WELCOME HOME TO MANILA

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A month before our official move to the Philippines, I traveled to Manila to do a test run so to speak on how life would be like if we chose to relocate. If you had told me last year that transitioning my life across the world would be my reality, I would have laughed and brushed it off as a really great joke in light of my hard preference for comfort and stability. 

But God's ways are higher than our ways. And every single day of that test run proved to be one big affirmation that His will for us was to take the biggest leap of faith and trust that He would see us through. My last week in Manila, a friend invited me to a church called Favor. I hadn't even entered the building yet when I was greeted "Welcome home!" by a cheerful Australian named James who I would later find out was the Senior Pastor. 

The rest was history. Not only was the sermon about FAITH in action, but I was blessed to meet the most authentic and welcoming group of people. Barely even knowing me, they rallied in prayer over the next steps of my journey with Emeka, fully believing in the power of God to move and make miracles happen. I kept texting my husband the whole evening, blown away with excitement at God's orchestration of the best kind of comfort one could ask for: Himself.

You see, no matter where your road leads in life, there is no need to fear because home is not so much a place as much as it is His Presence. Although moving across the world felt like a trillion miles away, to God who spoke the entire Universe into existence, it is but a single step forward. No calling is too big for Him. And the only ticket required is a mustard seed of faith. 

"Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." (Matthew 17:20)

I have a strong inkling that someone out there needed to read this today; to be encouraged that despite your circumstances, God is not only able but passionately eager to make a way for you. This doesn't mean that your journey won't be marked with its own unique challenges. But rest assured that God will affirm you every step of the way, revealing more of Himself in the intimate ways that speak most to your heart. For me, it was a group of friends I am thrilled to now call family. 

Last week, a group of us decided to plan a spontaneous canyoneering trip to Cebu! The day before, we rallied together to schedule the festivities from flight to accommodations to must-see attractions. Truly the ultimate YOLO! And by God's grace, everything fell together so seamlessly. And while watching the golden sunset on the beach and jumping off a 40 meter cliff (YUP. 40. Freaking. Meters. So much for comfort and stability, eh?) was exhilarating, I must say that nothing was more wonderful than the enriching and personal time spent together in community. 

Welcome home. Indeed I am. 

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**Special thanks to @KawasanFalls for the FUNventures and our new home @Favor.Church

Photography: @LizetteClaudio