2017 Myanmar – Kim MacDonald

During the cold second week of January 2017, I had the honour of going to Myanmar with 9 other amazing and selfless people. Throughout our time in this nation we got minister in Myitikina (in the northern part of Myanmar) in addition to the capital city of Yangon in the south. God taught me many things. I want to share a few with you.

The Bible talks about how our testimonies are the spirit of prophecy. This goes two ways: as we hear and receive, but also as we take and run. My first story is for you to hear and receive. The second is for you to take and run.

On our team’s last day in Myitikina, we had the privilege of spending time with some local pastors and leaders. Many traveled very far to be with us that day. The team did some VBS (children’s ministry) songs and even sang a special number. Pastor Marcus, our team preacher, spoke about “speaking to your rock” and the story of Moses getting water from the rock in Numbers 20. His message was about dealing with heart issues in order to enter into God’s promises. As this was being shared with people who had been in ministry for a while, I knew the truths were so applicable to our audience. But I had no idea how much until it was time for the altar call. Pastor Marcus gave an invitation to those who were feeling dry and heavy or hard-hearted to come to the altar and experience God’s refreshing presence. One woman who was sitting in the back came before the call was even finished. Instead of standing, she knelt at the alter in true humility and in need of God’s refreshing touch. As more and more people came forward, they all kneeled. At first I felt uncomfortable. How was our team going to pray for these people if they were kneeling? But immediately, I caught myself for being so simple minded. These were giants in the faith. People who had given everything for God’s Kingdom were now coming to receive the Father’s grace and healing, and here I was being so simple minded. As our team prayed for these beautiful men and women of God, we eventually moved into a time of prayer for the local head pastors. I was struck so deeply by what these head pastors had given for the Lord. I was greatly humbled to even be in their presence, let alone to be praying for them. I felt the Lord saying, “Their sacrifice is not in vain. They have given nothing in vain!”

It was hard to contain myself and the tears that streamed down my face. The Lord sees us all: from me, a simple Canadian living in South Korea, to those in Myanmar who have given it all to follow Christ and train others to do the ministry. He sees us all. He calls to us out of pure love. The reason He wanted these men and women to be refreshed is because He loves them. He wants them to enter His promises. And in His grace, God gives opportunities for us to deal with our deep pain and hurts and frustrations. He sees each of us where we’re at, and meets us there in His unfailing and unrelenting love! I truly feel that being there at this moment was part of God’s plan. Our team was sent to release God’s refreshing presence and love to these amazing leaders and pastors simply because God loves them.

This second story now is for you to take and run. During the latter part of our trip, our team stayed in the capital city of Yangon. It’s a developing city with beautiful buildings and a hearty desire to grow. As most cities, there are still areas that you don’t want to find yourself alone late at night. But this is where we found ourselves on our first night back in the city. We stayed at a hotel that made our hearts a little tense. You could feel the discomfort in the team. However, as good missionaries, we were trying to find the best in the situation and not complain. After team meeting, I left to go to my room alone. When I stepped outside the door, I felt fear hit me like a brick. Since I’ve struggled with fear most of my life, and even testified on this trip how God has set me free from fear in many areas of my life, I was intent that I was not going down like that! I took a step forward, but had to go back into the room with the other girls… it was too much for me. As we rearranged ourselves and we all found our ways back to our rooms, it all hit a point of being too much. My roommate and I came into our room and there were dogs barking right outside our window. Fear was infiltrating my heart, other things were going on around me that were pulling my attention in different directions, and I couldn’t handle it. I fell on the edge of the bed and prayed, “Holy Spirit, I’m really afraid right now. Please help us.” I felt a holy anger begin to rise inside of me. This was not ok. Fear had no place in our hearts or in our hotel room. This chaos was a tactic of Satan to get us off kilter. I felt pressed on all sides and I was not happy about it. So I began to pray. As I did, I bound up fear, disallowed chaos, and even prayed against the dogs barking outside. Well, the dogs stopped, the fear stopped, and the chaos subsided. To be honest, I was a little surprised at first. However, I felt the Lord was showing me that His breakthroughs and the freedom He has brought in my life is real! It cannot be taken away by how I preserve things. I have to stand in my freedom and change my old thoughts in order to see His power. The things that God gives us and does in our lives are real. His freedom is real. His unending love is real. But if we don’t live in the knowledge that we are free and loved, we don’t tap into the power that He has given us- the power that the Holy Spirit wants to release to us and through us.

I have never been more moved for a group of people as I was during our time in Myanmar. God loves the church in Myanmar. He is releasing strength to them for the next wave of amazing things He wants to do in this nation! Thank you for giving both financially and in prayer so that God’s Kingdom may be released and that His people may be strengthened in the faith. Although I went physically, you went in the spirit as we partnered together.