News from Tim Young

 


"Welcome back to Tim Young.  Tim has returned from Cambodia and visited RPC on August 17 to share his story of the amazing, challenging and rewarding experience working this last year in Cambodia.  Tim expressed his appreciation for all who supported and prayed for his ministry in Cambodia.  Tim also presented a banner with a prayer for all: "In the same way, let your light shine before men, so that they may see your good deeds and praise your father in heaven."  Matthew 5:6. 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 

Date: July 28, 2014, 2:35:46 AM PDT
 
Subject: Next week

To all my friends and family,
 
Each passing day brings me closer to America.  Each passing day leaves me more and more sad about leaving Cambodia.  I'm not ready.  Not by a long shot.  I've made so many good friends.  I've made so many amazing memories.  These people have stolen my heart, and I don't know if I'll ever fully get my heart back.
 
I have a list of things I have to do before I leave.  There are only a handful of things left for me to do.  A few odds and ends.  A few meetings.  Spending a lot of time with my friends.  It's all happening too soon.
 
I am going to lose it when I see my friends for the last time.  I don't cry much, but I'm going to cry like a baby.  I just wrote a short speech in Khmer to give on Friday when I meet with the staff.  I had to put a few jokes in there just to make myself laugh instead of crying.
 
I almost cried just a few minutes ago.  One of my friends, Rondo, came into the office.  He is one of the tour guides and a good friend.  I told him that I was going to give him my moto when I leave next week.  I wasn't selling it to him.  I was giving it to him.
 
Rondo has had to work very hard in his life.  He hasn't had much handed to him on a silver plater.  There was a brief period of time when his sister married a wealthy man, and Rondo was given a lot of really nice things.  For various reasons that relationship fell apart between him and the two of them, and to make things worse, Rondo was robbed of his moto and every other nice thing he had.
 
This was a few years before I came.  Rondo has been working hard to get back to a stable place in life.  He works hard to help support his parents.  He never asks for much. He is very humble and grateful for all he has.
 
Rondo is a not an emotional man.  He is keeps his emotions in check.  He is never too high or too low on anything that happens.  So when I told him that I was going to give him my moto (God told me to give it away when I first bought it), Rondo became teary eyed.  He couldn't find the words to express this thanks.  
 
It was at this that I could hardly keep from crying.  Here was my friend.  He was a man who never showed his emotions.  Here was a man who always gave his best and hardly ever received anything back.  And he was having a hard time expressing his gratitude.  I don't think I'll be forgetting that moment anytime in the next four or five lifetimes.
 
I expect a lot of near tear experiences over the next week.  I don't like crying, but I know its a natural part of life.  I know they will come.  The thing about tears and sadness, is that they only come when there is love.  If I didn't love these people and if they didn't love me then this wouldn't be hard.  I am only sad because I have loved and been loved.  So as much as I hate tears and as much as I hate being sad, I wouldn't have it any other way.  Bring on the love and bring on the tears.
 
May the peace of Christ be with you,
Timmy
 
P.S.  for those who still read all of these all the way through, thank you!  I just want to let you all know I am still looking to raise 1,800 dollars to support a staff members salary for a year.  If you are interested, you can give with the same forms as before.  If you need the forms, just let me know!
 
P.S.S.  I'm still looking for a job in the Clemson, SC area so let me know if anything pops up!
 
P.S.S.S.  Funny story time since you have persevered through all my blabbing!  In Khmer culture, people only talk a little bit while they eat.  When eating in groups, there is not lengthy conversation going on when the food is on the table.  Well, I forget that often.  I was eating lunch at the tour office with the tour guides and English teachers.  Well I was rambling along about something when all of a sudden one of the tour guides interrupted me and said "Why you talk so much when you eat!? That is not part of Khmer culture.  Please stop and shut your mouth!"  It was hilarious.  He didn't say it in a mean or rude way (I was the rude one by talking so much).  He said it in a way that showed all my talking while eating had been slowly stressing him out over the past year.  Got to love cultural differences.  And being told to stop talking and eat more was probably the greatest thing someone has every commanded me to do!

 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Jul 20, 2014 11:04:54 PM
Subject: The end is in sight

 

Hello everybody!

