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The time has come

Dear friends,

It is with great excitement that we share with you our plans to start the Bible teaching next week! It has been such a long journey to get here, and our hearts are filled with excitement and apprehension as we embark on this important task before us.


As you know, it has long been a question in our minds as to whether we should teach once in a big group or rather teach several times at peoples homes. We decided to rather have a more personal, intimate meeting at peoples homes. The reason for deciding this is because we can better keep account of who is attending regularly, people will be more free to ask questions, and will feel more inclined to attend when their absence is noticed.

We decided to do a small survey to see what interest there was in attending and who would open their homes to us for teaching. We has an overwhelmingly positive response with 100% of people we asked wanting to attend, and all 8 homes agreeing to have us teach there. So this means we will be teaching in 8 different locations 9 times a week. Please be praying for Phil especially as he will be teaching many people without any days off for the foreseeable future.

Logistics

Teaching at people’s homes has some challenges. Houses are small, so teaching needs to take place outside. There is no lighting outside and most homes just have one light bulb outside. We will need chairs for all who attend, a speaker and microphone, water and plastic cups (it is hot and people will be with us for 2 to 3 hours), a snack for each person as is customary in a gathering here, a seperate area to teach the kids and kids teaching resources. With is teaching outside we are dependent on good weather. Would you please pray with us that the Lord will keep the weather during the teaching times?

As we do not have the finances for plastic chairs, Phil has been making bamboo benches for some of the areas. They can be quite uncomfortable to sit on for several hours, so we still hope to be able to purchase the chairs instead. Please pray with us for the Lord to supply according to His will.

Children’s program

To keep the kids entertained and to teach them the truth’s of God’s word, we will be doing a children’s program. Please pray for Vina as she puts the program together and teaches the kids. We have a puppet show that Angelique and Boeta will help with. We carved the puppets out of an old foam cushion and used old clothes to dress them. They will do a short show at the beginning of every lesson, and then we will teach from the Chronological teaching for kids. Please pray that the kids will come to a saving knowledge of Him.

Families

We are so thankful to the 8 families that have opened their homes to us. Please pray for them specifically. Pray that they would not experience persecution from others who may not like what we say. Pray also that the Lord will keep them from the attacks of the enemy and above all please pray for their salvation.

Their names are:
1. Erwin and his family
2. Jagmis family
3. Kuya Bong, Ate Emily and family
4. Evio family
5. Mary Sumundong and family
6. Alvarez family
7. Mrs Abela and family
8. The people of Villa Fria

Thank you for standing with us in prayer! We look forward to updating you soon with news of the teaching.

With love, and thankfulness,
The le Rouxs

Simple things


I love how seeing our beautiful island in the distance never fails to bring a lump in my throat and a feeling of “coming home” in my heart. What an answer to pray! God has put a love in my heart for the Agutaynen’s and this little corner of the earth where we reside. A love that could only come from Him. I am deeply grateful.

This month Val and I went on our first solo trip to Manila for her to write her SAT test. For those who are not familiar with this, it is a Standard Assessment test to test college readiness used in the US to gain entry into American Colleges/Universities. Basically like a South African Matric qualification for lack of a better explanation. 

I was quite nervous to travel without Phil especially since the recent safety threat we have had in our region. The Lord put a calmness in my heart during the several days of travelling and no doubt went ahead of us preparing the way. Everything worked our perfectly. He is so good to me! Thank you to all who lifted us in prayer over this time. It was great to see some of our precious friends in Manila, albeit briefly, and catch up with them. God has really blessed us with beautiful friendships there!


We got to meet our beautiful God child, Amihan (daughter to Hector and Mayen). What a little doll! I am so thankful she will grow up knowing Jesus because her parents will raise her in His ways ❤.

While we were away Phil, Boeta and Angie stayed on the island. Angelique took over all my duties, cooking and doing laundry the whole time. I am so proud of the young lady she is becoming! Phil continues faithfully with the lessons despite the many distractions that life on the island brings. I am so thankful to the Lord for how He sustains Phil and enables him daily. We know we are not alone. He is our constant companion. 


Sometimes I am in awe of the life we live. While travelling on one of the boats back home I looked at the simplicity of the boat design. To start the boat the captain and crew pull a big rope through the window infront of the boat, loop it on a big bamboo pole that acts as a back rest for passengers, count to three and tug (almost like a tug-o-war) until the engine starts. This is a chaotic process as passengers must move away in the already cramped cabin to get out of the way of elbows and rope, legs and fumes. The captain drives the boat sitting on an old plastic container and uses basic steering equipment and years of experience to steer us safely home. 


This might seem like a crude design to some, but to the Agutaynens it’s their best boat. Everyone wants to travel on this boat because its slightly faster and more “comfortable”. This boat is the sea ambulance when they are deadly ill, the hearse bringing their dead back to island if they die somewhere else. Its the work horse that brings fuel, rice, supplies to the island. It brings their loved ones home for visits and takes them safely back again. Some may see it as unsafe, a danger on the waters but not here. Here it’s the gem of Agutaya with a name to fit: Princess Myka. 

