Revival Reports

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These Revival Reports are summarised in Journey into Mission

A lot of key passages and exciting developments get lost in the details of this book so I have highlighted passages in this book which bring some of those key revival passages together.

From Chapter 5 – Australia: Elcho Island (1994)

In that same evening the word just spread like the flames of fire and reached the whole community in Galiwin’ku.  Gelung and I couldn’t sleep at all that night because people were just coming for the ministry, bringing the sick to be prayed for, for healing. Others came to bring their problems.  Even a husband and wife came to bring their marriage problem, so the Lord touched them and healed their marriage.   

Next morning the Galiwin’ku Community once again became the new community.  The love of Jesus was being shared and many expressions of forgiveness were taking place in the families and in the tribes.  Wherever I went I could hear people singing and humming Christian choruses and hymns!  Before then I would have expected to hear only fighting and swearing and many other troublesome things that would hurt your feelings and make you feel sad.   

Many unplanned and unexpected things happened every time we went from camp to camp to meet with the people.  The fellowship was held every night and more and more people gave their lives to Christ, and it went on and on until sometimes the fellowship meeting would end around about midnight.  There was more singing, testimony, and ministry going on.  People did not feel tired in the morning, but still went to work.   

From Chapter 9 – Philippines (1995)

During the class seminars, my students reported on various signs and wonders that they had experienced in their churches.  Many of them expected God to do the same things now as he did in the New Testament, but not all! “We don’t seem to have miracles in our church,” said one student, a part-time Baptist pastor and police inspector. “You could interview a pastor from a church that does,” I suggested.

So he interviewed a Pentecostal pastor about miraculous answers to prayer in their church.  That student reported to the class how the Pentecostal church sent a team of young people to the local mental hospital for monthly meetings where they sang and witnessed and prayed for people.  Over 40 patients attended their first meeting there, and they prayed for 26 personally, laying hands on them.  A month later, when they returned for their next meeting, all those 26 patients had been discharged and sent home.

From Chapter 9 – Ghana (1995)

When we arrived in the mountain town of Suhum, it was dark. The torrential rain had cut off the electricity supply. The rain eased off a bit, so we gathered in the market square and prayed to God to guide us and to take over. Soon the rain ceased. The electricity came on. The host team began excitedly shouting that it was a miracle. “We will talk about this for years” they exclaimed with gleaming eyes. We had clear days all that week, although it was in the monsoon.

My interpreter that night didn’t know a lot of English. I think he preached his own sermon based on some phrases of mine he understood or guessed, and apparently he did well. When we invited people to respond and give their lives to Christ, they came from the surrounding darkness into the light. Some wandered over from the pub, smelling of beer. They kept the ministry team busy praying and arranging follow up with the local churches.

At that point I left the work to the locals who understood one another. I just moved around laying hands on people’s heads and praying for them, as did many others. People reported various touches of God in their lives. Some were healed. Later in the week an elderly man excitedly told how he had come to the meeting almost blind but now he could see.

Each day we held morning worship and teaching sessions for Christians in a church, hot under an iron roof on those clear, tropical sunny days.  During the second morning I vividly ‘saw’ golden light fill the church and swallow up or remove blackness.  At that point the African Christians became very noisy, vigorously celebrating and shouting praises to God.  A fresh anointing seemed to fall on them just then.

From Chapter 9 – Toronto, Canada (1995)

Over 100,000 a year flocked there from all over the world for well over a decade. The wide diversity of people from different denominations and countries there impressed me.  Love and respect for others filled the atmosphere and testimonies.  We joined the crowds of over 1500 each morning and night, enjoyed the low-key sensitive worship (knowing very few of their songs), appreciated the balanced teaching, and received personal prayer.

Both of us appreciated the gracious, caring way people prayed for us, and others.  No rush.  No hype.  No pressure.  Whether we stood, or sat in a chair, or rested on the carpeted floor, those praying for us did so quietly with prayers prompted by the Holy Spirit.  Those praying laid a hand on us gently, as led, and trusted the Lord to touch us.  He did.  Warmth and love permeated us.  We returned to our hotel after the meetings aware of increased peace and deeper assurance of the Lord’s love and grace.

After returning to Brisbane I noticed that people I prayed for received strong touches from the Lord, most resting in the Spirit on the floor.  We needed people to be ready to catch those who fell, to avoid them getting hurt (then needing extra healing prayer!).  Some of them had visions of the Lord blessing them and others.

From Chapter 13 – Nepal (2000)

By Raju:

After praying on the bridge we approached the Chinese officials to get a permission to enter Tibet.  The first official refused but the second one nodded approvingly, taking the four Australian passports from my hand as security, and let us go free of charge!  This could happen only by the supernatural intervention of our Almighty God, Hallelujah!  We had good prayer inside Tibet, especially on those individual shopkeepers whom I would grab and pray on without any resistance from them!

