Lessons from MET 2023


On July 5-11, 2023, the UPDCF once again conducted the Missions Exposure Trip, the first one after the pandemic. A group of 21 UP Diliman students, DCF alumni and Diliman Campus Bible Church members joined the week-long evangelistic and discipleship follow up activity in Baguio City, La Trinidad and Bokod, Benguet. I want to share some of the highlights of my experience from MET 2023:

1.We were able to share the Gospel message to a 90-year-old lola at Burnham park who was very responsive to the Good News. She was part of a group of elderly who frequented the park to ask for food or help. Though her condition was difficult, I realized God’s grace for giving her long life so that she can learn of Jesus’ love and respond in faith, all by grace. As we helped alleviate her physical needs, I was joyful that we could give her the best gift there is—the Gospel of Jesus.

The family of Kuya Julius, a UPDCF alumnus, joined the team. I was so blessed seeing them serve the Lord together, including their five-year-old son, Jes. I was especially moved by Jes’ excitement to share the Gospel with other children using the Evangecube. He even hiked 60-degree slopes to reach the church in Bokod, Benguet. Indeed, no one’s too young or too old to take part in God’s Great Commission.

3.  It is usually more challenging to share the Gospel in urban and commercial settings. We experienced this first-hand at San Vicente. Owners of shops and stores were busy going about their business. Many refused to listen, but God still led us to people who were open and eager to hear the Gospel. We are indeed just links in the chain of people’s spiritual journeys. Sometimes we are called to till dry and hard ground, to plant seeds, water saplings, cultivate plants or reap the harvest. We rejoice whatever role God gives us in His mission!

4. During our day-long evangelism activities, me and Alvia often struggled with hoarseness of voice and sore throat after talking to several people, non-stop. We thought of being consistent in sharing the Gospel even to just one person each day so that we will not have that problem. We can pour out our hearts and share passionately to that person as we continue to take part in God’s work even after the MET. Indeed, the Missions Exposure Trip has ended but the Great Commission continues until the Lord Jesus returns.

5. A few years ago, we made a tract to share the Gospel in UP. It is entitled, “The Bridge to God.” When we went to Quezon Province for MET, we wrote the Filipino version so that it can be easily understood by the people. I am joyful that we completed the Ilocano version in time for our MET to Benguet. Before this trip, I shared the Gospel in my mother tongue only less than five times because I am not as fluent as I used to. But with the Ilocano translation of our Gospel tract, I was able to share many times in Ilocano, especially to older people in Bokod and Baguio. Using my mother tongue helped the people better understand the Gospel. It was a joy to proclaim Christ in my heart language!

6. During our closing fellowship, we were asked to write down an encouragement for our fellow MET members. God again reminded me to pray for a missional heart, love for the brethren and compassion for those who don’t know Jesus yet. I remembered the words of Marie Louise de Meester, “Let your heart be like Christ’s so generous and so great, that the whole world may find room in it.” Jesus is the perfect example of passion and compassion for people. When he saw crowds, he was moved because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And so, he told His disciples to ask God to send workers in the harvest field. I am praying that the Lord will enable us to respond to this prayer.

7. I also experienced several spiritual struggles during the MET that could have distracted, discouraged, or frightened me. But I praise the Holy Spirit for His abiding peace and presence amid all these. At one time, the phone we use for our online financial transactions got lost! Though it stressed me at first, we surrendered it to God. He protected the phone, and we were able to retrieve it from our jeepney driver. At another time, we also experienced spiritual opposition while sharing in two households. At the corner of my eye, I noticed someone or something peeking from the window. But when I glanced at it, there was no one there! This happened twice. But instead of being afraid, I just prayed for God’s protection. I remembered Kuya Caloy’s reminder that when there is spiritual opposition, it means the enemy is not happy with what we are doing. In this case, the enemy surely hated the gift of salvation being spread in Bokod.

8. I was also blessed by the opportunity to minister to several members of the MET team. When I was busy completing my MDiv, I couldn’t spend much time in talking to and encouraging members of the fellowship. But during the MET, I had several opportunities to pray for and talk to the students. I was blessed to be given the chance to catch up with them and to pray for their struggles during the MET and even in other areas of life. The Missions Trip is truly a ministry not just to the community but also to the team members. God also speaks and transforms them as much as He transforms those whom they serve.

9. Lastly, I am also blessed by God’s Word during our Sunday service in Bokod. Before the MET, I asked God to use the outreach to help me better sense His leading for the next season of my life. During the service, I was pleasantly surprised when the text used by Pastor Marlon was the same text God used to call me in campus ministry—Philippians 4. Though Pastor Marlon focused only on the first half, I was blessed to be reminded again of the two truths that God used to lead me to full-time campus work. I should not be anxious about anything but surrender everything in prayer. Though the next season of my ministry life remains uncertain, this reminder is still true, especially when I am paralyzed by the struggles of campus and church work. And when this happens, it is also crucial that I fill my mind with what is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy. I thank God for these reminders, even as they help me better hear His leading in the ministry. 

In all these, I share our team’s refrain, “That’s God’s faithfulness. Praise the Lord!”



Post a Comment