Monday, 28 July 2014

Apostolic Ministry

Yesterday the day began very early indeed! I was invited to speak from 6am - 7am at a local radio station that reaches the entire Philippines. I spoke about the reality of the Kingdom of God and shared the Good News with the people of the Philippines. It was a challenge to basically speak for 60 minutes with only a few breaks but it was an amazing opportunity to proclaim the truth to the nations!

After a short breakfast we made our way to KLB's Sunday meeting. The room was filled with people and there was a real buzz. The worship team had clearly taken hold of the principles we taught them the day before and very soon we were entering the presence of God. It was wonderful to witness how these young worshippers have taken hold of the essence and are now running with it. Frances shared a powerful message on the call of God and how noone is disqualified. It was a joy to be part of this dynamic new church family and we are excited to see how God will continue to bless and work through KLB to transform Butuan. One visiting lady said it was wonderful to experience the presence of God like that again after so many years.

We then had a scrumptious lunch together (with avocado shake, calamari, kinilaw, stir-fried beef, aubergine) and then made our way to pastor Berwyn's church in Cabadbaran - Mabini Christian Fellowship, where I shared on Proverbs 16:15 about the favour of God. It was very special to see the many children again and to see how they have grown and matured. After the service we made our way back to Butuan and stopped for some fresh Durian on the way. Durian is very smelly but tastes amazing. In the evening we had our "Abschluss" dinner with Berwyn, Julius, Roszel and Jasfer (an amazingly talented young drummer). It was a long day and after rolling home from Robinson's (the new shopping mall) to Dotties hotel, because of all the food we had, we hit the sack and were out for the count.

This morning we had to pack and check out of our hotel and enjoyed our last coffee with Julius, Roszel, Jasfer, Yrah Lee and Jonkris. Berwyn and Liberty and the kids then joined us and we made our way to the airport where they saw us off.

We have arrived safely in Manila and enjoyed checking out the Mall of Asia. Tomorrow we will spend time with our good friend, Mark who was part of KLF for a  year when he was in Frankfurt. Mark does sign language for the deaf and tomorrow we will visit his school where I will be ministering to some deaf students. We will probably be visiting Mark's family in the evening. Our return flight via Hong Kong is on Wednesday evening.

It has been an amazing 10 days here in the Philippines. I praise God for the wonderful things we were privileged to witness as He touched the lives of so many people. We really feel that we were able to fulfill the apostolic ministry of teaching, imparting, equipping, training and helping KLB to create Kingdom culture as they remain uncompromising in essence but flexible in form. We give God all the glory for the wonderful things He is doing and will do! We are looking forward to visiting next year again, hopefully with a small team.

Friday, 25 July 2014


On Thursday afternoon we had another planning meeting with Julius and Roszel after which we went to KLB together to celebrate Julius' birthday. It was a lot of fun as we shared food together and honoured Julius on his special day. One of the highlights was a whole pig, what they call a Lechon. It was devoured within minutes!

Yesterday we had a leisurely morning before making our way to the Butuan orphanage that has been relocated until the present orphanage building in Butuan has been renovated. The interim building is a deserted and basically unfinished building where the children have a roof over their heads, and that is about it! It is a building site and the conditions are disgraceful. The orphanage building that is being renovated isn't much better and part of  KLB's vision is to eventually be able to build a home for abandoned children and orphans so that they can live in a safe environment and be fed and educated to give them a hope and a future. It simply breaks one's heart to see abandoned children and infants! I played a fun game with them that I taught them and for a moment I think they could escape their circumstances and have fun together. After a short word of encouragement we had food for them that KLB had prepared in the morning. It was an emotional visit but I praise God that He is the God of all comfort who comforts widows and orphans.

In the evening KLB had their first ever city outreach and set up a stage with sound and light systems to rock Butuan. The worship team did a fantastic job releasing the rhythm of heaven over Butuan and I shared the Gospel of the Kingdom with the many people that stood around the city centre square. We invited people for prayer to be touched by Jesus and many responded to the call. It was very exciting to see people being touched by God's Spirit. Some testified to feeling God's presence in the area of their bodies that were sick and a couple of people fell over under God's power. All this happenend in the centre of Butuan as many young KLB guys, dressed in their blue KLB T-shirts could be seen mingling with the observers and participants. Jesus' name was being made famous and KLB is building His reputation in Butuan! Hallelujah!

