“Then Jesus said to his host, ‘When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.’” (Luke 14:12-14)
Pattaya, a city known for its bars and brothels, for prostitution and pedophiles, is also home to thousands of slum dwellers. And this year’s Pattaya Praise event focused on the least of those. The ministries of Pattaya invited the poor to a banquet and they came.
The children, the crippled, the drug addicts and the hungry came and were fed, not only with a free meal, but with a feast of worship, of prayer and of joy.
Joy filled the air as brothers and sisters from different nations and tongues came together and worshipped the same God. Joy filled the air as people were healed. Joy filled the air as the poor shouted with exuberance after winning prizes – anything from T-shirts to rice cookers to bicycles.
Joy echoed through the slums as people met with the Lord.
For four days, from morning to evening, praises rang out over the city of Pattaya. The name of Jesus was proclaimed – the name with which darkness has no choice but to flee. His people sang and danced and hope sprung forth.
“…the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)