#MJVJustToPleaseYou Commemorative Song Cover

#MJVJustToPleaseYou Commemorative Song Cover


Be part of the #MJVJustToPleaseYou Commemorative Song Cover and join the entire JIL Worldwide family in celebrating Mayor Joni’s legacy through inspirational music this May 2021. Here are the mechanics:

  1. Participants shall cover Mayor Joni’s “Just to Please You,” record their performance on video, and upload it on their personal Facebook account (set the post to public) or YouTube channel.
  2. Include the following in the video’s caption:

    a. A description of how the participants have been inspired by Mayor Joni and her song, “Just To Please You”

    b. Names of participants in the video

    c. Area or location where the participant/s reside/s

    d. The hashtag #MJVJustToPleaseYou.

  3. All voice performance formats are allowed (e.g. solo performance, band, choir, acapella, acoustic, etc.), except for lip-synching.
  4. Send the link of your video via private message on our Facebook page: Jesus Is Lord Church Worldwide.
  5. The deadline for uploading entries is May 17, 2021, at 10:00 p.m. (Philippine time).
  6. Selected entries shall be included in the “Just To Please You” video to be premiered on May 28, 2021 at our official social media accounts.

May this simple way of reliving Mayor Joni’s glorious contribution to God’s kingdom inspire millions more to desire a life that only pleases God.

We join the Filipino nation in commemorating the National Bible Week.

We join the Filipino nation in commemorating the National Bible Week.

Now more than ever, we must put our faith in the restorative power of God’s Word. Let us take hold of the life compass given to us so that we remain bold, resilient, and faith-filled amid the challenges of the year.

For more details on the National Bible Week celebration, visit the link below:

bible.org.ph/nationalbiblemonth21


The problems we are facing are indeed real. But as real as these problems is the Word of God – Bro. Eddie Villanueva

Every day, we are faced with the aggravating condition of the world and of humanity. We can see in the news the horrible deeds that people do just to satisfy their corrupt desires, even to the point of trampling other people’s rights and dignity or using other people for their own personal agenda. Aside from this moral degeneration, let us also not discount the tangible and undeniable sufferings of practically every person living on this planet because of the COVID-19 pandemic and its resulting effects on businesses and world economies.

The problems we are facing are indeed real. But as real as these problems is the Word of God. And as people enlightened and changed by the Word of God, it is our moral duty to share His Word to the world. Let us be bold in sharing the life-giving and life-changing words of the Lord. We cannot just complain of the evils of the world if we are not sharing the Good News of salvation to them. And we also ought to be beacons of hope to everyone who is disheartened and discouraged by this pandemic.

The Lord is good and faithful. As we share His Word, we can be assured that we will be the first to be changed and encouraged by the message that we preach. “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12, NKJV)

So receive the blessings and bounties of God’s Word! Receive His fresh revelations and impartations! Receive the refreshing and restoring power of God! Shalom! Shalom!

Bro. Eddie C. Villanueva

President and Spiritual Director


God’s Word indeed restores, but we need to read. We need to listen. We need to heed His Word. Revival is re-Bible – Ptr. Bobot Bernardo

We are hard pressed on every side. From the outside, there is a pandemic that has been threatening our health, depleting our finances, jeopardizing our mental and emotional well-being, and disrupting our way of life. From the inside, we have our personal battles: some of us may have fears and worries and stresses… others, loneliness and the pursuit of joy and peace… still others, a gnawing guilt, shame.

The answer to all those? God’s Word. Let us devour God’s unchanging promises—of protection, of provisions, of deliverance, of hope, of peace, of joy. Then let us allow God’s revelation of who He is drown us—He is Mighty Creator, Great Deliverer, Dependable Defender… He stills storms, moves mountains, and breaks bondages… and He cares for us, looks after us, even reaches out to us because He loves us.

That’s just a sampling of what we’ll uncover as we read God’s Word. So this National Bible Week, let us dive in and read. God’s Word indeed restores, but we need to read. We need to listen. We need to heed His Word. Revival is re-Bible. Blessings to us all!

Ptr. Bobot V. Bernardo

Executive Director

2021 is the YEAR OF GOD’S TRIUMPHANT HOPE

2021 is the YEAR OF GOD’S TRIUMPHANT HOPE

2021 is the YEAR OF GOD’S TRIUMPHANT HOPE, the fulfillment of God’s agenda—in our personal life, in our family, in the JIL Church Worldwide, in our nation, and in the world.

