Gospel Adventures in Thailand & Myanmar

Categories: Intercultural Studies Blog, Student Stories

Wes Braun (second from left) is completing his third-year Intercultural Studies internship in Myanmar & Thailand with MB Mission’s TREK program. TREK is an intense discipleship-in-mission opportunity with two months of training, followed by seven months serving across cultures.

Full Circle

Three years ago, I served in Myanmar with YWAM. It opened my eyes to beauty and suffering in a powerful way. While I was there I felt a stirring in my heart that I would be back in this beautiful country one day. Through God’s faithfulness and guidance, He provided me with the amazing opportunity to return to serve in Myanmar with MB Mission for my ICS internship through Columbia Bible College! Our Trek team has the privilege of learning from long-time church planters who have seen lives transformed in Myanmar and Thailand.

Planted and Growing

For one month we traveled all around these two countries, proclaiming Jesus at Christmas outreaches. We literally saw hundreds of people giving their life to Christ! Lately we have been visiting a new Myanmar church plant every week. These pockets of believers are strategically planted in areas where there can be up to a thousand Myanmar people working in nearby factories. (It’s important to note that people come from Myanmar to Thailand for work and end up doing the most physically demanding, lowest paying, dangerous jobs.) When we visit the churches we teach English, guitar, drums, preach, share testimonies and serve in any way we can… even painting!

From Skepticism to Belief

At the beginning of December, we attended an evangelism conference at a hotel that was rented for the weekend. 400 Myanmar migrant people came to hear about Jesus. 250 people dedicated their lives to Jesus and 150 people were baptized! Praise God! I’ll be honest, I was slightly skeptical of what these people’s lives would look like after this conference. Were they just caught up in the moment? Did they really understand what they were committing to?

Well, God sure blew me away with a definitive answer! Fast forward to February. A Thai pastor invited me to preach at a brand new church plant.  He explained that this church began because a man met Jesus at the evangelism conference (mentioned above). He went back and told his family and friends about Him. God totally transformed him! The man described himself as a raging alcoholic filled with anger. Since encountering the powerful love of Christ, he is now sober and filled with incredible joy. A natural leader, he had gathered eight believers together in this small apartment. And this is where I showed up to preach. No pressure!

God is the One who Transforms

Through this story, God reminded me that He is the one that transforms people in His timing, and He is always relentlessly pursuing His children. Our task is to be obedient with what has been trusted to us and to share the message of reconciliation through our words and lives. When people genuinely respond, God will radically move!

I’m grateful to Columbia Bible College for being a community that understands the mission of God and is willing to support the body of Christ in prayer, encouragement, and by providing this opportunity to see this mission accomplished for God’s glory! Please pray for more life change stories like this!

Learn more about Columbia’s Intercultural Studies degree, which includes a third-year cross-cultural internship.