 
I realize I have not been writing consistently anymore.  I apologize for that.  Ever since the Emily incident, my motivation to write has disappeared.  That and I am approaching the end of my time in Cambodia.

  

I don't like talking about leaving Cambodia because I love it so much.  I love seeing what God has done here.  Yet, God asked me to come for a year, and even though I have prayed for Him to let me stay longer, I feel God is holding onto that year that He told me to come for.

 

Things are going fairly well.  The interns have come and they have gone.  They were great fun to have.  They all willing came and gave of their time, money, and love to pour into God's kingdom here in Cambodia.  I will miss their fun spirits.

 

The good thing about them leaving is that I can focus again on relationships with my Khmer friends.  The whole reason I came was to be with Khmer people, and I am excited that I get to refocus on that.

 

The sad part is that I am only able to refocus on that for two weeks.  In just over two weeks, I head back to the US for my brother's wedding.  I can't possibly think of a better reason to come back the US than my only brother's wedding, but I will be so very sad to leave my Khmer friends behind.  I will be so very sad to leave what God is doing here.  God is doing so many wonderful things in this country.  But God is the mastermind, not me.  I have to trust that He knows what He is doing even when I see so many ways that it would be helpful for me to stay.

 

Two weeks is too short.  I should do some wrap up things.  For those who support me monthly, you can go ahead and stop your support.  I have what I need to make it through the rest of my time here.  I am grateful for the support you have given me.  I hope to meet with each of you that have supported me so we can swap some more stories about what God has been doing in each of our lives.

 

Also, I still will be looking for a job in the Clemson area when I return to the US.  So if you know any good job openings, let me know.  I am all ears to all kinds of opportunities.

 

I will leave you with a cool story of how meaningful my organization can be:

 

 

Two weeks ago, a 15 year old boy showed up at one of our kid's club programs.  The Khmer leader of the kids' club, Chris, saw the boy (John). Because Chris knows the kids that come to the little park by the riverfront for our kids' club, Chris knew that this boy had never come before.  While we were playing games, Chris took time to get to know him.

 

John opened up about himself.  He had just gotten to Phnom Penh that day.  He was from the province.  He had gotten a job working on a fishing boat.  He wanted to make some money and send it back to his family in the province.

 

Well it turned out that the people running the boat were forcing him into unpaid labor.  He would work on the boat and get only food in return for all his hard work.  He never saw the money he was promised.
 
After a few weeks, John knew they were close to Phnom Penh.  He made his escape into the city.  That is when he met Chris.

 

Chris asked John where he was staying the night.  John told him that he would find a quiet place along the riverfront to sleep.  There are no quiet places along the riverfront.  The riverfront is renowned for sex trafficking.  The sad truth is that if John had stayed along the riverfront, pimps and drug dealers would have offered him money to work for them.

  

That work would eventually lead to either forced manual labor or forced sex work.  That is what happens to children without knowledge of what happens along the riverfront.

 

Chris knows all of this.  He has been working with us for over a year.  He loves these kids, and he wants to see God pour out His love and protection on them.

  

Chris immediately brought John back to our center.  They met with our director to make a plan to help keep John safe.  We are not an NGO that is allowed to house children.  Under extreme situations we can be given special permission to house children for two nights at most.

 

We knew we were no long term solution for John.  Chris and our acting director began calling all the other NGO's we knew.  We eventually found a NGO that would take him into one of their programs.  They would provide him with a place to stay, food and help him get back on his feet.

 

It's a great story of how God can prevent harm from ever happening.  God does so much preventive work to keep us from ever being harmed in the first place.  God protected John.  God kept Him safe.  And to do that God has placed His workers in places that He needs them to be.  God has used Chris to help impact the lives of many kids.  God continued to use Chris and put Chris in the right place to help John from finding his way into a more difficult life than he already had.

 

It's a reminder for me on how God takes care of us.  Even when things are hard, we must know that without God's provision things would be much worse than they are.  It helped me be reminded to be grateful for the life situation God has given me.  And it was a reminder that I need to be ready and I need to be where God wants me to be so that I can step up to help others in their time of need.

 

May the peace of Christ be with you,

 

Timmy

 

 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Jun 11, 2014 9:56:12 PM
Subject: Time keeps on ticking

 

To my brothers and sisters,

 
It's been awhile since I last updated you all on what is going on.  Life has been busy and crazy here since I last wrote.  And life has been fairly stressful.  But God is bigger than stress and hard times.
 
