My friends who live in my chosen home (Philippines) will appreciate this post perhaps more than others who live, for example, in the United States, because we do not have a such a designation.
Before I arrived here, I would often hear this word: “province”. I could not understand exactly what it meant and certainly not appreciate it until I arrived here. Now, I fully understand what it means and in fact, it is my intention to begin visiting various provinces within the Philippines.
The term province is defined, at least one of them, as “a person of local or restricted interests or outlook.”
Living in metro Manila, another description for the word province, based upon my conversation with many here would be: “a place where people are (un)der-educated, poor and not worthy to associate.” I know, the description sounds harsh, but this is the impression I get. When walking along the street, I hear people saying, “Oh, that person is from the province” detected by not only their language, accent or dress, but by their actions. It seems coming to Manila is the life goal for many while it is the life goal of those living in metro Manila to reach the shores of the United States. So, as the provinces are to Manila, would be the same as Manila to the United States.
I have a newsflash for everyone. While it is easy for many of us to look down on others simply because of where they were born, who had no choice in the matter, we could all be considered living in a “province” because of our first parents selling us out of our original earthly home!
I’m so glad God was not so snooty to us simply because of where we lived. In fact, He sent His Son to live right in the province with us, to give us an opportunity to get to know Him and have the desire to change our life condition, and strive for a better place, not just location, but in relationship. I’m so glad He didn’t look down on some of us because we are may be maids, drivers, yaya’s (Filipino’s know what this means), and other low-type employment. Some of us may also be addicts, GRO workers, and even unemployed, but that did not stop Christ from coming and calling us “sinners” without hope. What He calls you and me are, “sons” and “daughters”!
There is quite a “provincial” love which extends to us all no matter where you live, where you were born, what kind of work you do, or don’t, and nothing which we might consider as a factor in determining the kinds of people we would associate with down here, keeps Him from partaking in our lives. Just go through the pages of the Bible and see some of the people He did. Today, He is still doing the very same thing He did when He walked this earth. In fact, He’s right in the room where you are, RIGHT NOW!
Let’s welcome Christ to our particular province.
December 1, 2015