2015 Manila – Kristen Hendricks

The Isaiah 61 Inheritance

For this trip to Manila, my theme verses were Isaiah 61:1-2 which read,

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God…”

If you’re a member or a leader here at New Philadelphia Church, you know these verses well. They represent the vision of our church. And for a long time I had understood why these vision verses were so important. However it was in Manila that I realized that through Isaiah 61, we have a spiritual inheritance in the nations.

We as New Philadelphia Church have spiritual leaders, like Pastor Christian and Pastor Erin, who provide us with rich teaching on Isaiah 61. As members of this church family, we receive this teaching and, by God’s grace, they have taken root in our hearts and our lives. And as my missions team and I ministered, I realized that God sent us to be vessels of His Holy Spirit, to impart the power and truth of Isaiah 61 to the Filipino people. The Isaiah 61 vision it not meant to be contained within the four walls of New Philadelphia Church. It is meant to empower the global church.

Thus as our team ministered in the Manila slums, we consistently released the fire of God and the culture of honor to raise up believers. We did not stop at just blessing the local church. We sought to empower. At one service, Pastor Susy preached a challenging word to Christ Life Church located in Sucat, which is the central NPWM church in Manila. Many other churches and outreaches have come from this church. Pastor Susy preached that the Filipino church has an anointing for worship and that the Korean church carries an anointing for fiery prayer. She went on to say that when God calls us to pray, as Jesus did to the disciples in the garden of Gethsemane, that our response should be fiery prayer. After the sermon, Pastor Susy led an altar call for a revival in prayer and intercession. 45 out of 59 adults responded, and as our team prayed and released the fire of God, many wept and fell under His glory. Pastor Susy led another altar call for people who felt called to be prayer warriors for the church and for the Philippines. One woman responded and she was powerfully touched by the Holy Spirit. This sermon and the altar call set the tone for the rest of the trip – that we as a team were called to release the fire of God and empower churches as intercessors.

In addition to releasing the fire, God used us to establish the culture of honor. One service that stands out was at Christ Life Wedding Memorial Church in the slums of Green Valley. Here we ministered to about 50 kids and some young adults. The pastors, Pastor Ira and her husband Pastor June, had been faithfully discipling and ministering to children from that slum for seven years, and several of those children were now leading worship, teaching, or going to college. At the end of the service, we had all the kids and young adults put their hands on Pastor Ira and Pastor June and bless them and pray for refreshment. As the children and young adults prayed, the pastors were weeping and being powerfully touched by the Lord. No one in their congregation had ever prayed for them and blessed them as their leaders. In total, we ministered at 11 different churches and at 6 of those churches, we had members bless the church leaders, or we ourselves personally blessed and prophesied over the church leaders. Our team made it a priority to honor and recognize those who had been pillars of the ministry. The last day of our trip, we took time to encourage Pastor Ezekiel, his wife Sister Camille, and Pastor Joseph, the three pastors who had created our ministry schedule and hosted us in Manila. Pastor Ezekiel said he had never received such encouragement before. He was so blessed and inspired to the point where he knew he had to bring this culture of affirmation and honor to his own ministries. Praise the Lord!

In addition to releasing grace for intercession and honor, the Lord also used our team to release the fire of God. And it was easy because God was using us to release what we, as a team, was living out prior to the trip. As I was ministering on the field, I definitely grew in discernment, boldness, and my capacity to love. The altar call after Pastor Susy’s sermon on prayer was the first time I’ve ever prayed for people to receive the fire of God and it was powerful! It was amazing to see brothers and sisters getting transformed and empowered through the same Holy Spirit who had transformed me. After that altar call, I was so confident that God has set me apart as a vessel of his Holy Spirit, to take what I have received and to impart that blessing to the nations. At every church and home we ministered at, the fire of God fell and God’s people were empowered, healed, saved, and set free from bondage. At one point in the trip, one team member said, “it’s like we’re in Bible times!” My team and I agreed that we literally did all the things listed in verses 1-2 of Isaiah 61! If you go on to read verse 9, it says, “Their offspring shall be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples; all who see them shall acknowledge them, that they are offspring the Lord has blessed.” This is now my prayer for the Philippines – that the world would know that they are a people that the Lord has blessed.

I would like to thank everyone who prayed for and financially supported our New Philly’s missions team to Manila. We could feel your prayer covering every day that we were in the field. Thus know that the blessing and inheritance that I received from this trip is not just for me – it’s your inheritance too. You played a vital role in seeing the Kingdom of God move in the Philippines. Thank you for all that you sowed in, and be expectant for greater testimonies of fruit to come. God bless you!

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