Just an update on Emily.  She ended up giving birth to her daughter almost two months early.  Yesterday, Alli was able to bring Emily's daughter Nadia home.  Nadia is healthy for a two month premature baby.  Alli is beginning to be able ot move on from the stress of the past few months.  It'll be no short process to deal with and process all that she has gone through.  Not to mention now having four children in her house.
 
As for me, I had a team from my university come to visit and help out with different ministries here in Cambodia.  It was quite nice to have friends come visit.  Usually teams are a somewhat of a burden, but having a team consist of friends is anything but a burden.  It was a pleasure to have them come and be a blessing to myslef and the Khmer people I know and love.
 
At the beginning of this month, a group of interns came to Cambodia.  I have been equally exciting and dreading their arrival.  I'm excited because I get the pleasuere of working with them.  I get to help them love the Khmer people here in Cambodia.  It doesn't get much better than that.
 
I was nervous because they are all girls.  I'm a guy, and I'm leading a group of all girls.  That's not exactly my area of expertise.  I also was not looking forward to them coming because I knew helping them would take away from my other responsibilities and free time.  I would have less time to hang out with my friends.  I would have less time to keep pouring into the Khmer staff.  The interns represent a decrease in ability to do what I want to do here in Cambodia.
 
Then they got here.  Its easy to be nervous and not look forward to them coming before they get here.  Its harder to not want to spend time with people when they are here and they happen to be wonderful people.  I've throughly enjoyed getting to spend time with them and see their hearts for The Lord.  They desire nothing other than to love God and serve the Khmer people.  They make it easy to want to work with and help them.
 
I'm excited that I get to contiue working and serving alongside them for the rest of this month and next month!
 
May the peace of Christ be with you,
Timmy
 
 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: May 22, 2014 6:08:41 AM
Subject: What the future holds

To the ones who call on the name of the Lord,
 
This update is long, but it is very important to my future. I hope you can take the time to read all of this.
 
I want and need to keep you up-to-date on what is happening with me here in Cambodia.  When I began to make plans to come to Cambodia, I wanted to come to for two years, but I strongly felt God tell me to just come for a year.  So I made plans to only come for a year.  November to November.  I hoped He would change His mind and let me stay for longer.  I know it sounds silly hoping for God to change His sovereign will.
 
In February, my director asked me to join the Hard Places Community (HPC) full time.  Now HPC is a community of believers who keep in touch via email and pray for each other.  It is a small community with members in the US and in Cambodia.  Being a part of HPC does not make a difference on where I live.  So I just planned on joining and then going back to the US in November.  Joining HPC means a commitment to living missional wherever you live, focusing on the hard places in the world, and keeping in touch and praying for each other.
 
HPC then started a new thing they will do every other year.  Every other year we will have a retreat for everyone who is part of HPC.  This year the retreat is happening in Portland in September.  So I will be going to the retreat in September.  That is a month and a half before I was planning on coming back.
 
I began to pray and think about what that means for me.  Should I come back for a month and a half after the retreat?  Should I stay in the States after the retreat?  To make matters even more confusing, my only brother (Brian) is engaged and is getting married in August.  I would not miss that for anything.  So, do I come back after my brother's wedding or do I stay in the States?  What is the best? What is God's will?
 
Now as a member of HPC, I now need to think not just about what I want to do, but what is best for HPC.  I had to weigh the options of me coming back after September.  A round trip ticket is about 1800 dollars.  Sometimes you can get it for cheaper, but that is about normal.
 
The decision then becomes, do I raise 1,800 additional dollars?  What really makes that decision interesting for me is that one of our Khmer staff members makes 1,800 dollars in a YEAR!  So I thought, is it more important for HPC that I come back for a month and a half, or would that money better be used to pay staff members salary for a year?  I think I am good at my job.  I think I make a fairly big impact on those I work with.  But I do not think a month of my presence is worth a year of our Khmer staff.  I'm not that good. Not by a long shot.
 
Plus, every non-governmental organization (NGO) talks the talk about promoting Khmer (Cambodian) leadership.  We all say it, but really hardly any of us are good at it.  We might even do something, but by and large it is a facade.  NGO's need to be better at promoting Khmer leadership.
 
