In the mid 1970s more than 22% of Cambodia’s population was liquidated through starvation, torture and execution – often referred to as The Killing Fields. Thirty-five years later Jesus is healing the soul of a scarred nation, one person at a time.
Few Cambodians escaped the reign of terror at the hands of leader Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge Party. The horror is still fresh in the minds of families, and the injury is compounded by pervasive, generational poverty. These dire economic conditions have produced bitter fruit including HIV/AIDS, human trafficking, street children, orphans, and prostitution.Darkness of this magnitude breeds hunger for the Light. Cambodia is ripe for the Gospel message. In response, David C Cook is putting a powerful evangelistic tool called The Story of Jesus into the hands of missionaries, ministries, and churches on the ground. This compelling, illustrated booklet details the life of Christ. The story points children (and adults) toward salvation in Jesus alone. It speaks of a God who longs to bring value, meaning, and the unconditional love of a Father to men, women and children. Most of all He’s a God who provides hope to people steeped in despair.
Poipet, Cambodia is one of those areas where the Global Mission Unit at David C Cook is linking arms with missionaries. Poipet is a border town between Cambodia and Thailand and is best known for gambling. The area is home to 2,500 street kids and 10,0000 children virtually left alone while parents look for work in Thailand.
Just recently, Steve Hyde, a missionary and pastor in Poipet, explained The Story of Jesus page by page to a group of 200 children. He used this as a tool to help launch a special children’s church. As Steve says,
I want to change the destiny of these children from one of neglect, abuse, and poverty to one in Jesus Christ.
It wasn’t easy to get this church plant off the ground. Personal and logistical obstacles abounded, including a 12-hour deluge that transformed the church property – a newly cleared field with a giant multicolored tent – into a muddy lake. Yet children showed up and waded through the sludge and water to hear the message. The worship leaders and musicians ranged in age from 9-14.
After sharing the Good News through The Story of Jesus, Pastor Hyde spoke of Jesus’ miracles and asked if anyone needed healing. Three boys bravely spoke up, and kids surrounded them and prayed in Jesus’ name. One was healed from pain, and the other from a bad rash.
In the wake of this powerful moment, the pastor asked if any children wanted to ask Jesus into their hearts. Hands shot up from all corners and he led them in a prayer of commitment. Grandmothers and mothers raised their hands as well.
Pastor Steve followed up the service with a 4 day vacation Bible school for 700 -1,000 children. Each child was fed a hearty meal – for many it served as their only meal of the day – and gave out more copies of The Story of Jesus.
This is a typical example of how David C Cook and this powerful tool are being used in some of the toughest areas of the world. One child at a time – in unity with other believers – millions reached for Jesus.
Christians in Cambodia have printed and distributed 400,000 copies of The Story of Jesus in the Khmer language. We are working out details for an additional 500,000. Please give so the additional copies can be supplied.
And that’s just one country: More than 22 million copies of The Story of Jesus have been distributed worldwide — and requests have been received for 36 million more.
Each narrative is written in a native language with local customs and cultural sensitivities in mind. A believer shares the story one-on-one, and then an individual is referred to a congregation for further discipleship.
The fields are ripe. Stand with those harvesting souls for the Kingdom. Give now to support this evangelistic mission with a gift of any amount; you can donate online in a matter of minutes.
More importantly, please pray that innumerable Cambodian children would give their hearts to Jesus – and that a nation would finally recover from its decades-long wound.