PUBLISHED ON 15 JUNE, 2017 BY JULIE BOURDON Cambodia (MNN)
Despite economic growth in the last couple of decades, Cambodia continues to be one of the poorest countries in Asia. But, what would it look like to address not only the physical poverty in Cambodia, but the spiritual poverty as well?
Cambodia is a Buddhist dominant nation with nearly 90 percent of the people claiming that religion. Christianity accounts for just over one percent of the population . In this sense, Cambodia is a spiritually dark nation.
Hope: an answer to poverty Last year, we introduced you to Tom Faunce, a missionary who is passionate about sharing the Gospel in war-torn countries like Cambodia (read some of his backstory here). Faunce is a longtime friend and distributor of World Missionary Press. Over the last several years, Faunce has established contacts on the ground and the Gospel sharing ministry continues to grow. In fact, the pastor he works with in the area has been overwhelmed by the number of young Christians who want to learn more about Jesus.
So, how has that happened? What Faunce has learned over the years is that often times, people aren’t interested in what you have to say if you can’t put action behind it. Simple acts of compassion can open the doors and let people know they are truly loved and cared for.
Faunce says, “We’ve made a tremendous inroad, mainly up in the highlands on the Vietnam border, not only with the Scripture booklets, [but also with] water wells which open up a tremendous amount of villages.”
On his most recent trip, Faunce brought over fifty pairs of shoes for children in the highlands area. He wasn’t sure how the distribution would go, considering that they hadn’t taken measurements of the children. But miraculously, each and every child found a pair of shoes that fit them.
On previous trips, he and his team have installed wells in villages, some of which house several women who became widows during Cambodia’s recent violent history.
Through gifts like these, Buddhist villages that were previously resistant to the Gospel have welcomed Faunce and local Christians into their community. They utilize a variety of Gospel sharing methods including the Jesus Film, child story posters, and audio books from the Bible Alliance to share the Word of God in the villagers’ language. Additionally, in Cambodia and beyond, Faunce has been able to saturate communities with Scripture booklets from World Gospel Mission.
Faunce believes the Gospel will be able to touch and heal some of the scars left over from the war. He says, “These are people that know what it is to suffer. And people respond to love.”
But it’s not just the Buddhist communities who are embracing the Gospel. Ministering to the boat people in more recent years, they’ve also been reaching out to a group of Muslim boat people who live on the river. Upon meeting some of the fishermen one early morning, he learned that the people had many needs, and so he gave them what money and Scripture booklets he had with him. “I started going back and ended up befriending them. We started bringing the tremendous amount of needs they had.”
Many of the families slept under torn tarps, and Faunce helped them get new ones. Others were boiling grass for food, and so Faunce and his co-laborers helped to get them some rice. These acts of compassion have built a bridge between him and the boat people.
“Every trip, I’ve been going back and when I go there, they just come up and just respond. They hug us and just know that we love them. And that’s the Gospel, that you be a testimony to them and serve them.” But, Faunce says, wherever you go with the Gospel, you will face resistance. In this case, the opposition came in the form of fear. Many of the people Faunce spoke with accepted the Scripture booklets and read them, but would hide them from the rest of the community. The religious leadership was strict, and they could get in trouble for reading the Scripture. But as time went on, the people opened up to hear more about Jesus. And this, Faunce says, is the main thing.
“We can do a lot of good things — wells, feedings, clothing — but if we’re not giving the Word of God, that’s a band-aid on cancer. The answer is Jesus Christ.” In both the villages in the highlands and the community on the river, Faunce continues to share the Gospel and witness the change it is making in Cambodia. Even so, he says he doesn’t try to count the number of people responding. “God knows,” he says. “The important thing is to reach out, [and] begin to establish a fellowship with them.”
In between trips, a young couple Faunce has made friends with continues the outreach to both the boat people and the villages in the hills. “And that’s our goal, is to continually show up and love them. And the Bible says some plant, some water, but He alone brings the increase.”
Check back in later to learn about Faunce’s upcoming trip to Africa and how you can be praying. In the meantime, if you’d like to support this work, consider partnering with World Missionary Press. This ministry supplies missionaries like Faunce with free Scripture booklets so they can share the Gospel wherever they go. Click here for more information. He says, “It is such a tremendous blessing to have ministries such as World Missionary Press that provide the Word.”
And will you pray? Ask God to bless this ministry, to provide the leadership to lead new Christians, and to change Cambodia from a broken country to one transformed by the Gospel.
As World Missionary Press receives pleas for more and more Scripture booklets from ministries and churches in India, we are confronted over and over again with the challenge of how to answer these requests. Laying the letters before the Lord, as King Hezekiah did, we ask the Lord to show us what to do and how to do it.
Circumstances have brought about two distinct ways to do more to reach the 1.3 billion people of India with the gospel. God has provided resources to increase production in our plant in Indiana. As production volume has increased without additional overhead expenses, our cost to produce each additional Scripture booklet has been reduced. This enables us to print more booklets for every dollar donated. As income grows, production can increase even more, and the number of booklets that can be printed for a single dollar increases. We praise God for each donor who contributes to the printing of more and more Scripture booklets.