We declare victories and breakthroughs for JIL members and their respective families, along with the surpassing peace and unbreakable joy from God.

We declare that God will send us fresh fire, open new frontiers, and bring forth significant great successes for the JIL Church Worldwide.

We declare compassion and empathy, unity and solidarity among the Filipino people, as we declare wisdom, mercy, justice and integrity for our government officials.

We declare physical healing, financial recovery, emotional freedom, and spiritual revival for the world.

And as we receive all those, we also affirm our renewed commitment:
to deepen our faith in God, to intensify our service in the ministry, and to solidify our devotion to others.

We will all the more love God,

We will all the more serve God,

And we will all the more love and serve others,

Until the Lord’s Second Coming.

We say AMEN to this and receive God’s triumphant hope for 2021!

The Great Escape, the Blessed Hope

The Great Escape, the Blessed Hope

By Bishop Bro. Eddie C. Villanueva

Many are reported missing all over the world. Drivers suddenly vanish; vehicles on land, water and air collide against each other. Many people are rushed to hospitals due to accidents or mishaps. Medical people are in great panic as they attend to countless emergency patients while recovering from the fact that some of their colleagues have just disappeared into thin air. People in all the world make haste here and there in extreme terror. Family members groan as they realize some of their loved ones are gone and could not be found. Media headlines scream, “The world is in chaos!”

This is just a glimpse of what the world would be like after the Rapture.

What is the Rapture and who will be raptured?

The Rapture is the first phase of the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is God’s great rescue of His believers from the wrath to come, the Great Tribulation, wherein the Anti-Christ would rule wickedly in seven years as one-world ruler, as prophesied in the Scriptures. An imminent event that will happen suddenly in just a twinkling of an eye, the Church will be snatched away from earth to be with God in heaven.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, the Apostle Paul spoke of the Rapture to comfort the bereaved ones. He wrote:

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died. We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17)

The Rapture will be a great reunion for all believers both dead and alive during that time. The dead in Christ will be resurrected, with their old mortal bodies miraculously changed into glorified, immortal bodies. Then the bodies of the believers who are alive during that time will also be miraculously changed into glorified bodies and will be caught up together with those who are resurrected (1 Corinthians 15:51-52). And there in heaven they will face the Judgment Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10), where all the believers will receive the due rewards as promised (1 Corinthians 3:13-15; Matthew 25:14-30), and join the Marriage Supper of the Lamb for seven years. (Matthew 25:1-13; Revelation 19:5-10)

How and when is Rapture going to happen?

Nobody knows the date or the time. The Bible actually says that it will happen at the least expected time. Apostle Paul wrote, “Now concerning how and when all this will happen, dear brothers and sisters, we don’t really need to write you. For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night. When people are saying, “Everything is peaceful and secure,” then disaster will fall on them as suddenly as a pregnant woman’s labor pains begin. And there will be no escape.” (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3)

Therefore, we must live as if the Rapture would happen right now. Because any moment, it may actually happen.

Why must everyone prepare for the Rapture and, in essence, for eternity?

The event that will immediately come after the Rapture is the Tribulation of seven years under the rule of the Anti-Christ, which the Bible declares to be terrifying. The Lord Jesus said, “if not shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones.” (Matthew 24:22; Mark 13:20)

Therefore, to be included in the Rapture should be the heavenly goal of all the believers of the Lord Jesus Christ.

For the 42nd anniversary of the Jesus Is Lord Church Worldwide, the Lord has impressed upon my heart to declare at this point of history, in the midst of this long pandemic, a call for all to “Prepare for Eternity.”

The novel coronavirus had adversely shaken all the nations of the world and it gives a warning to the entire human race. Aside from this, false Christs or Messiahs and false prophets had already showed up and had been hiding in all the religions of the world since the birth of the Church. Wars and rumors of wars keep sending an alarm of fear. Famines and earthquakes shattered and continue to shatter many nations. Many believers had suffered severe persecutions in the past and it continues till today. Sin increases its speed so that the love of many has grown cold, and acts of unfaithfulness and rise of heinous crimes are but a few pieces of evidence. Most importantly, the Gospel today is being spread widely because of the internet. These are all preludes to Christ’s Second Coming.

