I was trying to communicate what has been going on to our church this weekend and ended up getting tongue tied and overwhelmed. The truth is, there is so much cool stuff going on, we could take an entire service to just tell testimonies and we would still be missing the awesome reports of what God is doing at the neighborhoods and football games. But hey, that’s a better problem than having nothing going on. I’ve seen both and a dearth of God’s presence is MUCH worse than too much of God’s presence…
This week, we had a house meeting with one of our neighborhood churches and as a couple of new believers come walking in the door, there are two awesome testimonies. The first was a lady who had severe sciatic pain in her lower back. We had prayed for her two or three times and nothing had worked. She was very discouraged and literally talked about ending her life, she was in so much pain. Now mind you, this was a lady that through her life has had multiple strokes, heart attacks, a brain tumor, blindness in one of her eyes and multiple brain surgeries. She told us that this pain in her back was the worst she had ever experienced and started drinking, just to dull the constant pain. On top of all that, she hadn’t slept more than an hour a night for about a month. Anyway, I brought my wife with me out to the neighborhoods on our date night (before I took her to dinner) and she got an opportunity to pray for this lady. Well, the first thing she says as she comes walking in the door to the house meeting (about two weeks later) is that God healed her and that she woke up the next morning after a full night’s sleep with NO PAIN! She has been feeling great ever since!
Another couple comes walking in with a miracle testimony. This lady had an abscess in her upper, front tooth and the pain was unbearable. She had been to a dentist three times and each time they would go digging for the infection, but couldn’t reach it (it was almost in her sinuses). After her third appointment, the dentist throws up his hands and tells her that she will have to see an oral surgeon to take care of the abscess. They prepare to take her back and get her an x-ray to see where exactly the infection is. While she is waiting, she calls her husband to tell him what’s going on and is lamenting over the phone how much pain she is in and they are discussing how they will come up with $4000 for the oral surgery. The hisband gets so fed up that he says, “In Jesus name, I command all infection to leave your body!” They finish talking, she hangs up the phone and notices that the pain is gone! They take her back to get her x-ray and the results come in: There is NO INFECTION, NO ABSCESS and the dentist sends her home without scheduling an appointment with the oral surgeon. Praise God!
Needless to say, the atmosphere in the house gets charged on the power of these two testimonies. We share a little scripture and start to worship Jesus, thanking Him for His great power. After a few minutes, the presence of God fills the room STRONGLY. Our team breaks up in the room and starts praying for everyone, addressing different strongholds and sicknesses. One of our new believers, who just weeks ago got delivered from a spirit of fear starts to pray for a lady in the group who has a very weird family curse. Every time she starts to press in to God and ge involved in a fellowship, someone in her family gets injured! He’s praying, just like he has seen us pray so many times and there a spiritual explosion! The lady jumps back in her chair, I almost fall to the ground and we both come up in tears! The power of God hit everyone on that side of the room like a frying pan to the side of your head! It was awesome! This lady jumps up from her chair, yelling that God healed her of all the upper back pain and leg pain that she had when she came into the room! Get that, we break a demonic curse and she gets healed! Cool, huh?
Bottom line, great meeting. The highlight for me was watching these new blievers mature and start to operate in the power of God.
OPEN HEAVENS AT ANOTHER FOOTBALL GAME
Another Friday night, another football game to invade. Two of them, actually. Word has spread about what God has been doing at these football games, so a bunch of people show up on Friday night, wanting to get in on the action. I don’t blame them, it’s been a blast! There are eighteen of us in the prayer room, soaking, praying, interceding and declaring a move of God among the youth in our community. I decide that since there are so many of us, we should break up into two teams, with one team going to a high school we have been to several times and another team going to a new school that's down the road a piece. There are nine people in each group and we are ready to see God move.
