Equipping in “B-Town”
Hello out there! DTS Equip, the reason we are here in Cambodia, is 4 weeks in. Only three left; time is flying. Equip is a short but intense school to develop leaders and discipleship. Why Cambodia? Cambodia is strategically placed in the heart of South East Asia, easy to enter for countries of all political persuasion, and easy to send from. We have been working with the Cambodians for over 10 years now for exactly this purpose.
This is the second Equip we have run in “B-Town” (Battambang, Cambodia). The first in 2010 was a wonderful success with fruit being seen in several nations. What is fruit? Leaders developed personally as well as professionally, improved styles of leadership and discipling, more effective decision-making, church planting, and increased networking. Overall, we have 35 participants and 10 staff, with work spanning 9 nations and two continents.
A few highlights:
Persecuted leaders arrive in numbers.
In 2010 we had 6 Vietnamese participants, plus 2 Vietnamese two staff. This year we have 20 participants plus four staff. Some of these young leaders have been in prison for the Gospel, yet this only fuels their desire for more training and development (see the group picture below). Believe me, even though you can’t see their faces (for security) they are all smiling!
Here in Battambang we are able to work again with people whom we have spent so much time with for more than a decade in a variety of roles and places. Another significant blessing for us is being able to work again with the staff and graduates from the previous Cambodia school, building friendships as well as continuing mentoring and development. In a picture of diversity with common purpose, our staff of 10 represents 5 nations on its own!
A church planted in 2010 now bearing fruit.
During Equip 2010 the Lord led us to a nearby slum (see the blog and video from October 22, 2010). When we arrived in Cambodia this year one of our graduates from 2010 (who is on the local YWAM leadership team) excitedly told me, “Do you remember our time in the slum? We ended up planting a church there.” This church has a (Khmer!) pastor, elders and a congregation, all in the slum. Early in the work one of the men there actually tried to kill our friend with an axe. However, he soon became a Christian. Today he is on the church leadership team! These people have been taught and discipled. An example of their growth is how they steward any money brought to the church. Over a whole year they saved their tithes. Not only do they bless their local community (the slum) with feedings and ministry, they also felt to commit to support a Khmer missionary, $10 per month. This is astounding. The money is huge for them, and the idea of supporting a Cambodian in missions is a major spiritual and psychological breakthrough for these impoverished people.
Thank you for reading this, and for your support of prayer and interest. Together we are making a difference. Keep watching this space for more updates and photos. The school is on Facebook too. Like us, at “dtsequip”.