Therefore, the time now is more than fit to call all people to repent, to go back to the Creator, to submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christ because we are now living in a very dangerous time. And if we fail to prepare for eternity, if we get left behind from the Rapture, our one precious soul would be at stake.

Let us remember that eternity is timeless, everlasting, forever, immeasurable, without end. And there are only two destinations of man: either eternal life with God in heaven or eternal death in hell with Satan. As Hebrews 9:27 tells, “And just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment.” And that judgment will bring us to our final destination, whether in heaven or in hell.

Existence on earth is very temporal. Sadly, millions of people exist only for the sake of existence. They do not understand that their destination is permanent and without end. It is not for one million or even one trillion years only but throughout eternity.

Who is the Anti-Christ and what is the Tribulation?

The identity of the Anti-Christ has been speculated for so many years but the Bible did not say anything specific about where the Anti-Christ will come from. But one day, the Anti-Christ will be revealed [although the spirit of the anti-Christ had been here already since the birth of the church (Matthew 24:5, 24; 1 John 4:3; 2 John 1:7)].

2 Thessalonians 2:3-5 tells us how we will recognize the Anti-Christ. “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.”

What prevents the Anti-Christ from being revealed? Paul said, “Don’t you remember that I told you about all this when I was with you? And you know what is holding him back, for he can be revealed only when his time comes. For this lawlessness is already at work secretly, and it will remain secret until the one who is holding it back steps out of the way. Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed… (2 Thessalonians 2:5-8a)

The Bible scholars agree that it is the Church endued with the Holy Spirit that holds back the revelation of the Anti-Christ. When Christians are taken away on the Rapture, that will be the only time that he will be revealed, then the Great Tribulation, a seven-year reign of the Anti-Christ in the whole world, is ushered.

Meanwhile, the Anti-Christ known as the Beast, will appear in the midst of chaos and anarchy. The world will need a “superman” in that era and many will be deceived, believing that he is the Messiah. Even the Israelites will believe him. There is no wonder in that for they have rejected the real Christ who had already come (Romans 10:1-4). The Anti-Christ’s regime will forge partnership or peace pact with Israel and during this time, the third temple will be built and a graven image will be constructed for the Anti-Christ. After 3 ½ years, the Anti-Christ will be revealed because the false prophet will require all men to worship him (Revelation 13:8, 12, 15). In full exercise of his power, he will require all men to receive the mark of the Beast, which is 666, in their right hand or forehead, for them to be able to buy or sell. (Revelation 13:16-18)

The Lord Jesus Christ substantiates that the Tribulation is going to be unsurpassed, a time of uncontrolled evil. “For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again.” (Matthew 24:21). This dreadful period is narrated in Revelation chapters 6 to 18. During the first 3 ½ years the condition of the world will worsen and God’s anger will burn against the wicked. In the last 3 ½ years, the Anti-Christ will be empowered to sit at the center of Tribulation’s evil (Daniel 9:27; Matthew 24:15; 2 Thessalonians 2:4).

Extreme natural disasters will occur during the Great Tribulation: the sun will turn black, the moon will turn red, great earthquakes will become common, stars would fall out of the sky, mountains and islands would be moved, oceans would become blood, and waters would be poisoned.

How will the people be saved during the Tribulation? Those who will refuse the mark will be subject to torture, even horrible death. These people who will become martyrs for Christ will have the chance to be saved (Revelation 17:6).

Christ’s Second Coming and the Battle of Armageddon

Christ’s second coming is spoken of in greatest detail in Revelation 19:11-16, “And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, ‘KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.’”

During Christ’s actual Second Coming, a great battle, the Battle of Armageddon, would occur. The Anti-Christ would gather kings in a place called Armageddon, and they will gather their armies to wage war against Israel. Christ ultimately will win this battle, even if the enemy pulls armies from all the ends of the earth.

How will Christ defeat the Anti-Christ? Paul wrote in 2 Thessalonians 2:8b, “… (He will) consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.” Revelation 19:17-21 further tells, “Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, ‘Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.’ And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.”

What happens in and after the Millennial Reign of Christ?

