2007 SE Asia Update 5

Pastor Paul took me to an Indonesian wedding yesterday. It was a blessing for several reasons. First, the father of the groomsman came from an area in Indonesia where a majority of the people are Muslim, but by God’s mercy he came to know the Lord. He then raised up his family in a Christian environment where they all came to know Jesus Christ.

Secondly, it was held in a hotel so that the father’s side of the family (who are all Muslim) can come and at least hear the Gospel message through the wedding ceremony. It was powerful knowing they tried to make the whole wedding ceremony into a mini-service.

This reminded me of the cost involved in following Christ. In the United States it is too easy to become a believer and not have to count the cost of being a Christ-follower. Here, in this part of the world, it may mean that they have to give up everything – their family and even their lives.

Today, we visited the Gereja Bethany Indonesia Church. They started out in Surabaya which is in the eastern part of Indonesia and since then they have planted numerous churches all over the world. They have a very familiar feel in terms of worship – very expressive and led by the Spirit. I am realizing more and more the importance of worship in experiencing breakthroughs in a person life as well as in a region. The pastor delivered a powerful word about families and the important role that fathers play in the home. He then invited all the men to come forward to receive an impartation so that they can be better husbands and fathers.

Then, later in the afternoon, I preached at Pekanbaru International Christian Fellowship (PICF), the church where Pastor Paul started a year ago. It was great to see people from different cultures gathering together to worship. There were a lot of first time visitors. I really enjoyed talking with some of the national people. They were eager to use their English 🙂

After the service we went out to eat dinner with a local pastor who is very well connected to various churches and key leaders in this region. It was refreshing to talk with someone that had a Kingdom heart. He comes from an area where they love spicy food so we naturally connected instantaneously 🙂

Pastor Paul and I are headed out to Malaysia tomorrow. God has already opened up some doors for us with meetings with key leaders in the country. God is truly amazing.
 
 
 
Indonesian Wedding1.JPG
 
My first Indonesian wedding – interesting how they try to mix the East and West
 
 
 
Indonesian Wedding2.JPG
 
As you can tell, there were some Muslims from the groomsman’s side. It was a powerful witness to have the Gospel presented at the wedding.
 
 
 
GBI Worship.JPG
 
This was one of the services from the largest church in Pekanbaru with dancers and all
 
 
 
GBI Service.JPG
 
The pastor challenged the men to be better husbands and fathers and many responded
 
 
 
Paul's Banner.JPG
 
This was the banner at the hotel where Pastor Paul had his international church service
 
 
 
Rides in Pekanbaru.JPG
 
Pekanbaru has no parks or rides for kids so they have these traveling cyclist who gives rides for a cheap price – it is a must see.