2014 Cambodia – Chanamas Gao Phengsomboon

God of New Generations

“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” -Isaiah 43:19

To be honest, I signed up for the missions trip to Cambodia because I wanted to be part of the dance team. But another reason was because I wanted to overcome the prejudice I had against Cambodian people. Because of political conflicts between Thailand and Cambodia and the fact that we used to be enemies in the past, I had no love for Cambodia and had no idea how I could love them. However, one day during my prayer time, God opened my eyes to see Cambodians as His children and realize that in the Spirit we are all sisters and brothers. God showed me how much He loves Cambodia and how much He desires for His children to be set free. God had softened my heart and I repented. There was no more prejudice or hatred. Since then I could freely pray for the nation from my heart.

I remember once our team preacher, Pastor Emily, shared a Bible verse at a team meeting. It was from Isaiah 43:19 “Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” God is doing a new thing in Cambodia, but what is that new thing? We had been warned from those who had come back from a previous trip Cambodians did not show their expressions very easily. So our team kept praying that, especially through the songs and dance performances we prepared, God would set His children free to express their feelings, their emotions, and especially their joy in Christ. Surprisingly, everywhere we went we saw a lot of expression! A lot of people responded to our dance performances, songs, VBS, and altar calls! Many raised their hands to receive Salvation. They prayed Sinner’s Prayer and accepted Jesus Christ into their lives. God was definitely doing a new thing.

However, I finally found out another new thing: God is using the new generations to change history in Cambodia. On the first two days of the trip our team ministered at Freedom of Sen Sok Church Youth Service. Halima, a team member, shared her testimony about how she grew up with a Christian mom and a Muslim dad. Halima chose the heavenly Father over her father on earth and God had broken off the fear of being abandoned by her biological father. The youth were touched by this testimony, and their eyes were full of tears. When Pastor Emily led an altar call, some of the students almost ran to the front to receive prayers. Many were weeping as our team prayed for them. I learned from January, an active youth leader, that many of the youth were also persecuted by their parents, who were not happy when their children went to church. Some are even cursed. But I felt that God truly delights in their faith and He is going to use this fiery generation to change this nation.

In addition to visiting churches, the team also did evangelizing and outreaches in slums. As you know, living condition in slums are not so pleasant. But despite this fact, some of the kids there were so happy. I did not think I had a heart for kids. I like playing with kids but I do not love them that much. However, in Cambodia my heart was melted by their innocent smiles. The kids loved hugging and being hugged and they loved receiving prayers. I feel like this is the good soil Jesus talks about in His parable. I truly believe that the seeds God has planted in their lives through our faithful prayers will surely grow and bear abundant fruit.

One of the most memorable moments for me on this trip was when we did door-to-door outreach with the kids from New Hope for Orphans Children’s Home on the last day. Our team and the kids were separated into three groups and went to visit people in the village. My group visited two houses, sharing testimonies and praying for two ladies. At the first house I had a chance to share my testimony of God’s provision to my family. I really felt an urge to share it with the lady living in the house. She was in the same situation my family was in over 10 years ago, before I received Jesus. This family was also struggling in poverty and viewing Christianity as a foreign religion. Our team prayed blessings over her family and healing for her high blood pressure. Even though she did not accept Jesus Christ, at that moment I learned how worthy a single soul is in God’s eyes. In the same amount of time we spent on sharing Gospel with this lady, we can hold a meeting and reach out to a lot more people, and even see a lot of salvations. But God sent our team all the way from Korea to this lady specifically! Then we moved on to the next house. We had one of the boys from the orphanage share his testimony with the lady of the house and I think she was touched by it. She even invited us to come back and visit her again. We as visitors cannot stay with them forever; we have to eventually come back to Korea. We cannot pray for the sick and evangelize to local people every day, but these kids can. The Cambodian children will continue to turn their country into a land of hope, a land where people raise their hands to worship only one true God.

I have seen only just a glimpse of what God is doing in Cambodia. I believe I will see more of it in the future. As you are reminded of this nation, I invite you to pray for the young generations. They are already on fire for change and hungry for God. Let us cover them with our prayers so that the enemy cannot snatch away the seeds God has planted in their lives. Let us be part of changing history in Cambodia, the land where God delights in the faith of young generations.

Finally I would like to thank you for praying for us, praying with us, and even fasting for this Kingdom work. We are sure that strongholds of the enemy were destroyed. Even when the trip got difficult at times, I was reminded that our team was not fighting alone. We were at the front lines but we still had an army of mighty warriors faithfully praying for us back home. Thank you so much for your partnership. May our God pour out His blessings upon you and your household, mighty warrior of God.

Leave a Reply