7 February 2023 Mission Summary

Jesus is Enough – The First Mission

This was the first ever “mission” in the history of the Jungle Discipleship School. It wasn’t a long mission, but it was a rich and beautiful mission. We were only gone for just over a week, but it felt much longer than that, and we packed a lot in.

In the past decade in Burma I have often felt nudges from God to become someone’s friend. I meet hundreds of people every year in Burma but every so often I just feel something from God, hard to explain, but just a feeling like I should keep in touch with this person. Get their contact information (if they have any) or find a way to be able to find them again in the jungle. There was no long-term plan, or end game, there was no ulterior motive, it was just friendship. God had a plan, and I just tried my best to follow along.

Now as I needed to plan and organize everything on my own for this mission; boats, motorcycles, places to sleep, people to meet… suddenly all these friendships from the past decade seemed to have a deeper purpose. I was so moved by the love of my friends in Burma. ThitSarLin and Jala also commented several times about how amazing my friends were.

I had never organized a boat myself. I didn’t even really know how to do that. But through friends we made a great contact who was able to help us organize a boat, park our motorcycles and even let us sleep in his house. It was the first of many blessings along this trip.

Once inside we were met by a gang of motorcycles from my friend K’Nuh. There was so much joy in the meeting and I was so proud of my friend. We arranged a flawless link up, without being able to speak the same language, and him without having any wifi or phone connection. Yet, he was there to meet us exactly on time. It was a thing of beauty.

We travelled to the Commando Battalion where we stayed for a few nights with K’Nuh, his pregnant wife, and a revolving door of commandos coming to visit with us. There is a story to the friendship I have with K’Nuh, but I’ll save that for another day. K’Nuh is a commando who had his leg blown off by a Burma army landmine – he is now learning how to continue his duties and life with a prosthetic leg. He never complains, he is so strong, and his heart to help and serve is so incredible. (we’ll feature him in an upcoming TV episode, so stay tuned for that).

We met with the VCDS of the Karen Army and had a short, but positive visit with him. He invited us to join him for Karen Revolution day in the jungle the next morning. We didn’t realize that they were all fasting, so when we arrived hungry the next morning we remained hungry throughout the duration of the day. Karen Revolution day is January 31st, a day to mark the beginning of the war. This year marked 75 years of their fight for freedom against the Burma Army. 75 years…  Just think about that for a minute. Probably for longer than you have been alive, the Karen people have been attacked and oppressed by the Burma Army. Entire generations of people have been born, lived, and died, all in the midst of war. For most Karen people, they have never known a life without war in it. My friend Silverhorn told me, “I would rather have world war three, and die fighting, so my kids don’t need to grow up their entire life in a war zone like I have.”

After the ceremony was over I was so blessed to be able to meet some family members of Day Chit. We will also do a feature on Day Chit on the TV show in the future, but he was a very dear friend of mine that was killed by the Burma Army this year. Day Chit was one of the gentlest, most humble, serving people I have ever met. He was a young leader in the Karen army, and as he led his troops to try and capture a Burma army camp, a claymore was detonated and he was killed by the shrapnel.

(Praying with Day Chit’s family)

His family came to sit with me, one by one, when they found out I was there. I showed a photo of me and Day Chit to his aunt and she only glanced at the photo – both our faces showing huge smiles – and she instantly turned away and began to weep. The pain of the loss is still so close to the surface. She sat next to me and wept. I felt bad that I had caused her to cry, but she kept holding my hand and then kept bringing more and more family members over to meet me. I got to give them some money and pray with them. We made plans to go and visit their village in March when we plan our second mission.

Earlier, another commando officer had come to visit me. He was initially shy, but as we got comfortable talking with each other he told me, “when I heard you were here I had to come and meet you. Day Chit was one of my best friends, and he talked about you so much. He loved you dearly and was so thankful for you.”  – now it was my turn to cry. “I can’t believe he’s gone” I choked out, and the officer wiped his tears away and silently nodded in agreement.

Saying goodbye to Day Chit’s family, K’Nuh and his gang of motorcycles drove us over the mountains so we could hike to the FBR training ground. Jala and I reflected on our feelings as we hiked the very familiar path into camp. We felt like we were now walking in as guests, but as soon as we arrived, we were welcomed like family.

