Dear family and friends,
Thank you all for your perseverance through prayer and support of the Lord's ministry here this past month! Ephesians 6:18 says, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with ALL perseverance"! We know the Lord blesses our perseverance as it proves a faith deeper than any obstacle! God has blessed each and every single prayer request in wonderful ways!
VBS went very well with an average of 120 in attendance each day and we saw new opportunities open up also to reach out to some of the parents. I've attached several pictures to this email for your viewing pleasure!
The 3-day revival services went so well that the people want to continue it for another 3 days, so we're going to continue having a great time with revival services from May 29-30th! I ask your prayers for me physically as it is extremely draining with the heat, but I've honestly never felt stronger! We've seen many new faces out at Church and attendance continues to run over 100 currently on Sunday morning worship service and we've been seeing about the same number out at revival services!
A group of over 10 new converts are learning about the meaning of baptism and Church membership so we continue to ask your prayers also for clarity in such matters. As I've explained before, people here tend to associate baptism with salvation, therefore becoming confused about the grace of God. So we take the time and do our best to make sure that people have a clear understanding of what the Bible teaches. I recently met another missionary who had baptized over 150 people, but only 30-40 were attending Church on Sunday morning. Such is the result of a lack of explanation and perhaps even a lack of true care and love for the people's soul. If we just baptized every person who said they wanted to be baptized and did not take the time to unfold the Biblical truths to them, we probably would have already seen some 400 baptized, but Church attendance would still be at 100; doesn't sound very fruitful does it? But when you take time to make sure that individuals are grounded in the truth you will see a Church that doesn't even have 100 baptized members yet running over 100 attendance, which sounds much more fruitful and pleasing to the Lord! The truth is that I have literally spent over a month with some individuals just helping them understand such simple truths, but every one of them are thankful for the clear understanding which has brought them into a true relationship with Jesus Christ. On the other hand, there have been others who have been saved and baptized immediately, clearly grasping these simple truths in a quicker time period; praise God for it all! And, on a related note, please pray for growth in the Bible Institute here, especially that strong leaders would come out of this and cause a tremendous explosion of evangelism and growth in Church(s)!
Please continue praying for several women who are in the Church and suffering because of unbelieving husbands. Janet, whom I mentioned last month, is still able to come to Church, and another woman, who stopped a long time ago because of anger from her husband, has been able to come back and even the husband seems to have lightened up a bit; keep the prayers lifted on high, God is working! Pray especially that those angered will come to know the Prince of Peace who died for their sins.
Thank you for the prayers for Kristine, her eyes haven't bothered her at all the past 2 weeks and on May 26th she was granted a tourist visa! We're not sure exactly when we might come back though as we also found out that Joshua is automatically eligible for American citizenship and an American passport, even though he was born abroad, so we're now looking into what needs to be done to accomplish that, then he can go and come whenever he wants without a visa. Josh will actually have dual citizenship, as the Philippines allows this. Josh already has a Filipino passport, but it will be better for him to just get his American citizenship and passport rather than trying to get him a tourist visa on his Filipino passport. So we're not sure exactly how long it will take to get that taken care of, but we'll let you know as we get more information. Thanks for the endless prayers and love, we pray, think of, and miss you all!
Yours in Christ,