When God Makes a Promise

When God Makes a Promise

Even in this time of crisis, God is faithful to fulfill His promise. No matter how impossible our prayers may seem, His grace and love for us will always see us through. As we continue to prepare for the midyear fast, here is a powerful story of salvation and healing. 

 

I had been praying for my parents’ salvation for two straight years. It was my faith goal in the 2020 January prayer and fasting. I had always dreamed of seeing them experience God like never before, just like how I did when I came to know Him through my husband.

Knowing God is a gift, and having the chance to worship Him along with my husband and four children is a blessing that I had always hoped to share with my parents. It seemed impossible at that time, but I kept on praying and believing that someday, they would see God’s hand at work in their lives. I also held on to a promise and vision that God had impressed in my heart in one of our conferences in church. I knew He would come through for us.

In March, my father had a stroke. It was his second stroke in five years. In April, it was followed by yet another one—his third, which could have been fatal. After that episode, I felt God nudging me to have the courage to preach the gospel to my parents, especially to my father.

On the day I was scheduled to visit my father in the hospital, I prayed and sought God for wisdom. I was uneasy and afraid of what his reaction would be—and even hesitated at the last moment—but God kept me strong. Though I doubted myself, God faithfully gave me the courage and grace to share His word.

As early as six in the morning, I was already in my father’s hospital room. I talked to him and asked him to join me in our online morning worship and prayer. After that, I preached the gospel to Him and we prayed the prayer of salvation. Before I knew it, he was already in tears. He asked God for forgiveness and received Jesus as his Lord and Savior. Seeing him come to God brought indescribable joy and gratitude in my heart.

Because of my father’s newfound relationship with God, he grew stronger every day—not just spiritually, but also physically. Even though it was already his third stroke, there was never a need for him to be transferred to the intensive care unit. He slowly regained his strength and is currently on his way to full recovery. Even his doctors and therapists could hardly believe how he escaped a fatal stroke.

What happened to my father somehow led my mother to come to God and know Him in a deeper way as well. She began attending online worship services with us and soon gave her life to Christ. My long-ago dream of seeing my entire family—not just my husband and kids, but even my parents—worship God has finally happened because of God’s grace. Truly, there is nothing impossible with Him!

My father’s healing from his sickness is unexplainable, but his and my mother’s newfound relationship with God is an even greater miracle. We know that God has a purpose for everything and my parents believe that my father’s second chance at life is a gift that he can use to know God more and worship Him.

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

Anna Leah Valerio is one of our Victory group leaders in Victory Meycauayan. She, her parents, husband, and four children are continually growing in their walk with God.

Grace That Heals

Grace That Heals

Sometimes, God heals in ways we don’t expect. As we prepare for the midyear fast, let us be encouraged and inspired by this amazing testimony of God’s healing, faithfulness, and grace.

 

My husband and I got married in 2017. I got pregnant a year later but had an early miscarriage. We prayed for a baby, and in 2019, I learned that I was pregnant again. We were so happy, and everything was going well with my pregnancy—until I reached my sixth month. As I entered my third trimester, I developed pregnancy-induced hypertension that eventually led to preeclampsia, a pregnancy complication characterized by high blood pressure.

According to my doctor, my condition could cause serious health problems to me and my baby, and it could be fatal. I was immediately admitted to the hospital during our 2019 midyear prayer and fasting for an emergency delivery via C-section. My baby was only 29 weeks old at that time.

I stayed in the hospital for a week, while my daughter, Quinn, stayed in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for four months. Though I visited her every day, each moment that she was there broke my heart. Seeing her grow but experience different complications brought me through a roller-coaster ride of emotions.

While in the NICU, Quinn developed mild pneumonia and had a bacterial infection. She also had anemia, which meant that she needed a total of seven blood transfusions throughout her hospitalization. Though she managed to overcome those, she later developed an inguinal hernia, which left an internal opening on both sides of her groin. According to her doctor, this type of hernia does not close spontaneously. She needed to undergo surgery once her weight reached 2.5 kilograms to prevent her internal organs from being dislodged.

Though difficult, it was a blessing that we received so much encouragement from Quinn’s doctor despite her condition. I remained hopeful amid everything that was happening and eventually built relationships with the other moms and doctors in that unit. We would pray together each day and be reminded of how mindful God is to us. Even in the area of finances, God also miraculously provided for us. He used our families and the people in our church community to help us with our running bill, which we had to pay on a weekly basis.

