Hang Lian: Melody in the Ministry

Hang Lian: Melody in the Ministry

Hang Lian has embraced the challenge of pursuing an education roughly 8,000 miles away from home. Along with the distance from his home in Myanmar, the difference in culture also presents barriers. The friendly environment of BBC, however, was the perfect place for transitioning into the American culture.

Hang LianIn approaching his time at BBC, Hang Lian shares a common motivation with most other students - to be educated, trained, mentored, and equipped for ministry. He plans to use his major in music to impact his church and community in Myanmar.

Growing up, the majority of my friends were Buddhist and Muslim. Under every oak tree in my town there are idols and shrines to the honor of thousands of different gods. Living among unbelievers, I began to question my identity as a "Christian"and how I am different from them. In the summer of 2001, our church had a youth camp during the Burmese festival Thingyan. It was there that I trusted in Jesus Christ as my personal Savior. Since then, God has been working in me and molding me. He has constantly proven to this day that He knows exactly what is needed in me to be more like Christ. I am blessed to have parents who constantly pray for me and show me how to live a life that pleases God.

My family became aware of BBC through missionaries from ABWE who would visit my father's seminary in Yangon. Three of my siblings, Lydia San Lun, Sang Pi, and Kim Pi, attended BBC in the past; I am the last one to graduate this May. This is a unique blessing that God has poured on our family.

Not only at BBC is the Bible taught for what it is - the inspired Word of God - but it forms the foundation for everything the college does. The professors love and fear the Lord and show their genuine care by investing in students' lives inside and outside of the classroom. BBC is unique; it is more intimate because of the smaller classes, which encourages me to participate more.

Adjusting to the American culture has helped me to appreciate different cultures. This included our differences in humor, as well as observing and imitating behavior, such as observing and emulating the way people eat, greet, walk, and take turns in a discussion. Even the way you reflect or even ask the professor a question during class. My friends and professors also have helped me tremendously over the years as they recognized the needs that I might have in adjusting to the culture. As for the food, I am trying my best to enjoy anything that involves cheese.

It is definitely humbling to see the professors striving for godliness here at BBC. They prioritize the Word in their lives and make prayer part of their lives. I am always encouraged when the professors pray before classes or a music recital. All over campus, you see professors investing their time in students and mentoring them to be example of their faith. I am also involved with the Student Mission Fellowship team at BBC, serving as the prayer administrator. My job is to collect all the prayer letters from missionaries and the persecuted churches from all around the world, then distribute them to different prayer-band leaders every week for prayer meetings.

I am a senior in the five-year Church Music program. Four of those years, I have been involved with the Concert Chorale and taken tours to New England and the Midwest during spring breaks. My professors have challenged me to be persistently striving for Christlike maturity as they themselves have shown in their lives. It is most certain that I will hear scriptural truths from them every time I have a music lesson or class. This is what I will probably miss most. They also helped me to grow in my musical ability. That includes being able to interpret the complexity of a musical piece and practicing discipline in performing well. I am eager to teach and share with others this knowledge.

As an international student living away from home for a while, the professors are my "parents" whom I can trust and talk to when needing immediate godly feedback and input. The online classes were also helpful and convenient for me to take classes online while back at home in Myanmar during the summer.

For the past five years, during summer, I was involved with one of the newly planted churches in a Chin community in Tulsa, OK, where I played the piano and led worship. God provided for my financial need last year allowing me to go back home to Myanmar for the first time in four years. I was able to reconnect with my home church, work with the youth, and renew relationships with church members.

Lord willing, I want to pursue a Master of Church Music degree. God gave me a passion for music, and when I go back home my hope is to teach music in high schools and assist in my church. The Burmese culture and religion are musically saturated and I desire to develop a community in music ministry and share the gospel. The need for higher education in Myanmar is great and I want to be flexible to teach whenever an opportunity arises.

Contact Info:
Learn more about music majors at BBC here.

Baptist Bible College & Seminary offers outstanding Christian higher education through on-campus, online, and other distance learning options. Students go beyond the ordinary, learning to think biblically, grow spiritually, and serve faithfully as they gain critical leadership and life skills.

To learn more, go to or call 570.586.2400.

Posted on: 4/21/2014 10:42:15 AM

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