After delivering the Word at church—two services in a row in Iloilo city—I badly needed to drink a glass of water to wash down choked nerves. (I confess, despite having spoken before different audiences in many places for years, I never got over the jitters, and probably never will.) 

Not only was I given a glass of water, I was served authentic Chinese food in a restaurant by 20 women of WOW—Women of the Word—of Calvary Chapel. Straightaway, I felt like I was one of them, not a guest from out of town. The encounter was free and easy, just bits and pieces of this and that, our ministries, how we began and how we want to go on.

We shared snapshots of our lives, our failures, our successes, our common faith and of the enormous grace that comes with it. 

The evening was so relaxing, with plenty of banter and laughter, we didn’t realize we had exceeded our allotted time. And so we said our goodbyes.   

I realized I may never see them again—not in this life. But definitely, we will continue our conversations, which will no longer be time bound, in a place reserved for all of us, where goodbyes shall be no more. 

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” John 13:34 (NIV)

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