When Quinn was finally discharged from the hospital in November 2019, we sought God for wisdom. After seeking Him in prayer for weeks, we made a decision to let her go through the operation once she reached the required weight. It was one of our faith goals in the 2020 January prayer and fasting. We prayed for provision and a successful operation—but we also never stopped believing God for miraculous healing.

On the third day of our prayer and fasting week, something unexplainable happened. I found comfort and reassurance from God that He would heal Quinn. I was so overwhelmed at that moment; I cried and trusted God as I believed for my daughter’s healing. And though it didn’t happen right away, I didn’t doubt God and continued to hope and believe in what He impressed in my heart.

Months passed by, and Quinn slowly gained weight. When her weight exceeded 2.5 kilograms, we knew that it was time for her to go through surgery, but something in me was telling me otherwise. I knew that God could use the operation to heal her completely, but a part of me was also in faith that she didn’t need to go through it anymore.

In the weeks that followed, it seemed as if the lumps that used to be in her groin were no longer there. In March, we were planning to have her checked, but the enhanced community quarantine was implemented, so there was nothing we could do but wait. While waiting, I struggled to fight the lies in my head as I continued to hold on to God’s promise. I constantly reminded myself of His amazing grace through the lyrics of the song that I always sang to Quinn in the NICU:

The Lord has promised good to me. His word my hope secures. 
He will my shield and portion be, as long as life endures.

Finally, on June 13, 2020, we went to the doctor for Quinn’s checkup and immunization. The lumps that served as physical manifestations of the openings in her groin were completely gone! Even the doctor was surprised when she confirmed that Quinn no longer needed surgery. She had been healed—completely!

What happened to Quinn was a miracle that we knew we had to share. It was something that seemed impossible, but God proved Himself faithful. Her name, Quinn Gabrielle, which means “wisdom” and “God is our strength,” holds true. God has given us wisdom to wait and the strength to endure everything we have gone through. It was His amazing grace that was with us all throughout. And it will continue to be with us as we believe God for His beautiful plans to unfold, for Quinn and our entire family.

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23

God is able to answer our prayers beyond what we ask or think. As we prepare for the midyear fast on July 7–9, let us all hold fast to His grace and be expectant.

 


Chams Pagulayan-Malana is one of our campus missionaries in Victory Malate. She and her husband continue to rely on God’s amazing grace as they raise their beautiful daughter, Quinn.

58 Days of Faith: Surviving COVID–19

58 Days of Faith: Surviving COVID–19

The pain of knowing that your entire family is COVID–19 positive is indescribable. But God’s goodness and faithfulness are also beyond what we can ever think or imagine. Here’s an inspiring story of a family that survived the virus.

 

Three members of our family serve on the front lines. My father is a police officer, while my younger sister and I are healthcare professionals.

When the coronavirus outbreak started, we knew that our family would be at risk, especially our parents. Aside from the fact that half of our family are exposed to the virus, most of us also have pre-existing medical conditions.

On April 2, right after my overnight duty at the hospital as a staff nurse, my mother called and informed me of my father’s high fever. He got a swab test that day and was advised to undergo home quarantine while waiting for the results. On April 9, a week later, his test results came out: he tested positive with COVID–19.

With only two hours of sleep, I went to different hospitals that day to help my father get the medical attention he needed. At that time, his symptoms were already severe; I knew I needed to do everything I could to help him survive. With God’s grace, on that same day, he was admitted to a hospital in Pasig City.

On April 14, just five days after we learned that my father had contracted the virus, another devastating news came our way. My mother started showing symptoms of pneumonia, and my younger sister also tested positive.

Because of what happened, we knew that the rest of us should be tested as well. Though I was previously tested when I accompanied my father to the hospital, I decided to join my 18-year-old brother and 10-year-old sister for another test.

On April 21, in the midst of everything that was happening to my father, mother, and younger sister—who were all in the hospital—we found out that even my two other siblings had the virus. It was heartbreaking.

At that time, I didn’t know what to feel or think. Seeing my whole family admitted to different hospitals alone and in pain crushed my heart. My father fell into severe depression, while my mother—who also turned out positive later on—struggled with all the painful medications. My younger sister who is an ER nurse tried her best to be strong and administered the medications to herself to protect her colleagues, but she later developed a Kawasaki-like disease; it caused her whole body to become inflamed. My two other siblings, on the other hand, were afraid and didn’t know what to do. It was so hard not to be there for them, especially for my little sister who had no idea what was going on; she is just 10 years old.

