiritual time where the Thai seek blessings for the New Year. Please join us in praying for the Lord to reveal Himself as the one who washes clean from sin those who trust in Him. See More…
- Please join us in praying for grace in this time of transition in our family.
- Pray for complete health as we go. Jedidiah is currently being treated for his first ear infection. Please pray for this to clear up before our departure.
- Pray for ease as we transition into our new home in Thailand and wisdom as we make decisions concerning language school.
- Please pray for us as we continue in all the logistics of packing, preparing, and saying our “see ya laters” to family and friends.
- Pray that the Lord will continue to sustain and expand our partnership team.
- Praise God that we were able to secure a new itinerary that will allow us the time we need to make our connecting flight!
- The doors have opened for us to share with one more church before our departure: The Filling Station in Wellington, CO on Saturday, April 1.
- We will also have a final sending from Fusion Ministries in Greeley on Sunday, April 2.
We’re truly blessed and honored to have so many folks behind us who believe in us and what God is doing. To each of you who stand behind us: Thank You!
To God Be the Glory!
Matt, Amy and Jedidiah
It’s the biggest question we’ve been getting lately. And it’s a great question!
We would love to say that we’re 100% confident of the date, but there’s a few things that simply must happen before we fly to the Land of Smiles…
As you can probably imagine there’s a lot to do to prepare for moving a family of three internationally. But before we can board our plane, we want to make sure we’re setting ourselves up for success. We don’t just want to get to Thailand – we want to be able to stay there for as many years as the Lord leads.
This means we can’t go alone. We need a team of partners backing us in prayer and in finances. For the past several weeks, we’ve been meeting with friends, family, and the Body of Christ, and sharing with them the vision the Lord has given us. We have been loving connecting with folks over coffee or dinner and letting them in on our excitement that He is launching us into the harvest field!
Many of those we’ve been meeting with have been saddened that these men and ladyboys have been trapped in prostitution. They’re angered by the injustices that the ladyboys in particular have encountered since they were 5 years old or younger. And they consider it a joy and blessing to partner with us to see Jesus receive His full inheritance from Thailand.
We also are angered and saddened by the situations that we have seen these men trapped in and are eager to see the Great Commission fulfilled in Thailand. We (especially Amy) have seen God do amazing things in the lives of the ladyboys. We can’t wait to step into God’s plan for us. It’s Thailand’s hour and we know that the seeds previously sown for centuries past will bear fruit. We are thrilled that He’s inviting us to be a part of it, and entrusting us with a key part of His plan for the nation.
We have been encouraged by God’s faithfulness as many people have already begun their financial partnership, covering 25% of our monthly needs. Many others have committed to do so. We are believing the Lord for a total of $5,000 per month and a start-up fund of $16,000. This will cover our move, help us get established in Bangkok, and enable us as a family of three to live and minister out of a place of strength in a metropolitan city.
Our goal is to be ready to move in January 2017. To make that happen we need to be 75% funded by October.
Commission To Every Nation and Dton Naam require that we be at that degree of funding prior to getting visas secured so that we reach the field fully funded. While that might seem like a lot, if we had 75 more partners each joining with us at $50 a month we would be fully funded. We want to invite you to journey with us, pray with us, and learn with us! I am sure we will encounter bumps along the way but part of the adventure is doing it TOGETHER. 🙂 We would love nothing more than for you to journey with us as we follow Jesus to Thailand!
Love in Christ,
Matt & Amy Baldwin
Please pray for us!
- For the Lord to continue drawing hearts to partner with us.
- Refreshing, renewing, new insights and new connections for us at the upcoming Abolition Summit in Kansas City (August 8-13).
- Grace on us as a family as we take steps to prepare for Thailand.
One of the ministries we volunteered with while in Pattaya is Pattaya Slum Ministries. In addition to seeking to help the poor help themselves through education, skills training and income generating projects in Pattaya’s slums, Pattaya Slum Ministries (PSM) goes into the Cambodian migrant worker camps offering medical health screenings. Many people from Cambodia, Burma, India and other poorer nations surrounding Thailand come to Thailand with the hopes of making a better life for themselves. Unfortunately, most end up in hard manual labor, working construction and other jobs that Thai people do not wish to work, making barely enough to get by. Over 500 people live in just the one migrant camp we visited.
Warning: The story shared in the following video forever wrecked my life. View with caution.
Joy is prayer – Joy is strength – Joy is love – Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.
~ Mother Teresa ~
During the last couple of weeks, Jesus has been challenging me in the area of having joy. It started one day when He told me to repent for not being a happy christian. It seemed a little odd at first. It made me feel like happiness was something I should always possess, or that I couldn’t be real with how I was feeling. But he prompted me to see that the Joy that is our strength and is the fruit of His Spirit isn’t somber, but full of cheer. Continue reading