Our ministry in the Philippines began with a Saturday morning meeting in an exclusive neighborhood where a successful business family had built an addition to their home specifically for holding Christian meetings. After having a life-changing encounter with the Lord when their daughter was miraculously healed, they totally reoriented their business to become a blessing to the kingdom of God. Instead of running the business six days a week, they cut the schedule back to five days and dedicated Saturdays to ministry – including the Bible studies and teaching sessions that they hold at their home. Instead of going straight into the business week every Monday morning, they start with a Bible study time with all the employees. The top-level have a second-tier Bible study in which they read a full chapter of the Bible each day – and are awarded with an all-expense-paid trip to Israel when they complete the entire Bible. In addition, the company has opened a free hospital for people who cannot afford medical care. At an annex to the hospital, the families who come to accompany the patients are given emotional support and spiritual comfort as volunteers share the gospel with them. Their company also has a large literature focus that has distributed over ten million gospel tracts and fifty thousand Bibles. After the owner of the company received the baptism in the Holy Spirit during Peggy’s visit last year, she purchased four hundred copies of Peggy’s book to distribute to women that she encounters through the business and her social contacts.
When one of our former Charis Bible College students told me how much my Women for the Harvest book had impacted her life and asked if I would allow her to translate it into Visayan language for distribution in her native country of the Philippines, I knew that the Lord had opened the new door of ministry that I had been waiting for. Once the translation was complete, Linda Easton and I began making plans to travel to Davao City for the release of the book and to teach it in two women’s conferences there. I knew that the Philippines would be a ready harvest field for our ministry of encouraging and equipping women to become actively involved in the Great Commission since recent mission studies have shown that the Filipina women are one of the rising groups of missionaries since they are very evangelistic and travel all over the world to work as domestic helpers. Almost as soon as we had finalized our plans and booked all the reservations for the trip, we were greeted one morning by headline news that Davao City had been rocked by a terrorist attack – a bombing that left seventeen dead! We felt that we should not cancel the trip, so we continued with our plans – and by the time we were to travel, peace had been restored to the city. When we arrived, we did discover that the bombing had taken place right across the street from our hotel; however, the bright side of that story is that our hotel was under heightened security and everything was extremely safe.
Even though we had traveled for a day and a half – including one sixteen-hour leg – and were dealing with a fourteen-hour time difference, Linda and I “hit the ground running.” Since our first day in the Philippines was was a Sunday morning, we split up and ministered in different churches, where we both found the Filipinos to be very open and hungry to hear the Word. [Read more…]
While vacationing in the Bahamas a few years ago, my husband and I joined a local congregation for the Sunday morning service – not expecting anything other than a good time of worship and fellowship. However, that all that changed when the associate pastor stepped up to the pulpit to greed the visitors. Rather than a casual “Thank you for joining us today,” he said that he had a prophetic word for us and then proceeded to point to my husband and prophesy. Having never met my husband or me and not knowing anything about us, he began to “read our mail,” by saying that my husband was a writer and that his books would be published all over the world. Then he turned to me and really shocked the both of us by saying that my book would go even farther than my husband’s books. [Read more…]
At the same time that I was in Burma and Nepal, Peggy was also on the same continent, but thousands of miles away. When she was initially invited to minister in the Philippines, she sadly declined the request due to the conflict with the Myanmar-Nepal mission; however, as time progressed she began to feel more and more that going to the Philippines was the Lord’s direction for her for this year. One Saturday evening, we came to the conclusion that it would be better to go our separate ways this time so that she could accept the invitation. Remarkably, the next morning at church Peggy bumped into the lady who had extended the original offer. With seven thousand worshippers in the service, it was truly a needle-in-the-hay-stack experience to find someone in the service. The lady was especially elated when Peggy shared her decision, commenting that she had just prayed that she would get a chance to see Peggy to check with her if it might be possible that she had changed her mind. On this first visit to the Philippines, Peggy found the people warm and receptive as she shared the Word of God in two different leadership conferences. The lives of these pastors and leaders will forever be impacted by her teachings on the heart of a true minister. The reports that have come in after the conferences is that the meetings brought new life to the regions. Where there had been some mistrust and disharmony among the pastors, now the beauty of brethren living and working together in harmony and unity has revitalized the churches.
Even though I’ve been on many mission trips to Asia, Africa, Central America, and the Caribbean, this was my first trip to the Philippines. Before I left, one of the ladies in a cell group I attend felt led to prophesy that I would encounter many difficulties but that they would melt before me if I would speak to them with my Kingdom authority. I had to put this admonition into operation even before I left the States because I was told in San Francisco that I should not board the plane since my passport was near its expiration date. The airline agent warned me that I would be turned away at passport control in Asia since my passport was not valid for a full six months after my entry into the Philippines. After serious prayer during the full fourteen-hour flight to Hong Kong, I was relieved when the airline agent met me in the airport with my onward boarding pass! His faithfulness and amazing grace continued to follow me throughout the rest of the trip.
I found the Filipino people to be some of the warmest and friendliest people I have ever met. Lana, the team leader, and the national leaders, Tessie and Lem, were great people to work with. We spoke to mostly pastors and leaders. It was very easy to minister since the people were so open. The conferences were very well planned and organized. All the team’s messages seemed to flow together. As a result of the Spirit-led teamwork, all the locals were powerfully challenged, encouraged, and excited to continue in their work for the Kingdom. We saw definite changes in the spiritual atmosphere after both sets of conferences in Dumaguete and Davao.
Our first mission in the Philippines was when Delron accompanied Dr. Lester Sumrall on a trip through several countries in Asia. The highlight of the trip was the dedication of the new ten-thousand-seat-auditorium for the Cathedral of Praise which Dr. Sumrall had founded some three decades earlier and was now pastured by his nephew, David Sumrall. Delron ministered in services for some of the daughter churches which had been birthed form the mother church and participated in the graduation ceremony of the Bible college which is affiliated with the church.