Sweet friends! It’s been over a month since I’ve transitioned from living in Tacloban to now Manila. What a challenging, raw, but growing season it has been. Living here knowing I plan to invest in this community longer than just a few weeks has challenged me to pray some big bold prayers! My heart for all my dear Filipinos has grown even more than I imagined. How good our Heavenly Father is to us.
Much of my time has been spent working in our Hope Alive Clinic. Each day Monday through Friday we see women from all over. These women come for weekly check ups. It’s a really sweet time of fellowship. We pray together, read His living word together, laugh together, and sometimes even cry together! I see each woman as a highly favored daughter of Christ. They carry strength and walk in humility. They each hold a different gifting and I am excited for them to continue learning more about who Christ has made them to be! Each week they see their babies grow a little more, and I see their faith growing simultaneously. This month of June is jam packed with loads of sweet due dates! Please be praying for continued good health for each mother and her baby! Please be praying for continued wisdom and joy to overflow from their lives!
Community has looked so different than my last season. It’s been such a tender blessing to be able to reconnect with all my friends I made here in Manila back in November. It’s also been really rad to meet new faces and create new relationships! I’ve been learning how to be more intentional. How to sit with someone and listen, I mean really listen. To just hear a friend share a piece of their heart out over something big or something little has really been incredible. God is so purposeful with every person we cross paths with.
We often see many visitors here at the YMC (ministry building I live in). Therefore my community seems to be constantly changing. In the beginning of May, I found myself so hesitant to get to know those around me. I knew the volunteers would be leaving within a week and I just assumed daily hellos would suffice. Abba kept stirring in my heart to connect with them more despite the time frame of how long I would have with them. When you say yes to the people in front of you God really does bless those friendships. I soon realized living in isolation or fear of having to say a hard goodbye is selfish. It’s not about me or how I feel. It’s about glorifying Christ with ALL relationships. Choosing to love the people around me even if I only get to see them for two days is worth it. There is no time frame on love.
These past few weeks Abba has been teaching me a lot. Teaching me discipline, teaching me how to be a gentle leader, teaching me how to listen well. I’m learning that God is so much bigger than what we imagine. He has a hand in all things. Weaving our lives intricately with one another all for His glory. You can easily miss opportunities to encourage someone. So stay awake! I’m learning to be bold in conversation. To skip the fear of rejection and jump into vulnerability and truth! Sharing your heart with others is so important. Especially when you use words to glorify Christ. These last four months I’ve shared my personal testimony countless times! Each time is sweeter than the last as Abba continues to unveil His goodness within my life.
Being a full time missionary is hard to put into words. Everyday life is still a thing. I still wake up each morning and have to remain disciplined. I have to seek Abba even when my mind is drifting to a million different things to do on my daily checklist. I am honored to be doing full time ministry in this season of life. We often put ministry in a box of a specialized event or time frame. Often it’s just being intentional and loving the person right in front of you well. There are expectations, higher standards I’m being held accountable to. I am learning to balance the raw authenticity of being messy me but pushing to glorify Christ despite how many times I fail. I’ve tasted and seen His goodness, I just want to share that with every person I encounter.
The Philippines man! It’s sweetness. Please be praying for this nation, for the Hope Alive Clinic, for the community I live in, for Kids International Ministry, for me. Pray Jesus continues to be the center of it all. Pray this fire in my heart to share His love doesn’t dim but instead burns brighter each day! You all rock. Thanks for keeping up with me in this season of life. You’re loved.