Creased brown faces accented by bright red cheeks, toughened by a lifetime of wild winds, intense sun and the frigid, dry air of the Plateau craned around one another to get a look at the anomaly in the center of the crowd. There beside the sacred stone heap, completely encircled by the eclectic mob of religious devotees was a small group of foreigners. In their midst was a fair-skinned, golden-haired little baby; a sight rarely seen in this obscure corner of the globe. Curiosity quickly shifted to desperation as a local young man declared that they would pray to The Most High God, known by the name of Savior Jesus Christ, and that He would heal them of any illness they had. This has become the pattern of so many of our most treasured moments with Jesus.
Within minutes, the crowd swelled, grabbing at our clothes from every side. Broad smiles cracked across the weathered faces as blind eyes received their sight again, deaf ears opened and pain vanished from aching bodies. Our little group of foreigners was quickly divided by the churning tide of those pursuing a blessing from the God they’d never heard of. Due to a dearth of translators, those without language simply reached out to touch as many as they were able to lay hands on. One elderly man, not to be dissuaded by the fact that Laci was nursing our little boy at the moment, insisted that she lay hands on his eyes. Perhaps his utter blindness was the cause for his indifference to her temporary preoccupation. As soon as she obliged, touching his wrinkly face in the name of Jesus, he opened his eyes with an expression of delight. He could see again! Of course, this served to whet the appetite of the onlookers to experience their own blessing from Jesus. The frenzy intensified, rising to a fever pitch of joy, hunger and curiosity. Meanwhile, elsewhere in the crowd, a deaf woman received her hearing back. I was with a young local believer, one of just a few in the town. We shall call him Drokpo. Though he was initially alarmed by the situation, he quickly warmed to it as he began to see person after person being healed, many of them under his own hands! I spoke in the Common Language, which Drokpo would then translate into the local dialect: “We pray to Savior Jesus. He is the Most High God and He heals you because He loves you.” Drokpo would then explain more about who this Jesus is.
Drokpo was one of a handful of local believers with whom we had the pleasure of spending our time on this visit to a closed region on the Plateau. He, along with some others, received the gift of tongues and the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Through the encouragement of the team, he discovered a newfound ability to prophesy with pinpoint accuracy, revealing hidden details of people’s lives and elements of their future calling in God. What joy to be able to pour into the lives of these precious few believers and see them progress forward in anointing and intimacy with Jesus. In this short time we welcomed multiple new believers into the family of God as well. At least one of them immediately joined the Fellowship and has plans to be baptized soon.
Back in the crowd by the stone pile, the unrestrained crowd had grown too large for its own good. A local authority figure suddenly appeared and in perfect english notified us that there would be trouble if we continued with what we were doing, due to the illegality of drawing crowds and doing anything that could be seen as religious activities. We agreed, and immediately sought to extract ourselves from the multitude. As we left, heartbreaking voices cried out, “Please pray for me! I am in so much pain!” Some healing did continue to break out as they followed us in our attempted exit, but the pain of leaving in that moment is difficult to express.
As we hailed a passing taxi, a man whose eyes, back and knees had been healed approached us.
“Tell me again the name of the God who healed me?”
“His name is Savior Jesus Christ, the Most High God,” I happily replied.