This is me.
To Iloilo I Went

So. The trip.

I headed to Iloilo (another province in our country) for a special Bible conference last week.

the conference venue

It took a bit of time to get used to things. I guess that's the funny thing about the Philippines; every island seems like a whole other world. There are similar styles of dress and buildings, but people speak other dialects and eat in different ways. It was all so fascinating though, and fun to be somewhere new.

The area aside, I made new friends and caught up with a few old ones. The conference itself was also food for thought, and God spoke through it to everyone there.

some of the people I went to the conference with

my cousins and me

The conference was about seeking God in our lives. The topics ranged from having faith that God was in control to loving Him because He loves us.

One thing I needed to hear was about the world coming to an end. Scary, but true. The speaker reminded us how the Bible talks about the world coming to an end someday. It doesn't really matter when, but the fact we know it will happen means we should be prepared for it. He likened it to knowing your office building was going to collapse before it actually happened. Would we still go to work if we knew it would happen?

Or would we move to a new office and take everything valuable with us instead?

I thought that made a lot of sense. I mean, everyone knows the world will probably end someday. Prices keep rising --- has anyone filled up their car's gas tank lately and not shuddered about the increase? --- and people keep dying because of hunger, disease and increasingly severe natural disasters. Then there are those scientific findings on water shortage and global warming. It's all got to come to a head somehow. We just don't think it'll crash anytime soon, and life is too busy to think of things like that.

But if we really knew about how God loves us, we'd be crazy not to hold on to Him and invest in what's eternal. The speaker said investing in the world is empty. Say you work to become the richest guy in the world. What then? There's no meaning; that's why the richest people give most of their money away. When you die, you can't take anything with you.

This doesn't mean we all become hermits, of course, and sit around waiting for the sky to fall. It just means we choose to follow Him and do right for Him. We choose to love Him and trust that we'll be with Him someday in the best ending of all.

"If you don't see how much more wonderful God is than the rest of this world," the speaker announced, "then pray that you'll see it. The joy you get from God is so much more than anything else; it'll change your life. But you'll only know what I mean when you've tried it."

I can't write down everything we talked about, but God's love was just so overwhelming. People came back changed for the better. Seriously, I can't believe how different some people I went with are now.

Some have dropped bad habits. Kids have told surprised parents they would listen to them more. Others who were fighting have started getting along. And everyone's just the happiest I've ever seen them. It's pretty cool.

I'm really glad I got to go though I didn't take as many pictures as I'd have liked. I didn't get much down time because of stuff --- like playing violin for the meetings --- I'd promised to do. I did get photos of the cool ceiling in one of our rooms from a friend though.

And an amazing sunset we enjoyed while going back home.

The trip was really awesome, and I'm glad I got to go.

Daisy on 6/08/2008 05:55:00 PM