UPDATE: HSI HTOO WAS RELEASED FROM JAIL ON 15 JUNE 2011. WE PRAISE GOD AND THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR PRAYERS. TO LEARN MORE ABOUT HIS IMPRISONMENT, PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING BLOG BELOW.

“Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.”

Philippians 1:12-14

Yesterday, I learned that some bible school students of mine are now in trouble with the refugee camp authorities. From what I understand here is what’s happening.

Hsi Htoo on an evangelism trip with Farthest Corners (May 2011)

A young man named Dawna is a bible student of mine at a refugee camp close to our home.  He is about thirty years old and while life has given him a heavy hand (he is stricken by polio), he has a strong and resilient faith. Recently, Dawna went to another refugee camp as an evangelist. A few weeks later he missed his check by the UN and this has angered his mother a great deal. So Dawna’s mother blamed two of his Christian friends for taking him away. The authorities in the camp have now put these men in prison for abduction. This is all pretty crazy because the son wanted to go to proclaim the good news and his friends only went with him to make sure he made it all right. I know this as a fact because they stayed in my home for one night on their way to the other other refugee camp.

Hsi Htoo in the Refugee Camp Jail

One of these students whose name is Hsi Htoo is now locked up for this supposed abduction. Hsi Htoo is a young man that Farthest Corners is working with so that he may soon go and serve as an evangelist in another village about two days walk from our home.

Sinte visiting with Hsi Htoo

Jail in a refugee camp is not a pleasant place. To me it looks more like a pig cage made out of bamboo  and wood. It’s about three feet tall and about 10 feet long and 4 feet wide. It’s a cage not a jail. Hsi Htoo is allowed out two times a day to go to the bathroom. However, in all of this Hsi Htoo shared with me how at first he was very angry. This became even more so when the mother of his friend came to the jail to yell and blame him for her son being away from her. But as time has gone on he’s become more hopeful that this situation, that his wrongful imprisonment will bring more glory to God!

Hsi Htoo

Today, I met with the Camp Leader. The Camp Leader seems sympathetic and has asked for the authorities to investigate both sides of the story. So things may change for the better. There is great hope by Hsi Htoo that God will be glorified in all of this wrongfulness. Even when suffering seems all to often to be a requirement in our faith, we should pray for Hsi Htoo to be strengthened in the hope our Lord provides.

So when you pray please ask God for Hsi Htoo’s release. But more importantly honor God and praise Him for His goodness. Whether we are imprisoned wrongfully in a refugee camp prison or if we are just sitting in the comfort of our air-conditioned home in the middle of a heat wave. Remember, God is good all the time! To Him alone be the glory!!!