I could do a lot to help here, but I feel I need to step out of the way.  If I stay, I may be a limiting factor in the development of our Khmer staff.  I must get out of the way to let others take up what I do.  I need to get out of the way some of the leaders can take up discipleship with the staff.  Spiritual development is what is most important to our NGO.  We ultimately exist to help people find the grace of God and grow in that grace.
 
If spiritual development is the most important aspect of what we do, then we NEED to have Khmer people in that position of leadership.  It is a must.  Its a biblical idea.  So sadly, I must get out of the way.  I long to be here in Cambodia.  I long to keep being here.  But for whatever reason, I feel God is using me as an example.  I must be the example to get out of the way to let others do what God is calling them to do.
 
I'm a little grumpy with God about that.  I'm a little sad that I have to be an example to others on how we need to promote growth and leadership from the Khmer people.  Leaving is not what I want to do.  I want to be in Cambodia.
 
But ultimately, I want to do what God would have me do.  I want to be obedient to the Lord.  My wants and my desires pale in comparison to what God wants me to do.  I've lived enough and read the Bible enough to know that doing things God's way always works out better for everyone involved than doing things our own ways.
 
And yes, I feel God is using me as an example of how to get out of the way to let others develop their abilities.  And yes I'm not thrilled about that.  But really, who am I to complain?  God used Ezekiel as an example by eating poop.  Hosea married a prostitute to be God's example.  I've got it pretty easy moving back to a culture I grew up in.
 
This all comes down to coming back to help the Khmer people be who they need to be.  This is also about how a year's worth of a Khmer staff member is worth more than a month of Timmy.  That goes to say, I feel God is telling me to raise 1,800 dollars to give to HPC to pay a year's salary to one of our staff members.
 
I am doing something I never wanted to do again.  I'm asking for money.  I'm not asking for money for myself.  I'm asking for money to hire a staff member for a year.  I'm asking for money so God can continue to deliver vulnerable children from abuse and trafficking.  I'm asking for money to pay for teachers to teach former young adult sex workers to find a new way of life.  I'm asking for money so God can do in Cambodia what He desires to accomplish.  I'm asking for money so that the people of Cambodia can make disciples of all nations, starting in their own.
 
I know most of you have the ways to give to my account, but I am going to attach information on how to give to support one of our staff members.  It will go to my account, and I will give it to HPC.  I also want to thank you all for how you have supported me. I've never once had to worry about money since I have been here. Thank you so much for that!
 
I would love for this 1,800 dollars to be raised before I come back to the States.  I will keep you all updated on how much more is needed to meet that 1,800 goal in my updates.
 
I have prayed and cried out to God asking Him to let me stay here and become a long term missionary, but I before I came He told me no and when I pray now He tells me no.  So as of now, the plan is for me to return in August for my brothers wedding, and stay in the States.  It's not what I want to do, but I feel it is what God wants me to do.  Thus, it is what what I want to do. If you have any job connections in the SC area, let me know.
 
May the peace of Christ be with you,
Timmy
 

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From: Timmy Young 
Date: May 15, 2014 12:06:05 AM
Subject: Follow up on Emily


To my friends and family,
 
I have not written to you in too long.  The past two weeks have been very draining.  I want to tell you of the situation with Emily.
 
I'll start with the good news.  She is alive.  Her child is alive and still in the womb.  Emily never had the child.  That was what we all hoped for because it meant the lives of both Emily and her child still have a future.
 
Over the course of the past two weeks, we learned what happened.  It started when Emily stole a lot of money from our director, Alli.  She did not mean to steal that much money.  She wanted to steal money from my director so she could get a ride away from the doctor's appointment because she hates doctors.  She accidentally stole much much more.
 
A few days later when she realized how much money she had actually stolen, she wanted to return it.  She called Alli to set up a time and place to give the money back.  She was riding with someone while telling Alli that.
 
Well the person she was riding with realized she had a lot of money, and instead of taking where he was supposed to take her he took her to a bunch of drug dealers.  They beat her up, took her money, and made her get high.  They made sure she kept giving Alli the run around and feeding her false information to keep Alli off their trail because they now had the money.  Emily would know who they were, so they wanted to keep her out of the loop with Alli so Alli could not hunt them down and the money.
 
