This past weekend, two events happened that had great impact on my mind. The juxtaposition of the freeing of Noble Prize Laurette winner Aung San Suu Kyi and the death of Toe Kyi have given me cause for reflection. On the one hand we see a lady who was held captive for twenty years suddenly released, on the other we see a man in the prime of life, contract cancer and after a late diagnosis (two weeks ago) pass on.
We are going to miss Toe Kyi in our community. He arrived here three years ago after a protracted stay in a Thailand refugee camp for Burmese citizens. He was a caring head of a household of six. But he was trapped in a body that was dying of cancer. In fact, in the last few days he was in extreme discomfort that had to be medicated by the staff at the hospital. The Scriptures tell us that once we are free of this earthly body, the believer is immediately present with Jesus. For the believer we have a hope for an eternity with Christ. One day the remains of each of our bodies will be pulled together and crafted into a new one for eternity. Our hope in Jesus is to see Toe Kyi again, to no longer have a language barrier and to enjoy time with him. Our prayer is for each member of his family to find strength and peace and joy in Christ so that one day they will be with Jesus for eternity.
As Aung San Suu Kyi was released we heard a cry of excitement and happiness heard around the world. Granted it was not given much mention in the major news outlets but where it counts, through the ethernet and over the voice connections people spread the word. Indeed the hopes and fears of the Burmese people were spotlighted this past weekend by this announcement. It is my hope that as this woman has been released, there will be more attention paid to a wanton government that has displaced people, allowed an undisciplined army to rape and pillage its own people, and denied Christians the opportunity to freely worship God. I trust this will mark the beginning of a revival among the Burmese, not to look to a woman’s release but to an Almighty God who can change the most hopeless circumstance into something good and new.