While on quarantine and waiting for my test results and family to come home, I would cry out to God and lift up my entire family to Him. I was also hopeful that I did not contract the virus. Like what my other sister always said, we couldn’t rely on anything or anyone but God. Only He could deliver our whole family from the disease. Every day, I would battle with negative thoughts and fill my mind with God’s word instead. I also kept reminding myself of His promise in Jeremiah 29:10,11 (NLT):

“. . . I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Though faced with the reality of being positive with the virus, too, and losing a member of our family at any minute, I trusted that God would carry us through and bring my parents and siblings back home alive. I am thankful that despite our situation, a lot of people believed with us and stood with us in prayer.

Every night, our friends and people from our church community would tirelessly encourage us and remind us of God’s goodness and faithfulness. Every little thing they did for us meant so much to me and my whole family. Though a lot of people became hostile to us out of fear for what happened, I am grateful that God surrounded us with people who chose to show us love and compassion in a difficult time.

For 58 days, we were filled with fear and anxiety, but our faith was also stretched and strengthened like never before. Faith kept us strong in times when we were hopeless and on the verge of giving in to pain. Though we were weak, God carried us and helped us endure. It’s indescribable how He delivered us and provided for us.

Last month, after weeks of waiting and praying, my test results finally came out negative. My father, mother, and 10-year-old sister also tested negative after several swab tests. They came home for the first time, and we celebrated Mother’s Day together. Several weeks later, my two other siblings were also sent home after having been cleared from the disease. It was such a sweet moment for us.

Even when everything was still unclear, I knew that God would come through for us. And there’s nothing more I want now but to tell others of how good and faithful He is. Seeing my family alive and complete is something I will always thank God for—and a testimony that I will keep telling people. Our second chance at life is a gift, and I, along with my whole family, will continue to use it to serve and honor Him.

Kristine is a staff nurse and part of a Victory group at Victory Fort. Her father is a policeman, while her younger sister is an ER nurse. She considers it a blessing that she did not contract the virus despite everything that her family went through. After being cleared from COVID-19, she and her family are now back on the front lines to serve with increased passion, dedication, and faith.

Our God Is Bigger: A Journey of Healing from COVID-19

Our God Is Bigger: A Journey of Healing from COVID-19

The coronavirus disease can assault the body extensively. It targets the lungs, but it can also damage the other organs of our body. It can take a grave toll on people affected by the virus. But no matter how harrowing its effects are, be it physically or mentally, there is Someone bigger than this disease.

Below is the inspiring testimony of a woman who was declared COVID-free after spending seven grueling weeks in the hospital to fight the dreaded virus.

RIGHT BEFORE IT HITS
I started to feel unwell on the morning of March 18. I had a high fever and headache. It felt like I was coming down with the flu. I thought I got infected with dengue after spending hours cleaning our home. But the following day, I started having bouts of diarrhea. We monitored my condition for a few days and hoped that my fever would go down, but it didn’t. Not long after, I had difficulty breathing. It became almost impossible for me to sleep while lying down. I felt so weak.

My husband and I went to a hospital in Pasig City on March 23. I was told that my lungs were clear and everything seemed okay based on the x-ray scan. I was instructed to go home and undergo self-quarantine for two weeks. But upon arriving home, my fever flared up.

We immediately called the COVID-19 hotline to seek help. I was told to go to one of the hospitals in Quezon City to have another x-ray scan. On the 25th, just two days after my last scan, I found out that I had pneumonia. I had to be admitted but there was no room available at that time. I stayed at the hospital’s parking lot from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. with an oxygen tank next to me—thinking every breath was my last.

THE LONG WAIT
While waiting at the parking lot, I was already bidding goodbye to my husband. I had worked as a nurse before, and I had a patient who died from pneumonia. I was almost sure that I’d have the same fate. I prayed and asked God to fill me with His peace.

While preparing myself for what would happen next, my best friend called and prayed for me. She encouraged me and reminded me to trust God. I was already struggling to breathe at that time, but I listened to every word she said. Knowing that someone was praying for me helped a lot.

Like my best friend, my husband also refused to give up. He contacted different people, including those from our Victory group. That same night, one of our leaders from Victory Katipunan, who happened to be a doctor, called us and helped me get checked and admitted to another hospital. I knew it was God making a way for me.