Over the course of two weeks, they would beat Emily up and get her high.  Eventually they and the money disappeared.  Emily was ashamed and hurt.  She eventually reached out to Alli and came back to meet with Alli, pregnant and all.
 
We couldn't have hoped for much better than that.  Emily is alive.  Her child is alive.  It really looked like, for most of two weeks, that the child and Emily were both dead.  The authorities all thought she and the child were dead.
 
There was much pain that took place.  Much deception.  A lot of lack of integrity that took place from so many different people and not just the drug dealers.  Sadly, this situation did not bring out the best of us.  I can't say more, but I'm very glad God is a God of grace and forgiveness.  We truly need it in each of our lives.
 
I want you all to rejoice and praise God that in His sovereignty, He made a way to keep a mother and child alive.  It was against all odds, but God seems to like to come through where there seems to be no hope.
 
Whatever situation is happening in your life, know that God cares about that situation.  Know that He cares about the big and the little things that happen in your lives.  And no matter how bad things might look, God can is bigger.  God is more powerful.  God is more willing.  God can.
 
I just urge you to walk with Him as He walks with you.  Don't neglect integrity as you hope and pray for God to come through.  God is more than capable to take care of you.  Don't do things your way.  Do it His way.  You will only hurt yourself by doing things your way, and you will regret it.  Walk in the Lord's ways even when it is hard.
 
May the peace of Christ be with you,
Timmy

 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Apr 30, 2014 11:29:06 PM
Subject: Confusion

 

My wonderful friends and family,

 
The past 36 hours have been the most confusing of my life.  None of what is confusing is good, either.
 
I don't remember how much I have told you about certain things, so bear with me.  Alli, the director of Hard Places, has been in Cambodia for about five years.  Over that course of time, she has known a girl named Emily almost the whole time.
 
Emily began to be sold for sex at the age of 12.  She is now 18-20, depending on the mood she is in when you ask her.
 
Alli has loved and cared for Emily deeply over the past four years.  She has tried to do everything she can to help Emily and show her God's love.  Emily has been a sex worker all of that time, and she has been on and off drugs as well.  Emily has been anything but easy to love.  She has stolen much from Alli and HPC.  She has continued her harmful lifestyle.  Despite all this, Alli has committed to caring for Emily no matter what.
 

A little over a year ago, Emily gave birth to a son who is named Nash.  Considering Emily is homeless, she cannot properly take care of Nash.  Last year, many of the Hard Places Community members worked to take care of Emily and Nash before and after the birth.

 
Over the course of the year, Alli has come to see Nash as her own child and is in the process of adopting Nash.  Emily knows she cannot care for Nash, and she wouldn't want anyone else to raise her child other than Alli.  Emily knows how much Alli loves her, and Emily knows how much Alli loves Nash.
 
Emily became pregnant again 28 weeks ago.  Throughout the process, Alli has said if Emily cannot care for this new child (a girl), she would adopt her too.  Emily knew she would not be able to care for her.  For the past few months, Alli and Emily have been saying this child will be Alli's to raise.
 
Last Thursday, Emily ran away while going to a doctor's appointment.  Yet again, she took some money from Alli to get a ride to where she wanted to go.  This time it happened to be a larger amount of money than she meant to steal.  In fact a few days later, when she realized how much money she stole, she called Alli and told her she was sorry and was going to bring it back.
 
Alli sent one of our staff members to go get the money from her, but Emily disappeared when our staff member arrived.  She was staying at a run down apartment complex notorious for drugs, prostitution, and pimps.  Emily always finds herself in these destructive situations with people who do not care about her.
 
Tuesday night, she called Alli.  This is where everything gets confusing.  Lots of things have happened, and we have no clue what is true and what is a lie.  She told Alli she gave birth to her baby girl 11 weeks early in the run down apartment building.
 
We don't know if this is true.  I'll save you all of the confusing and conflicting things we have found out thus far; but the possibilities range from she gave birth 11 weeks early because she was beaten up, she had a miscarriage, or she never had the baby at all.  We know she wouldn't try to trick us, but she may have been held hostage because of the money she stole.  She would not have had much time to tell us anything over the phone, but she knew that if she had the baby we would come to help her no matter what.
 
