Newsletter Nov 2011

November 2011

Hospital Empties

Dear Friend,

     God gave the Uganda missions team from Charis Bible College (CBC) of Chicago a small glimpse of things to come even before boarding their plane. Waiting for their flight, team member Tim Hartlett noticed a man who looked sick. "I knew I needed to talk to him," recalls Tim, "so I struck up a conversation."

     The man was on his way to see his daughter who had serious heart problems. He, too, had been in and out of the hospital himself for the past six months. Tim discovered he had graduated from a Bible school, so he used that connection to present the truth of God’s will to heal.

     "I simply told him that God was healing him at that moment, and then I prayed for his daughter’s. God gave me a vision of a heart monitor changing from bad to good and I shared that. I knew that God had healed his daughter right then." After Tim prayed, the man told him he felt very different and knew he had been touched by God.

    This was day one of a twelve-day trip to Uganda that would forever change the lives of the four team members — Tim Hartlett, Vern Boelkens, Marzieh Ghajarieh, and Katheryn Roberts — and their leader, third-year apprentice student Matt Ryczek.

       "A major point that has always been stressed at CBC  is that we are always loaded and ready to go where  He sends us," says Matt. "He’s already equipped us with everything we need, and I tried hard to reinforce that to my team — it’s not you but God in you who’ll be  doing the  work."

     Once in Uganda, the students headed to the capital city of Kampala, where they were hosted by the CBC-Uganda director. The students helped teach at CBC and partnered with the Ugandan students for local outreach.

     One ministry opportunity in particular stands out to Matt.  The team was at the bookstore, praying and fellowshipping with people who came in to look at Andrew’s books. We’d talk with them about the teachings, then ask if they need prayer.

     "One day," continues Matt, "I had the privilege of leading a woman to Jesus in the bookstore. Then, the very next day, that same woman came back and began talking with Katheryn, one of our team members, who shared about the baptism in the Holy Spirit. She asked Katheryn to pray for her and then received the baptism."

     This was just one of many instances where the team exhibited true teamwork. "I was really proud of how our team bonded," says Matt. "Everyone pulled together to support and offer encouragement to one another."

    That was especially important the night before their outreach to the hospital in Nakaseke. Vern, a student in his seventies, was overcome with anxiety and nervousness. He had never prayed with anyone before, and he was quite intimidated by the thought  of doing so. But the team rallied around him, encouraging him in the Lord, and praying for him. A prophetic word came forth for Vern that “the Spirit of the Lord was upon him” and he had nothing to fear.

    Not only did Vern’s confidence grow, but while they were still on the bus traveling to Nakaseke, he sensed in his heart that this outreach was going to be something very special: "I just knew God was up to something big," recalls Vern. "There was such a sense of wonderment, joy, and confidence from everyone on the bus." Vern was right.

    The hospital in Nakaseke, a remote town nearly an hour outside of Kampala, was a far cry from anything the team had ever seen in the U.S.A. Americans are used to hospitals with one or two patients in a room, a private bathroom, a television, and a coffee shop down the hall. The run-down hospital in Nakaseke has the beds lined up next to each other without privacy or comforts.

    Of the 150 patients in the hospital that day, many had malaria. From newborns to the elderly, this deadly disease doesn’t discriminate. Others were pregnant mothers with complications, a very common problem in an area lacking in advanced medical practices.

    As the team entered the hospital, they were moved by the sight of so many diseased and hurting people. But they were armed with anticipation of what God was about to do. While the entire team was fully engaged in ministering to the patients, perhaps no one was as intense as Vern: "I like to say that Vern was a man on a mission," says Matt. "Whatever insecurity he had the night before had totally vanished, and he walked boldly through the hospital praying for everyone he could."

    Vern went from patient to patient with his Ugandan student-interpreter. "I’ve come all the way from America to tell you that Jesus loves you, and you are going to be healed today!"

    "There was a teenage girl," Vern recalls, "who had just had a baby that was diagnosed with malaria. The girl was crying and overcome with sadness as she lay in bed with her baby. I started praying with an incredible intensity, speaking out healing and peace over her and the baby. After a short time, the mom regained her composure, and we hugged each other. It was a very powerful encounter."

    Tim had an opportunity to pray for a man who, for three weeks, could not walk or drink. "I put my hands on his back and just began praying in the Spirit. All of a sudden, I could literally feel him drawing the life of God out of me. He took a drink of water, which he had not been able to do. Then I prayed strength into his legs, and he stood up and walked."

    The man’s mother was there also, and she was suffering from double vision. Tim asked Joel, his interpreter and a CBC-Uganda student of only four weeks, to agree in prayer with him. The two released their faith for the woman, and her eyes were instantly healed. "Thanks," said Joel as he hugged Tim. "That was the first person I’ve ever prayed for."

    Matt had the special privilege of praying for twelve Muslim women who were in the hospital with their malaria-stricken babies. "I was careful to pray for their babies before I taught them about Jesus. They seemed hard at first. But before I finished praying, God began moving on their hearts, and they became broken and responsive. They wanted to hear more about this God who genuinely loves them."

    As a result of Matt’s prayers and sharing Jesus with them, all twelve Muslims converted to Christianity that day. By the time the team had left the hospital, a total of forty-eight Muslims had given their hearts to Jesus.

    And, reminiscent of the healing ministry of John G. Lake, who was known for emptying out hospitals, the CBC-Chicago team saw 117 of the 150 patients, released that very day. And as later reports came in, they learned that 147 people had experienced total healing, including 15 babies. And all of the expectant mothers were perfectly healthy! 

    Just shows what five ordinary people—even one who had never prayed for anyone before—can do when they are full of the power of God, ready to go destroy the works of the devil.

    This recent missions trip is an example of the fruit produced through your support of World Outreach. Not only were all those people healed, but five students had a life-changing experience that will go with them in ministry for years to come. 

 

God bless,

 

  Wendell Parr

  Director of World Outreach

 

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