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“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” ~Psalm 139:14

This week’s update you will give you a little bit from everyone in the Nguyen family as we say “Good-bye” to Phnom Penh and “Hello” to our new home in Siem Reap

By the time you some of you read this, our family will have packed all of our things, loaded the car, said our goodbyes to friends and neighbours in Phnom Penh, and driven the six hours and a bit to Siem Reap.  The moving truck will have come to load all our boxes, suitcases, and all the loose knick knacks tossed into laundry baskets.  There are many mixed feelings.  On one hand, there’s the feelings of sadness, annoyance and loss of having to pack up our lives again, leaving friends behind, leaving another home.  On the other hand, there is excitement and anticipation of settling into a more permanent home, meeting new friends, and diving into the work/ministry we have been called to and have been preparing for. It’s exciting that we can now function in the language of our host country (even though there is still sooooo much to learn).  Time and time again, God has reminded us not to worry.  Just now, 18 hours before the movers come to load our stuff onto the moving truck, we were able to sell the last bed instead of having to move it to Siem Reap.  God has His plans and we really don’t trust Him enough.  I am constantly reminded that MY plans aren’t GOD’S plans and HIS plans are the best.  I have to remember to continue not to worry but to trust in His sovereignty over all things.

Indeed time and time again in our family’s life, we have made plans just to see them not work out as we had planned. These last few weeks in Phnom Penh for Joyce and I were supposed to be filled with a lot of Khmer tutoring so that we can pray and hopefully share the gospel in Khmer. That all didn’t go as planned though when Elisabeth got sick 2 weeks ago. After a few days of high fevers we were worried that she had gotten Dengue so Joyce took her to the hospital. There have been 3 times as many cases of Dengue reported in Cambodia this year alone. In areas such as Siem Reap, it’s 6 times as many cases. Thank God that all she had was the flu but they kept her in the hospital for overnight observation in order to try to reduce her fever. It is said that “sharing is caring” and Elisabeth decided to “care” for her brothers by passing on her flu.  This left the Nguyen family basically quarantined to our house doing fever management for the good part of a week.  But we praise God that as we pack up the last of our things, there are no more fevers, although the kids are still low on energy at times (which we don’t mind too much).  I am excited about finally beginning to work more with Samaki Vietnamese Church in Siem Reap. But at the same time, I am full of nerves as I enter into this new chapter of ministry.  This last year of being a full-time student was refreshing but I also constantly battled the itch to be doing “ministry” after 16 years of pastoral ministry in Canada. Time to put my Khmer and Vietnamese to the test.

“Please pray for us so that we have a good transition to Siem Reap.  And that we adjust well. Thanks for helping us with giving us money for the car and for praying for other things. Have a nice day and see you next time.”

“I’m really excited and I miss you all. I want to come back and visit. Thank you for all you have helped us with.”

“Thank you for praying for us and donating money so we could get a house in Siem Reap. Last week Elisabeth got sick and she put germs on my stuffy and I was hugging my stuffy and got sick. I then gave it to Jadon.”

A few more updates:

  • We finally got our insurance paperwork and stickers for the car so we can now drive it without worrying about being pulled over.  We are so grateful for all those who have contributed to the car fund to allow for us to purchase this vehicle.  The car we had been borrowing for the last 10 months is on its last legs. If you use the high beams or even the turn signals, you risk blowing a fuse and having no headlights at all. So needless to say we are grateful to be driving our family around in a safer and more reliable car. 
  • Our kids also finished school 2 weeks ago and we are very proud of all of them. It was a very hard year as they had to not only start their lives in a new country but make new friends knowing full well that they would have to say good-bye to them 10 months later.  They also had to adapt to a school system that was a little different than Canada’s. We thank God for the resiliency that He has given them and pray that He gives us, as parents, the patience and grace to be more patient with them as they deal with all the transitions ahead of them in Siem Reap. 
  • Our team has been meeting and praying over the Vietnamese Ministry in Siem Reap.  We continue to realize that there is so much to be done but we are praying that we are patient to await the plans that God has in store for us and the ministry. Please continue to pray for our family and the Lim family as we become a part of the church family at Samaki Vietnamese Church. Please also remember to pray for the Vietnamese people in Siem Reap that we will be working with.

As we begin our lives in Siem Reap, God reminded our family recently studied Psalm 139. We were reminded that God knows every part of us and there is nowhere that we can go that is away from His presence.  We were reminded that each of us is dear to God and that we are wonderfully made by Him. This same God will be with us in Siem Reap just as He has been with us all these years.  What an encouragement this passage was to our hearts.

Thank you to each and every one of you for journeying with us through this last year as we were on language study in Phnom Penh. We look forward to keeping you updated and having you pray for us as we serve in Siem Reap.

Dave, Joyce, Jadon, Elisabeth and Josiah.

Oh…. and Happy Canada Day !!!!

Please continue to prayer for us in the coming weeks:

  • Pray for our move day – JULY 1st – we drive approximately 6 hours from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap.  Pray for safety in the move and during our drive to Siem Reap.
  • Pray for our team as we continue to discuss future plans for the Siem Reap ministry.
  • Pray for our transition from being language students to diving into the work/ministry with the Samaki Church and Vietnamese community.  
  • Pray for a good time of fellowship, meetings, and sharing with our fellow American and International C&MA colleagues, all serving in Cambodia in various ministries

Thanks again for journeying with us!

"Leaver's Assembly"

Our kids being prayed over at the “Leaver’s Assembly” at school. The annual assembly is an opportunity to recognize students who are graduating or leaving. Being a school that caters to mostly missionary families, each year there are many students leaving.