Today we are introducing you to Sam & Susan Ahn and their children, Joyce (8), Ethan (6), Chloe (5) and Isaac (3). Originally from Southern California, they were led to move to Thailand after hearing ZOE missionaries share about about ZOE's work of intervention and aftercare for children who are at-risk or being trafficked. Because of their own young children, they couldn’t imagine what trafficked children were going through and they wanted to help. After learning that Thailand is a country that is less than 1% Christian, they were also burdened for the Thais who had never heard the gospel. After prayer and counsel, they moved to Thailand in September of 2011.
A typical day in the life of the Ahn family consists of Sam going to his full-time job at ZOE where he coordinates vehicle maintenance, trains staff and works with the child rescue department. Susan homeschools the children (including Thai lessons!) and organizes the heart of the home. The kids spend their days homeschooling, playing together, learning Thai, taking piano lessons and of course doing chores. Their favorite food in Thailand is Moo-bping which is grilled marinated pork on a skewer, served for breakfast by street vendors and eaten with a bag of sticky rice. As a family they enjoy being outdoors and enjoying God's creation, hiking to waterfalls, going to museums, playing games together and having people over.
When asked what has surprised them most about being on the mission field, they responded, “How humbling it is to learn a new language and culture—it's harder than it sounds! It's like learning how to walk again as an adult. You fall a lot, you make a lot of mistakes, but you have to be patient and persevere. You also have to learn to listen and observe more than talk and act. Yet this investment yields the rich reward of being able to connect with the people on their terms and in their heart language.”
According to Sam & Susan the kids have adjusted well to their new lives in Thailand. In fact, Isaac, when asked if he’s American or Thai will say that he is Thai. As a family, they love finding ways to bless their Thai neighbors and friends either personally or by supporting their local ministries. Their biggest challenge has been that they miss their church family back home and being a part of the lives of friends and family there. Yet the challenges are overshadowed by the amazing things they have seen God do in transforming the lives of the ZOE kids. Susan says, “It really is a miracle to see how some of them come from such devastating backgrounds to now being new and renewed in Christ. No one can reach into the depths of a person's soul and bring healing and restoration the way God in His love can and does.”
The Ahns have been blessed in many ways while on the field. They continue to be amazed by the faithful provision of God in response to those who diligently pray over them and who sacrifice financially to support them so that they can do the work God has called them to in Thailand.
To receive updates on the family and for prayer requests, sign up for the Ahn’s email newsletter here Susan@goZOE.org