Self Reliant vs God Reliant


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Traveling on furlough can wear you out but there is no doubt in my mind that it’s an important part of missionary life. God has used it over and over again to teach us some wonderful truths. As Americans, we become so self-reliant that we often live life without relying on God. Being self-reliant is a good thing but if we’re not careful, we can live our life without ever going to God. As Christians, we need to realize that we need God more than our abilities or talents. If we’re not careful our service becomes a routine -a good routine- but nonetheless a routine. It’s a trap that’s easy to fall into. But duty can only get you so far. Our service should flow from a heart of love that realizes we need God for everything.  Even the “little” things.

When a branch is attached to an apple tree, fruit will grow from the branches.  This is a wonderful picture of what a believer needs to be successful.  We must stay close to Christ because He is our life. We need to pray and stay in His Word so we can hear His voice and obey.  A branch that is connected to the tree is stronger than a branch that has been cut off a tree. A believer who tries to live the Christian life in his own power is like a branch that has been cut off the tree.  The branch dies. This happens when believers try to live their lives in their own strength. 

This has been one message God has delivered to us through several different preachers and fellow missionaries. I pray this thought will challenge you as it has challenged me. Living the Christian life through your own power will only leave you frustrated. Stop relying so much on your wisdom and derive your strength from God.

John 15:4-5 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.


The Countdown Continues…

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25 days to go before we return to Cebu! Our schedule is busy with meetings, packing suitcases, and shipping supplies to the Philippines. During our time in the US, we have been refreshed and encouraged by our supporting churches but now the time has come for us to go home.  We have heard good reports from Cebu and we are excited to jump back into the ministry.  Please continue to keep our family in your prayers as we get ready to fly back to the Philippines. 


My Journey


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As a missionary wife, there are some questions I get asked a lot.  Whether it be a family member or church, inevitably I’m asked, “Do you like living in the Philippines?” My answer is a genuine YES! But that wasn’t always the case.  As a young wife, I completely supported Chris and was excited to serve the Lord in the Philippines. Then we took our survey trip…and suddenly I found myself looking at the reality of living in a third world country. Honestly, I didn’t think I could do it!  Everything was just so foreign, so different from anything I knew. I prayed, “Lord change this country so I can live here and serve You.” A very spiritual prayer, I know. :) But then something amazing happened in my heart. God brought the testimonies of other missionary wives to my attention. One phrase jumped at me…“Different isn’t always bad, it’s just different.” God used this over and over to prepare me for life in the Philippines. During the rest of our survey trip, God helped take my focus from me to the need around me.  By the time our survey trip was over, my prayer had changed from, “God change these people…” to “God change me so I can help these people.”  Now, almost 5 years later, the Philippines has become home. It’s funny, as a missionary you go to another country to reach out and help people and yet God uses these same people to help us. I’m so thankful to see how God has grown me throughout my personal journey. Not that I’ve “arrived” or become super spiritual but I realize how weak I am and how much I need God to work in my own heart. 

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