“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand” (Philippians 4:4-5, ESV).
Scriptures often discuss celebration, and God actually instituted several holidays for his people to rest and worship him. The art of celebration is a regular practice in the Old Testament, and it is echoed in the future wedding feast of the Lamb discussed in Revelation.
We’re told in the New Testament “Rejoice with those who rejoice” (Romans 12:15), so when others in the church community experience success or breakthrough, we’re called to join them in celebration.
This is a command that the church in the Philippines is joyously obeying!
Lifting Up New Leaders
World Challenge’s partners shared a few encouraging stories about what’s happening with the new community development committee in Gulod.
One of these was a recent 'Moving Up' ceremony where the committee members were acknowledged for completing their training. The team always wants to give recognition to these individuals, acknowledging them as equipped and ready to fulfill their responsibilities that include coordinating the development and improvement of their community.
Among the 11 committee members are three sisters who are in their sixties. The team and sisters decided to perform a special dance for the community in celebration. When she heard about the plan, a seamstress volunteered to make special costumes for them to wear while performing. Another woman volunteered to lead them in the dance.
Here’s a video that the team sent of all of them practicing and laughing together. These times of celebration are doubtless moments God delights in watching.
Valuing the Wise and Dedicated
Our team’s leader reported that one of these sisters helps lead a Bible study that they hold each time the entire team gathers. This sweet woman only has a 4th grade level education, but she pours over the scriptures with great care, meditating on it for a long time and writing thoughtful questions on the passage before she comes to lead the study.
Her diligence and dedication have been an inspiration and blessing to the whole team and made them especially delighted in celebrating her ‘Moving Up’ ceremony.
There is great importance in expressing our delight in God’s goodness in the world and one another through music, singing and dance. Our partners especially want to include seniors on the committee for their experience, wisdom, proven character, network of relationships, respect from family and community and knowledge of the community’s resources.
Join us in rejoicing for these three women as they take leadership roles in the community that loves them.