COUNTING THE DAYS
When I was admitted, the doctors had me tested for COVID-19 and checked my blood disorder, too. At that time, both of my lungs were already severely affected. I could feel that I was positive with the disease, but I tried to dispel that thought while waiting for the results. Seeing God make a way for me to be admitted kept my hopes up.

We were told that the results of my swab test would be released after three to four days. While waiting, I drew strength from God to keep fighting each day. Eight days had passed, and there were still no results; I was forced to go through another swab. At that time, I was slowly starting to feel better, but not knowing what was happening to me made me anxious. It felt like there was a big cloud hanging over me.

As I counted the days, I didn’t know that God was slowly preparing my heart. He knew that it was easy for me to worry and think of unpleasant things. And He didn’t want that. He used the delay to strengthen me and make me ready. After a few days, the results of my first swab test came back positive.

FIGHTING WITH FAITH
While I was in the hospital, God used different people to encourage me. My colleagues and Victory group always checked on me through video calls. My husband, who was tagged at that time as a person under monitoring (PUM), was not allowed to leave the hospital so he stayed with me. I am thankful to God that despite what happened, there were people who fought each day with me. I never felt alone.

There were times when I almost gave up because the medication was too painful—it felt as if it was melting my bones. But my husband never lost heart. He would always talk to me and help me see things differently. He helped build my faith.

Every day, God would show me His goodness through different people. He changed my perspective on many things and made me see what’s truly important. I realized how fleeting everything is and finally understood who He is in my life. With every pain, I saw how big He is. No matter what happens, I know that God is in control, and I can always put my faith and confidence in Him.

COMING OUT STRONG
While waiting for the results of my fourth swab test, I filled my heart with God’s word. Our online worship services and the morning worship and prayer on Victory’s Facebook page helped me a lot. Instead of focusing on my pain, I focused on God and started reaching out to our relatives and friends who were having a difficult time because of the crisis we’re facing. I encouraged them with God’s promises and helped them see the good in the bad.

My battle with coronavirus showed me that the challenges we face would help us come out strong like Job. Instead of questioning God, we need to look beyond our situation to understand His purpose. Our trials can be turned into testimonies that can bring honor and glory to God.

FROM PAIN TO PURPOSE
After seven grueling weeks of pain and uncertainty, I was finally declared COVID-free! My fourth swab test came out negative, and I was discharged in the afternoon of May 11, 2020.

Though I realize that sharing this story may cause me and my family to face the stigma and discrimination associated with the disease, I am sure that God will be with us no matter what. Letting everyone know that God is bigger than this pandemic is more important. The pain I felt has a greater purpose that will allow others to see His goodness.

 

No words can accurately describe the pain and agony that a person with COVID-19 feels. Though the uncertainty and fear are beyond difficult to bear, nothing is beyond God’s grace. May those who are going through this disease find comfort, strength, and hope in God—who is bigger than this pandemic. As a church community, let us open our hearts to those who are battling the disease, encourage them, and show them God’s love. By faith, there is healing, victory, and the promise of eternal life in Christ.

Vee is a Quality Assurance analyst and a volunteer in Victory Katipunan. She and her husband are part of a couples Victory group. They are currently being monitored and evaluated as part of the government’s health and safety protocols.

Always Faithful

Always Faithful

Do you believe that God is still the same God who performed miracles in the past? Have great faith as Reah shares how God stood by her family while her mother battled with stage four breast cancer.

In 2016, my mother was diagnosed with stage four invasive ductal carcinoma. She was already 57 years old, and her doctors felt that it would be pointless for her to undergo an operation because the cancer cells had already spread to other areas of her body. They advised us to just let her live the most of her life—with us, her family—because she might have only a few months left to live.

The news took us all by surprise. Before the diagnosis came out, Nanay would usually just complain about a headache or backache. It never occurred to us that she could have a growing mass in her body, much less a terminal disease. We did not know what to do.

One day, instead of sulking or losing hope, we all gathered in prayer as a family and asked one of our pastors in Victory Pioneer to pray for her.

True to our faith, when we went back to the hospital, the doctors told us that Nanay could still have hormone therapy combined with radiation. We knew that it would still be hard, but it was a relief to know that there was still something we could do. Any little hope we could get at that time was already a big thing for us.

