Tommy Downs

Tommy Downs

A Servant of Jesus Christ



It was Friday September 16th, I was doing language school via Zoom as normal. However, unlike normal, I was outside the airport waiting for my sister Bonnie to arrive in Cambodia. I couldn’t believe that she was actually coming, she always had so many responsibilities at home she couldn’t neglect, but now she was free, no children to watch and no other job to work.

I hadn’t seen anyone in my family for 15 months, so I was beyond excited. She was to arrive any minute so I logged off school early and waited earnestly for her. Nothing was gonna stop me from being there to meet Bonnie when she exited the airport; I wasn’t going to go to the bathroom, I wasn’t going to let my eyes off those doors for a second. It was like I was waiting for Jesus’ return, at that moment there was nothing else I valued in the whole world.

My tears flowed in realization of what had happened: my little sister Bonnie forsook everything she’d known at home, boarded a flight for her first time and traveled all the way around the world by herself just to see me. (She’s that kind of person, she’ll do whatever she’s asked and there’s not a gentler more selfless person in this world) We’ve never been particularly close, she’s always had her own things to do and I had mine.

My voice cracked as I called her name and walked over to give her a hug. I wanted to do so many special things for her, but the only thing she cared to do was be with me. We went shopping, met with some of my friends, and ate some Khmer food.

I started to think that maybe she is a perfect picture of what the Holy Spirit is like in our lives. She sent herself to me to comfort me. I take her with me wherever I go, we stay together, we laugh, we talk, we even do nothing together, it doesn’t matter. I’m like her vessel, I’m her voice, her transportation, and her advocate. I speak on her behalf to everyone we meet and I listen carefully waiting for a message from her that I can relay. I want everyone to know her, to be her friend, and see how wonderful she is. I tell her what’s going on and translate for her. Other people may be talking but we mostly just talk to each other (about what they’re saying), to some degree it’s like they don’t exist since we’re mostly focused on each other. Sometimes I wish she would tell me exactly what she wants to do, but she lets me make all the choices and happily joins in on every one without regret or complaint.

Likewise, the Holy Spirit is always with us, we are his transportation, his voice, his closest friend. He came to us to comfort us.

I’m just waiting for the opportunities to show her power to other people: she’s a great teacher, she’s great at running a house, peacemaking, and watching children.


Kids Ministry

Kids ministry on Sundays is fun. We have a blast teaching the bible, playing games, and leading kids into the presence of God. I’m so glad my older sister made me learn gymnastics, the kids love it and somehow I’m stronger and nimbler than I ever was. And on Monday nights we watch Superbook or Jesus films with the kids on the projector.

Khmer Expedition

Before Bonnie came, Theara led his first expedition of Cambodians and they shared the gospel in Cheom Ksant and it was a blast for the people serving and those being served. He has another expedition planned for November and Bonnie and I will join them for that one.

I’ve moved out of Amy and Thanak’s house last month and have been living with Theara, Jantu, and Chamrong at the revival center which is about 10 minutes away.

Amy, Thanak, Samuel, Tori, and I took a boat ride to the jungle village Antil. I hadn’t been there in months and Tori had never been there. Our friends in the village were glad to see us and we got to meet with the new village chief and it looks like we have open doors to do ministry there.


Some of our team members met with some government leaders and it looks like there’s exciting opportunities for us for a base and openings to serve in other places in Cambodia.

Prayer Requests

  • Revival Week is this week, our team from all over South East Asia is getting together for a time of fellowship and encouragement.
  • For AMT happening in Cambodia next year! That there would be students and that our team would be prepared to teach it.
  • After I finish language school in November, I’m going to return to the States for 3.5 months. After that things in Cambodia are probably going to look very different for us. Pray for me to use Godly wisdom and make wise decisions for the future.
  • Pray for team Cambodia to grow so that we can effectively reach this country and help our teams throughout Asia.
  • Pray for the expeditions of Americans coming to Cambodia next year to be filled and quicken the work here. That Cambodians would be drawn to Christ and reach the fullness of God’s plan for their lives.
  • My family as we all move away from home and go our own ways. Reece and Harmony are going to Africa soon, mom and dad and the young ones are moving to Texas, and the rest will stay in Dubuque Iowa for now.

For the kingdom,


P.S. I’ll get Bonnie to write something soon