Thursday, October 18, 2007

UMT Intensive Report – Weeks 2 & 3

I’m going to roll a couple of weeks updates into one. The last couple of weeks have been great. The saints are being equipped to get out there and do the stuff and last week we had an explosion of God at a local high school football game. It was off the hook!

Also, in the next few days I hope to post a quick update on Edouard, our Pastor friend in the Congo. We’ve been hearing some good things back from Edouard and the church there and I’d like to share them with you.

Our second week of the 6-week UMT High School/College Intensive was a great one. Jim Drown is an absolute fireball! He has been seeing Middle and South America lit up with the power of God over the last ten years as he’s been taking teams into the streets and prisons as well as holding citywide crusades throughout Peru and other nations. He has a wealth of real life experience and his life and testimony was and is contagious! He is a living, breathing picture of what revival looks like! Of course, after the meeting we were raring and ready to go out there and hit the streets with the power and glory of God.

We entered the fray of the parking lot by approaching a rough and tumble group of burly guys with what we thought was a word of knowledge. Turns out, we had the word of knowledge totally wrong! But this one kid that was standing to the side looked bewildered and confused. While the other guys were talking to the guy they missed the prophetic word for, I asked the confused kid what was going on and why he was so wierded out. He was taken aback that we would walk up to a stranger and start preaching and talking about what he called the three things you NEVER speak about with strangers: politics, religion or sexual orientation.

I told him that he had bought the politically correct lies spewed out by pop culture and that frankly, he was a chicken to stay so safe in conversation. He asked me what we were doing there and I told him that we were bringing life where there is death, peace where there is anxiety and joy where there is anger. He was listening, but asked why I thought that what I believed should be told to people that believe differently. I told him flatly, “Because what you believe is wrong”. He looked at me like I had three heads. I continued and told him that Jesus said that a tree is known by its fruit, good fruit, good tree and bad fruit from a bad tree. I asked him what was the fruit, or produce of his beliefs. I asked him if he had peace, joy or righteousness. I could see in his eyes that he was anxious and fearful.

He still asked, “Why do you think you have the right to speak to other people who believe differently?” I told him the story of how we don’t just tell, but demonstrate and that the demonstration gets people’s attention so that they will listen to us. He asked me what I meant and I told him how the week before we had seen a ladies blind eye opened in Jesus name and two cancerous tumors the size of golf balls shrink under our hands. Now he was listening intently. He stopped me mid-sentence and said, “You might not believe me, but I have been seeking and searching for Him… I desperately need help.” Like a diamond in the rough, we discovered this kid among a bunch of rebels. This kid was seeking the reality of the Holy Spirit and he found it. We prophesied over him, spoke destiny to him and before the night was over, he had heard and tasted of the Gospel of the Kingdom.

Lots of other stuff happened that night as our group boldly proclaimed and demonstrated the Gospel among a bunch of crazy young people, some who are agnostic, pagan or just plain rebellious.

We were all looking forward to last week. Last week we took teams to local high school football games and wouldn’t you know it, GOD showed up! Three sets of teams to three different local games. Every team had encounters with unbelievers, many were prophesied over and more than a few healings took place. The Gospel was demonstrated on local high school campuses! But at one of the schools we went to, it blew up!

There were three teams of 3-4 people that went to the school I was at. We had seen some cool stuff at this school before and were expecting great things. I could tell right away that we would have to tread lightly and show wisdom as the police presence was so prevalent. The main place where we preach and demonstrate the Gospel is the concession area and there were six Sheriff’s deputies encircling the area. Most of the kids that hang there are middle and high school kids with almost all the parents in the stands. So when we walked up, I and another obvious “grown-up” stood to the side and cut the younger guys (or at the least the ones that look younger) loose. It was a very unique experience for me. Normally, I am almost always right in the middle of things, but this night I got to just stand there and watch a move of God grow and break out.

Very cool.

Robert and I had just been standing there, sipping our drinks for a few minutes when one of the groups walked up to us and handed us a pair of crutches! I was like, “what’s this all about?” and they told me that some kids knee and calf got healed. He walked into the game using the crutches, in pain and walked away, without the crutches and in no pain! Still, among the accurate prophetic words and scattered healings, there wasn’t much of a stir being created yet.

One of the teams approached a young girl with a brace on her wrist and hand and asked if they could pray for her. She was taken aback until they showed her the unused crutches I was hanging onto. Wrestling with her religious arguments, finally the group was given the opportunity to pray for her. It wasn’t the result of the prayer, but the fact that the team wanted to pray that broke things open. They explained the gospel of the kingdom to a gathering group of middle school kids. You could see them being attracted to what was happening. It was like turning on a blue light and watching the bugs come racing to get zapped! The more people stopped to listen to the team preaching, the more people would pay attention and the group grew. After preaching to them, they asked who wanted to respond by pledging their life to serve Jesus and advance His Kingdom. About 15 kids all raised their hands and jumped in. They were commanded to bow their knees and give their lives to Jesus. Without hesitation, all the kids that raised their hands and even a few others hit their knees and prayed LOUDLY for salvation and repentance.

They say that success breeds success and it’s true. As the kids were bowing, giving their lives to the Lord, a new group of kids walked up to see what was going on. After another brief explanation of the Kingdom of God, the group pressed a girl forward who had lupus. The new believers in the group were told to extend their hands and pray healing for her in Jesus name. Probably the highlight of that night for me was watching these brand new Christians ministering healing LOUDLY, "IN JESUS NAME, BE HEALED!!!" which drew more people.

Now there was a buzz. All the kids that walked by stopped to hear what was being said. Our group decided that the new believers needed a touch of the Holy Spirit and told them of the fire of God and that they needed to be filled with the presence of God! They broke up and each of our 8 team members there had a group of 10-20 kids surrounding them asking for healing, prophecy or a touch from God. I watched as they extended their hands and released the Holy Ghost on these kids and their friends. Without being coached on what the Holy Spirit’s touch is like they started saying that they felt heat coming from their belly and moving up their chest.

One unsuspecting kid jumped into a mass prayer as he walked by and was at the back of the huddle of kids. I saw him walk up, extend his hands as they prayed, “Fire of God!” and immediately fall out under the power of God onto the cement! No one was even paying attention and it was hilarious to see him jump up from the ground, dust himself off and look embarrassed as he tried to regain composure. All in all, there were dozens of kids touched by the power of God an about 20 of them confessed Jesus as their Lord and King, publicly, in the dirt. Many miracles happened as tendons and ligaments were healed, broken bones were knitted back together and pain left the bodies of many who were injured or sick. The game was near wrapping up when the police got involved and started to break things up, so we decided to call it a night.

What will Jesus do this week?

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