Alan recounts his story of the time he spent in India:
It was the second day out and we went into a village. At about 8:30 in the morning, we went to a house and met with a couple fellows for a little over two hours. They had so many questions about Jesus and what it means to be a Christ-follower. After some time, though, they prayed and accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
Meanwhile, there was one gal standing in the background with a baby on her back. I couldn’t understand it, but she kept smiling. When we crossed over to her home, we discovered that she had pictures of Jesus all over the place. She was a Believer and quite pleased that we were sharing God’s Word with her neighbors.
So, we went next door to the biggest house in the plaza there. We were told that the local prominent religion there was a “snake religion”. The practice of this form of religion involves martial arts. Usually, the oldest son of the household will perform a combination of martial arts and snake handling. There are typically two ways out of the religion and to obtain eternal life: death itself or to kill someone by sword while they are alive.
As we walked up to the house, we were suddenly “greeted” by a door flung open to reveal a shirtless, sword-wielding man. To say we started “praying our buns off” is an understatement.
Well, the family allowed us to come in, sit down and talk. There were about a dozen women there who were married to Hindu husbands. We went through the Gospel with the women, but one thing that was interesting was what I noticed about the man with the sword. I first thought that he was drunk (odd for such an early hour), but when I looked into his bloodshot eyes, I recognized that what was inside of him was not liquor, but a demon.
It was very intense. Every time that I tried to make eye contact with him, he would look away.
About 80% of the women accepted Christ that morning, but they refused to fill out any of our follow up cards, for fear of how their husbands would react if they found out about the wives’ decisions. Yet, while they remained silent about their faith toward their husbands, they asked us to pray blessings over their babies and the elderly people of their neighborhood.
When we had finished, one woman sat down and began to tell us a story about a vision that she had had: About three weeks earlier, she dreamed that a heavy-set fellow with a harshly white beard was going to come and lead her to God. She had a vision that he lived in a house on a hill and she described this house in great detail, and she essentially described my home! I was completely shocked. She then said that she was told, “This person will lead you up the hill to God.”
Then she said that she had had a second vision: At about 5:30 that very morning, she envisioned that she was being chased through the fields nearby by a very ugly demon. She described the chase in great detail. Yet, in her vision, she saw a man, dressed in white, in front of her who glowed. And from his heart, light poured out that touched her inner heart. And suddenly, the demon went away.
When she completed the telling of her visions, the boy sitting on the bench put his sword down and asked to be prayed over. He accepted Jesus then and there, and when he looked up at me, the whites in his eyes had returned and the blood was gone.
Trust me, I didn’t expect this at all when I woke up that morning.
If God puts it in your heart to go, He might have a higher design for you than what you may think. He dragged me 12,000 miles so that this one woman’s vision could be fulfilled and this young man’s eternity to be transformed.
The scriptures say “in the last days, the Lord will pour His Spirit out on all people.” (Acts 2:17) The verse goes on to talk about people having dreams and visions concerning God’s hand at work. This is just what we see in Alan’s story.
God always has a bigger purpose in store for us than we can ever imagine. Take for instance, Jennifer’s story from Manipur, India:
The first day we went out sharing, I was very nervous. We were driven about an hour outside of town. I was dropped off first, so I was there with my interpreter, whom I didn’t even know yet, an intercessor whom I didn’t know, and a village guide whom I didn’t know either. I was the only American around.
Now, God had given me a verse before from John that spoke of God going out to get His sheep. It’s not about us doing anything, but about Him using us to get His sheep.
So we started walking down the dirt road, and I began to pray, “OK, God. You’re going to have to go get Your sheep. You’ll need to put Your words into my mouth as you promised, because I’m at a loss here.”
We went to the first house and met with 30-40 people there. Many people accepted Jesus, while others remained on the fence. We then went to another house where another 40-50 people were waiting for us; and I still really didn’t know at all what I was doing. I just depended on God to do what He said He would do. When we arrived at the third house, over 100 people filed in.
I simply told them that I worship the “Living King and He is the God of my church and that is why we came to meet with them that day, because God also loves each of them and He wants them to know who He is.”
A middle-aged man who started talking from the back of the room to my interpreter suddenly interrupted me. The only word I picked up was “Chicago”. I was struck by the picture: here we were in this village without running water or electricity, much less television or the internet and I’m hearing this man talk about Chicago?!
My interpreter then turned around to me and said, “They want to know if you’re from Chicago.”
“Yes. Yes, I am” was my reply (although I don’t think anyone on my team knew this about me, so I was stunned to say the least).
You see, the village had received a prophecy that someone from Chicago would come and tell them who God was. They asked if I were from Chicago, just to make sure that they were listening to the right person about the right God!
The last house that we went to was the house of a wealthy man who was getting ready for his daughter’s wedding. Even in the hustle and bustle of the wedding preparations, he still invited us in to tell him about Jesus. He then went on to tell us that he was a retired military man who spent his career protecting Christians. During those years, he heard them talk about Jesus, but not one of them ever shared with him who this “Jesus” was. All this time, he was waiting for someone to come around and tell him who Jesus was and what He could mean to the man’s life.
God had paved the road to that man’s heart and he accepted the Lord right there and then.
It makes me wonder how often we are just like the Christians that this man had protected all those years: The people around us know that we are Christ-followers, but have they heard the Good News of Christ from us?
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