I was born in Kenya and my wife Lorna was born in the Philippines. This year during the Easter holidays, we, Lorna, my two teenage sons and I visited the Philippines. Our trip was split into two parts – the northern and southern regions of the Philippines. This was a visit we had longed to make, especially to introduce our sons to their relatives whom they have never met, to meet friends that we have not seen in a long while, and to share our faith in Christ with them. Over the last few years, our family and friends in the Philippines have encountered many heart-breaking tragedies, and we sensed a great need to prepare ourselves for what God wanted to do during our visit. Therefore, before we left Australia, we spent much time in prayer and fasting, and sought prayer support from our life group and church leaders.
In northern Philippines, we had a wonderful reunion with Lorna’s family and relatives. On a particular Sunday, we were blessed to have fellowship with a local evangelical church at the village. We have known the local pastor for about a decade and have had the privilege of supporting him through many church planting challenges in the village. The pastor invited us to minister to the congregation – Lorna gave a testimony and I shared a message with the church. God was with us as many people in the congregation responded to God and came forward during the ministering time with many prayer needs for healing and family issues. Praise God for one mother who accepted Christ and many who were empowered to pray for their families. We were humbled to see how God has blessed the church.
Our second destination was Mindanao, the southernmost major island of the Philippines that is most feared for the presence of the rebel group, Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) which has a large presence on the island. God bless two fearless godly sisters who drove half a day to come and pick us from the airport and back the same dangerous road under rain through the rebel’s heartland. We were looking forward to meeting many ones who we used to fellowship with when we lived there 15 years ago. They had invited us to share God’s word and give a testimony during their fellowship meeting on a Sunday night at 7pm.
We arrived 3 hours late but all the families waited patiently. We were greatly encouraged by the warmth of their Christian fellowship and their heart for missions as they have been actively supporting one of the families for their mission work in Cambodia. We thank God for protecting, leading and giving us many opportunities to be His witnesses. Lastly, we would like to thank our life group and church leaders who prayed for us before and during the visit.
Matthew 9:36-37, “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.”
Family 1, Willawong Service