This is part of a series of stories from Servant Leaders who have been trained by the Center for Sharing over the past fifteen years. We will be highlighting leaders across the globe who have submitted their lives to serve and now find themselves in positions of leadership. This story is from Wilson Dumelod, who was a part of the 2007 Servant Leadership cohort in Mindoro, Philippines. Wilson trains and equips other pastors to serve within the Alliance of Bible Christian Communities of the Philippines, or ABCCOP, as well as working as a board member for the Center for Servant Leadership (CSLP). Below are some of his reflections from a letter he sent to the Center for Sharing.
It has been quite a time to be personally in touch with you. I know you are mindful of me. Take a moment to listen to my story.
One may not fully realize the impact of giving one’s presence for others. For in giving one’s time, one shares his or her own life. This is a lasting legacy of life.
Your coming is very unusual. You came when I thought I knew much in life. But you came not to simply feed the mind. You came with an open hand to touch the heart. You listened more than you spoke. You discovered our pain with a healing hand. We opened our souls without any pressure. We discovered freedom and safety in our brokenness. We learned to dream. For you were there, right here, one amongst us. Years had passed. Yet the dream lives on. And such a grace, indeed, to be part of the dream of God.
So a community was born. Mindoro Bible College is becoming more of a family than an institution. It is a transformation process that deals the issues of the heart. We learn to share our pains and fears with listening ears and loving embrace. We learn to be real because there is a community that cares. Each one is our greatest wealth.
We are called to make a better world. Right here in our world of influence. For Mindoro Bible college to be named as “Center for Servant Leadership Philippines” is a prophetic name in itself. The Lord has a stored plan in a name. Center for Servant Leadership Philippines exists to model an authentic community that develops servant leaders who are equipped for holistic Christian ministries. With this dream, we hold on to the grace of God.
I commit myself in the hands of the Lord as I decided to be part of this movement of God. First quarter next year, as an office policy of ABCCOP, I will be tendering my courtesy resignation as the Minister of Theological Education. I will be filing this courtesy resignation with an intent to remain and continue with my present ministry. Last November 3, through the joint election of the national and district leaders of ABCCOP, Pastort Chito had been given a second term four-year mandate as the National Minister. I have presented my case to him and has respected my decision. The National Council of Elders will make the final decision with regards to my desire to serve in the National office on February 2012.
For me, to be reinstated as the Minister of Theological Education of ABCCOP, is secondary. Primarily, I now see myself to be aligned and work closely with Center for Servant Leadership Philippines. This is a crucial decision I have consulted with my wife Bee who gave her consent and to stand with me in the ministry. With my wife’s consent, I hold on to the Lord’s word: “…Do not leave your post; calmness can lay great errors to rest” (Ecclesiastes 10:4b). The “post” is not simply my present ministerial position but my lifetime mission to teach, equip, and mentor servant leaders in building authentic communities. I made this decision clear to Dan and Pong, who have been faithfully journeying with me in prayer, to know the mind of the Lord for my behalf. And both of them affirmed their partnership for us working together in building the Lord’s community in the Philippines.
My 12-year old son Larkin is aware of my present journey in the ministry. I have informed him about my decision and he agreed to it. Yes, my community starts in the home. And it is a joy for my wife and my son to be my greatest support. It is a journey of faith. And we hold on to the sufficiency of the Lord’s grace.
Larkin will be turning first year in high school in the University of the Philippines Integrated School come 2012. I have great lessons from my son. One time he personally asked me, “Tatay” (Tagalog word for “Father”), “what do you fear most in life.” I answered, “Anak” (Tagalog word for “son”), “as our only child, what I fear most in life is to lose you.” Then I returned the question to him, “How about you my son, what do you fear most in life?” And he answered, “Tatay, what I fear most in life is to sin against God.” And as I see him grow, he means these words in his heart. My son, may not fully realize that he is my “hero.” For in time of temptations I call to mind the very words of my beloved son.
Bee is back to teaching since the first semester this school year. She is not yet done with her dissertation on her doctoral program. The politics within her college has played a great part for the difficult progress of her studies. We dearly hold on to the sovereignty and grace of God.
Last year had been stressful for me. Not much due to the strains on travels and trainings to different regions but more of the internal concerns in the organization of ABCCOP. I am glad things are getting better and with a hope for us to become persons and a better organization. May I be found faithful to do my part. As a family, we yearn for a refreshing time of rest at the close of the year.
The Lord is true and trustworthy. And for this, we have every good reason to be grateful. Thanks for taking time to listen. May all be well with you.
Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!
Grace and peace to us all.