How the Leffler family decided to go to Thailand
Matthew and Rachel Leffler, along with their three young children, moved from Montana to Thailand in January. God inspired them to go into the mission field last summer. After language study, they plan to move to Nakhon Sawan to be a light to the city, where Jonathan and Hannah Hill, our foreign correspondents, are (currently) the only two Adventists.
Below is an excerpt from the Lefflers' blog where they share how God led them to move to Thailand. We will share more updates from their time in Thailand soon.
I sat there, incredulous. As soon as the conversation was over and we started preparing for bed, I confronted Matthew.
“Are you serious?” I blurted.
I’ve always been interested in missions. In fact, missions is practically in my DNA, because when my family moved to a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean when I was three years old, I became a (very tiny) fifth-generation Seventh-Day Adventist missionary. My sister and I grew up eating pounded bread-fruit, building our own cooking fires, cutting down banana trees (ask my parents), and catching geckos by their tails (you’ll never forget it if you’ve tried it).
My parents ran a small mission clinic, and some of my most vivid childhood memories revolve around it: a visiting dentist’s hand over mine as I “helped” to extract a tooth (it broke), drawing up syringes of lidocaine, counting pills, translating for visiting doctors, watching my mom painstakingly put in 40-some stitches on an eel bite, and standing anxiously by as she did CPR on a tiny infant. When my little world was rocked by a move back to the United States when I was eight, I knew I wanted to be a missionary nurse like my mom.
Matthew: I grew up in the Midwest, and while I was fully vested in the mission of church planting when my family moved to a dark county during my teens, I had never seriously considered being a foreign missionary. From the time I started working in software development, I knew that a) I liked it, b) I had an aptitude for it, and c) there was commercial demand for it. Over time that last justification shifted to recognize that in addition to commercial demand, there was a great need for Adventist developers who would work below market for the church.
When I met Rachel, those convictions led me to believe that, though she was strikingly beautiful and charmingly sweet, she was not the one for me because she was going to be a missionary nurse, like her mom. By that time, I had been working professionally for 5 years and was a lead programmer. I believed the statement that “the specific place appointed us in life is determined by our capabilities.” Ed 267.1 I felt that God was calling me to be a stateside software developer, and God was calling Rachel to be a nurse overseas.
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- Contributed by Jesus for Asia