The Lord said through the prophet Malachi, “From the rising of the sun to its setting my name will be great among the nations” (Malachi 1:11, ESV).
Today I am praising God for making His name great in Southeast Asia. We just returned from the two-day Love Phnom Penh Festival in Cambodia’s capital city—the first such evangelistic event held in this nation with over 200 churches participating. It was such a privilege to receive permission from the government to preach in their beautiful country.
Cambodia suffered a mass genocide at the hands of the communist Khmer Rouge from 1975 to 1979, and one quarter of the population was killed. Fields outside Phnom Penh were the site of mass executions and graves, and they are now known as the killing fields. Missionaries had to flee the country, and it is thought that only 200 Christians survived that era, when religion was viciously persecuted.
Thankfully today, the Gospel can be shared openly in Cambodia. We spent many months preparing for this evangelistic event—we wanted to encourage the church there and sow the seeds of God’s Word. We praise Him that not far from the killing fields, we were able to proclaim new life in Jesus Christ.
A young couple in their 30s were watching live on Facebook the first night of the Festival. They were so blessed, they decided to drive from their home the next night to find the Phnom Penh City Center and be there in person. Seeing the crowded golf driving range converted into a makeshift stadium and hearing Christian music excited them; they had never experienced such a gathering. After I preached and invited people to respond to the Gospel, we praise God that they walked forward and accepted Christ as their Saviour.
While being counselled, the man said, “I am so blessed. I accepted Jesus to be my God. Christ Jesus is my personal Saviour and I now have security about salvation … so I am blessed. And I will go back to find a local church.”
On Sunday night, thousands packed the stadium in Phnom Penh. I told the crowd that each of us has a soul that will live as long as God lives: “Your decision tonight will determine whether that soul will be in Heaven with God for eternity—or in Hell forever and ever and ever.” When I gave the invitation, hundreds made their way forward.
Local partner churches invited Cambodian Christian musicians and artists, including a large choir, to be part of the Festival and point people in the crowd to a Heavenly Father who created them and loves them.
In the coming days, churches will follow up with every person who registered their life-changing decision with a counsellor. Pray with us for these new believers, and pray that God will continue to open more doors for ministry and evangelism in Cambodia.
Sharing the truth of the Gospel and the hope found in Jesus Christ is the best gift you could give anyone. Let’s continue to proclaim that message far and wide. That should be our goal and purpose as individuals, and it is our sole purpose at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA). Join us in praying the apostles’ words, that God will “grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness” (Acts 4:29, ESV).
In 2020, we have major evangelistic Crusades scheduled on four continents, in countries including Wales, Scotland, England, Canada, Germany, Guam and Saipan, and South Korea, as well as several places in the United States. It is your continued prayers and financial gifts that make this work possible, and we thank God for you.
May God richly bless you,
Bringing Comfort in Australian Bushfires
As Australia faces one of its worst bushfire seasons in decades, crisis-trained chaplains from the Billy Graham– Rapid Response Team (BG–RRT) have been ministering to dozens of hurting hearts, offering a listening ear and sharing a message of hope to distraught residents. While chaplains have been serving in various parts of the continent since September, they are currently ministering in Bairnsdale, Victoria, and Batemans Bay, New South Wales–marking the first time the team has run a simultaneous multi-site deployment in Australia.
Sarah* and her husband have been fighting the fires in Batemans Bay, New South Wales, since October 2019. They lost their three-bedroom cottage, boat, caravan and numerous animals to the flames. When BG-RRT chaplains visited Sarah, she was initially apprehensive to open up–but the more chaplains listened, the more Sarah shared about her pain and suffering. She and her husband have been working tirelessly to rebuild what they have lost, and helping their neighbours do the same. Sarah was brought to tears as she hugged one of the chaplains. “The Lord touched her that moment,” a chaplain recalled. “She accepted our offer of prayer and she held on to me like she was holding on to dear life. And we pray that it was the beginning of a continual growth towards Jesus Christ.”
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