To make matters worse, she has HIV and her baby would have needed special medicine within 12 hours of birth to greatly reduce the chance of getting HIV.  She was potentially born almost 48 hours ago.
 
Emily doesn't own a phone, but she has Alli's number memorized.  She called from a friend's phone.  That phone has been turned off or the battery has been dead for over a day now.  We have no way to reach Emily.  We have gone searching for her at every hospital we have connections at and reason to believe she may have gone there.
 
We don't know if she has had her baby, but there is a very real chance she gave birth 11 weeks early and the baby is receiving no medical attention at a hospital.  If she hasn't given birth, she is almost certainly being held against her will.
 
I don't know how to ask you to pray because I don't know what is going on.  I just know there may be a 11 week early baby who is not at a hospital and who is being cared for a mother who lost a lot of blood during birth and has no knowledge on how to care for a child let alone a premature birthed child.  Or there may be a pregnant woman being held against her will being beaten and abused.  No possibilities are good.
 
God still sits on the throne, and He is still in control.  Things looked bleak last year with Nash being born a month early to Emily WHILE she was high on drugs and who had been on drugs throughout the whole pregnancy.  Nash is healthy and beautiful today.  Nash is a miracle who we often praise God for.  God has received much glory through that situation.  God will receive glory through this situation as well.  Things look bad, things may end bad in our eyes; but the things people design for evil, God intends for good.  We desire for life, and life to the full for Emily and her child.  Pray God will bring life, and pray we will continue to praise His name.
 

May the peace of Christ be with you,

Timmy

 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Apr 23, 2014 6:26:59 AM
Subject: What I'm here to do

 

 

Brothers and sisters in Christ,

 
Three interns have been here on and off over the past three months.  The last one of them leaves this week.  Its amazing to think how fast time has had them come and go.  It was great having them, and they were all great help to everything here at HPC.  It was great to see them find their roles and serve in them for their time here.
 
That was the practice round.  Six interns will be coming on June 1st.  It will be a little different with them.  The three interns that just left had a little more freedom and a little less structure.  The interns that will be here this summer will be a part of our full intern program. It'll take up more of my time.
 
I feel better equipped for this group to come, but I'm going to enjoy my time with no interns over the next month.  I will have more freedom to spend time with my Khmer friends.  I'll have time to invest in those relationships, and I am excited about that.
 
I have started teaching most of the guys I disciple various Bible study methods.  It has been great.  It is so much better to give them the tools to grow in The Lord than to tell them everything that I find in the Bible.  I'm excited about transitioning from teaching people about the Bible to studying the Bible with each of the staff members.
 
My dream is one day for one of the Khmer staff to be the one who disciples the rest of the staff.  Now that they are being equipped to do so, it is a real possibility.  They have just as much right to make disciples of the nations as I do.
 
I have a new dream.  The rest of my time in Cambodia, I want to equip the staff members to make disciples of all nations.  I really want to push and promote the idea of all nations: as in all people groups.  There are 43 unique people groups in Cambodia.  31 of them are unreached which means under 2% of the people groups population is Christian.  31 different people groups have either no one or next to no one who even knows Christ let a lone an active church reaching out to their community.
 
My dream is for that to change.  My dream is to pass on the vision and passion to make disciples of all nations to those I meet with.  There is no reason that we cannot have Khmer missionaries in each of these 31 people groups within the next ten years.  I'm only planning on being here for a year, but if I can pass on the tools and passion to do it there is no reason that there should be any unreached people groups in Cambodia in the next ten years.
 
This is just what I've been thinking about this week.
 
Grace be with you,
Timmy Young
 
 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Apr 2, 2014 3:58:47 AM
Subject: Follow up

 

 

My family in Christ,

 
I just wanted to give you an update about my last update.  I went out with Norman on Tuesday to pray with cripples by the temple like happened in the book of Acts.  A common place for beggars to hang out is about two minutes from the boys center.  We hopped on my moto and drove over there.
 
Upon arriving, I asked Norman how he was doing.  He said fine.  I told him I was really nervous.  He was like, "really!?!??!? Me too!"  It gave him comfort knowing that I was also nervous.  I don't know if walking up and praying for strangers ever gets entirely normal, and if it does I am not yet there.
 
