Divine Appointments in the Philippines

Meet Lloyd & Dahl

Meet Lloyd & Dahl

As newly appointed Bible engagement advocates for the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), Lloyd and Dahl Estrada's first meeting with Arnie Cole (Back to the Bible CEO) seemed like a divine appointment. "Something from the Lord, where the timing was just right."

And because of that relationship, Dahl explains, "Back to the Bible has played a very important role as we started. It helped us jump start Bible engagement advocacy as we talked about goTandem to leaders and their churches."

But Lloyd and Dahl were very familiar with the ministry of Back to the Bible even before their meeting with Arnie. Dahl tells us, "We were teenagers. I was a very young Christian and I grew up practically as a young Christian with the help of Back to the Bible. I listened to the messages from Theodore Epp. I would receive other materials from Back to the Bible and it was really helpful to me, very encouraging for me. I was discipled with the correspondence and through the radio messages of Back to the Bible."

Advocating for Bible engagement

Though their eventual goal is an international mission, the work starts at home. Lloyd tells us, "We have started our advocacy in the Philippines since we live here and we know most of the national evangelical leaders in the Philippines. We have organized a couple of Bible engagement forums already for the national church leaders and we organized this in partnership with the two major church federations in the Philippines. Both Bible engagement forums were also organized in partnership with Back to the Bible."

Dahl continues, "We are excited about the digital daily discipleship goTandem app because we have been receiving good feedback from people. During our 30th anniversary celebration, we talked about Bible engagement and promoted the app because we wanted them to know more, not just about the ministry God has given us, but the importance of Bible engagement."

And people are responding! Dahl shared about a woman she's been mentoring who began using goTandem. "She sent me this message: 'I downloaded the goTandem app and so far I like it--especially the survey they gave before you use the app. It is a helpful review of my own spiritual life. I pray that I will fully be engaged in my Bible more and more as I grow in his presence. So excited to share this with the people that I disciple.'"

Equipping the church

Moving forward, Lloyd and Dahl see their biggest obstacle in helping church leaders. "I think it's an assumption that pastors make that their church members are really engaging the Bible. The problem is helping them understand that the ordinary church members do not engage the Bible." Lloyd continues, "When a pastor asks church members if they are reading the Bible they respond 'oh yes, pastor!' So maybe the church members are not very accurate with their responses. We know for people to truly experience transformation they need to engage the Bible more and more."

To that end, Lloyd tells us, "We have offered doing a spiritual assessment of pastors and we are starting with the conservative baptists in the Philippines. What they want is to do a survey of the national council members first and then pastors according to regions and then down to local churches--more than 600 churches in the country. They are very interested in understanding the spiritual needs of their denomination, and hopefully this will also help the denomination address the spiritual needs of their members."

As they continue their work in the Philippines and surrounding Asian nations, Lloyd and Dahl ask for prayer that "the Lord would open doors for us to be able to effectively advocate for Bible engagement. And pray that God will open doors with the right people in every country so we will be able to assist national church leaders. We expect Bible engagement in every country will look different, but at the same time, we want to roll out goTandem in each country because it is a very, very helpful tool for discipleship."

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