You might struggle to believe some of the following stories from last month’s outreach. I hope not though. ‘Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever’ (Hebrew 13:8).
So here are some feedback highlights, having asked folks to pray last month as we sent out 1,439 young evangelists from 88 churches for two weeks all around Burundi.
The top-line summary is that they saw over 23,000 people come to faith! It’s the modern-day Acts of the Apostles! Here goes:
An Urge for Healing
In the small village of Bwambarangwe in Kirundo province, 41-year-old Diomede had lain paralysed from the waist down and in increasing despair for the last three years. Our team visited him and shared the gospel, which he accepted as he was desperately in need of hope!
Interestingly, they didn’t pray for his healing initially. But as they parted ways and stepped out of the compound, he felt the urge to call them back to pray for him to be completely healed. Once they’d said ‘Amen!’, he took his crutches and stood up. He then let them go and carried on walking! He burst into tears and shouted for joy.
Hearing his cries, people rushed to see what was happening. Just like in Mark 2:12, they were ‘all amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” Thirteen people responded to the miracle by surrendering their lives to Christ.
In Her Right Mind at Last
In a town called Kivoga, Nadine was a contemporary ‘Gadarene demoniac’, just like in Mark chapter 5.
As her condition detoriorated, her father sought treatment at a mental hospital, as well as spending all he could on traditional medicine and witchdoctors. Eventually, the family gave up, and she wandered around Kivoga deranged and half-dressed, feared and mocked by the whole community. She lived on the rubbish dump and roamed the streets at night.
When our team of evangelists showed up, they overcame their initial fear and started praying for her. Demons manifested, but the team called on reinforcements, took her to the local church, and over the next three hours of intensive prayer, battled through for her total deliverance.
Suddenly, after the last demon was cast out, Nadine’s screams ceased. She looked at herself and began weeping. She had no recollection of what had happened but asked for some clothes.
When her father arrived and saw her ‘in her right mind’ (like Mark 5:15), he was so overwhelmed he fell to the ground. Our guys shared with him how Jesus had set her free, and her Dad and seven other people present gave their lives to the Lord!
From Cursing to Repenting
Baltazar was a notorious witch doctor from Bugenyuzi. He was feared by all around him, and loved the reputation he had. Nobody challenged him as they didn’t want him to cast a spell on them (I know, many of you struggle to believe this stuff. Suffice to say, out there you don’t need to convince them the power is real).
One day, a neighbour approached and asked him to stop his witchcraft. A few days later, that previously healthy man was found dead at home.
So that was the context when our team showed up. They heard the stories and decided to camp out on Baltazar’s hill and pray every night. When he heard what they were doing, he went out to confront them.
But as he approached them, he was overwhelmed by a greater power and fell to his knees. He asked for prayers and surrendered to Christ. He invited the team back to his home, where his wife likewise repented when she heard what had happened to him. A crowd came to watch as the team burned all his charms, and he and his wife repented of all they had done to their neighbours and in the community.
Everyone was amazed at this total transformation.
Wow! Wow! Wow!
There are more stories, but I’ll stop there. It’s a different context to ours maybe, but the same gospel message – the same Holy Spirit in us, the same power in the name of Jesus, the same Heavenly Father who longs to forgive his children and lavish them with his amazing grace.
Be encouraged. Be stirred. Be bold.
Thanks for your encouragement, support, and prayers – they make all the difference! Please keep them coming!