Monday, December 22, 2008

Stuck in Port Townsend

Dear Family and Friends,

Just over a month ago I, (Darrell) left for Sri Lanka and Thailand.  Just before Thanksgiving, Carlene joined me in Bangkok, and together we witnessed civil unrest which closed the international airport and eventually delayed our departure.  All of those adventures are documented in our e-mail updates and audio podcasts at

We finally arrived in Port Townsend Washington December 8th and Carlene and I began preparing for her mother's homecoming.  We painted, laid carpet, moved a bunch of furniture, oversaw the maintenance and repair of various home appliances and performed other domestic stuff.  (I can hear many of you laughing when you think of me and home projects...) Today's project is overseeing the installation of an outdoor chairlift (No, I am NOT installing it).  Twice we prepared  to make our way down to Portland, the first for our monthly Worship at the River gathering, and once again last Saturday morning... well, one look at the weather and we said no way.   Our son Matthew, who has been stuck in San Jose, California trying to come home from his Marine training camp in Southern California since Saturday, has finally decided to fly back to Los Angeles and drive back to Portland with his uncle Scott. We are preparing the Port Townsend House for all of our children and their spouses and friends for the holidays, and hope to make it back to the Portland area for the new year... we think!

These past weeks we have learned to live the truth that God is truly in every delay.  We are learning to wait on the Lord and submit our schedule to Him.  We have heard from many of you that during this season, our best plans and great ideas  belong to the Lord. Both Carlene and I miss many of our friends in Portland... and yet believe the the Lord is in this.

One of our friends, Delight Petersen, summarized in these past days in a way that I can't improve on.  I'll quote her:

This morning in the quiet, I felt like Holy Spirit was asking me.....what would happen if an entire city allowed the quiet and beauty to settle in on them and actually focused on Him in a new and deeper way?  So that was my prayer....that we would in a new way, ask that He take us deeper into His heart.  That we would set aside our fears about family and friends and be willing to flex with the weather and take a little more time with Him.  He is Lord of the weather.

We bless you... and Merry Christmas!

Darrell and Carlene

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Dear Friends:

Because of predicted burry temperatures, Sunday snowfall, combined with our infamous Colombia Gorge winds, we've decided to cancel Worship at the River for tomorrow December 14 (many thanks to all of you who replied a few days ago of my error inviting you to a November gathering). As much as I love our Sandy River Community Center, it does not feel warm and cozy with the predicted weather forecast. We were looking forward to sharing about our travels, but visit our blog for our report. Please forward to anyone who needs to know of our cancellation.

Our son Matt, is due home sometime the next few days before shipping out to Iraq sometime in January, and Carlene is preparing her mother's house in Port Townsend for our family's Christmas celebration.

We Bless you, and look forward to NEXT YEAR!!

Darrell and Carlene


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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Whew, we're Home Update

Dear Friends,

Carlene and I are
grateful to be back in America. Since October I've been in 6 nations
and banked nearly 30,000 air miles including the last month of travel
and ministry
in Sri Lanka and Thailand, including an extra week in Bangkok because
political unrest. We agree with Dorothy: "There's No Place
like Home".

This November 14 at our Sunday evening Worship at the
gathering, we'd like to invite those of you who are in the local
Portland/Vancouver area to come at 5:30 p.m. for coffee, cookies, and
sample our special Thailand herbal tea. We'd like to take some extra
time to share some of our experiences with you.

Carlene and I sat down yesterday and recorded two podcasts, one a short five-minute summary of our trip home (including a miraculous coincidence), and the second a longer and more detailed account
of our adventure. Listen and laugh with us! We are truly grateful for your prayers, and the
classic Christmas song I'll Be Home for Christmas is reality for these
two tired travelers!

Hope to see many of you this Sunday evening.

Darrell and Carlene

PS 1 Our annual Top Ten List for 2008 is coming this week. I always
enjoy confirmations and healthy disagreements regarding my choices!


PS 2 If you'd like to give to Pacificministries, you may use any major
credit card (or Paypal) for a tax deductable year end donation HERE.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Bless the Lord