This judgment of God executed in the Battle of Armageddon is described to be so sudden because Scriptures say it will last one day or one hour (Revelation 18:10, 17-19). This will end the reign of the Anti-Christ, who will be thrown into the lake of fire (Revelation 19:20; 20:10) and Satan will be bound in the bottomless pit for a thousand years (Revelation 20:1-3).

This ushers the Millennial (or a thousand-year) Reign of Christ on earth (Revelation 20:4, 6). This will be a welcomed time of peace for all mankind. This will also be a fulfillment of prophecy where He will sit on the throne of David, ruling over Israel (Luke 1:32-33), and the world (Isaiah 9:6; Daniel 7:14), manifesting His glory. The words “one thousand years” are mentioned six times in Revelation 20:1-7, confirming that this kingdom would be literal, and very peaceful (Isaiah 11:5-7). And to reign with Him are His saints and the martyrs who died during the Tribulation. (Revelation 20:4, 6)

The 1,000 year-reign of Christ seem to be limited but it actually begins His everlasting dominion that will continue from the millennial kingdom into the eternal state in the new heavens and new earth (Revelation 20:4, 6). But before the eternal kingdom comes, Satan will be loosed from the bottomless pit for a short while and then comes the final judgment throwing him at last to the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10).

Then the wicked dead will be raised again to be judged and thrown finally in hell. This is called the Great White Throne Judgment. Revelation 20:11-15 says, “Then I saw a great white throne and the one who sat on it; the earth and the heaven fled from his presence, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Also another book was opened, the book of life. And the dead were judged according to their works, as recorded in the books. And the sea gave up the dead that were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and all were judged according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire; and anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.”

After such, finally, eternity will begin. “Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.’” (Revelation 21:1-4)

How should we prepare for eternity?

  1. We must become a citizen of heaven or a child of God. It is not automatic that all creation are children of God. There is only one Son of God, the begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (John 3:16). Our religion is not relevant. We should be adopted as a child of God. John 1:12 says, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.” This assures us that we can be accepted, an immigration or adoption paper as citizens of heaven being given to all who would receive Jesus as personal Lord and Savior. This is far better and beautiful. There is no charge to pay. It’s absolutely free, because Jesus paid for it. As 2 Corinthians 5:21 puts it, “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
  2. We must accept the redemptive work of Christ. He bore our sins on the cross, as Romans 3:23 and Romans 6:23 attest. 1 John 5:11-13 also says, “And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” Salvation is simplified by God Himself; we can go straight to His Son. Jesus says in John 14:6, “…I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” It is the religious system that made salvation complex. What we need is right relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
  3. We must come back to God if we have backslidden, or else we will lose such a great salvation. If we were adopted as American or Canadian citizen and we violate the rules of the land, our natural citizenship will be canceled. So we must be warned. Let us not subscribe to the belief that once we are saved, we are always saved. Let us keep a right relationship with God and repent and return if we must, before it is too late.

What are God’s last marching orders?

Let us accelerate the fulfillment of God’s marching order to you and me: the Great Commission. Let us redeem the time as we anticipate the Rapture, allowing for more and more souls to hear this blessed hope we are looking forward to, that they, too, might experience it.

Let us also be excited in learning the truths of God in the last days. We should not be afraid of studying the books of Daniel, Matthew 24 and 25, Revelation, and other books that are eschatological. Let us seek the truth for nobody can duel with the truth. It will happen. That is why there is an urgency to prepare for eternity.

Furthermore, let us seek to study heaven, the place where we shall be. Heaven is an extremely beautiful place, beyond words. The heavenward people of God ought to seek to study it since it is our final destination, the eternal home of God.

More importantly, let us heed what Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:1-5, “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, [b]unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!” Hebrews 12:14 is also exhorting us, “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord.

Inevitably, we are now in the last days whether we like it or not. Let us be prepared every single moment of our lives.

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Bad Times? Something good can come out of this!

Bad Times? Something good can come out of this!

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the ways we live–including how we serve in the Lord’s ministry. But even if there are physical restrictions, our being fishers of men cannot be deterred.

For Sis. Maricris Pammit of JIL San Isidro, Cabuyao, Laguna and Sis. Karylle Cabugatan of JIL Peace Village/Inarawan and Pinugay, Antipolo City, sharing the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ must continue. This pandemic is all the more reason for them to obey Jesus’ command to go out and proclaim the salvation of Jesus Christ.

