Some of the children at "Smokey Mountain".
The church built next to a garbage pile.
Children of the Bajau
Our group on our last day. I was thankful that Joanna and I could go together.
A popular book, written several years ago, titled, “What happens when Women Pray” concerns the power of women and their prayers. If I were to write a book, I might title it, “What happens when Children Pray”. A recent trip to Manila in the Philippines with middle school students (ages 12-15) truly brought this home to me. The one week trip to the Philippines has our kids working with at-risk children in poverty with Metro Ministries as they minister with weekly Sidewalk Sunday Schools to share the Gospel and the love of Jesus. It was our third trip there in three years, and the timing of the trip means our kids give up their spring break to serve. Impressive.
Each day our group went out to minister to kids in varying situations. One day we worked in the garbage dumps with kids who live there with their families who scavenge for a living. Our group was surrounded by kids who remembered their visit last year, and what a reunion it was for them! One day was given to kids in a transient community. One day was spent on top of a mountain outside Manila in a village with no electricity, and where the pastor has given up almost everything to minister to the people there. One day was devoted to a church built next to a garbage dump for ministry to those who scavenge there.
Each night, our hot, exhausted and dirty group would meet to process the day, reflect on God’s work that day and pray for those we met and for those we would serve the next day. On the last evening of our trip, our school chaplain read a list of prayers that had been written many months before.
- We would have a safe flight
- Donations would be good
- We can help with the kids more
- Immigration will go smoothly
- Many kids will accept Christ
- Safety while we are there
- We can show love
- All will be healthy
- Protection (no one will be kidnapped)
- The kids will remember us
- Our group members will change as a result
As the chaplain read over each one, the group became silent. God had answered each one of their prayers in abundance. The prayers that night were ones of rejoicing in how Jesus had been beside each one of us showing us His power.
You may remember that last year on our visit, our group had prayed for a group of Bajau people from the southern part of the Philippines who had moved to Manila to escape the Muslim/Christian violence there. This proud and aloof people are now living in a Manila garbage dump. Last year, we were able to work on building relationships with them, and for the first time, a couple of children attended the sidewalk Sunday school. We were able to meet the children again this year and found out that many of them are attending weekly. We were thrilled to see how God has been answering the prayers of many!
“...He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” Mark 10:14
David and I thank you for your support of the ministry in Okinawa and around the world. We are personally thankful that we are very near our needed support level and that because of your faithful support and prayers, the Word of God and His Love is reaching to the “edges of the earth”.