Sunday, August 19, 2012

Jesus Loves Little Muslim Boys

Had to share this blog from one of our friends in Lusaka working with street kids.  I hope it's an encouragement of the great love the Father has for everyone of us!!!


A few months ago I was talking to a little Muslim boy about Jesus.  For our purposes lets call him Mustafa.  

I asked him “What do they teach you at mosque about Jesus?”  Mustafa’s big brown eyes grew enormous and full of fear.  He said “DON’T EVER SAY THAT NAME!!!!!!!  I AM NOT EVER ALLOWED TO SAY THAT NAME!”  Of course I was curious as to why a little innocent 7 year old should be so afraid of the name that we know brings life and healing.  

He proceeded to tell me a story that is taught to the children in his mosque.  They are told a very graphic story of a man who was tormented to his grave by a snake because he preached about Jesus.  When the man realized the snake was after him he asked for help and no one came to his rescue.  

    AWEFUL RIGHT!!!!!!!!?????

This poor child was SCARED!  So I  gently explained to Mustafa that the name of Jesus is a beautiful name and that there is safety in it...that Jesus wants to be Mustafa’s best friend and that he is loved.  I gave him a homework assignment...ask Jesus to show himself in a special way to prove that He is real.  

This happened about 2 months ago. 

I haven’t seen the boy until today. Excitedly I asked Mustafa “Did you do the homework I gave you?”  With a big grin on his little face he said YES!  The first thing I noticed was that he kept repeated the name of Jesus!!  Then he told me a story that had my jaw on the floor.  

Two months ago he was left alone in the house with a babysitter.  The house was dark (the electricity was probably out) the parents and the older siblings were out and the sitter had fallen asleep.  Mustafa was feeling lonely and unloved so he went out into the backyard and said “Jesus if you are real show yourself to me!”  

Suddenly a light appeared in the dark yard and a voice whispered to him


I must admit at this point the skeptic in me began to raise its ugly head, but God was quick to quiet my mind and allowed me to really SEE the boy's face.  In his eyes was a light that wasn’t there before.  In his eyes was a wonder at the beauty and majesty of what he had witnessed. 

When I asked him how it made him feel, he said “It made my heart feel warm and happy and peaceful”.   


I then asked him if had told his parents what happened.   He told me that no, he hadn’t because he was afraid that his parents would think he was insane.  

Mustafa hopes the Jesus will speak to him in his dreams!  WOW!!!!

I didn’t feel a release to ask him if he wanted to accept Jesus yet.  I know that it will happen in God’s timing and in a way this precious little boy will know is personal just for him.  

Pray for Mustafa and his family!  Pray that Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and the Light will reveal himself to the entire family.  

Monday, August 13, 2012

Finally Landed

(Prayer of Dedication for Ministry Centre Land - with Chieftainess Mwenda and village headmen)

The day we've been waiting for has finally come and it took us by surprise.  This past week, while doing a clothing distribution for vulnerable children and widows, we were invited into a meeting with the chieftainess and 20 of her headmen.  We originally thought it was just to give them some blankets for the cold season.  But when the meeting began, they informed us that they had chosen a piece of the chief's family land to give us for a ministry centre.

Needless to say, we were extremely excited and happy and humbled.  After we discussed our intentions and how we hoped to use the property to minister to the needs of the Tonga people, they took us out to the property for a viewing.  The land turned out to be about a 50 acre plot in the middle of an area called Ngangula.  It's located just behind a local school and in the middle of a rather large community.

After walking around the property to identify the boundries, we all gathered to pray over the land and dedicate it.  A few of us prayed and then Chieftainess Mwenda, as the chief and local leader, gave it her blessing and prayed over it as well.  So, things should be picking up soon as far as ministry is concerned.  Over the next few months, we will be diligently working to implement a foundations for farming program as well as begin to develop the property.

We hope to identify and move a Tongan family out to the property to oversee its operations.  We also hope to get a portion of the property ready for this coming planting season.  Lots to do and little time to do it, but we are extremely excited about the opportunity and potential.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Village Ministry

(CLICK HERE to view the video)

This week we've been hosting some friends from Texas and, while they were here, we held a few outreach events.  The link above is a short video of our time spent ministering to widows and orphans in Ngangula (home of our future ministry centre) and a village near the chieftainess' palace.

