Vital training for such a time as this

(Image courtesy Haggai Institute)

(Image courtesy Haggai Institute)

Philippines (HGA/MNN) — You’ve probably heard the phrase “for such a time as this.” It’s the ultimate leadership-training story of Esther, at a critical time when she’s encouraged to take a stand.

Her cousin Mordecai helps her realize that God placed her in such a way as to influence a king and prevent the slaughter of a nation. It brings two points to the forefront: the only way you’re going to hear that call is if you listen, and the only way you can do that is by getting alone and spending some quiet time with God.

This is what the Haggai Institute does. The training sessions they offer help prepare leaders to obey the Great Commission and influence the world.

Sound a little grandiose? Not really, when you consider the scope of their vision. They’re not talking leaders (with a lower case l). They’re talking about the Leaders of a country (with a capital L).

Here’s how they’re succeeding. Last month, we told you about presidential candidate Dr. Lazarus Chakwera, who is the Leader of Opposition in Malawi’s Parliament. Dr. Chakwera is also a Haggai Institute alumnus.

(Photo courtesy Wikipedia)

(Photo courtesy Wikipedia)

This month, we’re looking at two candidates for the Associate Justice of the (15-person) Supreme Court in The Philippines. Two of the names that are on the shortlist of four candidates recently presented to President Aquino are those of Haggai Institute alumni: Justice Jose C. Reyes, Jr. and Judge Reynaldo Daway.

When asked about marrying his job and faith together, Reyes answered, “Whenever I perform my tasks, I always rely on the guidance and inspiration and the wisdom provided by God, especially in matters pertaining to human life, protection of the environment, protection of human rights.”

After all, Reyes adds, being an advocate for justice means you have to know what grace is, too. “I take my job seriously so God should always be my help. He is the most powerful, yet full of mercy, so I always pray to God whenever I perform my tasks.”

Justice Reyes continues his involvement with the HI ministry and was part of their first Asia Pacific Summit held in the Philippines. Why? “It’s an institution for the evangelization of leaders.” In other words, you can change a nation from the top down. “As one of those fortunate ones to be invited by Haggai, I learned in Haggai that leaders must be God-fearing and must be prayerful. In other words, we must lead by example.”

He has been serving as Associate Justice of the Court of Appeals since his appointment in 2003. “I believe that I became a better Christian after that training. And I continue to remember the things that I have learned in Haggai.” The Haggai Institute training, he asserts, helped him gain a good track record as a public servant who has served the Judiciary for 27 years with integrity and dedicated service.

(Photo Appeals Court, Philippines courtesy Wikipedia)

(Photo Appeals Court, Philippines courtesy Wikipedia)

One of his favorite topics is stewardship. It’s easy to apply his training and his faith in the cases he gets, whether its financial stewardship or resource stewardship. That also opens doors for relationship, explains Reyes, with people who can get on board with decisions that involve environmental causes. “I became more and more involved in evangelization and trying to reach out, especially to the court employees by leading by example and bringing God to them and bring them to God.”

Specifically, after Haggai training, Reyes began a Christian Life Program under the government’s Moral Recovery Program; he is fondly called “bishop” by his colleagues because of his insistence on praying in every situation.

The other nominee, alumnus Reynaldo B. Daway, is presiding judge of the Regional Trial Court in Quezon City apart from being its Specialized Intellectual Property (IP) and Commercial Law judge.

Haggai Institute inspired him to take time out of his hectic work schedule to step up his ministry endeavors by conducting more Bible studies (his passion) and “to build a closer personal relationship with my family” and also “to build better relationships with fellow Christians.”

An important part of his life is the close communication he maintains with his Haggai Institute session mates who–through the e-group prolifically maintained–have prayed him through the entire nomination process. He shared with them that if he has any desire in this promotion, “it is for His glory alone.”

Please pray about the decision for Supreme Court appointment, which will be coming soon. The last judge who held the seat retired on 29 May. The President has to announce a replacement within 90 days, which would put the deadline at the end of August.