Our last morning in the picturesque community of Marikudo was both a trial and a blessing as we were able to see the fruits of our efforts in the goodbyes. Of course, no time is ever a good time to say goodbye and this caused a lot of heart ache and the tears were flowing. Although our time was short, it was extremely rewarding in seeing the reaction of a community that were once weary of foreigners. But soon enough they began to truly open up and share with us the life that they are proud to show to the world. Yet another blessing we were able to bestow upon this community was gifting the families with food packs that we packed yesterday. The smiles that radiated from everyone’s faces were well worth all the effort it took of constant trips back and forth through the packing chain.
God often places us in situations that mould and shape us into who we were innately created to be and this trip has so far proven to be the epitome of those situations. A few days may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of time but God does not work in human terms. He’s shown us that when He is present and in the midst of things; miracles can happen. This was evident through His constant protection and the softening of the hearts of the tribal people towards us. Many of them were on the brink of tears as we were saying goodbye, and so were we. The amount of love that has been shared between us have been phenomenal, we could not believe the connection we had regardless of barriers of culture, language and geography. It taught us that when God is the middle ground, when He is the glue and as long as we keep asking and are willing to be used as vessels for His special purpose then any relationship will thrive.
The lunch with the Mayor was a brilliant change to the usual but delicious chicken and rice that has been the staple diet throughout the first week. We were entertained with cultural dances which we were all given the opportunity to join in on. We were also given the opportunity to enjoy a local delicacy, Lechon Baboy, also known as spit roasted pig (it’s delicious!).
We then travelled to the high school of La Carlota where we were greeted with cheers especially, for Ben who was said to resemble One Direction! We were split into groups and taught the students Aussie culture (Aussie animals, towns and slang words). We then went to the cooking class and learnt how to become a master chef in the Philippines. This was followed by a basketball game with the locals while others in the team played guitars, chatted and caught up with random old Facebook friends.
Conversations have also gone deeper, it is no longer just the causal small talk. Eva is forcing information out of us and making us all be friends (just kidding we love her cute little DnMs – deep and meaningfuls). We are definitely looking forward to getting to know our team on a deeper level, listening does wonders.
We just want to thank God, all you prayer warriors and everyone who has commented for your constant encouragement and support. Tomorrow will be a big day, we are heading to a very disadvantaged fishing village which has a lot of social problems. Please keep the team in your prayers for good spirits and to just pour out love and serve these people like Jesus would.
Beksie, Benji and Evie
Special shout outs:
Eva: Hey mitchy, I miss you but cant lie to myself, im having a ball! Wish you were here though! Keep praying hard, I stepped on nail (no tetanus please Lord!) and also for my bowels 😉 I love you!
Ben: Hey Rosie, I’m missing you heaps and need to hear that cheeky laugh as soon as I get home. Missing the rest of the fam aswell and love you guys heaps.
Bek: Hello familia, missing you all heaps and thank you for praying for me! Miss you all and I hope Isabella doesn’t forget me! Can’t wait to see you all and tell you everything that’s been going on! Love you all lots xxxx