Since Nanay is staying in Mindoro, she would have to fly to Manila for her treatments. Each time I would see her go through the treatments, I would feel so bad inside. It was always heartbreaking to see her in great pain. Seeing her in a helpless condition made me want to give up. But Nanay’s faith strengthened mine.

After a year and a half of treatment, Nanay asked God to let healing be His birthday gift to her this year. Before her scheduled bone scan, Nanay prayed with Tatay and claimed healing for her sickness. She was in full confidence that God would take away her cancer—regardless if it is stage four and her body is not young enough to respond to treatments.

Though impossible, in February this year, Nanay’s bone scan results came back clear. There was no trace of cancer. Not even a bit. It was all gone!

When the doctors saw her test results, they were all in disbelief. Just a few months ago, they requested another test (a PET scan) and like the first one, it came back negative, too. They, along with the rest of my family, are simply in awe of how God made an impossible thing possible.

Now, Nanay is living her life like she never had cancer. She is very active in the ministry and has made a decision to devote her whole life to Christ. Her resolve and unwavering faith in God inspired me to be strong in my faith, too. Each time I would feel the need to give up, I would go back to the time we prayed together as a family and remember how God has been faithful to us through everything. He was faithful then. He is faithful now. He will be faithful in the years to come!

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

Our God stands with us through all trials in life. He is the same God who performed miracles and healed thousands of people in the past, and He can do the same in our lives. He can make impossible things possible through His great love and grace. Let us not lose hope and believe that He is always faithful.

To Heal and Make Whole

To Heal and Make Whole

Cloyd Abejar’s younger sister, Athea, was born with a heart problem that could cost his family half a million to cure. The entire family held onto God’s word and believed the Great Healer to work in their situation. Find out how God exceeded their expectations in this encouraging story.

 

My mother gave birth to my sister named Athea in 2015. On the year she was born, she was diagnosed to have a septal defect. This means that there is a hole in her heart, and she would need to go through surgery a few years down the road to completely address her health condition. We were told that the operation would cost roughly half a million pesos! Hearing this news saddened me and my family, but it didn’t stop us from believing that God could heal my sister.

Last year, I continued to declare God’s power over Athea and acknowledged that He is the head of our household. As I continued to pray, fast, and hold onto His promises, He started to move in my family, especially through my parents. My parents whom I dearly call Nanay and Papa had different beliefs, but they started to call on the name of Jesus and claim healing for Athea through prayer.

A month after consistently praying to Jesus as a family, the cardiologist informed us that Athea does not need an operation anymore! The hole in her heart miraculously closed! The doctor even mentioned that the prescribed medicines had no capability to heal the heart, and the only explanation she can think of is God’s power through prayer!

Our entire family felt the overwhelming love of God. After experiencing this miracle and seeing His power at work, my parents decided to surrender their lives to Jesus. They now have a personal relationship with Christ, and are walking with Him along with people who will help them in their discipleship journey.

I want to encourage you with these verses in the book of Psalms.

For the word of the Lord is right and true; he is faithful in all he does. The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love. (Psalm 33:4-5, NIV)

When the Lord promises you something, He is willing and more than capable to fulfill it. He deserves all the glory for what happened to my family.

Cloyd with his family (Photo from Cloyd Abejar)
His Works and Wonders

His Works and Wonders

As the Lord unceasingly performs miracles in the nations, He is also at work in the smallest details of our lives. *Beatriz, one of our cross-cultural missionaries in Central Asia, has been on the mission field for years. She believes that God will do wonders in that part of the world. Little did she know that God would start by working in and through her. Here is her narration of the recent wonder that God did in her life.

 

I am quite healthy, and rarely get sick. I have never undergone surgery or experienced what it is like to be confined in a hospital. Whenever I return to the Philippines, I undergo general medical examinations every year.

It came as a shock to me when I experienced irregularities in my monthly cycle for the first time while I was staying in Central Asia last November 2015. It became normal again when I came back to the Philippines. At first, I did not see the irregularity as a serious concern; I thought it occurred merely because of stress.

When I returned to Central Asia in March 2016, I bled continuously for the next two months. At that point, I decided to consult with two doctors, who were also my friends. They prescribed a pill that stopped the bleeding and helped regularize my cycle until October 2016. After which, the bleeding did not stop until the end of the year.

