Impact Blog

Philippines Journey of Compassion- Second Report

As you may have seen from reading the various reports from team members, we are having an awesome Journey here in the Philippines. We have been on the island of Samar; it is on the east side of the Philippines. Samar is the second poorest area in the country. They have suffered not only the effects of typhoon Yolana, the super-typhoon that hit in late 2013, but also typhoon Ruby that hit late last year. Ruby was a direct hit, destroying houses, tearing down banana plantations and coconut groves, and destroying rice harvests. The economic impact of Ruby has been devastating.

Wherever out team goes, we are greeted with great warmth and enthusiasm. Whether we are presenting the Gospel in evening meetings,   as we walk along the streets, or as we pray for families in their homes––the response almost universal. People eagerly give their hearts and lives to Jesus. Usually, every single person receives Him.

Yesterday was very special. In the morning the men went to a prison where they had an opportunity to share testimonies and preach to a group of about 35 men. Fifteen of them came forward to receive Christ. Meanwhile, the ladies were at a hospital, praying for the sick. They saw many healings, among both the patients and their visiting relatives. They also saw many come to Jesus. I don’t know how many received him, but just one of our team lead 25 to the Lord.

In the afternoon, we went to an isolated community called Surok. We all had to get into dugout canoes and cross the river, carrying buckets for our water filters. Some of the team installed water filters. This area had been suffering from typhoid; the filters would instantly remove that threat. Meanwhile, others spent a couple of hours going from house to house, visiting and praying for the sick. Every home invited us in. Immediately upon arriving, Ray and I met a lovely 15 year old girl named Annika. Two days earlier, Ray and a few others had gone over to this village for a short time. While there, Ray met Annika and had opportunity to lead her to Jesus. Now Annika was taking us all over the community, leading us to where she knew the sick were, and helping us to pray. We met an old lady named Lola who was deaf and could only take a few painful steps because of her arthritic knees. Her family indicated that Lola’s deafness was difficult for everyone. We prayed once and nothing seemed to happen, so we prayed again. Now she could hear partially. We prayed again, and she could hear perfectly well. (We stood behind her and spoke more and more quietly. Lola heard it all.) Then we prayed for her knees. Immediately they were healed, too.

There was a small covered area near the river where we invited people to come at 5:30. It was raining, so we didn’t know if anyone would show up. They certainly did; about 60 people came. We sang songs together (they eagerly joined right in), a few of the team spoke briefly, we told them about this Jesus who comes to make everything new, and then asked if they would like to know this Jesus. Every hand went up. We all prayed together, then we asked if there were any who needed healing.

We had brought with us, Pastor Sam, a wonderful man who is a church planter and who had a great ministry for children and the poor. Every Saturday morning, he gathers 300 poor children in the town and teaches them; every Sunday afternoon, he has 100 teenagers come to his church. I introduced Pastor Sam to the people and he met with these new believers and arranged for them to all meet again in a building that someone there had just made available.

And so, once again, we felt like we were living the book of Acts. People were healed and saved, and a church was started. We headed back across the river, amazed and so very thankful for what the Lord had done. This is why we go to the nations.

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