My personal assumption was that I could eat rice every day for three meals and be
I can say where I was this summer, living with eight other people in a two-room house in Barangay
The hospitable culture of the Philippines welcomed us, and God provided us with countless opportunities to share the gospel. Any home would receive us as long as we wanted to share the good news of Christ. The chance was served to us on the finest plate in the house next to large servings of rice.
As a result of that hospitality, five were baptized this summer: Darwin, Christian, Mauriz, Tatay Lino, and Jaycell. All five of them considered the ramifications of following Christ in their community, and all five reevaluated what it means to have a relationship with Christ and question the ways they were raised. This constant questioning provoked persecution from the Catholic community in which they were raised, but every believer from this summer decided it was a worthy cause to follow the way of Jesus by means of an active relationship with God.
Three of the five were in high school – we handed the duties of public ministry within the community to a fifteen-year-old affectionately called “Pastor Darwin” by his schoolmates. Christian had been to “bible school” in the
The relationship between discipleship and evangelism is like oars on a boat. Discipleship without evangelism will leads us in a circle, sharing the gospel without living it puts us in a cycle as well. Darwin and Christian were
Those baptized as believers but not proactively living with us were still raised up to live for Christ; Tatay Lino was not mobile enough to leave his home but he sought to learn the ways of Christ with his granddaughter, Mauriz. The first time our team asked Tatay Lino if he had prayer requests, he wanted to know of salvation. We were very fortunate that he was willing to come forth, and we were thankful God delivered us one who wanted to know.
The realities of what we did and the lessons learned this summer did not bloom in their entirety until I got home, back to Tennessee. I see now the need overseas, that Christ’s prayer was not for souls to magically be saved, but “Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” (Matt. 9:38). God chooses to work through man and gives us the command to go in His great commission (Matt. 28:19-20). Do we see the need of people marching headlong down the path without Christ? Are we doing anything about it?