My friends suggested that I return home for an emergency physical exam. When my doctor sat down with me to discuss the results in February 2017, I was shocked to learn that I had an ovarian cyst. As the doctor described the cyst and what I would need to do, so many questions flooded my mind. “How can this happen to me?” “What will happen to me if this develops into something worse?” These thoughts were recurring and becoming more terrifying.

As I left the doctor’s clinic, I went to a coffee shop to cry and talk to God about the diagnosis. I needed Him more than ever, and I knew that He is the only One who could help me. After a few hours of resting in His presence, peace filled my heart. God comforted me with His words from the Bible. I chose to focus on who He is and what He can do, rather than magnify my health condition.

After seeking the Lord, it became clear to me that practical medication and spiritual declaration are needed to overcome this challenge. I asked my friend, who is a nutritionist, to help me with my diet. As I returned to Central Asia, I had to be mindful of what I ate and had to take the prescribed medication. At the same time, I declared healing over my ovaries and claimed God’s promises of healing every day. I also asked my family and prayer partners to stand with me in this battle.

As I continued to believe God for healing, He reminded me of the word He gave me at the beginning of the year—wonders. He promised that he would show me many wonders in life through scriptures in the Bible like the verse in Job chapter 5.

“He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted.” (Job 5:9, NIV)

After I found out about the complications in my health, I held onto the promise of wonders from God and asked Him to make me brave and see me through until the cyst disappeared, which was what I was asking Him for. I believe that God is a miracle-worker, and He is able and willing to heal me. There were times when doubt would creep in my heart and I would feel discouraged. But I would always counter these kinds of thoughts with the truth in God’s Word, and choose to be brave. I resolved in my heart that God already healed me as He had promised.

When I visited the doctor again after a few weeks, she showed me through ultrasound that there are no cysts in both my right and left ovaries! She meticulously checked twice and confirmed that there is no cyst at all. I could not help but shout praises to God inside the room! I was so happy that I pranced all the way home. God proved to me once again that He is faithful! My heart was filled with joy and gratitude! The victory is truly ours. We just have to claim and declare it no matter what the situation is. I met with my friends and celebrated the miracle with them.

This experience made me realize three things about God. First, He is true to His word. Second, the victory is ours to declare, we can claim it through Him. Lastly, He is a miracle-worker. As long as you are breathing, believe that God already healed you.

 

We believe that this is just the beginning of the wonders that God will do in the life of Beatriz and every place she will go to. As she ministers and resides in Central Asia, we stand in faith that God’s signs and wonders will accompany her.

How about you? When was the last time you experienced God’s miracle in your life? If you have not experienced one yet or if it has been long a time since God showed you one, remember that His power is always available and at work in your life.

 

* Name has been changed to protect our missionary in this article from religious persecution. The image featured in this article does not represent our missionary in the featured creative access nation; it is a royalty-free image from Unsplash.com.

Daring to Believe for Miracles

Daring to Believe for Miracles

“I said yes, even if I had no idea what I’m supposed to do.”

These were the words of Troy Alvarez, a 17-year old student at Lyceum of Alabang, who joined our Dare to Believe prayer and fasting week last January 2016. On the first day of fasting, he felt God speak to him to pray for someone in church. It was the first time he heard God tell him to pray for someone. He didn’t know any special prayers, and he didn’t know how to approach strangers. Still, he said yes.

The next day in Victory Alabang during the first session of prayer and fasting, he scanned the crowd for someone he could pray for, and his eyes fell on an elderly woman. He couldn’t shake the feeling that this woman had cancer. Troy prayed for confirmation from God, and a feeling of certainty washed over him. “This is her. God wants me to pray for this woman,” he told himself.

After praise and worship, Troy started approaching the woman but before he could get near her, he was suddenly overwhelmed with fear and uncertainties. He couldn’t move a step forward and found himself retreating to his seat. Doubtful and defeated, Troy headed home instead. During his commute, there was a gnawing feeling inside him. He couldn’t take his mind off the elderly woman who needed his prayers. “I could feel there was something wrong,” he confesses, “I didn’t obey God because I was thinking more of what other people would say. I didn’t trust Him.” Feeling humbled, Troy prayed that the woman would be there tomorrow and he resolved to approach her, so he can do what God has been telling him to do.

The next day, Troy immediately looked for the woman. God answered his prayer, because he had no difficulty finding her. Gathering courage, he approached her and introduced himself. He found out that his name is Ester, and she was fighting breast cancer. At the time she met Troy, the cancer had spread to her lungs.