I went to stay at the house I had stayed at for the past few years. As soon as I walked in the door and I called my familiar greeting to the family, my friend’s wife jumped up, realizing it was me, and burst into tears and came over and gave me a long hug. She was so happy to see me, and so sad that I had decided to leave FBR, and so we just sat beside each other for a few minutes while she cried and I squirmed.

As I reflected on coming into Burma I thought about a few things as a foreigner being here. FBR has just been here forever, so they are just part of the fabric of Karen state. But there are other organizations that have sprung up over the past few years; there is a few medical programs run by foreigners, and some military-based programs, and then there is me. I realized that on every single other “mission” into Burma I came inside as a representative of FBR. Now, I was not representing anything. FBR brings a lot of resources with them nowadays. The medical programs provide medicine and health care. The military programs train and equip the soldiers. What was I bringing to the table?

I thought about how I had no money. I was not bringing any resources to the table. I am not a medic or doctor and I can’t really afford to buy medicine, so I am not going be able to help with the physical side. And I’m not an ex-special forces guy that specializes in military skills. Resources, Health, Security. It’s amazing how much of our lives we focus on those things.

The only thing I can bring now is Jesus and my love.

I reflected to Jala, “I hope it’s enough.”

He assured me it is. I knew what he meant, but I was thinking about the politicians we were negotiating with for permission and land and the rights to be in their land. Would “Jesus and love” be enough for a politician?

“Just look at your friends who have been helping us,” Jala continued. “They aren’t picking us up, hosting us, feeding us, and helping us because they want something or expect something. They’re doing it because you love them, they know you do, and they love you. That’s it. We’re here now, because of love. It’s enough.”

We had a few days at the FBR ground visiting with our FBR friends and family and then we left there to go to the Officer Training School to find Big Head. I will share another post later all about Big Head, there is a lot of story there. While at the OTS they asked me to teach an hour long class on leadership to all the students and so I was able to pray for all the students twice and share with them some leadership lessons on becoming good soil. We ended our evening there by reuniting with Big Head and other friends.

Their officer training is 22 months long, and they’re about 9 months into it. I could tell that Big Head hadn’t received or felt much love or affection in the past 9 months. Maybe none since the last time I visited him in November. I was surprised to see his eyes glass over with tears as we sat beside each other laughing and talking. Love was just overwhelming him, washing over him like wave, and he just couldn’t help but tear up. Which of course made me tear up.

We had a great visit with the OTS commander before we left camp the next morning and then hiked out to meet more friends who were going to drive us back to the border.

Sitting on the boat heading back I just couldn’t believe all we were able to do. We were able to pray with so many people. We were able to bring love to a lot of people and encourage them. Jesus and love is enough.

Below is a financial summary of what we spent on the mission. I decided I would post this here because this money isn’t mine, you all give to God, and God gives it to us, not to hold onto, but to spend and use for these missions and our school.

One thing I will point out about the “food” category. I love “family meals” together. I think it really breaks down walls and barriers when we can all sit around together sharing a meal. So it might seem like we spent a large amount on food on this mission, but we never just buy food for ourselves. We buy food for everyone who is in the house and nearby. Food is a ministry tool that opens up doors into peoples lives. If you have any questions about this mission, or the money spent, please feel free to contact me.

Our next mission will be next week… please pray for that. Pray also for K’Nuh and his wife expecting their first child. Pray for the Commando Battalion, and Big Head and the Officer Training School. Pray for Hay Blut and his new wife and all our new friends who helped drive us on their motorcycles. Pray for Day Chit’s family, that they would know Jesus and feel his comfort.

Thanks for reading.



Category Amount Spent (THB) Approx. USD$ Comments
Food 12,600 $382  
Transportation 14,500 $439 Boats, gas, motorcycles, repairs.
Gifts 16,500 $500 K’Nuh, Day Chit family, IDPs, Big Head, OTS, Hay Blut
Misc. 6200 $187 Buying a printer to support the OTS school.
Total: 49,800 $1,508 (around $2165 CAD)