Friday, May 19, 2006

When the Outstation becomes the Outhouse

Today (5/19/06), two of my favorite weekly adventures took place, going to the market to soulwin, and having our Friday outstation. The market was packed as always, even with the new mall open, it didn't seem to diminish the crowds here. Two of the new bible college students went with me. We took the jeepney and paid our fare (15 cents a piece) and rode til we got close to the market. The scene changes little from week to week. Teeming humanity searching for their weekly treasures, vendors trying to convince you to buy, though the novelty and excitement of the place has worn off a little, the excitement of talking to someone about Jesus hasn't. Now, my grasp of the language enables me to invite them and to witness to them. Even my ignorance sometimes works to my advantage, If I don't understand everything they say, I just reply by telling them no matter what, they need to make time for God, and only the blood of Jesus can wash away their sins. Since most of the time they are just giving me an excuse, it works pretty good!

On the way home, we bought some mangos (from the family above) negotiated a fare on a tricycle, and went home for lunch. After lunch the second great adventure began.

Balibago is a small community of poor folks that live right next to the infamous "Fields Avenue". Fields is where the bars and girlie joints are, and it's lifestyle claims many of the young girls with it's lure of fast money. Fridays we go and spend time inviting people for an hour or two, and then have service right there in their community. It is an adventure, because as you walk through the pathways, you always seem to find more paths leading to more houses and lots of people to invite. Today after about an hour of inviting the rains came. Although many parts of the Philippines are beautiful and clean (so I am told) this is not one of them. Trash is thrown everywhere, and children and animals do their "Bizness" on the pathways. When the rains come, it is like flushing the toilet! These are not gentle little sprinkles sent to refresh and cool, but dousing dollops that send torrents of water surging through the paths, washing away all of the filth and trash with it. The kids loved it! They came running out and took impromptu showers under the downspouts! After the rain died down, we had church, even with the inclement weather, two new men came and prayed for salvation!

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