On 21 April all the eight of Australians and I had a trip to Gochadda in west Nepal and held a three days conference over there at Easter.  While driving toward the destination I shared the Word with the driver of the private bus and during the inauguration of the conference he approached the altar and accepted Christ as his personal Saviour.  On the same day a Christian brother whose hand was partially crippled for six years was touched by the Holy Spirit and healed absolutely.  He was shaking in his whole body and raising his hands, even the crippled one already healed, praising the Lord with all his strength, he glorified the Lord for his greatness, Hallelujah!

Out of about 200 participants in the conference by the grace of God 100 of them were baptized in the Holy Spirit praising the Lord, singing, falling, crying, and many other actions as the Holy Spirit would prompt them to act.  About ten of them testified that they had never experienced such a presence of the power and love of God.  Some others testified being lifted to heavenly realms by the power of the Holy Spirit, being surrounded by the angels of the Lord in a great peace, joy, and love toward each other and being melted in the power of his presence.  Many re-committed their lives to the Lord for ministry by any means through his revelation.

On the second day of the conference the trend continued as the people seemingly would fall down, repent, minister to each other in the love of Christ, enjoy the mighty touch of the Holy Spirit, singing, prophesying, weeping, laughing, hugging, and all the beauty of the Holy Spirit was manifested throughout the congregation by his grace and love.  One woman of age 65 testified that she never had danced in her life in any occasion even in secret, but the Lord had told her that she should now dance to him and she was dancing praising him with all her strength.  For hours this outpouring continued and the pastors of the churches were one by one testifying that they had never experienced such a presence and power of God in their whole Christian life and ministry.

Some 60 evangelists from Gorkha, Dhanding, Chitwan, Butwal declared that they were renewed in their spirits by the refreshing of the Holy Spirit and they are now going to serve the Lord in the field wherever the Holy Spirit will lead them to be fully fledged in His service.  In the last day of the conference while praying together with the congregation and committing them in his hands, many prophesied that the Lord was assuring them of great changes in their ministry, life and the area.  While the power of God was at work in our midst three children of 6-7 years old fell down weeping, screaming and testifying about a huge hand coming on them and touching their stomachs and healing them instantly.  After the prayer all the participants got into the joy of the Holy Spirit and started dancing to the Lord, singing and praising Him for His goodness.

Before leaving Gochadda while we were having snacks in the pastor’s house a woman of high Brahmin caste came by the direction of the Lord to the place, claiming that she was prompted by a voice in her ear to go to the Christians and ask for prayer for healing of her chronic stomach pain and problems, and that is why she was there.  We prayed for her and she was instantly healed and we shared the Gospel, but she stopped us saying, “I need to accept Christ as my Saviour so don’t waste time!” She accepted Jesus as her personal Saviour being lifted in spirit, and even the body as she said she didn’t feel anymore burden in her body, and spirit, Hallelujah!

On 25 April we held another conference in Nazarene Church pastored by Rinzi Lama in Kathmandu.  Ten churches unitedly participated in the two days gathering where about 100 people participated.  The outpouring of the Holy Spirit continued in this conference refreshing many in their spirits and bringing much re-commitment.  Some cases of healing were testified.  …

On 27 April we held a one day conference in Hosanna Church where the touch of the Holy Spirit was tremendous and people blessed by the Holy Spirit and his might were manifesting his power and presence in the place.  While people were worshipping and praising the Lord, a prophecy came and the Lord said, “What happened to the vision given to you six years ago?  You have forgotten to pray about it but I have not forgotten what I have promised to you through the vision!” I was reminded by the Holy Spirit that I had seen a vision where I was taken over the highest mountains in this country with a few of my foreign friends and some of our evangelists and as we put our step on the top of the mountain it started shaking and melting and my friends and the evangelists started disappearing, then I cried out, “Lord where are my friends?”  And He said open your eyes and see, and I saw all my friends and the evangelists were scattered all over the mountains and they were coming towards me with multitudes of people behind them.  I started weeping and with a feeling which words cannot explain I was thanking the Lord for His goodness, I was laughing in the Spirit for the repetition of the vision which I could see again.  Hallelujah!

From Chapter 14 – USA: Pensacola

I liked the spontaneous bits best.  Before Friday night’s revival service some people in the singing group of over 50 people on stage began singing free harmonies without music while they waited for the sound system to work, and we all joined in.  It sounded like angels harmonizing in continual worship.  Wonderful.  No need for words!

