“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever. Amen.” Romans 11:36

Glory is going to be her name. She has and will bring glory to God.

‘Elaine’ is the wife of the pastor of the Burmese church we have been attending. I first noticed her soft-spoken nature and the elegance she naturally presents, but after talking to her I realized that the quality she possesses that stands out the most is her reverence of God.

Bethel Burmese congregation poses with CHI students: Jane, Madison and Elias.

Members of the Bethel Burmese congregation pose with CHI students: Jane, Madison and Elias.

Elaine grew up in a Christian home in Burma, where only 3% of the population followed the same faith as her family. Like most of the other congregation members she had to escape to Malaysia as a young refugee woman in hopes of one day coming to the United States.

She kept her faith strong even as refugee in a foreign country through fellowship with other believers. In Malaysia, she met her husband who would later convert from Buddhism to Christianity. As she told me this story, her husband showed me a photo of himself when he was a monk. Yet here in front of me, he sits as a pastor of a church who is spreading the good news. It is truly amazing to see the way that God works, sometimes in the most unexpected but powerful ways.

The couple has had one daughter together since arriving to the United States and Elaine is now pregnant with their second child. I asked her if she knew what she wanted to name her second child. She proceeded to tell me the story of how she decided to name her future daughter.

A while back when Elaine was a couple of months pregnant, she fell down the steps in front of the church. She was rushed to the hospital where the doctor told her she had a 50% chance of her baby living. A couple of days later, her prayers were answered when they found out that their baby was going to live and be perfectly fine. A few more months later into her pregnancy, she went in for a regular check-up and came out with some bad news. The doctor told her that her baby may be born with Down syndrome.

Elaine and her husband were in shock and she told me about how they prayed to God fervently and that they trusted in His will for them and their family. As more time progressed in her pregnancy, she went in for another check-up and both Elaine and her doctor were surprised to find out that the baby would be born healthy and normal.

She believed that everything that happened was to glorify God and thus she wanted to name her daughter Glory. For me, it was beautiful to sit and listen to Elaine’s story because through her I am able to see a bit more of God’s love for His children. Her faith and walk with Christ is what sustains her and should be what sustains all of us. She gave Him the control and had faith in Him in every struggle of her life. The life she lives is a light for the world and it’s absolutely beautiful, just like her.

Melissa Puntkattalee - CHI 2013 participant  Jane is a participant in Siloam’s Community Health Immersion.

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