After this lesson, each girl should be able to
* Tell five facts about Singapore.
* Briefly describe Phil and Lisa DiMustos' work in Singapore and why it is important.
* Suggest a way she can assist in the DiMustos' ministry.
BEFORE THE MEETING
* Bring materials to make lanterns and play kuti kuti.
* Prepare nasi goreng and pisang goreng to serve at the meeting.
Let the girls display the lanterns they made and provide supplies for those who did not bring them from home. Talk about the Singaporean proverbs and what they might mean before playing a round of kuti kuti. Afterward let the girls sample nasi goreng and pisang goreng.
Phil and Lisa DiMusto
When Phil and Lisa DiMusto arrived in Singapore as missionaries in 1998, they had one primary focus: to tell Asia's youth about Jesus. Since then, God has used them in a variety of ways to share His message of salvation.
The DiMustos work with the Singapore Assemblies of God to engage young people so they can hear the gospel and learn to share the message with others. They organize conferences and youth camps, and they help lead the Teen Challenge ministry that ministers to young people bound by drugs, gangs and alcohol.
Sometimes God uses the DiMustos' message to reach older people in need of salvation. That is what happened to 50-year-old Charles, who was working as a sound technician at a youth conference.
The DiMustos describe what happened this way:
"During the event, God's presence was evident as we saw young people flooding the altars to renew their commitment to Christ. Many were healed and delivered. After being in God's presence for the three days of the conference, Charles could no longer hold back and began to worship. Two youth leaders started to pray that Charles would receive Christ.
"After the conference, the youth leaders approached Charles to thank him for all his hard work and mentioned how they had seen him singing earlier. Tears welled up in Charles' eyes as the convicting power of the Holy Spirit came over him. He shared how he was born into a Christian family but walked away from his faith during his teen years. Now he felt his life was totally messed up, and he had done way too many sinful things to ever come back to God.
"The youth leaders reassured Charles that it was not too late for him to give his life to Jesus and it was certainly not a coincidence that he was working at the conference. As they spoke, the reality of God's love washed over Charles, and with a tear-stained face, he prayed and accepted Christ.
"The focus of the conference might have been youth, but God's plan is always to do more than we could ever dream possible. God wants people to come to Him-no matter how old they are."
The DiMustos' love for youth has taken them all across Asia to speak at camps, hold youth events, and disciple students. At every location, they find young people who are longing for peace and a relationship with God.
"One young man, John, came to a youth camp we were holding in Indonesia," they recall. "He told us that one day in the town where he lived, he heard singing coming from a church. He asked the people what they were singing about because the music made him happy. The people told him they were singing about Jesus.
"John was raised in another religion, but he was curious to learn more about Jesus. He continued to go to the church to hear the singing, but he only stood at the window and listened. Eventually, however, he was drawn inside and accepted Christ. The pastor then invited him to the youth camp-a 15-hour bus ride away.
"John told us that by the end of the camp he felt something he couldn't really describe, but it is awesome. He was baptized in the Holy Spirit and sensed the presence of the Lord in a strong way.'"
The DiMustos have seen God do miracles in many young people's lives. This is especially true at Teen Challenge Singapore, where Phil serves on the board of directors. At Teen Challenge, youth who are trapped by drugs and gangs find a new way of life in Jesus.
Kelly, a young girl from the Teen Challenge program, told the DiMustos her story.
"When I was 15, I joined a gang," she said. "I stayed out late with my gang friends and skipped school, so my studies really suffered. After a while I began running away from home and staying away for several days at a time. My parents and teachers were worried and tried to help me, but that only made me more rebellious. Fighting became a way of life for me, and soon I became a gang leader."
Eventually, the authorities told Kelly she had to attend a program run by Teen Challenge Singapore.
"Initially, I had a very bad attitude and didn't want to be there. But the counselors and youth workers were patient with me. They took time to befriend me, and eventually they won my trust and respect. I opened up to them, and they gave me valuable advice and encouragement. They helped me break free from people who were having a negative influence on me. I also started going to church regularly.
"After a year of volunteering at the program, I started working on the staff. I am thankful for people believing in me and not giving up when I did something wrong."
The DiMustos are serving in Singapore because of people like Charles, John and Kelly. Everywhere they go they are constantly reminded of how many young people in Asia need to know Jesus.
"Each night when our neighbor returns home, he prays at the family altar in his living room, calling on a ‘Healing Buddha' who is supposed to take away misfortune and prolong life," the DiMustos say. "On the altar, he leaves offerings of food, water, flowers and candles to gain merits and increase his karma. He also burns incense to attract his ancestors so he may seek their wisdom and guidance for his family members.
"When we smell the distinct fragrance of the incense wafting through our open windows, we are reminded why God sent His Son into the world and why He has placed us here in Asia to share His message. Would you also remember our millions of neighbors in Asia Pacific who do not yet know about Jesus' saving power?"
End this lesson by praying for the DiMustos and believers in Singapore. Discuss ways your club can assist efforts to reach the youth of Asia.