Instead of sharing all of the details of the afternoon, I thought I might share just one encouraging testimony.  We started the day by meeting Chieftainess Mwenda and driving to two villages within her chiefdom.  After handing out clothes and blankets to the widows and orphans at the first village, we had a time of prayer.  We were actually behind schedule and just planned to say a "blanket" prayer for all in attendance, but there were many who requested that we stay and pray one-by-one.  This meant that the people in the next village would have to wait, but we felt like the Lord was in it.  So, we stayed and prayed.

We ended up breaking into groups of 2-3, each with an intrepreter, and began praying for everyone who remained behind.  (On a side note, it was so refreshing seeing Chieftainess Mwenda volunteer to be one of the intrepreters.  Culturally, this is not normal, because it gives a connotation that the interpreter is placing themselves underneath the one speaking, which a chief should never do.  But she did and I'm sure it spoke more to the heart needs of these people than anything we could have said or done.)

One lady, whom Kerri and I prayed for, complained about poor hearing and back pain.  Specifically, she said that she had a constant ringing sound in her ears and that her back and leg hurt her so much that she couldn't move very well.  As we prayed, I put my hand over one of her ears and literally felt like God was doing something.  We then prayed for her back and said Amen.  When we opened our eyes, our interpreter asked her if anything was different.  She said that the ringing in her ears had stopped and that she could now hear much better than before.  But she also said the back pain was still present.

So, we decided to pray again.  Our intuition was saying that if God wanted to heal one thing, he probably would heal the other.  So, we asked her if we could pray for her again.  As we were praying for her this time, her back popped.  And when we opened our eyes again, her demeanor had completely changed.  She was smiling from ear to ear.  Our intrepreter asked her what she felt and she said that her back popped and the pain went away!  She began bending twisting side to side and bending over to touch her toes.  Then she started dancing!!!  Needless to say, we were completely encouraged.  Isn't God awesome!

The next post will be about another really neat thing that happened this day.  In the mean time, we hope this story will encourage you that God still is in the business of healing, and that He can use ordinary, imperfect people to minister his love to those around us!

Friday, August 03, 2012

A Village Under Attack

Yesterday afternoon Luke and I were asked to visit and pray with a friend of ours who was sick.  He has been having severe stomach pains for 2 months and was having difficulty eating and even sleeping at night.  The village where he stays is about 30 minutes out in the bush.  So, we hopped on the motorbikes and headed out there.  When we arrived, we were greeted by the entire family, which lives in this small village of some 6 or 8 huts.

Typically, when we are asked to come and pray for someone, we usually ask a lot of questions first.  Our experience has shown that sicknesses are not always caused by of bad germs or inhospitable living conditions.  We've actually seen individuals and families that have been sick because of their involvement in witchcraft.  Why do we know this?  Because when we've prayed for these dear people, they have been instantly healed after we prayed against the spiritual forces that were attacking them.  This is not to say that a demon is behind every corner.  There are those sicknesses that have their root in natural causes, but there are those that don't.  So, before we prayed with this family, we asked a lot of questions.

As we sat there and talked with the family, from the grandmother to the grandkids, we learned that this sickness was not the only one that had been impacting this family.  We found one precious little boy with a shriveled hand (pictured below) and another baby with swollen lymph nodes.  But we also learned that there had been over 15 children, youth and young adults that have died over the last several years.  We learned that the grandfather, who is now deceased, was heavily involved in witchcraft.  And we learned that the village next to them, who they were constantly fueding with, was involved in witchcraft as well.

Needless to say, there were a lot of signs that the issues that have been plaguing this family might, in fact, be spiritual.  Had we gone there and just prayed for the sick, we might have missed the root of the problem.   We might have put a bandaid on a wound that needed stiches.  But we believe that we dealt with the root yesterday.  Before leaving we were also able to setup a meeting between the villages and will return sometime soon to see if we can help reconcile this relationship.   So please be praying for that meeting.

Please also join us in continuing to pray for this family.  As you can see it is quite a large family.  Pray that the early deaths and sicknesses would end.  Pray that their involvement in witchcraft would finally stop and that Jesus would take center stage.  And pray for the future generation, the young children.  Pray that they would be a generation that will impact this community with the gospel for years to come!