In addition, the Lord laid it on the heart of WMP’s leadership to create a special focus to impact India through a MAJOR supply of WMP Scripture booklets. Realizing that time may be short and that many parts of India are experiencing increasing resistance to the preaching of the gospel, we developed Project India—a focused effort to provide 100,000,000 booklets for India in 3 years at a cost of $3,000,000. Major ministry partners in India have calculated the need and have teams in place to use all we can produce. The production of 8 million Scripture booklets in India was recently completed. By printing here at a reduced cost as well as printing in India, WMP can significantly increase the amount of material available to attack enemy strongholds and bring light to the darkness.
The challenge is before us. He has committed to us the ministry of reconciliation. The time is short. Millions are dying daily without ever knowing their Creator and the One who gave all to restore them to Himself. We praise God that one of our regular partners has sponsored one of four containers destined for India in line for production here. Will you help?
"A few months back, the spirit of sharing that l saw being exhibited by these little ones was so touching; for even when they were hungry, they shared among themselves the little they had. It was obvious that what was at hand was not enough for just even one person! This communicates volumes.
1 John 3:16-19 'We know what real love is because Jesus gave up His life for us. So we ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion-how can GOD's love be in that person? Dear children, let's not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before GOD.'
Please pray for our upcoming Outreach with Frontline Ministries. With the LORD's provision, we shall reach the little ones with Love, clothing, etc., and the Word of hope using Scripture booklets from World Missionary Press..
In serving the LORD, our entire focus is to move forward always since the onus is on us to live to the expectations of our Father in Heaven.
Every influential person on earth was once a helpless baby. Every oak once was an acorn, and every great structure was once a mere blue print on paper. No matter where we stay or come from, once we walk and talk to the LORD faithfully, with all our hearts, bodies, souls and minds, He listens and responds.
Therefore, it’s not where we are today, but where we are going that counts, for there is always Light at the end of the tunnel. John 1:5 "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it."
Shared by Mike Prieur on Albert Kisembo's Facebook Page, WMP Ambassador in Uganda
My testimony: I was raised in somewhat of a religious and very patriotic family in Philadelphia Pennsylvania. My father was a WWII and Korean War veteran who always loved America and our veterans. My older brother was the first Born Again Christian in our family and we all assumed that he had gotten religious. I did not really understand what it meant to be born again in the late 1970's, but he planted the seed of God's Grace and Salvation and kept praying for us.
I joined the Navy back in 1980 and and met several Born Again Christians. I remained a little confused about these Born Again Christians, until one day when I was cleaning our berthing compartment (where 80 other sailors and I slept) and picked up a Christian tract. I read a passage from the tract that said, "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." and "You must be Born Again". See Romans 3:23 and John 3:3. John 3:3.
I kept on reading, and it said... "What is your answer?" I said the prayer, believed that I was a sinner, and received Christ Jesus into my Heart. I signed it on 11-25-82, and have been growing and loving the Lord Jesus Christ ever since. I'm a retired Navy veteran who has seen the good, the bad, and the ugly things in this world. I know that the Lord has always been with me and shall be for all eternity.
I hope that all those in your life, who need Jesus, will receive Him and be Blessed in this life and the next.
-Rick DiLoretto, USN Retired, WMP Ambassador in Hawaii
The commandment of our Lord is not a heavy burden, nor a weight to drag us down; it’s the greatest gift He has given us, it is Agape love. When I think of the Lord’s command as He said this is the New Commandment I give to you, which is the eternal commandment that is everlasting, I think of the life in Christ. --- A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. (John 13:34 KJV)
Love is the Living Water that flows freely through the Born-Again soul. How can anyone who claims the name of Jesus dam it up with selfishness? Truly this is not the way of the Cross. There is no greater joy in the Christian life than to be that outpouring. The Holy Spirit came to anoint us in such love that flows straight from the heart and throne of God. In Him we have life, and in Him life flows through us. Shall we live our Christian walk with such marvelous a fountain of mercy within, not opening the floodgates of love, but shutting it off to a world so in need of His grace? No, let it never be said of us that we would ever allow such self-centeredness to be within. We love, because He loves, this is that greatest gift of being Born Again. ---Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning. Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. (1 John 2:7-10 KJV)
This is my mission letter and I was going to start off about what the next outreach is, but in my heart, I felt the best expression of sharing what any of us do in Christ is love. Truly it is not crossing the seas, but abiding in the Cross, the finished work of Jesus Christ. I am ever grateful for the love that has been shared and is shared from so many friends, to reach those who are so in need of mercy, as we were before He filled us with His grace. --- For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. (Romans 5:6-9 KJV)
I will be leaving for Cambodia soon. I am praying for open doors to put in three wells, one is paid for already, working on the other two. My desire also in my soul is to go back to Africa soon after, in which we are doing the building for the Mill Project. The harvest is plenty, and so is His love. In Cambodia, we will also be doing more playgrounds for children, and also reaching out to the Muslim Boat People, and wherever He may lead us. Please pray for this, and the needs that arise to do all He commanded us to do, which is love to the furthermost ends of this world. ---- And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come. (Matthew 24:14 KJV)
I look forward to going, yet always difficult to leave my family behind, but all is in His hands, there is no greater place for all of us to be. Again, thank you all for being such a channel of His love. To love as He loves is a wonderful command; He is the Crystal-Clear River of Life that flows through the dry desert of this world that is dying. Let us get into the depth of this River and go with His flow of His love spilling forth this wonderful mercy that many would drink of His mercy and grace. ----- He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (John 7:38 KJV)
Thank you for your love & Support
Tom and Julie
1 John 3;16
Taking the Word to the hearts of men.: Acts 1:8
Note: This was posted to Facebook earlier this year, but the needs are still great.
