Category Archives: Philippines Mission Work
WHAT FAITH IN GOD IS ALL ABOUT
(This was the theme for a series of lessons I taught in Adult Bible Class in January 2016, ending with a sermon on the topic of Faith, Hope and Love this past Sunday, 1-31-16. This and forthcoming posts are excerpts and editions of my teachings.)
#1 LEARNING GOD’S WORD AND ENCOURAGING BIBLE STUDY IN 2016
Our focus for this New Year is about drawing closer to God and His Word, and increasing our Faith. God reveals Himself and His plan for our lives in the Bible, the Word of God. The BIBLE can be summed up as a study manual for those who believe in Jesus Christ as:
Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth
Believer’s Instruction Book for Life Eternal
We’ll be learning about FAITH:
Forsaking All I Trust Him
Forsaking All I Take Him.
Many pastors live by FAITH IN GOD in the Philippines. They have no contract for a salary and/or housing and car allowance and comfortable life as most of their American counterparts. In many churches we’ve been to in Northern Luzon, there were meager offerings. God provides for the pastor with gifts of fish, chicken, rice, eggs and prepared meals from church members. On the mission field one can expect good Christian hospitality and native meals, but in only one church I preached at did I ever have an offering given to me, which I tried return unsuccessfully. It was a 500 pesos note or about 10 U.S. dollars. We know of folks who pray, ‘Give us this day our daily bread. . .’ We were more blessed than the people we went to bless because we saw them LIVING their faith, one day at a time. One Filipino pastor said:
FAITH is Food Always In The House! AMEN!
THE BIBLE IS MORE THAN JUST A BEST SELLER BOOK!
A BLUE PRINT– The BIBLE is the BLUE PRINT of God’s Plan and Purpose for Man. It is revealed within the pages of Genesis to Revelation. It is the history of man’s beginning and his ending. God is the Master architect and builder in whose hands are the details of His Eternal Kingdom that He is preparing for all those who choose to be a part of it.
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. 1Cor 2:9-10
A MAP- As a MAP, A MASTER MAP, the BIBLE connects where man originated and migrated with races and nations of people, tracking them to the present day on current geo-political maps. The Bible is as current as today’s world news, so that careful study of the prophetic books and warnings of Jesus Himself tell us exactly what is happening in the world. Briefly, the Bible describes the breakdown of society and man’s leadership; what is yet to come; the location of the final world war and line up of nations that will side against Israel, and where the largest world assembly will be held at the end of man’s rule (Zech 8:3; Micah ch. 4:1-2).
A COMPASS AND GPS (Global Positioning System)- The BIBLE serves as our COMPASS to point us in the right direction. It is important to know how to read a compass correctly or you will get lost! When I was a teen, our family went on a cross-country trip in the U.S. Shortly after we started out we went 100 miles off course because of not holding the map right and having the compass needle pointing to True North. A compass is needed to show the way to our destination. Making wrong choices will result in wrong turns, dead ends, obstacles and getting into strange and/or dangerous situations. So the compass works together with the map to get our bearing 1)to see where we are, and to know which direction we’re headed to get where we want to go.
The GPS of the modern age of technology allows us to use our car or iPhone to follow a route to a desired location. The GPS game, ‘Geo Caching’ that is played all over our island and world-wide is a fun, hide-and-seek game of treasure hunting. Our family has had a lot of fun going to unusual places all over the island of Oahu to find some of the treasures by following clues from the Internet. God’s COMPASS/GPS are very exacting, essential for going on a treasure hunt, looking for the blessings and rewards He has for those who love and obey Him. Our clues are found in the Word of God, the Bible. It is God who sets the standards and we have to go by His game rules. The wonderful thing about the Bible is that as a map and compass and GPS, it helps us to find our way to God and eternal life. Without the Bible, we would all be lost!
We need to not only READ, but also STUDY the Bible to meet God’s approval, and not be ashamed of lacking understanding of God’s expectations of us.
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2Tim 2:15
Do you want to be BLESSED? Then read your Bible and meditate on the scriptures!
Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. Psa 1:1-2
GOD BLESS YOU! Next Lesson- ‘WHY GOD’S WORD IS IMPORTANT’
Edited post on Philippines Mission- This is being reblogged because I noticed the photos got separated from each other when I did the post in 2012.
Going by boat to the small island of Pugaro. Me on the right accompanied by a pastor’s wife. I’m the guest speaker for the Sunday service. I’ve preached there a number of times- a lot of youth and old folks faithfully await the infrequent visits of American missionaries to encourage them in their faith. The island is near Dagupan City. The church is very humble with open air windows and the folks are happy to have an American missionary bring them a fresh Word from God. I often give strong words of exhortation to be faithful to God in their daily living, etc. and pray for their needs. Then after church I will have a lunch of milk fish/bangus and vegetables with them!
(First posted on 1-31-13, Vision of a Departing Train in ‘PROPHETIC VISIONS’ on Tab Bar)
This vision was shared during lunch at the Star Plaza Hotel while I was on a mission trip to Dagupan City, Philippines in 2001.
I saw a large train and people were boarding it. It was departure time. I heard the conductor call out in a loud voice, “ALL ABOARD!”
He saw a train on fire as it went up into the sky and he recognized the faces of some of his own church members who were in the train. He said that it was like when Elijah was taken up to heaven in a chariot of fire, ‘fire’ meaning Holy Ghost fire. We both were impressed by the Holy Spirit that the visions were confirmation that Jesus is returning soon.
We need to know where we’re going and how to get there. But we also need the right ticket in our hand and need to be ready at the right place when the train pulls up. The return of Jesus Christ could be at any time. It will be like the train coming up the tracks and hearing the train conductor call out, “All Aboard!” Jesus has been calling all this time, but soon it will be the last and final call of ”All Aboard!”. If you’re ready and waiting, you’ll be transported to your heavenly destination. If not, you’ll be LEFT BEHIND!
FEEDING PROGRAMS- BRINGING JESUS TO THE PEOPLE
Many families come to know about the love of God and His gift of salvation that He offers ALL who will come to Him. Jesus said,
“Let the children come to me, and don’t stop them: for the kingdom of God is made up of those with childlike faith.” (Mark 10:14, paraphrased)
We do a lot of singing and action songs and simple craft activities with the children like this paper folding of a cross. One sheet of paper folded like a paper plane and one tear done very carefully, will result in a cross with the scraps that make the word ‘LIFE’. These beautiful Filipino children are so well behaved. In these pictures we worked with 45 or so kids in a tight, confined space and the miracle is that no one lost their tiny paper scraps to complete their activity!
It is truly amazing that with outreach programs like this, hundreds of children and adults are able to be taught about eternal life, the gift of God to all who believe:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him (Jesus) should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
Parents and grandparents who accompany the children to a feeding program event will also be taught the gospel by church workers and missionaries like myself and my husband. Then afterwards, everyone will be served delicious hot ‘sopa’ which is like a light milky macaroni soup with bits of chicken or thin slices of sausage. That is my favorite Filipino comfort food.
At another feeding program in a ‘poorer’ area the folks lined up with their bowls and spoons for plain hot noodles dished out from a huge pot, and they were invited to attend the barangay/community church.
Sometimes special services are held at night and because there will always be a meal served, it seems like a whole barangay will be walking on a road (no lights) toward a church at dusk. Before the service is over, many more people will have arrived and the small country church would be bursting at its seams! Later, meals would be handed to those lined up in several lines for a late dinner and bottled drink. Again, respect and order always prevails. I love the Filipino people! And God loves them even more!
You know, writing this post makes me miss being on the mission field!
http://www.fcmuk.org/freebies/talks/crosfold.htm Paper folding cross. We did a simpler version.
This post is about a miracle in March 2000 on our first of 14 missionary trips to the Philippines:
Saved and Protected By God’s Angels!
Our very first trip to the Philippines in late March 2000, 12 years ago, was a great blessing and an eye-opener for Wyman and I. Many people were very eager to receive the Lord and to be saved, to be filled with the Holy Spirit, healed, delivered and blessed, much like during Jesus’ days. It seems that everyone was very open to God’s presence in our meetings and open air crusades.
