Heartland Hispanic Quarterly Celebration - 07/22/17
ANOW - 07/24/17
Communications Team Meeting - 07/27/17
Heartland Minister's Meeting - 07/27/17
2017 Serbia Mission Trip - 07/28/17
Bishop Fairley at Amazing Grace UMC - 07/30/17
Most Thai people are Buddhist, and most Buddhists in Thailand have some form of "Spirit House" and shrine in their yard or in their house. Even businesses, shopping malls, and the entrance to sub-divisions have spirit houses shrines. A spirit house is looks like a dollhouse, except for it is meant to be a home for the ghosts of persons who used to live in the house or area. The shrines are for providing food, drink, and incense offerings to take care of the ghosts and appease them.
Thai Buddhists are generally very afraid of ghosts and will go to great lengths to protect themselves from them. We have just moved to a new office for TMM, which is a small house in an old subdivision. We had expected to see the usual spirit house and shrine near the entrance to the sub-division, and our sub-division does have these. But we were very surprised to see glass cases with a few dozen beautiful traditional Thai gowns next to the community spirit house and shrine. When we inquired about these bright colored dresses and gowns in the elaborate glass cases, we were told that these dresses were placed here to appease a female ghost. This is the first time we have seen something like this, but Thai friends tell us this is much more common than we think.
When Thai people receive Christ and become followers of the Lord, many wonderful transformations take place in their lives. One of these transformations is that they no longer live in fear of evil spirits and ghosts. Christians know that we serve the Lord Almighty, and our Lord is greater than any evil spirit. Thai Christian homes don't have the shrines and spirit houses, instead they know that they are God's children and they have the Lord's protection. They no longer need to wear amulets (these are portable idols and shrines meant to protect them from evil spirits) or have idols of any sort. Because our Lord is the Almighty God. Amen.