FBR: Thanks, Actions Here and Choosing Between Doubt and Faith.
Karen State, Burma
29 November, 2006

Part of our headquarters team, Good Life Club and four of the nine new teams as we split up and started the mission from our training site ten days ago.

Dear friends,

Thank you all for your love and prayers. I wanted to write this to update you all on the actions of the teams now that we have finished the training. After graduating the new teams, we sent them all out on relief missions. Karen, our children, along with the Good Life Club team (Kiryn from Colorado, Karen and Karenni medics, Eliya’s wife and daughter, two KWO ladies, two FBR relief teams and 11 mules and horses) followed one group of FBR teams to the south.

We divided our leadership team into two headquarters groups- HQ1 and HQ2 to go along with the new teams, help them on their first mission and to assist in communications. HQ 1 of the Animals, Matt (FBR video man) and I went north with some of the new teams. Right away (as per reports) we began meeting and treating fleeing IDPs. The new teams including new Karenni and a Kachin team went right into action, providing help (most of the medicine was from Partners- thanks!) and giving love- they are really wonderful. There are over 25,000 people displaced and we have met many people that we knew from earlier trips- now they are on the run. We also met two women we knew from before- one who lost one of her twins while fleeing and the other with a child crippled by illness as the family fled. (We sent photos and that story earlier).

Karen’s group and HQ2 walked for three days to another area and began their Program while the teams split off and went deeper with HQ 2 (Nate is part of this team). Most of the Burma Army attacks are occurring in the area we (HQ1) are in now, but some attacks including the attack on a village, have resumed in the area Karen, the GLC team and HQ 2 were in so she had to move a half day back with villagers and IDPs. She and the GLC team are continuing their mission going from village to village while HQ2 and the new teams are responding to the attack.

Everyone is doing their duty and if the situation permits we hope to link back up for Christmas some where in this area. We then plan to resupply in the field and continue the mission.

Through the train up of new teams for these missions and up to now we have been grateful for all of you prayers and support. Also this has been a time for me of really seeing how little of my heart I give to God and how easily swayed I am in my feelings by circumstances. I was writing a message to a frontline Karen leader and ending the message with Proverbs 3:5-6 and realized I left out the part that says “with all your heart”. It is difficult for most of us I think, to trust God with all of our hearts. I am very grateful for your prayers and God’s mercy to help us do that. We will try daily to trust God with our whole hearts and for me it is like a choice between the planting and growing of two different trees; one called Doubt, the other Faith.

There are two trees before me I can help to grow. One is the tree of doubt-This one is easy to see, and has a clear, seemingly straight shot to they sky. It grows fast. But everytime I put energy into helping that tree grow- and grow it does- the fruit that comes is poison with all of poison’s effects to me and others.

The other tree- is called faith, and is much harder to grow. It is often choked by weeds and we seem to be standing in a thicket where we can not even see the sky. But the efforts of faith, prayer, the help of others as well as clinging to God for help, makes it grow- however slowly. The Wonderful thing is that the fruit of this tree is good in every way. And it is the fruit of this tree by which God gives us a insight into His view. By this fruit we can see some of the results of faith. Faith, by earthly definition can not be seen, but by the good fruit that comes from it, God has given us an insight into it. He has given us something tangible to hold on to. My prayer for you is the same as it is for me; to choose to grow the tree of faith and hold on to God for the strength to do it.

Thank you and may God bless you all,

“Trust in the Lord will all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths”. Proverbs 3:5-6