Before we went and talked to anyone, I suggested we pray that God shows us and brings us some cripples to pray for.  It is God who heals, not us, so I figured asking Him to bring who He desires is a good way to start.  We prayed and then we started walking through the people.
 
Norman kept wondering should we go there.  Or maybe there.  I could tell he was really nervous.  I told him that I completely trust him, and that because my Khmer isn't that good I would defer to his lead the rest of the time.  I wanted him to know I trust his leadership on this.  The reason we came in the first place is because we read the Bible, and I felt God say that I cannot explain how to have bold faith, but it is something you must develop through actions.  That is what brought us there in the first place.  Norman was learning how to be bold in his faith, and letting him taking leadership showed my trust in his faith.
 
Well when you pray for God to do something to bring about His glory, He usually provides a scenario to do that.  As we were walking, two men in wheelchairs were just a little bit in front of us.  Norman asked if we should go talk to them.  One of them rolled away from the other in front of us.  It was pretty clear that we should talk to him.  Norman still had his doubts though.
 
To remove all doubt, we went and stood in the shade since it was so hot.  Both of them then rolled into the same patch of shade we were.  We eventually struck up a conversation with them.  We told them who we were and that we were Christians.  Norman asked about their history and how they ended up in wheelchairs.
 
Both had accidents when they were young in which they lost use of their legs.  They were both in their early 40's or so.  They never asked us for money, and we just talked.  Norman and I then asked them what they wanted prayer for.  Neither of them asked for healing despite us saying we belived God could heal them.
 
They instead asked for prayer that their families will be able to sell enough stuff to be able to eat.  They lived on the streets and had no home.  Recently the police had been giving them a hard time, and they asked for prayer for the police to leave them alone.
 
I do not feel I am someone to tell other people what they need (apart from letting the love of God into our lives).  If those are their needs, and they did not ask for healing then who I am to tell them they need healing?  So we prayed for them.  We prayed for their families and we prayed for peace from the police.
 
It was an encouraging time of talking to people and getting to know them while sharing God's love.  Were they healed? No.  Was God given glory? Yes.
 
What matters about the situation is that God received glory from our talk with them, and Norman and I were obedient to what God asked us to do.  We cannot control results.  That is God's job.  We only do what we are asked.
 
I plan on going and talking to them on occasion.  They hang out right next to where one of our kid's clubs meet.  So when I go there I will be sure to talk to my new friends and see how they are doing.  God has control over the situation, and I can't wait to see what He does with the rest of the story.
 
May the peace of Christ be with you,
Timmy

 


From: Timmy Young 
Date: Mar 22, 2014 5:32:18 AM
Subject: Teaching can be hard
 
To my brothers and sisters in Christ,

 

 

Sometimes teaching can be really hard.  I mean that in so many ways.  First, the Bible tells us that teachers will be held to a higher standard.  When teachers lead people astray, God has some pretty harsh words for them.  Something about millstones and drowning and something about being a son of hell if I remember correctly.  Teachers need to be very responsible in what they teach and the standards they live.  By and large, I feel like with the Holy Spirit's help, I'm up for that challenge.

 

 It also is hard coming up with lessons all the time.  Especially when you have to make so many different lessons each week, it is easy to get confused what you have already told people and what illustrations you have used where.  It gets confusing.  But I am a firm believer that the Holy Spirit can lead just as much when I'm planning my lessons as He can in the spur of the moment.  In fact, I think He leads more often in times of preparation.  (That being said, last week I had an entire lesson planned and felt led by the Holy Spirit to teach about something entirely different on the spot.  God does what He wants when He wants to).  So preparing and coming up with lessons is hard, but I like the challenge of it.
 
The hardest part is that I strive to always be a person of integrity.  I try to never teach on things I don't practice in my life.  And instead of skipping over teaching on things, I try to work through those issues in my life when they come up in lesson planning.

 

Well, that gets hard sometimes.  I was teaching about the Mary and Martha passage where Jesus tells Martha that she is more concerned about doing the work of The Lord than The Lord Himself.  When I was planning that God said, "Timmy, does this sound familiar? Maybe you need to learn this yourself while teaching it."  God had His way with me in that.

  

Now God is having His way with me again.  I was planning a lesson on Wednesday for next Tuesday.  I will be meeting one on one with one of our staff members, Norman.  When I prayed and formed a plan for what God wanted me to meet with him about over the coming months, this week happened to be the week we meet to talk about being bold in our faith.

