Catie and I are sorry it has been several weeks since the last post. Sometimes it is hard to put thoughts into the written word. Since the last post, I was able to spend a couple of nights on the Tonle Sap Lake, which is the largest lake in Cambodia. This lake isn't any lake Burton, or even Allatoona lake. No, about the only way to describe the Tonle Sap is to picture one of the great lakes and imagine all of the water is brown. Now this lake changes size from 2,700 sq. Km in the dry season to 16,000 sq. Km in the wet season. Water depth goes from 9 feet to 27 feet deep. All this is to say that people do not desire to live on the lake like in the states but instead, many people live on floating shacks that have either empty gasoline barrels or wooden boats under their shacks in order to keep their lives floating. When the water levels rise, their shacks begin to float with the shifting of the waters making it very hard to have any sort of permanence in their lives. Sometimes they will be near a floating school for their children, but sometimes they will not be close enough. Everyone fishes. Some people fish at night, some in the day time. Everyone who lives on the lake eats, drinks, bathes, washes, and survives from this lake. Unfortunately, they lake has become very polluted with trash and body waste that many diseases are spread through this water.
PCL, the organization we are working with, has a houseboat on the lake and has setup a durable and productive water purification system that they give to the people who desire fresh drinking water. During my time on the boat, I sat down with several older men who needed this water in order to survive because of the damage the lake water does to their bodies. PCL is also able to teach the children near their boat English, Khmer (Cambodian written and spoken language), and Bible classes.
It was a surreal several days talking and sharing life with people who have never touched a white man's hair or skin. There are many many people who have never heard of Jesus, and he is opening doors for more people to come to know about his grace and forgiveness. Continue praying for strong Cambodian Leadership from PCL on the lake. Here are some photos.