Thailand is a beautiful nation, filled with wonderful people. But there are sections of the city of Pattaya that are darker than any place you can find. Much of this city is given over to the international sex trade. Women, men, boys and girls are trafficked in the bars, hotels, streets and alleys, and along the beach. During our missions school, we train and equip Believers to go out and be light in the darkness—sharing the extreme love of Jesus Christ and watch His love, that has washed away the sins of the world, manifest through them, touching people in profound and powerful ways!
Many are crying out for revival in this hour. "Revival" is simply a way of saying, "We long to see death defeated in all its manifestations and the abundant life that Christ died to give us be made tangible everywhere we go."
(photo courtesy Rob Hotchkin)
I was recently over in Pattaya, Thailand, as part of Extreme Prophetic's "Operation Extreme Love–Thailand" missions school. This was our second time leading teams from around the world out on the streets there. We saw great darkness, but even more, we saw God arise through the school's participants in notable and remarkable ways that pierced the darkness and drew many to the Lord. Every day we saw many saved, healed and delivered. Everywhere we went we saw miracles and heard one amazing story after another of God's power working through everyday Believers like you and me.
I think my favorite moment of the school was when a participant from Canada chased me down in the streets one night declaring, "Wow! This stuff REALLY works!" "This stuff," that he was talking about, was the Gospel! This gentleman had never seen a miracle before and was excited because his outreach team had just seen God invade a bar full of prostitutes and sex tourists being saved, healed and delivered. He not only got to see a miracle, he got to work them. He will never be the same. Praise God!
Lazarus—All Things Are Possible!
I want to share a revelation the Lord recently gave us about Pattaya, Thailand, and the work He plans on doing there through Believers like you and me—to draw a people and a city out from the grip of death and darkness into His glorious light and life! I have read the story of Lazarus in John 11 many times over the years; it is a favorite. But what God highlighted this time was when Jesus stood before the tomb, about to work the amazing miracle of bringing Lazarus forth from the dead, Martha's only thought is that the smell will be horrible because Lazarus has been dead for so long (four days) and the rotting flesh will stink something awful.
Martha and so many others there around the tomb were focused on how things are and how long they have been that way. They are thinking of the flesh and the ways of the flesh and the stink of the flesh. They are afraid that even the Lord Himself can be of no real impact in a situation this far gone. They are leaning on their own understanding (to them four days dead means really stinking, hopelessly dead!), and they see the situation with Lazarus as a lost cause. Their only real thoughts of the Lord are wondering why He did not prevent this from happening in the first place (John 11:21- 11:32).
But Jesus stands before the tomb, eyes on the Father, knowing ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE. Jesus even allowed Lazarus to pass away (John 11:14-15) so that the people could be stretched to new levels of faith and hope in the Lord, greater understanding of God's love and power, and a revelation that TRULY—all things are possible when we believe.
Martha and the mourners see a lost cause where God has seemingly failed to move. Jesus sees a way for God to be mightily glorified. He declares to everyone, "Did I not tell you that you would see the glory of God if you believe?" And then He speaks and Lazarus comes forth—ALIVE—without even a whiff of the stink of death on him! The Lord then instructs those who had been there to remove every shred and remnant of the grave clothes from Lazarus (John 11:44).
In this revelation, I believe that the Lord is reminding those of us who are believing for transforming works in places like Pattaya, Thailand, that we WILL see the glory of God if we believe—No Matter What! There are those who would say Pattaya is too far gone, too dark, too given over to perversion, too stinking with "the rot of the flesh." But it matters not how dark things are, or how stinking and filthy. Nor does it matter how long they have been that way. All that matters is whether or not—we believe!
I believe that Jesus stands in Pattaya and reminds us that we will see the glory of God if we believe. I believe Jesus stands in Pattaya and reminds us that if we refuse to be intimidated by how given over to sin it is, with the putrefying of the flesh, and refuse to be daunted by how long it has been that way, we will see the glory of God arise there!
