Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas Season Happenings in Myanmar


Did you know that two times Jesus talked about how if we left family or lands for His sake that we would receive what we gave up manifold times? In the book of Matthew it says we will receive a hundred fold! I have both of those passages (Luke and Matthew) written down in my  journal. The hardest part about moving abroad for me is saying by to family and saying bye to modern conveniences. Bye bye Walmart, Target and Hobby Lobby!

I don’t think God has to abundantly bless us because we obey Him but I think He is such a kind, generous and loving God for doing that for us. He really is good to us!

I can honestly say that I’ve seen God keep His promise regarding those verses. It isn’t even Christmas yet and I’m feeling abundantly blessed. Yes, I still miss my family and lots of other things but God sure has poured out His blessings on Dave and I during this season.

I wanted to share some of things we have done this December. It’s been fun, encouraging and really neat and I wanted you to have a glimpse into life here as well. 

Caroling


Earlier in the month we went caroling with the teachers at the school. We started at 7pm and it didn’t end until 2am! Dave and I went home half way through but I’m telling you caroling with them was such a fun and encouraging time. They carol to students families from the school and share the gospel with them. By caroling, I mean it’s like a mini concert where everyone sings super loud! Each place usually had a snack or meal for us after we sang.

We finished singing at one place and their neighbors liked it so much they asked us to come into their home and sing, so of course we did! It was just so neat to be a part of something that shares Christ during this season with people who need Him!

School Christmas Party
These kids were extremely excited for Santa!

This past week we had our Christmas party at school. The kids all bring a gift and then, class by class, they line up in a circle. Music is played while they pass gifts and when the music stops they have a new gift. Kind of like musical chairs but with gifts. It was really fun to see them exchange gifts.


Secret Santa
The teachers also had a secret Santa. Once again we were all in a big circle and we would share who we got for our secret Santa. Everyone was really excited about revealing who they had and it was for sure the most fun and memorable secret Santa exchange I've ever been to. Dave got a really neat tie from the Chin tribe.

The person who had my name was Mr. Za. I got a tribal dress from the Karen tribe and he also purchased a longi for Dave.

A longi is basically a wrap / skirt that men and women wear here. They tie differently for each gender but many people wear them here.


There are several tribes here in Myanmar. Each tribe has different patterns on their clothing. I’m still trying to figure out all of the tribes but I was really excited to get such a thoughtful gift. It will be a great gift for Dave and I to take back home.

The Christmas Program

Later in the evening we had the Christmas program. The whole theme was “Follow the Star” with emphasis on lights.We brought black lights in to make things really glow!

Here are a few pictures I took before the program begin. The first picture is of Crystal. She is a sweet little girl that attends school and Sunday School here.

The program started out with a Taekwando performance.


The kids sang a lot of songs and there was a drama for the nativity. It was the first year doing a drama and I got to work with the kids on memorizing and acting out their lines. I'm glad I had that opportunity because I got to know a few of the kids more through that.  Everyone did a fantastic job and it was a great opportunity to share the gospel.


I must tell you something! Most people here in Myanmar have never seen black lights and this play had a lot black lights! We had chopsticks wrapped in white paper for them to wave during a song, our shirts were black with a neon orange star and manger scene, we had neon bracelets and some kids had white crowns.

Even before the play Zama and Pam brought each class into a room where a black light was to show them how it worked. They wanted them to get all their excitement and giggles out so they wouldn’t be surprised during the play.

The program was so neat! When the black lights first came on and the chopsticks were waving everyone started clapping with excitement! The chopsticks were waved back and forth and then each kid made a cross from them.

The kids singing here is something I wish each person could come and here. They sing so loud and with such enthusiasm. I’m pretty positive that music in heaven will sound similar and I know it had to bring a big smile to God's face hearing it! I cried a lot when the kids sang. I couldn’t help it. =)

Pam directing! She did a great job and I love this picture!
 
The Christmas program is a big deal here because many of the parents get to hear about and see the Christmas story being acted out. If you think about it please pray that God would grow the seeds that were planted during this time.

School is on a two week break so Dave and I are going to spend Christmas with Zama, Pam and their family. We are so thankful for them!

We have been invited to go an a two day trip to Bagan. A church group will be sharing the gospel and visiting an orphanage there. Dave and I will be taking medical supplies and will be helping where we can. Please pray that God would bless this trip and that we will stay healthy.

I hope you each are enjoying the Christmas season. I’d love to hear what you have been up to this time of year.

What has been your favorite thing this Christmas season?

7 comments :

  1. so, so much fun!! :) i love the things your secret santa got both of you!!!

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  2. These pictures are so much fun! What an amazing experience. I love how excited they got about all the glow lights. They would have loved the Electric Run :) I will keep praying for you guys. I admire what you're doing and the sacrifice you've made. Merry Christmas from Oklahoma!

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  3. Thanks, Robyn! I loved what our secret santa got us too. It was really fun! Hope you had a good Christmas and new Year!

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  4. Thank you! I'm glad you had a wonderful Christmas season too!

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  5. Oh my word - I can't even imagine all the people here at an electric run. It would be epic and really entertaining! One of the Dad's was so impressed with the program that the next day he enrolled his other student. =)

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  6. Aw, so glad that you and Dave have had such a blessed Christmas season while serving Him in Myanmar! Looks like a lot of fun, and so much effort put into everything! I love the black light thing & those shirts!

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  7. Thanks! The black lighting was for sure a hit. Some new students even enrolled all because of the Christmas program. We thought it was funny that is why they came but are so glad they did!

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