Dear Praying Friends:
I trust you are doing well, and by the time this letter arrives to you, your church should be meeting back together for “in-person church services”. As for us over here, we have been on lock-down in Cebu since March. Cebu City is now the number one city in the Philippines for COVID-19 cases (as of May 15, 2020). We have not seen many of our members who live beyond the city border for weeks now. Through it all, God is still faithful and proves to do amazing things that we could never even have imagined. We are staying connected as best we can.
Summer vacation in the Philippines is only for two months, mainly April and May. That means that we have spent our whole summer vacation inside the house and doing livestream services from home. It also meant that all of the summer youth camps were canceled. So, here is where God really blessed us. Through much prayer and counsel, we decided to go with an Online Baptist Youth Conference. We broadcasted all the services on livestream, and had an average attendance of about 4,000 daily. We were so encouraged by the preaching of Dr. Mike Ray, Pastor Ben Turner of Vancouver, Missionary Calvin Houser, and Pastor John Harvey of Mississippi. We also had some local pastors who helped with our divided sessions. In all, we saw five soul saved, and over 30 young people surrender for full-time ministry! The theme for the Online Conference was taken from 2 Timothy 2:9, “ Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound.” This proved be to quite fitting in that God’s word was surely not bound, even during a time of Philippine Lock-down. The young people all over the Philippines were so excited to be part of the first ever online youth conference. God was glorified!
Please continue to be in prayer as we are trying to make our final down-payment for the church property. This will be due by the end of May. We know that God is faithful, but please do pray for us.
Thank you for all who have reached out to us to check up on us during the pandemic. I leave you with this encouragement from Psalms 57:7-9, “My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise. Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early. I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people: I will sing unto thee among the nations.”
Let us fix our hearts, that even though we are bound in a house, we will continue to be used of God, and will be resolved to be Christians who continue to share Jesus Christ with others. For while we are sometimes bound, Gods word is never bound!