Have not had access to Internet, so will make this short.  This situation here is, according to some getting worse.  Northwest Air cancelled our flights, and we are about 11 hours from Bangkok and we are not anxious to return until there is some stabilization.  Here in Chang Mai, the prime minister and his government are re-locating, and even though we are not in Bangkok, one Christian was murdered in the clash of protesters.  We are again, safe, but are very cautious about moving around to another city as thousands of tourists are trying to leave.  The King of Thailand is not anxious to intervene, and some say 4 days ... others say longer, before airports may open. (can we say "Merry Christmas" in Thai...NOOOOOO!)
So what does this mean.  I have always said God is in every delay, but I really always meant minor flight cancellations or weather problems.  We are living out this truth...and we still believe it.  We are staying in a compound with some 15 other missionaries from all parts of the world.  We are getting an education in Kingdom application from so many cultures, and we have ministered to many, as well as receiving the gracious hospitality of several families in this city.  There is a purpose to all of this, and we are excited to discover  it.
Our immediate prayer concern is wisdom with regard to our next move.  I believe we will stay in this city until we hear the Lord.  I am so glad Carlene is here with me, and despite our situation, we feel loved and surrounded by His Grace.  We have many stories to tell...too many to tell now, but I want to share this.
Those of us who live in free and democratic nations have much to be thankful for. Having traveled to Sri Lanka and now, Thailand for the past 3 weeks, (both countries which face unresolved civil conflict), have made me aware of how I have taken for granted so many things.  I encourage you to pause and Bless the Lord...for His great love and blessings we enjoy.  Yet, I see a deep faith and a strength in the Thai Christians I do not see in many western believers, including myself.  I'm jealous of it. We were fortunate to minister for 2 days to some 5 mountain tribal pastors and leaders, and their simple love for God and each other humbles me.  We prayed for all of them, and felt as if this one assignment was worth our entire trip.
Thanks for praying, and we will try to update all of you in a few days.  We may visit an Internet cafe, and check our email, and your insights and brief notes are encouraging.  I said to Carlene last night....we really are not in Kansas anymore....(we are still laughing...hard at times and mostly at each other!!)

Why do the nations conspire?

Dear Praying Friends,

Carlene and I have experienced both the richness and pain of this divided country.  If you have been following the news, you know the major airport has been shut down stranding thousands and disrupting the country  New York Times article.  Even in Chiang Mai, (where we are), a northern city, government supporters shot dead an antigovernment activist on Wednesday. We are safe, but the best advice from local leaders is that we must remain flexible with our travel plans. Our itinerary is that we leave Chiang Mai this coming Monday with a departure Tuesday.

We are primarily ministering with a group of 30 leaders from literally all parts of the world.  They are senior missionaries from Russia, Cuba, India, ant many other countries.  We are spending today and tomorrow ministering to many of them individually.

Please pray for:

Clarity in our discerning travel plans
Peace in this country, as many feel they are facing a civil war
For strong Spirit filled leadership to guide the Church in Thailand
Pray this Psalm with us...we desire God's "kings" installed in this land
Psalm 2
 1 Why do the nations conspire [a]
       and the peoples plot in vain?
 2 The kings of the earth take their stand
       and the rulers gather together
       against the LORD
       and against his Anointed One. [b]
 3 "Let us break their chains," they say,
       "and throw off their fetters."
 4 The One enthroned in heaven laughs;
       the Lord scoffs at them.
 5 Then he rebukes them in his anger
       and terrifies them in his wrath, saying,
 6 "I have installed my King [c]
       on Zion, my holy hill."
Bless you,

Darrell and Carlene



This is the day that never ends. Yes it goes on and on my friend. Somebody started planning it not knowing what's ahead, and they'll continue planning it forever just because ....this is the day that never ends. Yes it goes on and on my friend.......OH my goodness. We just walked in the door. It is 10:30pm Sunday night and we were up and running at 6:30. Let's see if I can "Thai this one together" for you.

Tour of history of Presbytery missionaries and Aids Foster home for Thai orphans.
Lunch at Korean Restaurant
To worship center to hear Pastor Darrell
Fruit break
To ancient wall/gate to pray.
Stand around and wait for bus
Watch traffic...Darrell and I sang/danced at a outdoor public market square
Share a traditional Thai meal and enjoy a Thai childrens Christian traditional folk music/dance

The next day was filled with our team prayer assignments at the highest mountain at a Buddhist temple, Listen here, and here for our podcasts). Later that evening, some 2500 Thai believers came for a worship and prayer concert. Today, I (Darrell) speak in the morning to 50 pastors from Korea who have sponsored these events and have various mission centers throughout this country, and then, I will share this evening and tomorrow.

We are grateful for prayers, and a confirming word from Chuck Pearce a few weeks ago about Thailand makes sense. An excerpt:

“I AM beginning to surround this Nation. I would
say I AM going to break out first in the North, (currently, Carlene and I are in the northern area)
... I AM going to move in a very peculiar
way over these next 3 years, for My Wind will be like a whirlwind
around this Nation... I say teams will come and go with you as you worship
around this Nation. The Nations that surround this Nation will begin to
come to the borders and say ‘Come over...come over and worship with
us.’...“Do not despise a small beginning, for I already began in this Nation.”
Click here for Full word
Bless you,

Darrell and Carlene