Today was a day of saturating ourselves with Vietnamese history. It allowed us to experience the history from the perspective of the Vietnamese people. First of all, we had the great privilege and opportunity to visit the Vietnam War Museum. The story of the Vietnam War was told from the perspective of the Vietnamese… it is interesting how history is always told from various perspectives. It was humbling to know that many Americans and Vietnamese died on the soil that we were walking on.
We also had the opportunity to go to the Vietnamese Culture Museum. The country of Vietnam is rich in culture. All their arts and artifacts describe a culture that displayed elegance and grace. It was beautiful.
The highlight of the day was meeting the first church and pastor that went underground after the war and when the Communist took over the country. He was a humble man (by the way, I realized that is always the prerequisite of being used of God in a mighty way). When you first meet Pastor Tu, you would never realize the incredible stature of the man.
He has 2,500 in 311 areas under his apostolic leadership. His membership totals close to 400,000 people all throughout Vietnam. Oh I forgot to mention that he was imprisoned for 4 months in 7 different prisons. Almost all of his staff members suffered imprisonment. In the midst of their suffering they found encouragement because many godly people in the Bible were imprisoned (Joseph, Daniel, Apostle Paul, etc). Just recently, due to all the development in the country and the openness of the government, they have recognized Pastor Tu as the top leader of all of the Christian movement in the country.
Whenever I have the privilege of meeting people like this, I am reminded that people do not reach a certain level of influence without suffering. There is something about pain and hardships that draw people closer to God and it keeps them humble. It was truly by God’s grace that we were able to meet him because he was out of town and just got in this morning. God’s timing and opportunities are amazing.
Please keep me in prayer because I am going to preach at an underground church revival meeting tonight.
Here are more pictures:
On top of a destroyed U.S. tank at the Vietnam War Museum
Pastor Ben and I were trying to go local
Meeting with Pastor Tu and his staff – he is the 2nd from the left
I shot a M-16 and a AK-47 at the museum driving range. Wow! Truly exhilarating!