MYANMAR MISSION 2016
Health Teams International's Myanmar Mission led by Dr. Richard Charlick in January, 2016 for the 14th year was very successful. We had 10 medical, dental and optical health care providers, treated over 1600 patients which included 800 that were fit with eyeglasses for the 1st time. We had over 730 people who asked to become Christians so we had the privilege and honor as a team to lead them to Jesus.
Two of the areas we went to were very strict Buddhist areas that had never had a group of foreigners, let alone Christians, come to their area. In one area the Mayor or head government man was strongly opposed to us coming into his area. He came to check us out the first day. After he went to our group evangelism session he chose not to become a Christian. After seeing our physicians, getting treated and getting some medicine he went to Dora May and received some glasses which greatly improved his vision. He then came to me and had his aching, abscessed tooth removed without any pain.
I told him who we were and why we came and asked him if he knew what a Christian believed. He said no, but after witnessing Christian Love in the way he had been treated he agreed to let me tell him what Christians believed. I started with creation, explained all about Jesus and that Jesus was the only way to be reincarnated directed into Heaven. Although he was a very strong Buddhist and the top influential leader of the area, he asked to become a Christian. He wanted to go to Heaven.
After 40 minutes or so I was able to teach him and lead him in prayer and he was very excited to become a Christian. I used the same method that the Holy Spirit helped me develop on my first mission to Myanmar 14 years ago and is recorded in the last chapter of my book, Mission Possible.
When we were all done he said to me, "I have great peace in my heart, thank you very much for telling me about Jesus." Then he said, "You know you people are very good people. If there is any way I can help you please let me know. I will make sure no one bothers you."
My translator had been translating for our teams a couple times several years ago. Since then he received more Christian training, got married, had children and became a Pastor in a country outside Myanmar. He asked Jubilee, our host, if he could come back to Myanmar without his family, on his vacation, and translate for our mission. He became my translator. He has a big evangelistic heart. When I asked him why he wanted to come all this way just to translate for me he said, "You people have such a good way of leading our unreached Buddhist people to Jesus. You lead more people to Jesus in 2 weeks than I can in a year. I feel so good when I can help lead my people to Jesus. I will go home all fired up as a better Christian and Pastor."
Another very memorable and rewarding experience was when I had the head Buddhist Monk of a very large local Buddhist Monastery sit down in my dental chair in much pain. I gave some local dental anesthesia and the pain disappeared. While the medicine was working better (it usually lasts 1 to 2 hours) he agreed to let me tell him what Christians believe. After 30-40 minutes, again sharing the same information, he asked if he could become a Christian so he could be reincarnated directly into Heaven, since I told him that the Bible tells us Jesus is the only way to Heaven, there wasn't any other way in the whole world.
He was very excited and very thankful. I knew it changed his life because he asked if he could have my Christian cross necklace (cheap plastic) I was wearing. I gladly put it on him. I took my camera that immediately prints out pictures, took a picture of him with my translator and myself and printed out a copy and told him this is for him to remember the most important day of his life - when he decided where he was were going when he died and he can now spend eternity in Heaven, because he heard about and accepted Jesus. Then I gave him our 30 page booklet that our host made up for us that repeated all the information and steps he went through to become a Christian.
The second thing that happened that proved to me his life was changed, he asked if my wife, Dora May, who had fit him with glasses before he saw me, would come and sit beside him and me and get a picture taken together. Buddhist Monks are taught to never get anywhere near a woman. I was happy because I knew his life and beliefs of Buddhism had changed.
Then I said something I have never said before on any mission trips. I guessed I sensed his sincerity. I told him that his people were very kind and good people but my heart was broken that there has been no one here to tell them about Jesus because they have never heard, and they will never be able to become Christians and go to Heaven. I told him there were so many people that needed to hear and I couldn't tell everyone. It was then I received the shock of my life. This Monk that is head of a large Buddhist Monastery, who had just become a Christian said, "I will help you tell my people about Jesus. Please give me many more booklets and I will be your helper".
Only God and His Holy Spirit changes people's lives and performs miracles and with tears in my eyes I felt I had just seen a miracle.
I could relate many more stories of the miracles I saw and the change in people's lives on this mission, when people truly invited Jesus into their heart and life. I am greatly rewarded and totally happy when I can see people who have never heard the name of JESUS ask and become Christians and see their life change.
This year for the 8th year I have had 100% of all non-Christians that sat in my dental chair ask to become Christians and with help they prayed to invite Jesus into their heart and life and truly become Christians.
The Lord is good. I feel very privileged, happy and rewarded to work as His servant especially on these Myanmar missions.
Peace and Joy in Jesus Christ
Richard E. Charlick, D.D.S., M.S. Author
Pres/CEO Health Teams International
Assoc. Prof. Emeritus U. of Mich. Dental School