Sis. Maricris: rich harvest of souls online

Two weeks before the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine, Sis. Maricris received a revelation from the Lord that made her pray more for family members who were yet to receive Jesus’ salvation.

She held on to God’s promise in Acts 16:31: “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” His Word reassured Sis. Maricris that the Lord would never turn His back on her heart’s desire for the salvation of her family members.

And then she acted on her faith. Sis. Maricris invited her mother and siblings last April 10 to an online bible study and, to her surprise, they agreed to join. It was an unforgettable date for her as it was also the day that her mother and siblings finally recognized and accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior. To add to the blessing, her mother who had just received Jesus in her heart requested that they do the online bible study every day. Her heart burst in joy.

Henceforth, they hold their online Bible study every day at 8:00 p.m.

Sis. Maricris also encouraged their other relatives to join the online Bible study. They eventually did and they also received Jesus’ gift of salvation. As of now, 12 family members have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior through the online bible study that Sis. Maricris pioneered. Praise God for this rich harvest of souls!

Sis. Karylle: salvation at the perfect time

Sis. Karylle had one precious prayer: that her father would open his heart to the One she serves—Jesus.

Amid this pandemic, she prayed even more that God would answer her precious prayer, especially because her father had a lingering illness due to his old age. She always reminded God of Mark 11:24 that says, “Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
Sis. Karylle felt the urge to make her father watch the JIL Worship and Healing Services aired on Light TV. She admitted that, at first, it was difficult to persuade her father into watching. But by unceasing prayers and perseverance, her father eventually obliged. Sis. Karylle was in awe of the Lord for the answer to her long-standing prayer about her sick dad.

As they watched together Bro. Eddie’s televised messages, she would see her father intensely listening to God’s revelation. There were even instances when tears freely fell from her father’s eyes. Her heart melted every time at the sight of it. Then there was that time when he joined the prayer of acceptance led by Bro. Eddie during the Worship and Healing Service. As he prayed, Sis. Karylle sensed the humility in her dad to come to Jesus.

So when her father passed away last April 28 due to his illness, there was assurance that he received Jesus Christ as his Lord and Personal Savior. While her father’s passing is still painful, Sis. Karylle is thankful because the Lord embraced and comforted her dad up to his last breath.

Sis. Maricris’ and Sis. Karylle’s testimonies are proofs that the God we serve is a God of turnarounds. That even at such a time like this, God can produce something good out of it.

Theirs are testimonies reminding us that if we still have loved ones or friends who have not yet received Jesus’ salvation, we must never give up on praying for them. Because in God’s perfect time – even in the midst of a pandemic – they shall be part of the harvest. Like what they always say, “Faith it until you make it!”

Photo courtesy: Sis. Maricris Pammit and Sis. Karylle Cabugatan

JIL Netherlands pioneer receives royal honors from the Dutch monarch

JIL Netherlands pioneer receives royal honors from the Dutch monarch

Sis. Avelina Rodriguez-Baxa of JIL Netherlands received the “Lid van Oranje Nassau” (Member of the Order of the House of Orange) medal last April 24, 2020, which was presented by the Mayor of South Holland province Johan Remkes on behalf of King Willem of the Netherlands.

She was one of the three Filipinos to receive the award, which is given to Dutch citizens and foreign nationals alike who have made meritorious contributions to public service and voluntary activities.

Sis. Avelina’s volunteer work includes providing counseling, training, and practical assistance to Filipino migrant workers living under difficult situations.

It all started in the 1980s, during the height of domestic violence in The Netherlands, where “mail order brides” were rampant. She worked for the welfare of entertainers and for those in inter-marriages and focused on improving the occupational and social position of Filipino workers.

Sis. Avelina led the fish net making project at Brgy. Casilian, Bacarra, Ilocos Norte

Sis. Avelina led the goat-raising/breeding project at Brgy. Baraniw, Cabaruan, Casilian, Bacarra, Ilocos Norte

Sis. Avelina interviewed by TV Patrol Ilocos Region on 2010

For that, she co-founded Samahan ng Manggagawang Pilipino sa Netherlands (SAMAHAN) together with her husband and three other Filipinos. She further became a board member of Stichting Kapatiran from 1993-2018, which supported underprivileged and indigent children.

