2017 Myanmar – Marie Suazo

His Treasured Possession

For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession. Deuteronomy 7:6

Although I have been on a few missions trips with New Philly, I knew that this one would be special. As I prepared for our trip, I felt God highlighting the verse from Deuteronomy 7:6 where He declares His people as His treasured possession. As I did more research on Myanmar, I realized that most of their exports are gems such as rubies and jade, which confirmed the verse I was praying over this nation. I got excited because I knew that God was going to do something special in Myanmar. I knew that God was sending our team all the way to Myanmar because He cares so much about His church in this nation. I knew that He was going show His sons and daughters here that they are His treasured possession.

But in the weeks leading up to this trip I felt overwhelmed with the tasks that were before me. As the team leader I had to strike a balance between finalizing field logistics, and catching God’s heart for this Myanmar. I felt like I was going through the fire as God was peeling away my fleshly mindset and asking me to trust in Him. Although I did take the steps to trust Him, I still felt like I had to power through the missions season. If I just got everything done despite feeling overwhelmed, everything would be ok… or so I thought.

Once in the field, I was amazed to see how God was showing the Burmese people how He truly treasures them. For each ministry event, a team member would share a testimony that would line up perfectly with what the congregation was going through in that season. And not only that, their circumstances would perfectly match the sermons that God was speaking to Pastor Marcus long before we even got to Myanmar. I saw so many people get touched by the power of the Holy Spirit- weeping and hungering for more of His presence. One of my favorite examples of this was our last day in Myitikina, a northern city in Myanmar. Pastor Khaungze, our local contact through NPWM (Native Pastors for World Missions) invited the leaders of several local churches together for a special service. Pastor Marcus preached a powerful message from Numbers 20 about Moses and his emotional health as a leader. He explained that God wanted to do new things in Moses’ life, but Moses had not dealt with the death of his sister properly, and he relied on the old method of leading rather than having a relationship with God and trusting what He said. Pastor Marcus then led an altar call for people whose hearts had become hardened and thus needed a fresh touch of the Holy Spirit. One of the first people to come up was Pastor Khaungze himself, and soon after the altar was flooded with pastors and ministers asking God to soften their hearts once again.

The team prayed for the pastors, declaring that God sees them, and that He treasures them so deeply that He would rather have a relationship with them than their service. And it was in this moment that I felt God whisper to my heart, “You are my treasured possession. I see you. I have chosen you, and I am glad to be with you.” While I laid hands on different pastors, tears streamed down my own face as I felt the overwhelming presence of God’s love for His people, and for me. God didn’t just want my service, or even the fruit of my service. He wanted my heart. He wanted me.

Just as God showed me that the Burmese people are His treasured possession, this trip showed me that I am His treasured possession as well. He cherishes me so much that I don’t need to fake positive emotions just to get through. He wants me to share what I am going through me no matter how small I think it is. God wants to walk me through each process. And just like coal being purified to become precious gems, He wants to walk me through each refining process to become more like Him. Though the temptation of wanting to get by may come again, I know that in the end I am God’s treasured possession. He sees me, He has chosen me, and He is glad to be with me.