“som tam” lady (papaya salad lady)

Each Wednesday the students at my language school meet for a fellowship time, in English. There are two groups, and my group basically has a pot luck type of meal. I generally bring som tam (papaya salad) that I buy from the Sa Keow market.

If you remember from almost a month ago (I think). I had a frustrating time with the lady who sells som tam – my pride was hurt and I was discouraged. After that occasion I hadn’t been back to her to buy more. The reason wasn’t because I was avoiding her, but I just hadn’t been in the mood to eat som tam for a while. I’d passed her stand on my bike and said hello but that was about it. In late October, there was a national holiday celebrating a famous king of Thailand who is regarded as one who brought prosperity to Thailand. It just so happened that I wanted som tam that night but the som tam lady wasn’t there. And for the next week or so she still wasn’t there….

So finally, this last Wednesday, I went to buy something for fellowship group and was hoping that she was back in her spot, selling som tam. And she was. In Thai,I asked for som tam in the proper way (the way I should’ve asked for it a month ago) and told her that I had been looking for her the past few weeks or so and hadn’t seen her. She told me that she and her husband had been in the Isaan region (North East Thailand) visiting her husband’s relatives. We talked about some other things as she was making my som tam and it came out that she remembered that I was from Canada! This may not seem like a big deal, but most people assume that I’m American. Not that being American is a bad thing, but when you’re Canadian, you want to be recognized as a Canadian. Anyway, I was very impressed that she remembered this fact, along with some other things, and I rode away on my bike encouraged. A relationship is slowly building with the som tam lady.

One thing I’ve been praying for a lot recently is that my life would testify to Jesus Christ. My words, my actions… everything – I want it all to glorify God and to testify to the Lord. My language is so limited, even though I’ve been learning for 3 months, and I so much want to be sharing the Gospel. I’m thankful that I’m here for the long haul and am able to take the time for relationships to develop – that was always such a frustration for me when I was on short-term trips.

So I pray that God would continue to build relationships between me and those around me. I pray that my life would testify to Christ. I pray for God to be at work in hearts of those around me, that He’d plant a desire in their hearts to KNOW Him, to confess their sins, receive forgiveness and BELIEVE.

3 thoughts on ““som tam” lady (papaya salad lady)

  1. Excellent news, Beth! Very encouraging. It’s exciting to see how your language learning has developed and even in just a short time how God has helped you start friendships and witness to the Thai people around you. Continue to be “strong in the Lord and in the strength of His power”. JenPS I think I hit a milestone in language learning now…I feel like I can blurt out French conversations without having to think them through in my head first. As scary as that seems! : )


  2. Hey Beth,I love your blog page. I think it’s so cool how you are learning language. I’m sure that you are a bright light over there! May you have a great time as you as you follow Jesus step by step. I’m learning ‘lots staffing dts and seeing God work is wonderful. Definitely out of my comfort zone too! LauraPS – I heard that we may see you while we’re in Thailand 🙂 That’s awesome.


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