It has been three days since I left Chiang Mai but Chiang Mai hasn’t left me. Somehow God has kept the events simmering in my heart, speaking to me clearly through this weeklong trip. Though I went in with little expectations, God had other plans for me – speaking through seven main signs during this trip. While the signs come from many directions, they end in one place, much like the story of four blind men touching an elephant. They all described the parts differently, but only one who pieced it together could know it was an elephant. Similarly, the signs might not mean much alone, but taken together, God seems to have a certain message for me.
1. “Thai with no accent.”
I was practising Thai song in the chapel hall with a microphone. Sean was sitting downstairs at the dining area with Jacinth from CCO. When Jacinth heard me singing, she asked Sean who was singing. Sean said it was me. She said that the way I sang the Thai song had no accent, like normal Thai speaker. I am greatly encouraged.
2. “This is a song of healing and revival.”
At Karen village in Mae Tho, after dinner, Aekkachai was singing songs with the orphanage kids. Just one guitar and 30 kids lifting their voices to a God. During their singing, as I sat in a chair, I started to cry. Then I started weeping and sobbing out loud. Sean said my face was quite scary looking. Some kids were scared or shocked. I think my team also. Uncle Chow Siong and Sean laid hands on me as I cried. I felt a force flowing through me and I knew it must be the Holy Spirit. The spirit coursed through my hands and legs, and my whole body became stiff and numb. My fingers were fixed in a claw like position and was so hard to move. I was slain! I never expected this to happen to me, a mostly non-charismatic. I could still hear the music singing and I knew God’s power was real. I had prayed for a God to reveal himself to me a few weeks back and now he did. Maybe a little embarrassing to be slain in front of others but God has his plan. After a while, the numbness disappeared and I was back to normal. Uncle Ricky Tan prayed that the children’s singing brought healing to my soul. Hopefully it can send revival too.
3. “After Bible school, come back and pastor church here!”
Some of us during the Karen tribe visit, travelled with Aekkichai to visit another place, his hometown. There was a church there and he told me that after I finish Bible school, to come back and pastor the church! Out of the blue, he also told me the qualities of a good wife, 1) love The Lord and 2) good face. And he told me that twice.
4. “You’re beautiful.”
Before leaving Karen village, Achai the pastor there, put his hand on my shoulder with a big smile and said, “You’re beautiful.” I found it rather cryptic and thought it due to his poor English. Later we shall see if that is true.
5. “I met my husband on a mission trip.”
I asked Angela from Termfun how she met John her husband, from Shan tribe. She met him on a mission trip to Thailand when she was younger. He gave her a verse that confirmed her calling. She asked for a life partner before she went as a missionary to Thailand and God provided John for her. She said also possible for me!
Angela’s testimony and life path was interesting. She went to TTC and took an M.Div but wanted to be missionary after that. I believe it was not a coincidence I met her. She told me that it is a possible path I could take too. Going to TTC doesn’t mean I must restrict myself to be a pastor in Singapore. She is also thinking of setting up more homes for village children but need more people to be in charge. A future opportunity perhaps? I’ve seen the impact such homes and orphanages has on the kids and believe in it strongly.
6. “Here am I. Send me!”
During the last team devotion, I happened to read this verse.
Isaiah 6:8 (NIV)
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
Uncle Chow Siong said this could be another indication from God for me. Seating was random but I read the verse. Darren, a team mate encouraged me to find a Karen wife. Chow Siong told me later that this trip was meant for me, and that probably God wants me to serve him overseas as a missionary. Not sure where, maybe Thailand. I need to bathe the matter in prayer.
7. “Beautiful feet on the mountains”
During team devotion by Claire, a youth on the team, she referred to the verse:
How beautiful on the mountains
are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
who bring good tidings,
who proclaim salvation,
who say to Zion,
“Your God reigns!”
The team immediately highlighted the words “beautiful” and “on the mountains”. I didn’t really spot it. It reminded me of the Karen village on the mountains where the pastor told me I was beautiful! Shall I now bring good news to them? In retrospect, my mother also sent us this verse at the start the trip.
These seven signs might be confirming a God’s call on my life to mission work. There is great darkness in these lands, lost without Christ. My burden has moved from being a light to being a light in the darkest place, because that’s where the impact is highest. I want to serve in places where Christ has not been preached. In Thailand, only 1% of a population of 70 million people are Christians. Isn’t that dark? Don’t they need Jesus desperately?
This trip has realigned my goals to where I should serve Him in the future. I’m not sure of many things but I know the next step to take.
“I have but one candle of life to burn, and i would rather burn it out in a land filled with darkness than in a land flooded with light.”
― Keith Falconer