Have you ever considered the possibility that you are right smack dab in the center of a window of opportunity? There are times when we know we are in the center of God’s will and times when we wonder what God is thinking. But then there are other times, that when looked at from the perspective of before and after an event, the awe and wonder of the window of opportunity becomes ever clearer. Our team that went to the Philippines on a recent work and witness trip have had just such a life experience.
This was the trip that almost wasn’t. The weeks leading up to our trip were filled with volcanos erupting, earthquakes tremblin, and what, at the time was a virus called Coronavirus, that at the time was just beginning to spread outside of China, and the word quarantine was readily spoken about. All of these reasons along with our team members facing various health obstacles had us seriously considering canceling or postponing our trip. However, as the team began to really pray, one at a time, we were able to share with one another how God gave us each a peace that surpassed our understanding and we knew He was saying, “Go!”, even when the world around us was saying “no”. And so, “Go”, we did.
Our days at the GMA Church of the Nazarene/Lingap Bata Child Development Center were filled with painting, electric work, eating, cleaning, brick work, eating, building a book case, connecting with the people, teaching a drama for an outreach presentation to the community, did we mention eating? However, as our group looks back and reminisces, not one comment was about what we did, but about how we fell in love with the people there and how they loved us with the love of Jesus. Stan James said, “The church showed us such a beautiful Christ Spirit in all they did, for us and the community. Would that every church was as they are.” Bonnie Boyd summed up this same thought with, “The church in GMA are our brothers and sisters in Christ. They cared for us in every way, always giving, so respectful, and fun.” We miss them all dearly, and they hold a special place in our hearts.
Since returning home, we look back at how much has changed in the few short weeks since we have returned. The airports in which we traveled are no longer accessible. The ability to travel outside of our homes is an obstacle, let alone half way across the world due to the Co-Vid19 outbreak that is now affecting our entire globe. And once again, we realize that there was a window of time, that presented us with an opportunity that was meant for exactly that moment in history. When God calls, we can trust His leading.
We aren’t sure of the kingdom or long-range impact our visit there made. But we do know that there is a group of people who made a lasting impact on us. People we are now lifting in prayer during this global crisis, by name and face, because they are held in our hearts, personally. It was for such a time as this that God called us to “Go”. And we are so glad that we did.
Submitted by Pastor Lynette Cherry, Pueblo First Church of the Nazarene