Traveling along the MacArthur Highway from Manila to Bangui via Laoag City, a distance of over 350 miles, our mission team of 10 people rode in a large Jeepney. After several stopovers for a few days along the way, we headed for Bangui, the furthermost northern tip of the Philippines archipelago. While traveling in April, the beginning of the hottest time of the year, the weather was already sweltering with afternoon temperatures in the mid-90s. This leg of our trip would take us about seven hours. We had a harrowing life-threatening experience. Two drivers plus a team member were in the front seat, and the rest of us with our two baggages each, piled uncomfortably into the back of the large Jeepney. We were packed in like sardines, some with handkerchiefs to wipe our often sweaty brows!
Then the devil tried to kill us when we left Binalonan on the way to Bangui. He hated us for preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ and doing the Lord’s work. We were lumbering northward in the Jeepney going about 45 mph in normal light traffic when about two hours out, a compact car ahead of us had a tire blowout. Our driver jammed on his brakes, hitting the car in front of us, causing some slight dents to the trunk and bumper. At the same time a large 50 passenger Partas air-conditioned bus that was following very close behind, hit us. I looked back when I heard the blowout and saw that the bus was heading right for us and knew we were going to be hit! There was no time to even pray as it happened so fast!
But we experienced a great miracle that day! The Lord had His angels stop the careening big bus from killing us, such that it only kissed the Jeepney, giving us just a sharp jolt and causing only a slight dent to our heavy Jeepney. Had the bus not been able to stop, the crushing impact would have seriously injured or even caused deaths among us. God in His mercy intervened by having His angels protect us so that no one was injured. Upon the impact, one of the ladies handkerchief flew out of her hand and landed in the hand of another guy in the rear of the Jeepney. After more than an hour delay for settling cash payment for damages to the car ahead, our Jeepney continued the balance of the trip to Laoag City, and then to Bangui. We then had a beautiful revival time at the little church in Bangui and with the extended Bolosan family there!
In obedience to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ (Mark 16:15), we went and God was with us all the Way! He was watching over us and knew of our every move. He had sent us into a far-off land to be His emissaries to bring life and deliverance to the people in the Philippines. Here are some scripture verses that relate to this incident:
Psalms 91:11-12 “For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.”
Hebrews 1:14 “Are they not all ministering (angels), sent to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?”
Proverbs 12:28 “In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death.”
In Pozorubio, Philippines, Wyman and I went fishing in the marketplace with Pastor Jimmy and Pastor Roy. We joined them in marketplace preaching which is fishing for souls to bring them the gospel of salvation. Jesus said, in Matthew 4:19, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Last evening we attended the United Christian Fellowship of Filipino churches in Hawaii. It was the 2012 annual conference with great worship, sharing and teachings. We were also on the program to share our experiences as missionaries in the Philippines.
Before the evening service we had a dinner of Filipino foods that my husband and I have learned to enjoy. I got in the line and served myself some rice, various vegetable dishes, and a dish that looked like fried brown rice, passing up the meat dishes like I usually do. Then I went and sat down between a pastor on my left and another pastor’s wife on my right while Wyman sat not far from me to talk to old friends. I asked the pastor on my left, “What is this that I’m eating? It’s very tasty!” Smiling, he said, “I only know the Filipino name, ‘abuos’ and yes, it’s very good!” By then I had finished eating that part of my meal and turned to the pastor’s wife on the right side of me and pointing to the food on her plate, I asked her, “What is that? It’s very good!” She proceeded to tell me that it was a delicacy someone brought back from the Philippines. FRIED ANT EGGS AND LARVAE!!! That’s what I found out I ate after I finished eating them! Then the man on my left was asking me if I also ate grasshoppers and caterpillars like the kind sold from the sidewalk stalls in Vietnam . . .
I was told that giant ants/termites’ eggs and larvae are harvested from trees like the tamarind tree and are relished by Filipino people and other racial groups as well. They are a good source of protein and will lower blood pressure. Now, would I have eaten that delicacy if I knew what it was. . .