Wednesday, November 20, 2013

They Were Once his Enemies, Now they are his Mission Field

Recently I was blessed to travel with Go To Nations president Jerry Williamson (pictured below) and his team of pastors and ministers. He took them on a trip to Davao, Philippines for a pastors conference for church leaders who minister to the tribal people groups in Southern Philippines. Some readers may recall I have served this effort before.

On this trip we met Pastor Manuel (pictured below with his hands raised). He has an interesting history; he is a former cannibal.

Now he leads a very different life as the pastor of his church among his tribe, and also as a missionary to other tribes in Southern Philippines. The tribes that were once his enemies, they are now his mission field.

It is hard for me to fathom what his faith costs him. It is hard for me to fathom what sacrifices and dangers he must face as he ministers to warring tribes. Join me in prayer for Pastor Manuel, and join me by being inspired by his example.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Typhoon Haiyan Relief, by Christine

I have often seen others doing relief work after a devastating storm and thought how awesome and exciting it must be to be in the front lines helping those who have just been through the tragedy. But Wednesday as I began helping with the relief work here in Iloilo, I realized- as I counted out matchboxes, sorted clothes, stuffed bags with food, folded tarps and cut hundreds of meters of twine- that relief work is tedious and laborious and desperately needed even without the excitement and glory that I so mistakenly thought it was like.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I realize now after traveling north and seeing the loss of infrastructure, the loss of houses and the loss of so much nature- a thousand words is really not even enough to express the loss so many have felt.  

Each house that was lost during the storm represents a family. Before we headed north, it was hard to grasp how much damage one storm could do, but now I have seen. I wish the pictures could represent it more fully. On Saturday Eric, Faith and I, left our house at 7am to travel north three hours to Sitio Dae-as Lupo Altavas Aklan. We traveled with fellow missionaries Nate and Abegail Shuck and some friends. We took bags of food and tarps for 125 families there.

While we were there I met a woman who was in her house as the roof was ripped off.  I asked her if she was afraid- she looked at me with tears welling in her eyes and nodded.

Another woman just cried and hugged all of us so thankful for the little we had to give.  As we left, they told us we were the first ones to bring any relief aid at all.