This morning was spent with the worship team and Frances and I taught them some of the basic principles of how we lead worship and why we do what we do. After a couple of hours of teaching, we spent some time practising entering God's presence together. These guys are hungry for God and fast learners. It was not long before we had entered God's presence together and God made His presence known. We are excited to see where KLB will take the principles we have shown them further as they develop their own expression and form of the essence of worship.

I praise God for the transformation that is already taking place as people are being touched one by one with God's presence and love. As KLB gets hold of the essence of the Kingdom we will see a steady transformation in the lives of the people here. Hallelujah!

This afternoon Frances will have a session with the young women of the church and this evening we will be teaching the church about Life Groups, their purpose and function within the church. I wonder what I will do with my free afternoon...Bo's or Robinsons? Maybe I can find some more strange things they sell here...

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Building Kingdom Culture

On Tuesday evening we spent time with KLB's core group, teaching them the essence of what it means to live the kingdom life. It was wonderful to see how the truth was setting them free as they received spiritual revelation of their identity in Christ. Having come from a more traditional background that still teaches progressive sanctification and essentially salvation by works, we showed them that we are sanctified the moment we are joined to Christ because we are joined to the Holy One who is our Righteousness. It was an amazing time as we literally witnessed veils being lifted off their eyes. Hallelujah!

Yesterday we spent the morning and afternoon with the core group and continued to teach them the essential values of Kingdom Life that form Kingdom culture, which are:

Belong - Faith - Alignment
Relationship - Love - Purpose
Identity - In Christ - Union
Devotion - Worship - Service
Expectation - Hope - Kingdom

In the afternoon, after treating everyone to a Bo's coffee, we taught the group how to minister in the Spirit, showing them how to pray for people in such a way as to make room for the Spirit to do His work and colabouring with Him. It was a powerful time as God ministered to each of them as we demonstrated how to pray for others.

We then had a couple hours break before we went to visit pastor Jonathan's church in the evening. As part of their weekly prayer meeting, we were invited to minister to them. During the worship I received a prophetic word for the people and shared
a message about how God sees us and that we must learn to live for the audience of One. The Lord's presence was tangible and many were deeply ministered to during the sermon. It was a very special evening and I praise God for speaking right to the core of the needs of the people. God truly sees us and knows what we need.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

The Kingdom is near

Yesterday morning we visited pastor Zabala's church about an hour's drive away from Butuan in quite a remote area where the vegetation is much denser and the housing even more basic. We love visiting this church because of the anointing upon the worship. Young and old sing with their whole hearts and the heavens seem to be open when they worship. The worship leader, Gideon has a voice of an angel and because of the anointing, young singers and musicians are drawn to this church. The girl with the beanie (in the picture on the right), called Isabel, also sang and we were simply amazed at what was coming out of her mouth. She lives in a very remote area and is part of the local tribal people. Frances and I shared a message on the reality of the Kingdom which God proved with touching the people with His presence. It was wonderful! After the meeting we had lunch together. It seems we are having lunch earlier and earlier each day. We got to taste some Jack-Fruit which tastes a bit like a mixture between pineapple and banana. On our way back to Butuan I spotted a Filipino recycling station.

In the afternoon we went to Butuan's favourite new shopping mall that is completely air-conditioned, where we enjoyed a coffee together with Julius, Roszel, Berwyn and Liberty. At the coffee place we met another pastor with whom I chatted and was able to encourage with a prophetic word. It was a divine appointment and we all left very much filled in our spirits.

In the evening we were invited to Julius and Roszel's new home and Aaron, Julius' brother cooked for us. It was a wonderful evening and a joy to see Yrah-Lee and Jonkris (Julius and Roszel's beautiful children). It was another special day and such a joy to see people encounter God as we share His love and encouragement with them.

