Thursday, November 15, 2007

My Trip to Davao, THIS is Church

The exclamation point at the end of this trip was Sunday morning service at God's People Christian Fellowship Badjao Community Church.

The Badjao community is a true squatter village. The Badjao people do not own any land. Their entire community is built over the water with their houses and buildings on raised stilts. Many of the families depend on the ocean for their livelihood. Many of the Badjao men I met were pearl divers.

They are very poor but also very passionate about Christ. They are true worshipers, praising God with all their hearts. In their poverty they still have much joy.

During praise and worship the place was literally hopping. Since the church, just like their homes, is built on stilts over the water, the building was swaying and moving up and down during worship.

We had a powerful time of prayer. Many people came forward for ministry.

When this man came to church he was blind. When he left church that day he could see. Prayer really does work. Prayer really does change things. Miracles really do happen. I have now seen this with my own two eyes, just like this man.

Here is a member of Davao's finest, one of our police escorts for the day.

Near the church is a mosque that is unfortunately very hostile to this church and to Christians in general. There have been some incidents of violence toward the church and its members. This is why we needed a police escort for our visit. There was even a gang of rough necks (or as my friend officer Jimmy Capone would say, "knuckleheads") that had to be kicked out of the church service.

My visit to this church has blessed me in so many ways. These people are some of the poorest I have ever seen. Their homes are literally little shacks built on stilts. And yet in the midst of their poverty, they are very rich in their faith in Christ. This fact makes them richer than most. Their faith is powerful and passionate. They love Jesus with all their hearts, and it shows.


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