OPEN HEAVENS AT ANOTHER FOOTBALL GAME
I take a team to the new school and when we drive up near the school we are amazed at the traffic! We had to park a good ways away and hoof it to the stadium. There are tons of kids and we are excited. We split up into three teams of three. Right off the bat, one of our teams goes up to a small group of kids and starts prophesying over one of them. This draws a quick crowd of mockers. They aren’t very receptive, but a stir has begun! Soon a gaggle of religious kids starts to gather and persecute our group. It’s the same tired argument, “God doesn’t move like this anymore!” Well, if God doesn’t move like this anymore, why is He moving? It’s like the kids who say that God doesn’t heal AFTER their friends get healed! What’s up with that? You are standing there, with verifiable proof that God heals and they try to argue theology with you! May God have mercy on the religious system that’s raising up a crop of kids that deny the power of God! So in spite of some religious persecution, God keeps moving as they pray for the sick and prophesy over kids.
My team is walking the stadium and we are passing by the concession area. There are a bunch of people all around and while we are navigating the crowd, a big feather appears right in front of my face and floats right in front of me! I turn around to Bryan, who’s with me and say, “Do you see that?” He gets a big grin and says, “Yup!” We hang there for a little while, move on and then a few minutes later we’re walking by the same general area. I hear a ladies voice yell my name, “RYAN!” I turn around and see no one, saying to Bryan and Elliot, who are directly behind me, “Did you hear that?”
We hang out for a few minutes and get a word or two for a couple of kids hanging by the fence. As we start telling them what God is showing us, they freak out! One of the kids literally runs away, terrified at the words we got for him, they were so accurate. He comes back a few minutes later and gets on his cell phone, calling his friends elsewhere in the stadium, telling them to come and get prayed for by us! After this point, it’s all a blur. All I remember is looking up and we have a huge group of kids surrounding us on every side. They split the three of us from each other, forming lines in front of each of us, eagerly awaiting their turn to hear a word from God. A highlight in my group was seeing a group of juniors and seniors line up in front of one of our team members, a 13 year old kid! They were hanging on his every word because God was speaking through him! That’s as big of a miracle as I have ever seen! When High School Seniors line up in front of a 13 year old, God is MOVING! Another cool thing is having a junior come up to me, pull on my sleeves and ask my “Can you do what he is doing?” while pointing to Elliot, the 13 year old! I told him, “Probably not, but I’ll try!”
As always, we speak to them of the Kingdom and the King who demands their allegiance, telling them that God is getting their attention through the prophetic words. We just start speaking what God gives us; we are address the group, then an individual, then a group. We call it “automatic mouth” and we are getting used to it now. We aren’t thinking or planning our next move or word, God just takes over. We’re the vessel, but He is doing all of the work! Let me tell you, when He takes over, He can do more in a few minutes than we can in a lifetime of striving! We are leading people to Jesus, people are crying, people are sobbing. There is joy, there are tears, and there is excitement. It’s awesome!
Then it’s over.
A police officer taps me on the back of the shoulder. I was totally unaware of their presence and a group of cops sneak up on me. One of the cops looks at me and says, “Are you done?” I say, “I guess I am now, huh?” He nods in the affirmative. Actually, he was very nice, a lot nicer than most of the police that have escorted us from the other football games. He saw that God was doing something awesome and honestly didn’t want to break it up. He started apologizing and explaining why we had to go. We assure him that it’s all right. The game is nearly over and we have been working for nearly three hours already. In my team, 4 people give their lives to Jesus and a multitude hears the Good News, coupled with a demonstration of God’s power! The kids see the cops escorting us away and a group of guys that had been waiting for a while follows out of the stadium into the parking lot, desperate for a word. We give them what the Lord shows us and they get powerfully touched by God… while we’re walking!
It turns out that we were the last group of three to get ejected. The others had been booted a few minutes earlier. The Principal of the school came out, saw the crowds around our groups (a bunch of kids!) and broke it up, marshalling the authorities. But no problem, God had a chance to move and move He did. Before the night was over, at both football games, we had 9 people give their lives to Jesus, 6 instant miracles and scores of people heard the Gospel with a demonstration of God’s power.
Look out, it’s about to get out of control!