“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, His Love endures forever” Psalm 136:1
It’s hard to believe that we have now been living in Phnom Penh for more than a month. We are settled into our apartment and lots has happened since our last update. We are very thankful that God has been protecting us and no one has gotten really sick from eating out at the various food places we have explored. God has also shown His provision by providing someone who speaks a little bit of English at almost every place we have eaten, even at a little side of the road restaurant. This has been a special blessing as we still do not know how to explain Jadon’s peanut allergies in Khmer. This past week we gathered as a team to welcome back Kim Bui to Cambodia after her time back in Canada. We also just finished our Khmer Kickstart language course at Gateway 2 Khmer and will soon start our Level 1 course. During our lessons, we once again experienced the kindness of the Cambodian people through our excellent teachers who were so patient and encouraging to us as we stumbled through learning basic Khmer phrases. With our first week of language study under our belts, we put our new found language skills to the test. The end result was Dave either getting a deal on a dress for Joyce or offering to pay more than the asking price for the dress. We further tested out language abilities by attending New Jerusalem Khmer Evangelical Church. It was encouraging to be able to understand a few words during the service. For Dave, the service was a flashback to his childhood growing up in the Vietnamese church. This past week we visited the Choeung Ek Genocidal Center south of Phnom Penh. Choeung Ek is just one among the many killing fields in Cambodia where mass graves have been found. It is a stark reminder of the tragedies faced by millions under the Khmer Rouge rule between 1975-1979. It is hard to put into words how one feels or should feel after visiting this site and learning about the stories of this tragic era. At the end of the tour, we were reminded that tragedies as such are not just limited to Cambodian History, but our world is full of stories where countless lives have been taken in the name of misguided ideologies. Visiting the Choeung Ek Killing Fields is not about learning about the past but learning from the past so that we can prevent history from repeating itself. For the next year of our lives here in Cambodia, learning is going to be a key theme for us. We will continue to learn about the people, the culture and the Khmer language and we pray that God will continue to teach us how to better love the people of Cambodia as He loves them. Please continue to pray for us in the coming weeks:
- Praise God for his goodness and protection in our first month in Cambodia.
- Pray for supernatural retention abilities as we start our level 1 Khmer course.
- Pray for the kids, that they will continue to adjust to their new school and make some great friends at Hope.
- Pray that we will get to know the Phnom Penh geography better as we have begun driving on our own
Thanks again for journeying with us!