Yes I'm a proud geek, but I am no Bilbo Baggins. For one, I have't got the big hairy feet. Anyway… many people have asked me: "What are the biggest lessons you've learned since returning from Olongapo?"
Tall question… and thinking on it through jet lag is nearly impossible. Ugh… ears, POP already!
But now that my system is slowly returning to normal, I've been able to meditate on God's revelations, think about what happened, and how the Spirit has counseled and transformed me. And I've also given great thought to the things I saw, were shared with me, and the fluid conclusions I've drawn thus far…
Intentional community works.
I don't say this in terms of using IC as a systematic method of programming — not by any stretch. Any type of IC requires deliberation, patience, time, caring, nurturing, humility, and love. These traits are not inherently programmatic. In fact, North America's repeated insistence in trying to make them so has often seen disaster in its wake. I say that IC works because I bore witness — and share in — to the community where young women were brought out of the sex trade, their lives were transformed, and God was glorified. Family is created, Jesus is central, and the practical outworkings of the Gospel are evident in daily life — from morning worship to paper making to reaching out into the community. In fact, the base leader in YWAM Olongapo was once a girl herself in prostitution, and is now the fruit of community living centered on Christ.
That's where I'm at. I know there are moments in the bars/clubs I want to share about, and other thoughts, but I want you all to know that intentional, deliberate family nurturing and community tending works to break the chains of slavery. I went to the Philippines to see for myself if this was so.
And it is.
God, may it be so in Canada.