Later, during the service Lindel Cooley, their worship leader, led spontaneously from the keyboard without other instruments, singing the chorus of an old hymn from his youth (and mine) – ‘Love lifted me’.  All the oldies joined in, and then it went on to a verse sung from memory.  It moved me deeply, from my own boyhood memories, especially as I had just then been asking the Lord for a personal touch from him.

A visitor preached, calling for faith and action.  Their prayer team prayed for many hundreds at the ‘altar call’ – short and sharp, but relevant and challenging. The man who prayed briefly for me spoke about national and international ministries the Lord would open for me.

From Chapter 15 – Vanuatu (2002)

By Romulo:  “The speaker was the Upper Room Church pastor, Jotham Napat who is also the Director of Meteorology in Vanuatu. The night was filled with the awesome power of the Lord and we had the Upper Room church ministry who provided music with their instruments. With our typical Pacific Island setting of bush and nature all around us, we had dances, drama, testified in an open environment, letting the wind carry the message of salvation to the bushes and the darkened areas. That worked because most of those that came to the altar call were people hiding or listening in those areas. The Lord was on the road of destiny with many people that night.” 

Unusual lightning hovered around the sky and as soon as the prayer teams had finished praying with those who rushed forward at the altar call, the tropical rain pelted down on that open field.

God poured out his Spirit on many lives that night, including Jerry Waqainabete and Simon Kofe. Both of them played rugby in the popular university teams and enjoyed drinking and the nightclub scene. Both changed dramatically. Many of their friends said it would not last. It did last and led them into ministry and mission.

From Chapter 16 – Vanuatu (2003)

Significant events associated with the coming of the Gospel to South Pentecost included a martyr killed and a paramount chief’s wife returning from death.

Thomas Tumtum had been an indentured worker on cane farms in Queensland, Australia. Converted there, he returned around 1901 to his village on South Pentecost with a new young disciple from a neighbouring island. They arrived when the village was tabu (taboo) because a baby had died a few days earlier, so no one was allowed into the village. Ancient tradition dictated that anyone breaking tabu must be killed, so they were going to kill Thomas, but his friend Lulkon asked Thomas to tell them to kill him instead so that Thomas could evangelize his own people. Just before he was clubbed to death at a sacred Mele palm tree, he read John 3:16, then closed his eyes and prayed for them. Thomas became a pioneer of the church in South Pentecost, establishing Churches of Christ there.

Paramount Chief Morris Bule died at 111 on 1st July, 2016, the son of the highest rank paramount chief on Pentecost Island. After a wife of Chief Morris’s father died and was prepared for burial, the calico cloths around her began to move. She had returned from death and they took the grave cloths of her. She sat up and told them all to leave their pagan ways and follow the Christian way. Then she lay down and died.

Chief Morris’s son, Paramount Chief Peter, had an uncle who returned from Queensland as a Christian in the early 1900s. When he was old, after many years telling them about the Gospel, one day he called all his relatives to him, shook hands in farewell with everyone, and lay down and died immediately.

From Chapter 16 – Solomon Islands (2003)

Revival began with the Spirit moving on youth and children in village churches. They had extended worship in revival songs, many visions and revelations and lives being changed with strong love for the Lord. Children and youth began meeting daily from 5pm for hours of praise, worship and testimonies. A police officer reported reduced crimes, and said former rebels were attending daily worship and prayer meetings.

Revival continued to spread throughout the region. Revival movements brought moral change and built stronger communities in villages in the Solomon Islands including these lasting developments:

1 Higher moral standards. People involved in the revival quit crime and drunkenness, and promoted good behaviour and co-operation.

2 Christians who once kept their Christianity inside churches and meetings talked more freely about their lifestyle in the community and amongst friends.

3 Revival groups, especially youth, enjoyed working together in unity and community, including a stronger emphasis on helping others in the community.

4 Families were strengthened in the revival. Parents spent more time with their youth and children to encourage and help them, often leading them in Bible reading and family prayers.

5 Many new gifts and ministries were used by more people than before, including revelations and healing. Even children received revelations or words of knowledge about hidden magic artefacts or ginger plants related to spirit power and removed them.

6 Churches grew. Many church buildings in the Marovo Lagoon were pulled down and replaced with much large buildings to fit in the crowds. Offerings and community support increased.

