I was on my 4th year in high school when I started becoming curious about spiritual things. Back then, I remember a Christian teacher who would enter our classroom and teach about values and would share biblical thoughts. Growing up from a Catholic background, I had many questions and those discussions stirred in me the desire to know more about God.
At the beginning of my conscious spiritual search, I got acquainted to IVCF as I entered college. My brother, who was a member then, introduced me to the fellowship and that time on I started attending to their prayer gatherings, large group and small group meetings. But despite my seemingly active involvement that year, I realized that there’s still something wrong with me. It was not until DLTC 2015 that I came to know that I was still in bondage from guilt and still struggling with uncertainty. I know I have already heard the gospel but it was only during that camp when I completely understood God’s gift of grace in Christ Jesus. Having fully accepted what He did on the cross, my soul was satisfied as I found my Saviour, and indeed I finally felt free!
Continuing with my IV-involvement, I was appointed as the chapter’s treasurer during my 2nd year in college. That year too, I was exposed to many leadership summits and trainings. I learned a lot of things in a short span of time to which I considered myself privileged as a newcomer in the ministry.
Later in time, the inevitable came. All my Ate’s and Kuya’s were about to graduate leaving just the three of us in the chapter. One thing that concerned me was the ministry. “How are we going to keep this up? How can we continue this campus ministry?” These concerns moved me to step up.
Entering the A.Y. 2018-2019 was an exciting but nerve-racking opportunity to continue the movement inside the campus. Worried by the number of leaders remaining, I didn’t know how the 3 of us could pull off a Back-to-School Treat (BTST) but we were able to make it a success with the people and resources that God provided. Eventually, we were able to form our small groups. Being the first time to handle my very own small group, I got excited to start the discussions with my SG members but also was worried by the thought that they may not show up. But thankfully, they did! I looked forward to our weekly SG meetings where we had our stories told, we shared our laughs and tears, we had food to eat, and where we made memories. Every SG discussion was full of reflection and response. Every week was a surprise.
Having been able to journey with them this school year, I felt the same joy that I saw in my Ate’s and Kuya’s back then. It was truly fulfilling to see them grow, and to hear God’s work in their lives through their testimonies. This gives me much joy!
It was a rollercoaster of events and emotions in just 3 years! I can only ask for courage to what more I have to learn, relearn, and unlearn. To this, I give my deepest gratitude to my Lord and Saviour who saved me, satisfied my soul, and stayed with me through all this. Praises be to God alone!
(Written by: Ms. April Dianne Tuna, who is an incoming 5th year Accountancy student in MSU-Gensan. She is one of the few remaining student-leaders in Southern Mindanao. Continue to pray for more ‘April’ to rise this school year, for His glory!)
PRAISES AND PRAYERS
Praise the LORD for:
- God’s faithful provision for SY 2018-2019. We thank God for our Ministry Partners’ regular support. As of May 2019, we have an ending balance of P314,855.02. Hallelujah!
- The culmination of the 2-month intensive Discipleship Ministry Partners Development (DPMD) last June 3. Charlie Gujol (Davao-based staff) is now qualified to train others!
- Crissa Faith Blanco, who is now an official IVCF Staffworker for Regional Communications and Fieldwork in Davao del Norte/ComVal starting June 2019;
- Cristopher Abadiez, who will be serving as a full-time Regional Staff Intern (RSI) for IVCF-Kabacan and Resource Development starting this June 2019;
- the restful National Staff Conference last June 3-7 in Antipolo, Rizal. Praise God!
- and· the continuing work in our Specialized Ministries. Praise God for the opportunity to minister among our Indian friends through the International Student Ministry (ISM) of the Tecson and Arcenas couples in Davao City; and for the Peace Generation Discipleship Group of our Silingan Ministry.
Pray unto the LORD for:
- KAWAYAN CAMP 2019 (Mid-year).This is the 2nd batch of KC this year for the students from the shifted calendar. Pray for the delegates and camp staff’s preparation and provision;
- DMPD CONTEXTUALIZATION. Pray for Charlie as he trains the SMRU team starting this school year. Pray for wisdom and guidance;
- a meaningful Sabbatical LEAVE of Gretchen Guillas (Tagum-based staff) on July 2019 after her 6 years of full time work;
- our REGULAR AND SPECIALIZED ministries this school year. For our regular student ministry: pray that the Lord will raise batch of committed student-leaders who will partner with us in extending God’s kingdom in the campuses. For our specialized ministries (ISM and Silingan): pray that the Lord will continue to transform the hearts of our least-reached friends through these ministries. Pray for the discipleship of the new believers, for more creative ways on how to engage them, and for resources to sustain the work. And
- the right & called person to take the Admin & Finance Officer (RSI)vacant position ASAP.