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Open the eyes of my heart

These 3 weeks have literally been the most rewarding, and difficult weeks on my life. It has been filled with ministry of various kinds including bringing food to outside villages, children’s ministry and a separate youth ministry called Journey 4 Hope. Early on in the trip I visited and played with the 2-5 year olds at the children’s home which is apart of the kids international ministries. We then walked around villages that really opened my eyes to poverty levels here and made me so very thankful for what we have in the states. Later on it was such a blessing to walk around the streets next to our home base and handing out toys and eventually started jump roping with some of the children that walked up to us.

My calling on this trip was to focus on feeding which was comprised of different locations, some better than others. On most days I went, the location was near homes right next to landfills.. just piles of trash and the smells were just surreal…at these feedings we shared the gospel and have bible studies in which I have been so blessed with leading those aside the pastor Dodoy who translates in Tagalog. I also shared my testimony a few times during each feeding. We have them every morning mon-fri. And each evening mon-fri, myself and a group participate with a ministry called journey for hope which takes kids off the streets of broken homes and sharing bible studies and the gospel with younger ages to older (7-17 year olds). The trip for me got real when we were right on target for a typhoon.

After the typhoon hit, it made me reflect how I love how God uses His power to glorify and His grace to magnify. It also lead to great ministry opportunities. The storm pretty much shut down the top half of Rizal (our province of the Philippines) tues and wed so our whole days were out of wack. Needless to say our ministry routine was thrown off.
During that time The Lord taught me a lot about waiting and patience for Him. That also I could only be in control of so little vs His control of everything else! having God use the typhoon to slow us down was really really amazing, yet challenging. The storm came and went in a fury with a lot of rain and at times large gusts of wind but nothing too out of control. The damage was eye opening to see a large number of limbs and debris all throughout the streets. It was quite remarkable the houses withstood the storms.
It was incredible serving the community by sweeping the streets from debris and at the same time talking to ppl and telling them about Jesus and praying for them! Their joy in the midst of the aftermath is indescribable. The Filipinos are so full of content with what they have and during the day of clean up there was not a whole lot of sorrow with materials being lost.
I am still so blessed to have built a continued strong relationship with the Filipino pastor that comes with us to feedings. He calls me pastor will! Haha, our team has been so involved and intentional during this opportunity of a lifetime. I’ve never trusted in the concept of FLEXIBILITY more than I do now!

Thanks for the chance to blog and God Bless,
Will Richardson