Jesus promised that Lazarus' sickness would not END in death (John 11:4). To the natural mind and eye it looked like it had (Lazarus was four days dead in the tomb), but to the Kingdom mind and the believing eye, it was not over yet. Jesus never said that Lazarus would not die; He said that it would not END in death.
Can we look past how things are in Pattaya, Thailand? Can we look past how long they have been that way? Can we look to Jesus and believe that Pattaya's sickness of perversion and greed will not END in death, but that the Son of God will receive glory from this situation? (John 11:4).
I stand in faith that:
- We will see the glory of God in Pattaya, Thailand!
- We will see an abundance of life in Pattaya, Thailand!
- We will go and remove even the tatters of death from her as she emerges from the tomb she has been rotting in!
And I ask you to stand in faith with me! Let's remember that ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE IF WE BELIEVE!
Glory of God—Come Forth in Pattaya!
We have another Operation Extreme Love–Thailand missions school trip coming up May 10-16, 2009. I am excited to see all that the Lord will do during this time. All the more because of the promise He spoke to us through this revelation from the story of Lazarus in John 11. These next few weeks before our missions school converges again in Pattaya, let's believe with a renewed focus and passion that Jesus is well able to save an entire city—calling it forth from decades of rotting flesh into glorious life—through Believers like you and me!
Pattaya has been set free from the law of sin and death by the finished work of the Cross (Romans 8:2). Let's stand with Jesus and cry out: "Pattaya, come forth!" Let's call this city out from its tomb of perversion and corruption! Let's believe and declare that the law of the Spirit of Life truly rules there, because Jesus IS Lord of all creation and all the earth (Psalm 24:1). Let's do the works that Jesus did as He calls us to do (John 14:12), let's stand and speak to our Father as He did (John 1:41-42), declaring God's faithfulness, and call forth Pattaya into LIFE and GLORY!
Rob Hotchkin in Thai village
(photo courtesy Rob Hotchkin)
Glory of God—Come forth in Pattaya, Thailand! Pattaya, ARISE and SHINE! Your Light has come! And the Glory of God will be seen upon you! Come forth into LIFE and LIGHT and PURITY in the mighty name of Jesus Christ!
Thank you all for laying hold of this and praying into it on behalf of the nation of Thailand, the city of Pattaya, and Operation Extreme Love—Thailand. Bless you all. I am so grateful to be part of a company of THOSE WHO BELIEVE!
If you would like to find out more about Extreme Prophetic's upcoming Operation Extreme Love—Thailand this May 10-16, 2009, or would like to see a video from Patricia King sharing about this mission and outreach school, just click here.
About Rob Hotchkin: Rob ministers with Patricia King and Extreme Prophetic. He fervently believes every Christian is a miracle-working explosion of the Kingdom waiting to happen. His preaching, teaching, and ministry inspires Believers to grab hold of their restored relationship with the Father through the finished work of the Cross and walk the earth as Jesus did—destroying every work of darkness everywhere they go! Rob is a passionate lover of Jesus Christ and that passion is truly contagious! He ministers with strong faith, releasing revelation, prophetic decrees, healings, miracles, and the love of God. He is a true carrier of the glory and revival. People have been healed, refreshed, set free, and empowered through his life. He believes for Heaven to impact lives and regions everywhere he goes.
As Steve Shultz and I were praying over the phone last week, he had a vision of Pattaya, Thailand. Steve saw women and children in the streets giving themselves away to make a living. Then he saw Jesus walking the streets of Pattaya. When Steve was sharing this he started crying because he saw Jesus crying as He walked in the midst of the women and children. Then He heard Jesus say, "Where are My people?" At that point, we both lost it.
Pattaya, Thailand is known as the "sex capital industry of the world." It has become a popular vacation destination for many foreigners and tourists, not only because of its oceanic beauty, but because of the prostitution industry. Women and children prostitute themselves on the busy streets and bars in downtown Pattaya. I saw this firsthand when I was there last spring walking the streets.