Christian, we have the greatest blessing before us, for in our lives is the only hope for all. The Gospel should never be bound up like a precious jewel locked away into some storage chest. No, let it never be said of us, that we held in that which was freely given to us. One of the greatest joys in our life is to give up our lives for others, this is the grace of our Lord in action through the lives of His children ----- For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward. (Mark 9:41 KJV) -Tom Faunce, Seasoned Missionary and long-time friend of WMP
From Genesis to Revelation, we see the Holy Spirit and the Word working together...revealing heaven's beauty to earth's brokenness. Without the precious people who faithfully distribute our literature, world-wide and free of charge, we would be left with dormant paper, ink and staples.
We want to give special thanks to Yuri Ilnitski and his team for sharing over 6,000 WMP Scripture booklets with folks at this year's Bonnaroo Music Festival in Manchester, Tennessee! The Holy Spirit is alive and well on planet earth...and He was definitely given some Word to work with at this major event!
Huge thanks to all of our partners who are bringing His Word to the multitudes! Your walking in union with His "Go ye" causes us to rejoice greatly!
Before l share this spiritual meal purposely for our spiritual nourishment today, l would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank World Missionary Press for the scripture booklets through brother Thomas Faunce that always do us wonders enabling us to reach out to folks in Africa and across other borders with the true Word of Hope, well simplified, summarized in different languages, and very rich in the Word of GOD.
The Scripture booklets are easy to read, pocket size friendly, easy to move with either on transit reflecting on the Word of GOD and above all very great reading material for spiritual nourishment in the daily life of each mankind.
Blessings to the entire team at World Missionary Press and as it goes, we all deserve to serve the LORD no matter where we come from, our color, size, age, tribe, nation, name it. The bottom line is we all need GOD. And with World Missionary Press, job well done for your impact is always felt across the world in making it a point that the Word of GOD reach people at their door steps! Amen
Therefore, since we all belong to GOD, we always need to be filled with the Light of His Presence not simply for just self-pleasures but for the glorification of His Name here on earth and in heaven.
John 8:12 “Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “l am the Light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” (NLT)
For Christ gave up everything by living as a man sacrificing himself for the sake of our sins so as to set us free. That alone communicates volumes in regards to the love Christ has for us all.
We just don't need to disappoint GOD at any one time.
1st Peter 3:18 “Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to GOD. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit.”(NLT)
Therefore, there is nothing we can hold back away from the LORD for He knows us more than even we know ourselves. So let’s move on and share the LORD’s Word to mankind for we are the vessels for His Message to all.
Mark 16:15 “And then He told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.” (NLT)
That said and done, it’s imperative to note that it makes a lot of sense in our lives to consistently live close to GOD, focusing on Him as we walk through each day enjoying His Presence which permeates us with protection, love, care, blessings and many more.
-Albert Kisembo, Uganda
WMP ministry partner - June 9, 2017
"In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." - John 16:33b
One of our major ministry partners in India had one of their churches burned down recently. The ministry leader shares "It seems the Hindu activists burned down the church because they were angry that the pastor conducted Vacation Bible School for three days at his church. One hundred plus kids attended the VBS and most of them were from Hindu families."
World Missionary Press partners with several major ministries in India, supplying millions of Scripture booklets in various Indian languages yearly, as a primary tool for reaching India’s 1.3 billion souls with the gospel.
While hundreds of WMP How to Know God booklets burned during the fire, many millions more are at work changing lives for eternity.
The ministry leader states "The fiery darts of the devil may burn down church buildings, but they cannot snuff out the passion we have in our hearts to reach out to the lost! Church building or no church building, the Word we have in our hearts and the Word we have in our hands (WMP booklets) will continue the work of the gospel. If God moves in your hearts to send help, send us not bricks, but more WMP booklets!"
Thank you for standing with us in prayerful support of our ministry partners in India. If you would like to help provide more Scripture booklets for use in India, please click here:
Inspiring & Insightful articles from WMP Staff, Ambassador Network Members, & Friends