“I asked her if I could pray for her,” he narrates, “I told her that God has been telling me to pray specifically for her.” As Troy was praying, he suddenly felt very cold and goosebumps overwhelmed him. He felt the presence of Jesus in their midst. He shared with her his life verse from Mark 11:24, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Before long, he found himself crying with Tita Ester. “After praying for her, I was speechless and I felt really cold,” Troy shares, “I felt a mix of emotions, but the most overwhelming thing is the joy that is overflowing in me.”

The next day, Troy went to church again and the first thing he did was look for Tita Ester. To his dismay, she wasn’t in church. Troy couldn’t help but worry and feel anxious about her absence. Remembering how he felt Jesus’ presence yesterday, Troy was comforted. At home, he continued to pray and fast for Tita Ester’s healing. He knew nothing is impossible with God. He is sovereign, and He can cure any sickness in a blink of an eye.

On the last day of prayer and fasting week, Troy prayed to see Tita Ester once again. To his relief, she was in church and he ran towards her once he saw her. Tita Ester was in high spirits. She had wonderful news that she couldn’t wait to tell Troy about. Doctors were dumbfounded to discover that the cancer in her lungs seemed to have disappeared!

Upon hearing the news, Troy felt a wave of peacefulness wash over him. God did not only give him front row seats to witness a miracle, but He used him to be an instrument of blessing to someone he didn’t even know when the week began. Troy wasn’t spared from the voices in his head telling him that his faith is not enough to heal, but he clung to his life verse and was reassured that God can do the impossible. Ester’s daughter, April, agrees; her mother recently underwent laser surgery to remove a small tumor discovered in her brain.

“Though we know Mom’s fight with cancer isn’t completely over,” she shares, “we know that the victory is already ours because of Jesus. We’re so blessed because God gives her so much strength; she’s a fighter.” Ester’s courage has made quite the impression on Troy.

“This experience taught me to be brave,” Troy shares, “It showed me that when God declares something, it will happen. We’re not the miracle workers, we’re just the instruments, so we need not fear. We just have to dare to believe.”

Believing for the Impossible

Believing for the Impossible

Claud's weddingTheo Cañeda didn’t expect to meet the love of his life during the time that his business was going bankrupt. When he was introduced to Claud by a common friend in church, he was smitten. “I found out that she works in the church,” he shares, “and I was attracted to how devoted she was to her calling.”

Without a regular job, his finances were in shambles, which made him hesitant to court Claud. Nevertheless, he prayed for her, gathered his courage, and pursued her. The two started a relationship, and eventually talks of marriage started coming up. By the end of 2014, they were engaged.

“We decided to get married,” Theo says. “Despite the challenges, we knew we wanted to get married.” At the start of 2015, the couple prayed and fasted for an overflow of provision for their upcoming wedding happening in a few months. Amidst their preparations and several months prior to their big day, Claud was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and a benign tumor called myoma. This is a condition that imbalances a woman’s hormones, leading to the formation of ovarian cysts.
Claud and Theo

Claud was crushed. She was about to get married, and was hearing of the very real possibility she would never have children. Theo was heartbroken at how the news saddened Claud so much, but he never lost hope. He comforted his future wife that he loved her, no matter what, and reminded her that God is sovereign. “A lot of tears were shed,” Theo reveals. “She even asked me if I want to push through with the wedding.”

This ordeal brought the couple closer than ever. They cried, prayed, and fasted together for God to deliver them. Faced with Claud’s condition, and with their wedding day approaching, Claud and Theo also realized they didn’t have enough money to cover their wedding expenses.

The couple cried out to God, and He responded. Two months before their wedding, Theo’s business bounced back from bankruptcy and started doing well. Provision started pouring in, and before they knew it, they had more than enough to pay for the wedding they want. “Everything was covered,” Theo exclaims, “We were able to have a joyful, debt-free wedding!” Pregnant pic

After their wedding, the couple was in faith that they would have children, despite Claud’s condition. They consulted different doctors, who recommended procedures to make pregnancy possible for her. To their dismay, the procedures were very expensive. “We were on our knees believing God for the impossible!” Theo reveals.

