How Hot Is It?

In my last entry about the heat here, I neglected to mention exactly how hot it has been in degrees. Lest anyone think we are exagerrating or just wimping out, at one point it hit a high of 113 F (45 C) but there were many days when it was somewhere around 110 F (43 C). They do it in celesius here so initially it took some backwards conversion to figure out how hot it was in numbers that we can feel the emotional weight of. Praise God that it has started to rain more this past week and with that some cooler temperatures. It is still in the 80s and 90s with lots of humidity but it sure feels better than 110.

Hot, Hot, Hot

When even the Thai themselves are complaining about how hot it is, then you know that it is hot. This is a particularly hot "hot season", and we are oh so glad that we have some A/C in our home. Our bedroom has A/C and baby's room has A/C and we will often turn it on around bedtime for a few hours to make sleeping a bit more bearable. Air conditioning in Thailand is fairly expensive to run, especially in comparision to the cost of living so we don't use it that much but it sure does feel good when we do.

It is simply easier to get work done when you are cool. Going here and there in the heat is quite draining and I've heard from others what I myself have been saying for a week now: I'm exhausted. And I think the heat is the culprit. Motivation lags too when you feel like you are sitting in a sauna. Before I leave the house in the morning, I can already feel the sweat rolling down my back. Not a promising start to the day. But this is the place that God has called us to and we just do the best to put up with the heat and whatever else.

Yesterday I was reading Ephesians 5:20, which says "giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." That is a tall order and difficult to implement when I am feeling miserable because of the oppressive heat and sunshine that makes me feel exhausted. How shall I give thanks for something I find bothersome? Thank you God for reminding me of my human fraility and weakness compared to the power of the forces of nature which you have created and which reflect your power and greatness.

Idol Madness

Jatukhamramathep amulets for sale in a Thai shop (photo credit: recently took a field trip to Southern Thailand to check out a potential ministry opportunity in Nakorn Sri Thammarat province and, among other things, we observed how much the people there are into a particular amulet called Jat-Tu-Kham-Rama-Thep. In fact, the amulet comes from Nakon Sri Thammarat and is so immensely popular right now that people come from all over the country to buy up these amulets and resell them at a 30-60 fold profit. Jat-tu-kham, unlike a lot of other amulets, is not a Buddha image but is an image of an ancient king of Nakon Sri Thammarat who has been elevated to divine, or angelic, status. Every place in Nakon is selling these things - restaurants, beauty shops, malls, convenience stores - everyplace. It's idol madness, really.

Something really notable about the Jat-tu-kham, besides the fact that it is so immensely popular with Thai people, is the probable reason why it is so popular. I recently read an article in a Thai national newspaper's weekly magazine that said the Jat-tu-kham amulets are popular because what the amulet promises corresponds to Thai people's current needs - i.e. the desire to have money and get rich! The economy is down and people want something to help them make money (or get rich, perhaps). Listen to some of the names of the different editions (or models) of the amulet that

I'll Feed Myself, Thank You

A couple weeks ago, Joshua decided he didn't want to be spoon fed anymore. He'd twist and turn and shout and the spoon just wouldn't go in. From that point on, picking up little pieces of rice, meat, cracker, vegetable, and so forth was the order of the day. Since then he has allowed some spoon feeding again but overall, he still prefers to use his pincer grib to pick up food with chopstick-like precision between his thumb and pointer finger. It is often the left hand he uses for this so we wonder if he is a lefty. Only time will tell on that front. Personally, I am routing for ambidextrous as it seems much more versatile.  Here a video of the boy going after a raisin.


Check out those flailing arms. Joshua is really Mr. Energy. Should we put a drum cage around his feeding table?

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