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Atong Trabaho (Our Work)

Let's talk about work, everybody loves work right, ooh, and geography, everybody is a fan of that too, right?

This is a picture of Tubajon, the municipality that we are working in on Dinagat Island, which is north of Surigao Del Norte (at the bottom of the map), which is on the current island that we live on, Mindanao (that was a mouthful).

The area is divided into 9 baranagays. These 9 barangays are spread out through the whole of the red area on the map, with most of them actually being along the coast inside the sideways v looking bay on the left side of the island. For our purposes, we are basically calling them villages that all answer to one mayor, even though each of them have a barangay captain that is responsible to the mayor for the administration of that area.

Out of the nine that are in this area, there are four barangays (that we know of) that have absolutely no evangelical church anywhere within their administrative areas. These four areas are going to be our object…
Recent posts

Review of Katharina & Martin Luther

Since it is Reformation month I thought that I would read and try to write a quick review of a book on the man who began the Protestant Reformation in force. Michelle DeRusha wrote this nice little book on the marriage of the Reformer, something which is often overlooked in most Reformation history. We tend to focus on the theology and the upheaval of the Reformation, because that is important. But DeRusha does an amazing job at showing why Luther's marriage to a runaway nun was so groundbreaking at that time. This focus shows how Luther's theology is fleshed out in everyday life, and it is a great reminder that our theology (because every Christian is a theologian) needs to be fleshed out and connected with the everyday and mundane of life.

With only 8 letters of Katharina (von Bora) Luther that has come down to historians there is a hard time to figuring out important things about her early life and the day to day of their marriage. There are copious amounts of letters from …

Review of Note To Self

This is the first book review that I'm doing for the blog. I probably won't do a very academic style book review, but keep it fairly short and sweet. I will also be taking these as an opportunity to show you guys maybe what we are reading over here and if we are able to utilize any of it in ministry. NOTE: We are not getting any sort of kick-backs from these reviews, we are not getting paid to write a review for any company and we don't get anything if you guys do decide to buy any of these books via the link provided. Thanks!

I have recently been binge-listening to the podcast Doctrine and Devotion, which is a SBC/reformed baptist pastor and a perennial elder-candidate talking about anything and everything in church life. Joe Thorn, the pastor and co-host, has written a few books, and I hope to review almost all of his here sooner or later, especially as I hope to maybe use some of them for future ministry training here in the Philippines.

Joe Thorn writes this book essen…

Going Green

We have posted a few times about experiencing loneliness while being here. This is not one of those posts, but in some ways it will probably be very similar.
DISCLAIMER: This is NOT a post about whining or complaining about anything. It is, if nothing else, me simply trying to think through some of the feelings that we have had over the past couple of weeks.

There are some new missionaries in town. Two new families, to be exact. There are two families with a collective 6 1/2 kids that have moved in to Butuan, and they all live within a few minutes of us. Now, two new families moving to town may not sound all that crazy or like it's big news, but boy howdy it is! With new Americans (one of them is Canadian, but that's ok) here that means a few things. First, it means that we're no longer the noobies here as far as missionaries go and second, we are not alone.
Wait? Did I just say alone? I mean, we've been here 8 months now, we have friends, we have contacts on at least …

The Need

Recently in church we heard a really convicting sermon about the need for missions and how only through  resting in Christ are we able actually to do the task that He has given us. There was this video that we watched at the end of the sermon, listing facts and statistics about world missions and other related issues. That video is posted below.

This sermon and especially the video has got me thinking. There is so much work for the church to do in the world. And even though we live here, even though we work here, we can and will never able to do enough. That is the reality of the situation. We will never be able to "save" enough people before we are done with our work here.  But none of us are called to do any more than what we have been given. We (and that includes you too, Reader), as servants, are only told to share the Gospel as we go throughout the world. We are not able to save the world, but our God is able and willing to do that through us. This means that we don…

The Makililimos and Me

Most people know that there is real, hard poverty here, with people openly begging on the street, at intersections and in front of churches. Depending on where in the city you may be, you might be noticed by someone who is begging, and they might know enough English to walk up to you and say, “Hey! Give me money!”. This can be jarring. Other times it’s when you are coming out of Mcdo (McDonalds for you Americans) and there will be a small, shoeless, disheveled kid who is barely whispering, asking for money or food. This can be devastating.

Mga makililimos (beggars) are sometimes people in legitimate need. Some can't walk, they might be missing limbs, or they just might be able to physically work any longer. Others, we've been told, don't want to work, they may own farms but don't want to work them, or their parents might have "too many kids" to take care of and so they send them out on the street to beg for food or money to take back to their family.


A Few Thoughts

What happened over the last weekend in Charlottesville is horrible. A person lost their life. Sin reared its ugly head. Hundreds of lost people had their hearts hardened even more by the sins of others and their own sinfulness. Let's make no mistake about it, we are talking about sin. Is bigotry bad? Yes. But is it worse than lying? Or adultery? Or stealing, or idolatry? Before you get upset that I just equated racism with lying, consider this:
For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it. For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment. (James 2:10-13)

We need to realize that there is no innocent party here. All of us have sinned, all of us have had …