You may remember our post about the children’s leader at the church moving to the slum community, known as “the community,” in February. This story took place shortly after Ole moved in, but I only recently heard it.
The first night that Ole moved into the community, she felt something tickle her feet as she was sleeping. It woke her up and she looked to see what it was, but saw nothing. She tried to go back to sleep, but again felt her feet tickled. She was now scared so she pulled her covers up to her neck. Next, her covers were pulled down. After that, she prayed and then was able to sleep. This happened whenever Ole spent the night in her new house.
Ole was disturbed, but did not want to make a big deal about her suspicions, so she only told one other person in the church and made excuses to sleep at the center.
Right at this time, a team from Hawaii came to minister in Bangkok. They went to the community with Ole and me as we taught English to the children. Before we left the community that night, we all went to see Ole’s house (this was my first visit to her new home). While there, we prayed over her house and then anointed it with oil, setting it aside as a place for ministry. We prayed that Ole would be safe in her new house, this home would be an effective place for ministry, and that the Spirit of God would dwell there and push any dark spirits away (not knowing that Ole was struggling against them).
After this prayer meeting, Ole has never experienced any spirits in her house again.
Ole told me this story, after one of the children in the community has been plagued by a spirit whenever she reads her Bible or goes to church. Ole says that spirits are everywhere in this community, so pray for her and the children living there.
One of my students told me this story the other day as we were talking about supernatural things in class. This story took place when she was in the 10th grade. She had typhoid and was staying in the hospital. (Hospitals in Thailand are a little different from those in the U.S. as she was in a room with about 10 other people.)
She was very sick and laying in bed trying to sleep. Her mother had gone home for the evening and would be back in the morning. When she was nearly asleep, she saw a man dressed in white coming towards her. She was immediately awake.
The man walked up to her and invited her to come with him. She asked where he was going, but he just said trust me, and come. She asked if she could talk to her mother before going with him. The man did not give her the chance but said you must make the decision right now; do you want to stay or go? She really wanted to talk with her mother first, so she told the man she would stay there. He then replied that he would come back tomorrow night and then she would have to come with him. After that, he left her and she fell into a fitful sleep.
When her mother arrived the next morning, the girl told her mom what had happened. The mom was very scared and went immediately to the temple to offer merit for her daughter. (Buddhists live in fear of the spirits. They have special spirit houses on the property of every house where people give the spirits food and drinks every day. They do this to appease the spirits of the land that the building os on. Thais also go to the temple to try to keep the spirits happy by offering merit.)
That night, at the same time as the night before, the man dressed in white returned. He walked over to her bed and told her that he had come to the wrong bed last night. Then he apologized and told her to go to sleep. She then fell into a deep sleep.
The next morning, when the girl woke up, she found that the girl in the bed kitty-corner to her bed had died during the night.
The Bible descibes an angel of death as being a servant of God. The picture in this story does not sound like a servant of God doing God’s work. Instead it is more like a demon masqueing as a good angel to trick this young woman. The demon needed her permission to take her life. This is a chilling story that reminds us that the spiritual world is all around us.
Recently, I spent a day with Tommy, the pastor for the local Foursquare Burmese congregation in Bangkok. We went just outside of Bangkok to reach out to the Burmese migrant workers who gather there. For some years Tommy had lived in this community and worked odd jobs in construction as he pastored the church. Just after graduating college twenty years ago, he came to Thailand when the militant government in Burma took over.
Tommy is part of the Karen people group that has suffered greatly under the current regime in Myanmar. Many of his people have fled for their lives or for a better life. He comes from the Arowadi Delta which became infamous a year ago with Cyclone Nargis. We used a local holiday to take time to have a gathering for the Christians and many of their friends in the area where many of them work and live. I found that many come to Thailand to work at a chicken factory or car parts factory. They also work as maids, in construction and other odd jobs.
We met people who had come as recently as a couple of weeks ago to years of displacement in Thailand. This man of God hopes to turn this gathering into another church in the coming months. The plight of the Burmese is severe, but God is reaching into their lives and giving them hope.
To read more about the Karen, visit this site.