This morning we went to the local rubbish dump where many poor families live in make-shift houses. In the middle of the dump is a little school building where little 3 and 4-year olds go to school. We visited the school and I told these little gems the story of the little boy with a lunch box filled with 3 pieces of bread, 5 pieces of fish and rice who came upon a man speaking to thousands of people on the mountainside and how God multiplied the little boy's lunch. It was a lot of fun and the little gems listened attentively. It is such a joy to share the reality of God with these people and to see the joy of hope shine on their faces as they listen to the good news.

After our visit we went to Bo's where we had a planning meeting with Julius, Roszel and Berwyn to discuss the next steps of our work together and future planning. It was a very exciting meeting and all of us sense God's hand upon what we are doing and plan to do in the future! This evening we have our second session with the core leadership team of KLB.

We are so excited about furthering God's Kingdom here and our prayer is that many will catch the vision so we can pour even more resources into this fertile and fruitful area of ministry.

"Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Luke 12:32-34

Sunday, 20 July 2014

KLB Inauguration

The alarm went off at 5:20am so I could have a quick, quiet shower before being picked up to go to the radio station for the 6:00am live stream. Berwyn and Julius took me and we got to the radio station punctually and waited for the announcer to arrive. He finally pitched up at 5:59am just in time to enter his cubicle and speak directly into the microphone. He said two sentences and there was a power cut. Change of plan. No radio broadcast and I hadn't had my coffee! Grace abounds. We made our way back to our hotel and I invited them for breakfast. After spending a bit of time with the radio producer, we made our way to Bo's until it was time to go to Kingdom Life Butuan for their Sunday meeting and the special inauguration ceremony.

The room was packed and because of the power cut that then lastet until evening, we couldn't use any electrical equipment for the worship and speaking. We proceeded anyway and there was great joy in the house. It was a very special time as the children sang for us and we ordained Roszel and confirmed Julius as the senior leaders of KLB. I then shared a message from Isaiah 61 as a prophetic word for KLB that God has planted them as oaks of righteousness for the display of His splendour. We then shared communion together and blessed the church.

After a yummy lunch we went with Julius, Roszel, Berwyn,Liberty and the kids to try the traditional Halo-Halo, a dessert that is basically a mixture of different things. Ours had sweet corn, coconut, ice cream and other interesting-tasting ingredients. It was delicious. After saying bye-bye to the Halo-Halo, we made our way back to the hotel with Berwyn, Liberty and the kids so that they could swim in the pool for he afternoon.

In the evening we attended KLB's first youth meeting and over 60 young people came. We spent some time in worship and then I was asked to share a message. I spoke on God's calling a generation of radical worshippers and urged the young people to follow God wholeheartedly. God's presence was wonderful and the Holy Spirit was clearly stirring hearts into flame. It was a powerful evening and I am excited to see what God will do through those who submit to His call.

As we are finishing off for the day, we are enjoying some of this delicious, exotic fruit. I have forgotten what it is called. It tastes amazing.

Thank you Lord for another amazing day and for the lives you are impacting and will impact through KLB!

"They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for he display of His splendour." Isaiah 61:3

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Raising the Next Generation

After a good night's rest and a few souvenirs from some Philippine mosquitoes, we had our breakfast (of course including my traditional morning mangoes) and then made our way to Bo's where we collected our cup-of-cinos and where we had arranged to be picked up by Berwyn. In the morning we spent time with the core leadership group. Once again Frances and I spoke about essence and form so that the leaders understand that our purpose in planting Kingdom Life Butuan is not to form a copy of how we do things in Frankfurt but that they understand why we do what we do so that they have the freedom to have their own expression of Kingdom values and the essence of Kingdom living. Frances and I showed them how we need to live from the reality of the Kingdom to bring heaven on earth. They are a very young group of people who are hungry for God and excited to be part of what God is doing through KLF and now through KLB.

After a quick lunch we did some admin stuff and then made our way to one of the areas where KLB ministers to the street children. The place where the children meet is in one of the homes of one of the members a little further out from Butuan in a slightly remote area where there are no other churches or organisations looking after the children's needs apart from KLB now. As we arrived we saw a heap of flip flops (sandals) that fitted some very tiny feet, gathered at the entrance of a wooden-paneled house. Inside were over 30 children seated on the floor as some of the KLB leaders sang songs with them. I was asked to share a message with them. On the way to the gathering, I had asked the Holy Spirit what to share and then He gave me the idea to share the truth of God's love using a banana. Needless to say the kids and I had a lot of fun as I explained to them that God loves bananas and that He is more concerned about what is inside us than what the skin looks like! After the message, the kids each received a lunch box with fried noodles and bread in it. They were delighted and everyone tucked in with joy. It is really moving to see how people who live in such humble conditions open their homes for the benefit of the poor and needy. There is such love and kindness released through their generosity that reveals the heart of the Father and the nature of the Kingdom.