(photo courtesy Rob Hotchkin)
I saw the most beautiful women selling themselves in bars and some of them brought their children too because they had nowhere else to take them. The uttermost atrocity is when these very children are prostituted as well—to help provide for their families. I saw it all in front of me. It's hard for me to even write this without breaking down in tears. In my first week in Thailand last spring, I was nauseous and sick to my stomach and couldn't keep anything down. I think this is how Jesus feels as He walks the dark streets of Pattaya.
The U.S. Department of State posts this health warning for Thailand: "Thailand has been experiencing an epidemic of HIV infection and AIDS. Heterosexual transmission accounts for most HIV infections, and HIV is common among prostitutes of both sexes…"
"Let There Be Love, Let There be Light, Let There Be Hope in the Darkness Night"
These words have been playing over and over in me, especially in the past few weeks. I pray them. I sing them. I declare those words over Thailand daily. Those words came from my sister, from a song she heard, before I went to Thailand last spring. As she heard them, she knew those words were for Thailand. I believe this is a now word over Thailand and we will start to see the manifestation of those words begin to happen.
Just in the past week alone, God has brought Thailand to my heart on a level I've never experienced before—about any place or region. In fact, in the past week I've felt overtaken with the presence of God every time I pray for Thailand. There are times my entire being shakes and vibrates when I pray for Thailand. There are times it feels like electricity is running through me. Everything in me KNOWS that God is going to move mightily in Thailand now! For years, God has spoken to me about Thailand and has given me many visions and dreams of what will take place there as the "Kingdom of Thailand" is overtaken by the "Kingdom of Heaven."
A couple days ago when I felt a strong presence of the Lord overtake me, He said, "Everything I've told you is going to happen." All I could say was, "Yes, Lord, I believe!" Rob Hotchkin shared in his word, "TRULY—all things are possible when we believe." I believe that it's the hour for the Kingdom of Thailand to be overtaken by the Kingdom of Heaven. I believe that the darkest place of perversion is destined to become one of the greatest places of God's light. I believe one of the worst places of dishonor is destined to become one of the greatest places of honor. I believe there will be love, there will be light, and there will be hope in the darkest night of Thailand.
My sister who heard those words over Thailand is a food scientist and director of a food company here in the Northwest. A few years ago I told her that she was destined to go back to Thailand and would start a business there. God began imparting a deep desire in her to go back to Thailand and be a part of what He wants to do. Since then, her company has been working with other food companies in Thailand, and she has been back there a couple of times for business.
In January, the Lord started speaking to both of us about Thailand, telling us that He was going to send us back there together this time. In February, His words started taking shape around us. My sister found out that a food processing factory had gone bankrupt and was closing down—just east of Pattaya, Thailand. Her company was able to purchase this food processing factory as well as an import/export business, and they are sending her there to help start up and manage the factory.
My sister and I will be there in May, in Pattaya, which happens to be at the same time Rob Hotchkin and Extreme Prophetic's "Operation Extreme Love–Thailand" will be there.
Could it be that God wants to do something significant in Pattaya at this time?
Could it be that God wants to shift the city known as the "sex-capital industry of the world"?
Could it be that God wants to plant a foundation of light in that dark ground—as a catalyst for what He's going to do?
I believe the month of May to be a significant month for Pattaya and for Thailand!
God is Redeeming Thailand
The most powerful tools we have are our testimonies. Giving our testimonies is part of sharing the "Good News" and God's "goodness" in our lives. Such is the story of my Thai family and heritage. I'm sharing just a condensed piece of my family's testimony as a preface of the goodness of God, His redemption, and a piece of His plans of restoration over Thailand.
My mother is from Thailand and had a very hard life and childhood there. She is from Northeast Thailand—from the Isan Region, which is considered to be Thailand's "poorest region." Her parents were rice farmers there and had many children. Both of her parents died of pneumonia when she was a young girl and her oldest sister gave her to a Chinese businessman, and she became one of his wives. She had five children with this man, and then he passed away shortly after their fifth child was born. My mom was left with five children to feed and little assistance. She had other family members help take care of them, and she went to work in a massage/bath house to earn a living.