Still, the “Koninklijke onderscheidingen” (royal honors) is not Sis. Avelina’s first award. In 2005, she received a gold medal award by Bombo Radio Ilocos Norte in recognition of her efforts in the microfinance of livelihood projects for unemployed mothers in Bacarra, Ilocos Norte, where she came from. Furthermore, in 2010, she became a recipient of a special recognition by TV Patrol Ilocos Region through the Basic Literacy Program she was engaged in. The following year, the foundation further received the Presidential Banaag Award.

But aside from her social work, Sis. Avelina is also actively involved in the ministry. Aside from being one of the five pioneer members of JIL Netherlands, she also held several ministry positions: Secretary of Board (1994-2006), Bible Study Cell Group Leader (1994-1999), Education Ministry Head (1994-2009), and Editor-in-Chief of the JIL NL newsletter “In Pace With God” (1998-2001). Presently, Sis. Avelina is the church coordinator of JIL Rotterdam.

From a “fellowship partner scholar” finishing her MA degree in Development Studies at the Erasmus University Rotterdam International Institute of Social Studies, Sis. Avelina’s journey turned out to be a fulfilling and “others-uplifting” journey. It even turned out to be a successful and decorated one. But for all these, she herself attests, “It is all for the glory of my God!”

God has Other Plans

God has Other Plans

A Testimony by Sis. Gi Laurel-Emas

Karlo and I have been married for eight years. We have made a conscious decision to wait to have children because of what was happening in the different aspects of our lives for the past seven years. But finally, last summer, after much prayer, we decided to start trying to conceive. After some months, I finally had a positive pregnancy test. That was in March, and we were so happy and thankful to the Lord.

The scheme of the enemy

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy…” John 10:10 (NIV)

On my sixth week of my pregnancy, my first ultrasound didn’t show any gestational sac. Our family doctor said that it might be because I was still in the early stage of pregnancy, so I didn’t worry much.

But at the same time, the ultrasound showed bilateral dermoid ovarian cysts—four inches of cysts on both my ovaries. This meant that I was at risk for having twisted ovaries or ruptured cysts, which would both require emergency surgery.

After two weeks, I had a bleeding. I was passing huge clots. I was brought to the ER, while Karlo couldn’t stay with me. No visitors were allowed due to Covid-19. I just kept on praying and praying.

“There is no sign of pregnancy.” That was the result of the ultrasound. I had a complete miscarriage. I was devastated. I hugged Karlo when we got home and just cried for the rest of the night. He was trying to comfort me and to keep my spirits up. He prayed for me—for us. For several nights, I cried myself to sleep.

Around four weeks after the bleeding, I was still having symptoms: nausea, on and off pelvic pain, fatigue, and bloating, so my family doctor ordered some tests.

The day before having my the tests done, there was another unfortunate incident. Karlo had a bad nasal congestion. He was having a hard time breathing and swallowing, so I decided to bring him to the ER just to be safe because he has an underlying medical condition. Praise God! Karlo tested negative for COVID-19.

Then, on Sunday morning, I woke up at around 7:30am with an urge to pee. When I got up, I felt a little dizzy. But as soon as I sat down to try to lie down again, I felt a sudden severe pelvic pain that radiated throughout my upper body and to my head. I tried to get up to shake it off, but I got very dizzy—almost close to fainting. We called 911 and we arrived at the ER around 8am. Visitors were still not allowed. I was to face this ordeal alone.

Several tests were done. My pregnancy hormones were very elevated and the CT scan revealed that I was having internal bleeding from a ruptured right fallopian tube due to an ectopic pregnancy. I needed an emergency surgery.

As I was getting transported to the operating room, I started to have bargaining thoughts with God. ‘I’ll settle for the laparotomy just to have my cysts removed now, for as long as a part of my ovaries will be left to give me a glimmer of hope of bearing a child in the future.’

Before they started putting on the general anesthesia, I just prayed to God for His will to be done, to be in control of the surgery since He knows what’s best for me. I whispered with all my heart, ‘I surrender it all to You. In Jesus’ name.’ Just about five seconds of administering the anesthetic, I was out.