I count myself blessed to see through their eyes. To see how the seemingly simple can be precious. I hope my eyes never adjust to where simple is not enough for me. Pray with us that the Agutaynens will accept Gods truth when it presented to them. The simplicity of the Gospel will change their lives in unfathomable ways. I can’t wait!

We love you all ❤

What I never knew..


This year marks the 10 year anniversary of our arrival in the Philippines. Time surely has flown bye. The days are long but the years are indeed short. Looking back nostalgically on our time here there are some things I wish I had known as a young missionary embarking on our adventure here. And some I’m glad I didn’t know 😊. As a new missionary there were many things I feared and expected but what I didn’t know was..

That the strange smells, sounds and tastes would one day feel like home.

That the things I feared most then are not even things I think of now.

That I would not be home to bury my father but would be at peace because the Lord, in His grace, saved him 2 months before his death.

That taking my children away from all they knew would be the best thing I could ever do for them.

That I would long for my home country with an ache that physically hurts my heart, and that I would feel the same way about the Philippines when I am home on furlough.

That we would survive a super typhoon, our vehicle being stoned and shot at and were almost shipwrecked, and some of it would be while on furlough.

That I would experience first hand how God can turn a calamity into a beautiful blessing.

That struggling financially would be gift because it allows us to see God perform miracles.

That home-schooling my children would be a privilege that I would love.

That I would come to love a people group who have nothing in common with me but who have become my life’s purpose.

That being on the mission field would expose the sinfulness of my heart in ways I never knew existed, and God’s love for me would be even more real because of it. 

That what I once counted sacrifice has been the best decision of my life (well, second best after salvation ❤).

There were so many things I didn’t know then, but I knew enough to know I could GO. 

Today I know enough to know that I can STAY. 

He is faithful beyond what we could ever imagine. 

It is fitting that our ten year anniversary coincides with a new chapter in our ministry and family life. This year we prepare to teach the Agutaynens for the first time and next year our eldest child, Valerie-Anne, leaves for college abroad. Although I know these things come with big challenges and sacrifice for sure, I am at peace knowing that something beautiful will come from this. He has already begun to paint a beautiful picture with the fragments of our lives, and I cannot wait to see the finished masterwork!

Rejoicing because of all that He is,

The le Rouxs

August News

What a crazy month it has been! We praise the Lord for many opportunities to share about His work in the Philippines, for lots of fun times we spent with special friends, and for a scary experience that allowed us to see His Grace and to testify of His goodness. It’s been a busy month!

Ministry opportunities:

The Lord has blessed us with many opportunities to share what He has been doing in the Philippines. One of our favorite things is catching up with many fellow brothers and sisters in Christ who partner with us, and hearing what is happening in their lives too. We praise God for women’s Bible studies, youth groups, schools and of course churches that have invited us to share. We will treasure these times for a long time to come. We continue to pray that the Lord will use us as His instruments in South Africa, and that we will challenge, encourage and bless all those He brings across our path.

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Mountains:

This past month we had the privilege of climbing up 2 of Cape Towns beautiful mountains. We climbed up Table Mountain with friends, and then last week we climbed Helderberg Mountain with friends too. What a beautiful way to see the Cape! One cannot but help to praise the Lord when you see His beautiful creation. It’s also a good reminder of how insignificant we are, and yet God is concerned with us and our lives. We a blessed beyond measure!

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A scary experience:

Less than a week ago on our way back from a youth group that Philip led, our car was pelted with rocks and a gun shot broke the back window. We were just unfortunate to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. But, we know God never makes mistakes. What man may mean for evil, God will turn for good. We were miraculously not harmed and were shaken, but unhurt. The damage on the vehicle amounts to R40000. Thankfully the van is insured by our good friends who borrowed it us.
The Lord really has blessed us through this. Philip was able to share the gospel with someone because he was taking the van to Durbanville after the damage was done. Also, fellow brothers and sisters in Christ gave us the funds to cover the insurance excess, and we have been able to borrow another vehicle from other dear friends until the van is repaired. The outpouring of love and concern has been really touching, and we cannot but praise God for those He has raised up as a support for us. We are so blessed!

Incidently, the police have arrested 12 people for stoning cars, one directly for damage to the van. We continue to pray for the people of Klipheuwel who threw the rocks. May their need of Christ be a reminder to us of the urgency of the work set before us.

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Agutaya:

The landing strip progress is slow but steady. We were encouraged to see some photos that show the landing strip start to look like a landing strip :-). Thank you to all who prayed for our friend Kuya Jes. We hear he is back on the island and although he is struggling with high BP, he is much better.

Unfortunately we received news that someone tried to break into our house on the island on Monday night. Thankfully they were unsuccessful. What comfort to know that God is here with us, but He is also there with them. We rest in the knowledge that He is in control.

Thank you for praying for us and caring for us. We are so blessed to share this work with you, our trusted partners.

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The le Rouxs