After our time with the children we headed back to KLB where I was asked to share a word with the KLB youth group. We looked at what it means to receive fullness of life in Christ how God has created everyone of them uniquely for His pleasure and purposes. After the meeting we were brought back to the hotel so we could get an early night because tomorrow morning I have a radio broadcast at the heavenly hour of 6:00am and that without my cup-of-cino! "Gooooood morning Butuaaaaaan!"
No cockroaches sighted today...

"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God." Colossians 3:1-3


Friday, 18 July 2014

Leaders' Seminar

After a pretty rough night trying to sleep in a room next to a very noisy road, we had our breakfast and made a beeline for Bo's Coffee place to get a decent coffee to keep us going. Julius and Berwyn picked us up at 8.00am and we made our way to a place commonly called RTR, near Cabadbaran where Berwyn lives and pastors Mabini Christian Fellowship. In RTR is the Four Square Church that we have visited before at previous visits that is pastored by pastor Lumba. Pastors and leaders had been invited to attend a day seminar and to fellowship together over a lunch that we provided.

Our purpose was to help the leaders think about the difference between essence and form and to learn to ask the right questions in terms of what they do and why they are doing what they do. Frances and I shared the teaching and we had a lot of fun interacting with the people and challenging traditional mindsets. Our aim was not to give all the answers but for the leaders to be equipped to ask the right questions that they can answer themselves. After 2 sessions in the morning and afternoon we offered to pray for the leaders and many came forward to be ministered to. God is so faithful. Frances and I were pretty tired by the time it came to pray for over 30 people but God began to give us prophetic words and power to pray for the sick. One man felt the fire of God all over his body. Another man said he could see better after receiving prayer for healing. There were many tears and some were deeply ministered to as the Holy Spirit touched their hearts and lives with His love and presence. God's grace is truly sufficient for us as His power is made perfect in our weakness (2 Cor 12:9).

We praise God for the many testimonies of leaders who said that they had received fresh revelation and felt equipped to take their ministries further. Hallelujah!

After a long but powerful time, we were invited for dinner at Berwyn and Liberty's home in Cabadbaran. It was a joy to see the whole family and I spent most of the time playing with Christopher and Christine. It was a lot of fun! I really don't mind my bald head being used as a landing pad for all sorts of animals and toys.

Thank you Lord for revealing your heart today and for bringing us back to the essence of what you have called us to as leaders and as your people.

"The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7


Thursday, 17 July 2014

Ministers of Hope

Well, we have finally arrived. After leaving Frankfurt on Tuesday morning and spending a day in Hong Kong, arriving in Manila at 1:20am and catching our flight to Butuan at 12:00pm today, we finally arrived in Butuan and were warmly received by Berwyn, Julius, Roszel and Aaron (Julius' brother).

It is quite humid and hot here. After a welcome lunch, we headed to our hotel and rested a bit. In the evening we had our first activity with KLB. A group of young people gathered to prepare for their weekly outreach activity where they go to a local area to minister to the street kids and give them some food to eat. They share the Gospel with them and 6 or more young leaders then take a small group of kids to speak to them and find out more about them. They then pray with the children. It was wonderful to see the joy on the street children's faces and to hear the testimonies of how the leaders were moved with compassion for these needy children. Frances, Berwyn and I sat in McDonalds and while we were there a group of 6 young men joined our table. I struck a convesation wth them and began to ask them about their future. I was propmpted by the Holy Spirit to speak hope and a future into their lives and they became more and more intrigued and their faces lit up. God was giving them hope and He was showing them that their future is only secure in Him. It was a wonderful opportunity to share the assurance of the hope we have. I am pretty sure they will be at the KLB service on Sunday to which I invited them.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13