Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Challenging Story

Friends, let me share a story with you as related to me by a Canadian friend who spends significant time in India. His last trip there was earlier this year during which time he met an Indian brother with a very challenging testimony. This brother, whose name is Randeep, was a nominal, Christian who identified himself as such simply because his parents were Christian and he was not a Muslim or Hindu.

However, his mother became an ardent follower of Jesus and felt to go to an area in Northern India near the border with Tibet. Her family felt she was crazy and refused to go with her so she went alone. Two years later Randeep and his Hindu wife decided to visit her. While Randeep was walking along a street he saw a Hindu priest trying to cast evil spirits out of a totally demonized woman who was writhing on the sidewalk. As he walked past, he heard a voice command him to pray for the woman and set her free. He kept walking arguing with the voice that he did not know what to say. Again the voice came commanding him to help the woman and said, "Do you not think I can manifest myself through anyone on this street should I choose to do so?"

He walked back and as he did so heard the priest telling the woman to bring certain offerings to the temple. Righteous anger rose up in him and he rebuked the priest for laying more burdens upon the woman and then laid his hands upon her to pray. To his amazement, for the first time in his life, he began to pray in tongues and the woman was set free.

The next morning he woke up to the noise of a crowd milling around outside the house. He became afraid that something had gone wrong with the woman and they were there to beat him up. So his mother went out to see what was going on. They asked her, "Does Jesus lives here?" "Yes He does.", was her reply. So they invited the crowd into the house and prayed for them all. That was the beginning of seven years of great grace and miracles.

Soon his mother was saying to Randeep that he needed to begin to teach the new followers but his question was what to teach them? Knowing it was Jesus who had spoken to him, he began to read the gospels to find out who Jesus was and what He did. Reading that Jesus had twelve disciples, he did the same and began to follow Jesus with them. Realizing that their state had twelve districts, after three years with his disciples, he sent them to start all over again in each of those twelve states. That was fifteen years ago and now this movement has baptized over 150,000 plus those baptized by other teams they have trained.

Once he had sent out his twelve disciples Randeep needed to start over again and seeking to obey Jesus in Luke 10 he moved to a new city and began to walk the streets. After three months of praying, walking, blessing the city and seeking a man of peace, a man came to him and said, "I have seen you walking by day after day. Why?" Randeep explained what he was doing and the man asked him to come into his home to pray for his sick wife. Jesus healed the woman and that home became the house of peace for the beginning of a new multiplication of the generations of Jesus Christ.

As my friend interviewed many to understand the dynamic of the movement, one phrase was repeated over and over. The phrase? "The Holy Spirit spoke, the Holy Spirit moved me, the Holy Spirit led me..." These believers had been connected to Jesus by the Holy Spirit. They had not been connected to a human leader, to a book, to a doctrine, to a system- they had been plunged deep into relationship with Jesus.

It is sad that one of the challenges this movement has to face is from western missionaries who have come to them and charge them with not planting "real" churches since they have no buildings, no bible schools and no paid, professional clergy. How can they be so blind? Jesus forgive them. How do these followers of Jesus respond to that charge? "We are simply following the example and words of Jesus. We are healing the sick, casting out the demons, raising the dead, baptizing those who believe, making disciples who do the same and forming communities of disciple who meet where ever life happens. Where is your fruit?"

We are challenged again about the simplicity of following Jesus

Jesus you capture our hearts again and again

www.harvest-now.org

Shared by Mark Acuna

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