The Philippines’ trip was indeed blessed above measure! The 90 minute departure delay at Sydney Airport was untypical of the trip! The trip could hardly have been better, thank God!
The issue of strength and health for both Kathleen and me was blessed beyond description! We both managed the busy schedule of the conferences. The long sessions (3-4 hours) rarely had any breaks! God kept us from any sickness, flu or stomach upsets. The strength for the task was so unusual and divine.
I spoke 9 times in 10 days in Manila-2 conferences, 4 churches and 4 Bible colleges. The people were so gracious and we made many lovely friends! I loved trying to speak my few words and phrases in the Tagalo language!
We sent the study materials via missionaries to Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Burma, India, Kenya, Ethiopia and Lebanon. There may have been others. A Burmese student studying in Manila took 10 books and a set of OT and NT DVDs to put in the library of a Burmese Bible college of 160 students of which his father is the president. This all excites us to no end! One Bible institute in Cambodia already has 39 students studying one of our courses!
The Lord led us to a printer in Manila who is printing 6000 books (OT Guidebook and NT Handbook) for an unusually low price. He will also look after distributing the materials! A church in Manila is giving us a room in which to store the books indefinitely. An Australian friend gave a gift to help us further bring the prices into line with the capabilities of the students. There is much poverty there. All these developments are miracles from God, and we stand amazed in His presence! Initial responses to the initiative to get these materials into Bible colleges and institutes are abundant and exciting. Please continue to pray.
Seven people accepted Christ and many Christians appeared to be both challenged and comforted. We heard much good preaching and were personally blessed and challenged. The Filipino churches have a passion for missions even though their resources are so very meager compared to ours in the developed countries.
Also, many churches have a Bible institute program and some have Bible colleges. They realize how important it is to teach their people and get them involved in a structured learning program, something I find lacking in many churches in the west and in Australia. In 2008 I sent a free set of the NT study materials to all my supporting churches. I only know of 2 or 3 which have run the courses in their churches (one is my sending church). These Filipino churches are crowding around to see how they can use the materials and are testifying of great blessings for having used them to help teach their people.
Thank you for standing with us in prayer for this trip. God has answered!