After the surgery, while trying to endure the pain from the inside and from the surgical keyhole incisions, other things came up. Due to severe internal bleeding, I lost almost 1.5 litres of blood. My hemoglobin dropped after the surgery and continued to drop over the next two days. On the second day, I continued to have low blood pressure and developed new symptoms that posed the risk of organ failure if not treated immediately. My surgeon decided that I needed blood transfusion.

In addition to my low hemoglobin situation, I also couldn’t pee on my own during those two days. The pain was so severe. As a short-term solution, a catheter was put on me again. Finally, on the second day, I was able to pee. But because of those two days, I developed a bladder infection. I was put on antibiotics to treat the infection.

My throat also started to feel sore from being intubated during the surgery. I would wake up in the middle of the night with a dry throat feeling a scratch and making me cough almost uncontrollably, causing painful pressure on my incisions.

The grace of the Lord

“… I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10 (NIV)

While I had to deal with complications after my surgery, the surgery itself was a great success. God gave me a compassionate surgeon—someone who didn’t see me as just another ER patient, but as a person, a woman, and a future mother. She had the technical skills to be able to operate on me by laparoscopy (surgical keyhole incisions) instead of laparotomy (long surgical incision) despite my complicated situation. She said she almost switched to laparotomy because there was hardly any space to move around because my cysts were so big, but she persevered for a somehow easier recovery for me.

She was able to remove the ectopic pregnancy and the ruptured right fallopian tube. Moreover, she removed both cysts and was able to save my ovaries. God is so good! I truly believe that God was guiding my surgeon, the anesthesiologist, and the ER nurses. I am also thankful that all the hospital staff I encountered in this journey were all truly caring and compassionate.

Being at the hospital alone during this whole ordeal was very tough. I wouldn’t deny that it was starting to take a toll on me mentally and emotionally. I was getting overwhelmed with emotions, fighting not to get depressed. I was alone at the hospital and longing to at least hold Karlo’s hand for some comfort but couldn’t because of COVID-19 protocols.

I continued to pray. I listened to God’s Word and to worship songs. I texted people to pray for me. I decided for my room not to be a hospital room but a prayer room, and my bed to be a battle bed. It was a fight declaring that God already won the battle for me. The six days at the hospital was my precious time with the Lord. It was Him who carried me through. I believe He is just preparing the best for our future family.

My surgeon herself said that I was a mess… my situation was a mess when I came to the hospital. She further said that she didn’t know how I was able to endure such severe pain. Even with medicines stronger than morphine, I was still in a lot of pain. As cliche as it may sound, but my mess became a message of hope and faith for His glory.

Truly, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us (Philippians 4:13). He is always with us, and will never leave or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:8). And He definitely knows what is best for us and He has only the best intentions, even though sometimes we do not see it (Jeremiah 29:11).

As I look back, I don’t believe that it was just a coincidence that I celebrated my birthday (April 14) in between the bleeding (March 29) and the ruptured ectopic pregnancy (April 26). Both incidents happened on a Sunday and I believe that it all has a deeper meaning: Karlo and I have been praying for a miracle of life. I received the miracle not in the way I wanted, but definitely the way I needed. The miracle of life… my life. My miracle, my life.

I am home now and on the journey to recovery. I declare that by His stripes, I am healed (Isaiah 53:5).

“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6, NASB)

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28, ESV)

There is hope in Jesus. There is life in Jesus.

*****

Sis. Gi Laurel-Emas is a fulltime staff of the JIL Church Worldwide. She is currently the Administrative Officer of JIL Canada West while her husband, Bro. Karlo Emas, is the MAN Head of JIL Vancouver. They are also both serving as life group leaders for young couples in JIL Vancouver.

Photo courtesy of Sis. Gi.

Revival during JIL WUSA’S Vision Casting and WIN Summit 2020

Revival during JIL WUSA’S Vision Casting and WIN Summit 2020

“Vision 300 by 2020 and beyond!”

That was the battle cry of everyone who attended the JIL West USA (JIL WUSA)’s Vision Casting and WIN Summit last January 23-25, 2020 held at JIL San Diego, CA.

On the first day of the event, the vision of JIL WUSA’s pastors and leaders was renewed, instilling in them the faith that every church in the JIL WUSA region would experience breakthroughs, great increase, harvest, and expansion—not just in numbers but, also, in signs, wonders and miracles.

