Dear family and friends,
We are excited to share with you all the great things that the Lord has been doing here over the past 2 months, and we first want to thank you for all that each of you have done through faithful support, prayerfully and financially, THANKS and keep it up!
The most exciting news is that of new people coming to receive Jesus Christ! Our outreach ministries are the heart of all that we do here, and even the rainy season can't stop the spreading of the Gospel. Recent typhoons that have come through have left some people shocked that we would still come to their house to share the Bible with them! And a thrilling part about this is that when I say "we" that doesn't just mean myself and Kristine. Several other faithful members in the Church are very active in evangelism! In the Bible Institute we've started, the students (currently 10) are required to go soul-winning at least once a week, but most of them aren't satisfied with sharing the Gospel just once a week! We praise the Lord that the desire of sharing the Gospel continues to spread in the believers here, please pray that this will always continue! I was even counseling to a new believer recently about baptism and I asked her what should a person do after receiving Christ. Surprisingly, she didn't say "get baptized", but "maghikayat sa mga ibang naligaw na kaluluwa", which simply means, "win other lost souls"! Please pray always for people to surrender their lives to the proclaiming of the Gospel, especially for godly men to surrender to the ministry and the support of the Christians here for them. Concerning financial support, the people here are being challenged to give more and more. A typical monthly offering would be about $200, but I'm challenging them to double this in preparation for greater works, which I believe can be supported by the Filipino peso, not the American dollar. Some have been very faithful in making donations/sacrifices and we're praying for even more of this!
Church attendance has dropped down a little bit, averaging under 100 currently on Sunday mornings. Please pray for some Church members who are being tempted to work on Sunday. Poverty tempts them to work instead of worship sometimes, but we know that if they will be faithful to the Lord first that "all these things shall be added" (Matthew 6:33), so please pray for them to grow deeper in their faith and trust the Lord for the impossible. Please pray also for higher paying jobs for the people. Here in the Philippines there is a minimum wage law, which I believe is currently 220 Pesos per day. The current exchange rate is $53 US for every peso, so that's a little more than $4 per day. The overall cost of living is very low, but even at minimum wage it's tough to get by. However, there is absolutely no enforcement of this law, so it's not uncommon to see people working 12 hours a day and only being paid 150 pesos per day or less. If you are up-to-date on the Filipino economy/government, you are aware that it is one of the most corrupt in all of Asia. Please pray for people in the country who have positions of authority and power, that they would come to know Jesus Christ.
Thank you for your prayers for our health as we've all been very strong, especially Kristine. Concerning little Josh, well it's hard to call him little anymore, he's getting tall really fast! He's almost 11 months now and almost walking. He's so hyper though that he can't slow down enough to try and take some small steps. Once he gets himself stood up he likes to try and jump up and down, hopefully you can see this in the latest pictures I've attached to this email!
God bless you all! Please drop us an email if you can, we're always blessed to hear from you all!