To be quite honest, writing a prayer letter from the mission field to those in America, who are going through some of the same craziness that is more common around the world, seems strange, yet here we are in the midst of a worldwide event that touches all corners. Please know that we are praying for you, as we know that you continue to pray for us.
What we believed to be a short-term interruption to our regular schedule has turned into a no-end-in-sight change to almost every facet of our ministry. Just to update you on what we are doing and how God’s goodness is evident, I’ll share with you the following and ask that you pray for some items where we need to see God work.
Our area of the Philippines is currently under what they are calling “General Community Quarantine,” but because of new cases of COVID-19 in our area, there is the possibility of it continuing longer or becoming more stringent again. Currently, all young people (21 years and below) and elderly (60 and above) are not supposed to be outside their homes. Only one member of a household may be out at a time for essentials. There is food delivery, but no dine-in, and churches (mass gatherings) are limited to 10 people. We have begun allowing members, who are eligible to be out, to reserve seats in one of our four small gatherings taking place at the same time on the church property. One service is live, and the others are watching it streamed through Facebook Live. Many of our members, who are able to, are watching the livestreaming, and many of those are gathering in homes together and seeing friends and neighbors saved and faithfully watching the services with them. Sadly, not all of our members have Internet or the ability to stream services. It’s not the same, and service after service, we long to be back to what we are accustomed to; but we are thankful for what we are allowed to do at this time.
Our members are using social media to communicate with one another and reach out to the lost during this time. Almost daily, there are those sharing how they were able to lead some acquaintance to Christ online. A few of our men drive for a food delivery service, and this has allowed them to make quick visits to some of our members while they make a delivery near to them.
Because of the generosity of some churches, we have been able to supply food and help with other urgent needs during this time where so many are unable to work, or their work has been made so minimal that they are unable to support their families. Government assistance here is minimal and not always reliable. Please continue to pray for our church family; pray that their faith will not fail during this time and that their needs will continue to be supplied.
Please pray concerning our visas. Our family has been here for 10 years, and we can only extend our visa for up to 10 years. This means that we must leave the country and return to restart the process. We had plans to leave at the end of June for a trip to Thailand and back. Obviously, those plans are on hold, but it leaves questions on what Immigration will or will not allow us to do going forward. Please pray for wisdom and for God to open the way for us to care for this properly.
Would you pray about our radio station status? I can’t help but think about how wonderful it would for us to be on the air during this time. Please pray that when the door opens, we will have what we need to set up our studio and get on the air soon.
Thank you for loving us. We are grateful for your faithfulness and faithful support.
Thank you for being faithful,
As the pandemic was starting, we began utilizing Facebook Messenger as a medium for our folks to go through the discipleship material, Foundations of My Faith. Nearly 80 of our members have begun this, and just in the past week, I began advertising it as a free Bible study through Facebook Messenger. Already we have new students, and the goal is to witness to them first and then help them through the material while we attempt to get them into church. Already we’ve had some response with folks either already saved, but looking for church, or trusting Christ. Pictured here is a young woman in our city who is now going though Foundations of My Faith and plans to attend church with her boyfriend this Sunday.
One of our college young ladies shared this experience she had, witnessing to an old classmate over Facebook Messenger. We may be locked down, but the Gospel is not locked up. We are printing thousands of tracts during this time to be ready to flood our city with the Gospel once the floodgates are lifted.