There were times Claud would think she was pregnant, but they turned out to be false alarms. The couple experienced a rollercoaster of emotions. Then suddenly, the couple’s world rocked further when Claud’s father passed away. Amidst their grief and frustration, Claud and Theo clung to God more. “The Lord will replace anything we’ve lost,” Theo declared.

It was a slow and painful journey, but God soon provided a silver lining. A month after Claud’s father passed away, the couple found out that Claud was pregnant. The two were ecstatic, but they decided to keep the information secret until a doctor confirmed their discovery. After her check-up, the doctor did confirm that Claud was indeed pregnant, and they weren’t having just one baby, but two! Claud was pregnant with twins! twins

In a few weeks, by faith, Claud will give birth to two healthy babies. “I have just experienced the goodness and faithfulness of God first hand,” Theo declares, “He made me experience a miracle only He can make! Indeed, we can dare to believe God for the impossible!”

Update (June 27, 2016): We are so excited and pleased to let you all know that Claud gave birth to two absolutely adorable baby girls! We celebrate God’s faithfulness and pray for the continued health and safety of the twins. Congratulations, Theo and Claud!

Jenny’s Miracle Babies

Jenny’s Miracle Babies

jenny-and-carl-dyJenny Ang Dy of Victory Greenhills shares her story of how God provided a child for her, despite multiple miscarriages and difficulties. May you be encouraged and inspired as you read her story!

Two months after my husband and I decided to start a family, we received the best kind of news—we were pregnant! We were so excited to share this with our family and friends. However, we lost that pregnancy a week after we found out.

We found out that I was pregnant again a few months after that. This time, we were more fearful than joyful. My worst fears were confirmed when we lost the baby again, just four weeks after we received the news.

During this time, several friends were also expecting to have kids. I was in so much pain after losing two babies, I didn’t want to do anything that reminded me of my loss. I refused to attend baby showers and children’s parties. Other than that, I refused to accept the fact that I couldn’t have children.

After many tests and doctor’s visits, I discovered that I had an immune condition where my body did not know a pregnancy when it happened. My body recognized a growing embryo as a form of cancer, and would produce antibodies to attack it until it wouldn’t survive. I really wanted to have a baby, and sought answers by learning all I could about this condition and put my faith in doctors. I even turned to traditional medicine, wanting to leave no stone turned.

All this stress also took a toll on my career, which I had to put on hold because of all the time-consuming treatments I underwent. My husband and I spent close to a million pesos on tests and medications. I felt like I was losing control over my finances, my work, and my life.

One day, an old friend invited me to a Victory group. I had grown up a Christian, but knew so little about God. When the gospel was shared to me this time around, I had a greater understanding of who God is. He is not just a provider and a healer—He is also my Heavenly Father. I sought for a deeper understanding of who He is. The more I read the Word, the more I became at peace.

My husband eventually joined me in attending church and Victory group. We started trusting and believing God together to grow our family. He began changing our hearts—it was like He infused us with fresh faith to believe Him for my healing. Other than that, He gave me a deep joy in my heart. Despite my childlessness, I began celebrating with others for their seasons in life. I also stopped going to different doctors, and made a decision to trust God for the child He would give us. We were in faith that He would provide for us, in His own time.

One day, after an extended trip with my husband, we discovered that we were pregnant, again! I admit it was a challenge for me not to feel anxious and afraid all over again. I’m thankful that I had my spiritual family standing with me in prayer. Every time I would feel fear, I’d claim God’s promises over my life, and ask for His protection for the baby and myself.

After a total of five miscarriages, God gave us our first baby, Catie, in April 2008.  God’s promise to my husband and I had come to pass.

Today, Catie is now seven years old!
Catie was born healthy in 2008.

After Catie, God blessed us with two more beautiful and healthy girls, now aged six years old, and 20 months. Each pregnancy I encountered is a different story. I can now say that the journey of trusting and letting go is a continuous process. My husband and I continue to rely on God’s grace to be able to steward them well.

The Dy family today
The Dy family today

Truly, anything is possible with God, and miracles still happen in this day and age. His plans are greater than our plans, and nothing can separate us from His love. As we surrender and declare His Lordship over our lives, He remains faithful. His will always prevails!  

Miracles Still Happen (A Story on Healing and Provision)

“Miracles still happen in this age and time . . . God is able and His hand is never too short.” A few years ago, Tina Melendres’s son, TJ, was diagnosed with a congenital heart disease. Watch this video to know how God healed her son and provided for the finances that their family needed.