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Mission Outward Bound 2023 (by Joan Tan)

[Joan Tan shared her Mission Outward Bound 2023 reflections on December 31, 2023, during Bartley's Thanksgiving Service.] สวัสดีค่ะ! ฉันชื่อ Joan ค่ะ! [Thai: Hello, my name is Joan.]


Good morning, church. I'm Joan. I'm a young adult serving in Frontline Youth. And I'm excited to be out here today to share my testimony of how God has been so good to me and the team during our MOB trip. So from the video, from November 23rd to November 29th this year, the MOB team went to Chiang Rai, Thailand, to teach English, perform Christmas skits, and dance to share the gospel with the unreached. The purpose of this mission trip was also to 1) expose our youth to cross-cultural missions and 2) respond in obedience to the Great Commission, "Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations." (Matthew 28:19).

When I was first approached to lead the team, I hesitated to say yes, as it has been a long time since I went on a mission trip. and I did not know if I was qualified to lead as well. And what we just said, we sang just now, "Who You Say I Am." I was reminded that I am chosen, not forsaken. God is for me, not against me, and God called me for a reason. And with that reminder, God doesn't always call the qualified, but qualifies the called, which led me to say, "Hey, Nai Ni, here I am. Yes, Lord, I will go and lead MOB."

Going into this trip, I expected myself to be a blessing to those around me, but instead, I found myself thoroughly blessed as I witnessed God working through the MOB team. Even the shy ones, my teammates, spoke boldly in front of the Mien church and shared their testimonies, a testament to God's transformative power. During the trip, I faced worries about the programme's logistics and the team's health, as many of them felt sick during the trip. And this is what God taught me: to fully trust in Him and let Him take control. And this testifies that God always provides. Though there were some hiccups along the way, I thank God for His provision in every moment. Everyone has now fully recovered, and truly, God is the healer of our every ill.

Secondly, likewise, like what we just sang, “Sovereign over us," God is sovereign over everything. And on our rest and relax day, we went to the northernmost part of Thailand, a place called the Golden Triangle. There, we could look out at the Myanmar borders.

It was really close. We were all facing Myanmar, which was just 50 metres away. We prayed for the country that's experiencing the coup and the crisis, and the stark reality of the war being so close to us left an indelible impact on me. And despite it all, God reminded me that even still, He is sovereign. All in all, I'm grateful for this opportunity to lead the team on the first mission trip since COVID. And I thank God for revealing to us that He's working even during COVID and how much He loves His people.


And I believe that's the beauty of mission trips, which is to experience God tangibly. And with that, ขอบคุณค่ะ [Thai: thank you], thank you, Church, for supporting us in many various ways, such as prayers. I'm so excited to see what God is going to do on the upcoming MOB trips. And with that, God bless,ขอบคุณค่ะ. [Thai: thank you]


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