Still Early Morning, Chiang Mai
So I’ve been praying a lot for the Lord to have His way during my time here. I didn’t want this to be simply a fun holiday (although much fun has been had!), but I sensed God’s leading me here to hear Him speak and to surrender each day to whatever He wanted to do in my travel plans, my interactions with those I met, and my heart.
In coming to Chiang Mai, I really wanted to take a cooking class, and yesterday, I got my wish. =) I had a neat opportunity to learn how to cook Thai food in a special one-on-one setting. I’d heard about the school through Iraise since she found it on the Internet after having her original plans upset because it was late in the evening and the school she wanted had already started their last lesson. Iraise loved it and recommended it highly.
Interestingly enough, I was going to try another school just to compare notes, so I called to join the morning session arrange transport and they were happy to oblige. Though they said they were sending a driver, they flaked both times I called that morning. I waited for hours and got a little frustrated, but God knew He wanted me somewhere else. I love how God even uses disappointment to lead us and guide us in His plans! Again, He wastes nothing in His work in our lives!
So yesterday I called Vannee, and she fit me in between her morning session and evening session. She even worked with my schedule since I told her I had a 4:30p appointment (church that night). Her and her husband picked me up promptly from my guesthouse and off to the market we went! It was so much fun. I had the best Thai iced tea ever (not too sweet!) and my private session (that cost the same as one with a larger group!) was wonderful. On the ride to their home, we talked about Chiang Mai, how their business got started, where they are from, how I came to visit, and what I do back home.
And let me just say, Vannee is a great teacher, and I cooked some amazing food under her watchful eye at the impressive cooking workshop in front of her home. In those 3 hours, we talked, we laughed, we shared more about ourselves. I took pictures of almost everything, and she encouraged me in it. I offered to send her pics to use for her business. I had such a great time with her and her family.
During my time, I noticed the little altar in front of her home with flowers, just beneath the red, blue, and white Thai flag that waved proudly in the air. My lovely instructor, full of life, kindness, and joy, did not know Jesus. I prayed for God to move mightily in their lives while I cooked.
At the end of our time, I ate half of the 5 dishes that I prepared (so good!) and paid her for my session. I sensed the Lord prompt me to be generous with them, so I heeded His voice. I prayed quietly in my head for more direction. “God, should I ask if I can bless their home and pray with them? Show me what to do.” But an opportunity to pray did not present itself, and we piled into the car so I could get back to the guesthouse.
I met their son, probably in his mid twenties, and we talked. His English was pretty good, so I complimented
him and made fun of my Thai not being nearly as good. I did impress them all with a well-timed “chan chob ka” though. 😉 So we just talked about his work, my work, how I liked Chiang Mai. And I was still praying for God to open a door to share Him more, asking even if maybe they could drop me off at the church.
Well, the Lord is good and responded. I spotted Wawee Coffee and knew the church was quickly coming up. “Actually, my appointment is right here. Could you drop me here?” “Oh, at the church?” Vannee responded a little surprised but a bit knowingly it seemed, as if she may have sensed something different about me and perhaps Iraise in their session. “Oh okay!”
I waved goodbye and thanked them for everything and Vannee wished me great success in my future and invited me to come back and stay in touch. I smiled and agreed, then waved before heading into the church. God is so good!
I trust that He knows what Vannee and her family need. Maybe He arranged it so they could meet and spend one-on-one time with two Christians in the same week so He could show His love through our actions. Maybe it was also to drop me off at the church to help emphasize why I am who I am. I don’t know what God means to do, but I know He works with the loaves and fishes of our lives to multiply it, feed others, and bring Him glory. There is no moment too small or meeting too brief that He cannot use to speak volumes about the truth of His great love. Praise be to God.
Be praying for Vannee and her family. I know God is pursuing her just like He does all of us. Love it. =)