It was in this massage/bath house that she met my father, an American G.I. stationed in the U.S. Air Force. They fell in love and my sister and I were born in the Isan Region within a couple years of each other. My mom, sister and I came back to the states when I was just an infant, and my father brought four of my mom's first children back to the states too, except her oldest son who was already an adult and wanted to stay in Thailand.
Last spring I returned to Thailand for the first time since I was born there. God told me this was a time of "returning to my roots" and to "discover the fullness of who I am." Before I returned to Thailand, God told me He was going to unlock chambers in my heart that I didn't know existed. When I arrived there, my heart awakened to embrace a culture about myself I didn't know existed. I realized that I only knew half of myself and there was another half of me to discover. A full redemption of who I am started to take place.
I met my oldest brother (my mom's oldest son) for the first time, as well as his wife and their children. I also visited the town I was born in and found the actual location where I was born. I was able to connect with some ministries in the Isan Region as well as in Pattaya, and made some beautiful new friends. I instantly fell in love with the people in Thailand.
My last week in Thailand, the Lord said that He wanted me to walk the streets of Pattaya. As we drove into town, it started raining. I got out of the car and walked through the downtown streets. I saw those beautiful women giving themselves away, I saw the men who were eager to receive their service, and I saw the children!
As I was walking in the rain the Lord says, "Bless the atmosphere with My presence. Pray My blessing over the atmosphere." I start praying, "I bless Pattaya in the name of Jesus Christ; I bless Pattaya with Your presence, Lord." I keep repeating this prayer as I walk up and down the streets in the rain, and then it starts raining harder. As I walk down several streets, I am soaking wet and I see a vision appear in front of me. I see my mother's face flash in front of me, then I see the words, "Redeemed" in neon lights above her face. Redeem means "to restore the honor, worth, or reputation."
God is redeeming Thailand—it starts with one person and one family at a time.
Little girl in Thai village
(photo courtesy Rob Hotchkin)
While in Pattaya, I found out that many of the women there come from the Isan Region, the poorest region of Thailand, where my family is from. Many families, during the off and dry season of farming, send their daughters to Pattaya to work in the streets—to earn money to send back to their families.
As I said, my sister is a food scientist. She comes up with new ways to produce and extract ingredients; she creates new formulas. It's one of her dreams to help the farmers in Thailand to produce new product in the ground and sustain them during their off seasons and be self-sufficient, so their daughters can stay home and not be sent to Pattaya. We know this is just the beginning of what God wants to do in Thailand—and He is laying a foundation for it.
As Steve Shultz saw Jesus walking the streets of Pattaya, saying, "Where are My People?" be praying for the laborers there now and for the laborers going to lay a new foundation in May, and for many more to come. May is a key month for Pattaya.
A prayer over Pattaya: We say to you, Pattaya, your redemption draws near. We call forth God's perfect plan of redemption over every child, woman and man working in the streets of Pattaya. We call forth God's cleansing rain, to wash away the sin of the city and the streets. We say your destiny is being shifted—out of the hands of the enemy and into the hands of God. We declare over you, Pattaya—Let there be Love, let there be Light, let there be Hope in the darkest night!
About Julie A. Smith: Julie is the editor of the ElijahList, an editor of ElijahRain Magazine, and fills in for Breaking Christian News. She has over 15 years of business management experience, including five years of publishing experience as a newspaper, magazine and book editor and journalist. Julie is passionate about writing from the heart of God and longs to share His supernatural ways, so that we may simply know Him.
God has placed a passion in her for the country of Thailand, where she is from and where she was born. Thailand's official name is "the Kingdom of Thailand." Her prayer and passionate desire is for the Kingdom of Thailand to know the Kingdom of God. Julie resides with her family in Salem, Oregon and is on the healing and prophetic ministry teams at Life Church.