For the next two days, their faith was strengthened, as God empowered them to fulfill the vision. The fire of God came upon the attendees, and many testified of renewed passion. There were those who, for a long time, had been in spiritual hibernation, but were revived. There were those who had been stagnant in their calling and in their ministry, but recommitted their lives to God.

The three-day event was marked not just by personal revival but, also, corporate revival as the attendees also recommitted themselves to the vision of God for the JIL Church.

With everything that happened, the pastors and leaders of JIL WUSA left the event revived, renewed, and full of faith that, through God’s power and anointing, those who need the touch of Jesus Christ would be drawn to the JIL churches in the WUSA region.

Around 3,000 OFWs participate in JIL Taiwan’s Leadership Conference 2020

Around 3,000 OFWs participate in JIL Taiwan’s Leadership Conference 2020

TAICHUNG CITY – While the Taiwanese community celebrates the Lunar Chinese New Year, and even amidst the novel coronavirus outbreak, around 3000 Overseas Filipino Workers from different cities and counties of Taiwan flocked to the Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC) Auditorium in Taichung City for the Jesus is Lord Taiwan (JIL TW) Leadership Conference 2020 last January 25-27.

For more than two decades now, JIL Taiwan has been regularly holding Leadership Conferences for its leaders, workers, and new believers to equip them with biblical principles and truths for practical application in their daily lives.

For this year’s conference, the theme was “Fully Charged,” based on Ephesians 5:18b, “but ever be filled and stimulated with the Holy Spirit.”

Powerhouse guest speakers included Rev. Dino Tobias, Ptr. Menchie Tobias, Rev. Joey Crisostomo, Ptr. Ellen Crisostomo, Rev. Alex Garcia, and Dr. Lilian Garcia. They shared inspiring and powerful messages on how to maintain one’s zeal in his/her personal relationship with the Lord and in serving God’s ministry considering the everyday challenges in life.

Pastors from Cambodia, Singapore, Japan, Vietnam, and Laos were also present. Other special guests also include Bro. Marlon and Sis. Joanne Oliveros, who led the worship team.

The “God of Juanders” parade and presentations officially opened the conference. It was a thematic dance competition showcasing the talents, creativity, resourcefulness, and unity of JIL Taiwan’s leaders and workers. Among the fun-filled activities was the Campers’ Night, where the delegates donned their “boots and beanies,” sang JIL signature fellowship songs, and met old friends. Delegates also shared a hearty Filipino breakfast a la boodle fight.

The conference concluded in a commissioning service where everyone renewed their commitment to the Lord and was anointed by God through the guest speakers and also, by JIL pastors from the JIL International Operation – Asia, Middle East, Micronesia and Africa (AMEMA).

The JIL Taiwan Leadership Conference was managed and hosted by JIL Taiwan under the leadership and guidance of couple Rev. Edgar and Ptr. Recilyn Valdoria.

Jesus Is Lord Church Hong Kong  Leadership Conference 2020

Jesus Is Lord Church Hong Kong Leadership Conference 2020

Nearly 7,000 people attended JIL Hong Kong’s Leadership Conference last January 26, 2020 at the Queen Elizabeth Stadium in Wan Chai, Hong Kong.

An annual event, the leaders and workers of JIL Hong Kong congregate every Chinese New Year season to be empowered and, also, to receive the fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit.

The conference was also participated by guest pastors from the Philippines. Rev. Bobot Bernardo, OIC Executive Director of the JIL Church Worldwide, and Hon. Domeng Rivera, Representative of CIBAC Partylist, shared the Word of God and ministered to the spiritually hungry delegates.

Attendees testified to the strengthening of their faith and to the revival of their souls, even as the supposed two-day conference was cut short to one day due to the Hong Kong government’s restriction in relation to the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) global emergency. As a precautionary measure, everyone, the speakers included, wore face masks and exercised strict hygiene practices.

Though the time seemed limited and the times seemed dreadful, those in attendance testified that it was still a remarkable experience as God poured out His presence to them. Some even mentioned that not only were their hearts consecrated and renewed through God’s anointing, but their faith also strengthened and revived to willingly do great exploits in the land they were currently in for the glory of God.