 

Well the story that came to mind was when Peter and John told the crippled beggar that they didn't have money, but instead they healed the man.  The thing about living in Cambodia is when you hear stories about crippled beggars by temples, it isn't an abstract thing.  Specific people and faces come to mind when that happens.

 

I was planning the lesson, and I thought to myself how can I teach about this passage when I resemble nothing close to the faith Peter and John had in this passage?  When beggars ask me for money, when was the last time I called them to be healed and have faith in Christ instead?

 

I asked God how to go about teaching this lesson, and I felt an overwhelming thought in my heart and mind: "Go and do likewise."

 

At that point, I said, "God, I didn't sign up for that!"  Then I did the only other sensible thing and wrote it down in my lesson plan to go with Norman to the riverfront and talk with some of the crippled beggars and ask God to heal their bodies and souls.

 
So on Tuesday, I'm going to read a passage of Scripture with Norman about talking with crippled beggars and then go and do likewise. Pray His kingdom come and His will be done.
  
May the peace of The Lord Jesus Christ be with you,

 

Timmy

 

 

 

 

From: Timmy Young 
Date: Mar 15, 2014 7:01:34 AM
Subject: Unorganized thoughts

Hello everybody!

 

I was trying to sit down and develop a well thought out email to send out, but I have a bunch of random thoughts going on in my head.

  
First, I have hit my groove with everything here in Cambodia.  At first planning up to fourteen different times of discipleship every week was really hard.  I thought it wasn't possible in fact, but it turns out it's possible.  After a few months of meeting with the guys, I have gotten to the point where I can effectively plan good lessons instead of just throwing things together at the last minute.  Its refreshing to do a good job.

 

That being said, I need to sit down again this week and set out my 2-3 month plan for every one that I meet with.

 

Second, a lot of my attention is going to other things as well.  As the interns have been here for awhile, they don't need constant care.  That has left me with free time, and at first I didn't know what to do with it.  Now I have found ways to enjoy my time as well as do some other productive things.

 

I am starting to make a push to get the word out about my upcoming book.  I am talking with a publisher now.  If they decide to pick it up, then I will publish it through them.  If they don't, I've decided to take the self publishing route.  I'm excited either way, but would prefer the stability the publisher offers.  I am looking to use Facebook, Twitter, and my soon to be started blog to get lots of people interested in reading a book about my time when I chose to live homeless.  I can't wait to finish have it published after about a year and a half of working on it.  Please feel to check out the Facebook page at facebook.com/book.ifollowtheway

 

Third, I still really don't like working out or exercising unless it is through playing sports.

  

Fourth, I have been reading through the Old Testament recently.  God is INCREDIBLY patient.  He did so much for the Israelites.  He gave them freedom, food, water, land to call home, and many other things.  Yet they constantly complained.  They asked for more.  They continually asked for new leaders and a new god.  How did God have the patience to not leave them?  That is beyond me.

 

Fifth, I have had to fill out two different paperwork things recently that involve writing about God and how He works.  I love doing things like that.  I love writing clever responses about God.  I love going beyond the surface level answers for things.  God is great, and I love pointing it out. 

 

Sixth, I miss rules of the road.  Cambodian traffic is the definition of chaos.  People go wherever they want when they want to.  Cars in your way? No problem! Just drive on the wrong side of the road.  Waiting at a traffic light? Way wait when you can get on the sidewalk and get to the intersection without waiting!  I miss organized transportation.

 

Seventh, I love people with special needs.  I haven't had any encounters with people with developmental delays here, but I miss spending time with my autistic friends, my Down syndrome friends, and all my other friends with special needs.  They are always the most genuine people I know.  They are some of the most loving people I know, and I miss them.

  
Eight, I love studying Khmer.  I love being able to understand people when they don't think I do.  I like being able to talk to Po Oudom when he comes home because he doesn't speak much English.  I love having my teacher teach me.  He is a wonderful man of God and a great and encouraging teacher.  Now finding time for that homework he gives me. That's a different story.

 

Nine, I appreciate all of you who actually taking time to read this.  I know life is busy so taking time to read the thoughts of someone on the other side of the world means a lot to me.

 

 

Grace be with you,

Timmy