7 Unity. Increasingly Christians united in reconciliation for revival meetings, prayer and service to the community. …

Children received revelations about their parent’s secret sins or the location of hidden magic artefacts or stolen property. Many children had visions of Jesus during the revival meetings.  Often he would be smiling when they were worshipping and loving him, or he would show sadness when they were naughty or unkind. …

At Seghe the children and youth loved to meet every afternoon in the church near the Bible College there.  The man leading these meetings had been a rascal involved in the ethnic tensions but was converted in the revival. A policeman from Seghe told me that since the revival began crime has dropped.  Many former young criminals were converted and joined the youth worshipping God each afternoon.  Revival continued to spread throughout the region. …  

We taught in morning sessions about revival and answered questions. One mother, for example, asked about the meaning of her young son’s vision of Jesus standing with one foot in heaven and one foot on the earth. What a beautiful, powerful picture of Jesus’ claim that all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to him (Matthew28:8), seen in a child’s vision.

From Chapter 17 – Vanuatu: Pentecost (2004)

By Matthias:  The deliverance ministry group left the college by boat and when they arrived at the Bungalows they prayed together.  After they prayed together they divided into two groups.

There is one person in each of these two groups that has a gift from the Lord that the Holy Spirit reveals where the witchcraft powers are, such as bones from dead babies or stones.  These witchcraft powers are always found in the ground outside the houses or sometimes in the houses.  So when the Holy Spirit reveals to that person the right spot where the witchcraft power is, then they have to dig it up with a spade.

When they dug it out from the soil they prayed over it and bound the power of that witchcraft in the name of Jesus.  Then they claimed the blood of Jesus in that place.

Something very important when joining the deliverance group is that everyone in the group must be fully committed to the Lord and must be strong in their faith because sometimes the witchcraft power can affect the ones that are not really committed and do not have faith.

After they finished the deliverance ministry they came together again and just gave praise to the Lord in singing and prayer.  Then they closed with a Benediction.

From Chapter 19 – Vanuatu Pentecost (2004)

By Don:  The night’s worship led by the law students started off as usual with singing, then spontaneously turned into a joyful party. Then Joanna Kenilorea gave a testimony about a very sad event in her family that brought the Keniloreas back to God. She was especially eloquent in her address and when finished, Geoff found that it had been so powerful that he had no more to add that night and made an immediate altar call for prayer. Almost as one, 300 high school students, teachers and others present rose from their seats and moved out into the aisle to the front of the hall. There were a couple of slow starters, but when it became apparent that Geoff could not possibly pray for each individually, even these moved up to the back of the crowd until everybody in that room had come forward. Geoff in all his years of ministry and association with renewal ministries and revival (and that was the subject of his doctorate) had never experienced anything like it. The most remarkable thing for Helen and me was we were there and part of it in such a remote and previously unknown part of our world! It was surely a night to remember.

From Chapter 21 – Vanuatu: Pentecost (2005)

Many of the older people attending these intensive teaching sessions had been involved in local revivals through many years. They understood the principles involved such as repentance, reconciliation, unity, personal and group prayer that was earnest and full of faith, and using various gifts of the Spirit. They were most familiar with words of wisdom and knowledge, discerning spirits (especially from local witchcraft), revelations, healings and deliverance.

I learned much from them, especially about the spirit world and humbly seeking God for revelation and direction. We westerners tend to jump in and organize things without really waiting patiently on God for his revelation and direction. Many westerners, including missionaries, find waiting frustrating or annoying, but local people find it normal and natural. Wait on God and move when he shows you the way. For example, you can seek the Lord about who will speak, what to say, and how to respond. We westerners often use schedules and programs instead.

“Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!” (Psalm 27:14)

From Chapter 22 – Kenya (2005)

Before the Kibera slum church moved into their corrugated iron shed they met in a community hall.  I taught leaders there, and spoke at their Sunday service with about 30 people.  We gave them real bread for communion, not just symbolic cubes.  The Spirit led me to give them all the bread we had, just t loaves (not five barley buns as the boy had in Scripture).

“Can I take some home to my family?” asked one young man.  That’s a hard question to answer in front of 30 hungry people.

“It’s yours. You can take some of your own communion bread home if you want to,” I answered.

Everyone then took a large handful of communion bread, and most put some in their pockets to take home later.  We shared real glasses of grape juice in plastic glasses, thanking the Lord for his body and blood given for us. After my return to Australia I heard that the bread apparently multiplied, as those who took some home had enough for their families to eat. Some of them were still eating it two weeks later.

From Chapter 22 – Fiji (2005)

By Jerry:  While we were praying and worshipping, the Lord told me for the first ever time to take the salt water and the land and give it back to God. And I told this brother that when we offered it to God the rain is going to fall just to confirm that God hears and accepts it according to His leading. 

I told him in advance while the Lord was putting it in my heart to do it… this is the first ever time and I always heard about it when people are being led… now it has happened to me… I could not even believe it. 

As soon as he brought the water and I brought the soil to signify the sacrifice, I felt the mighty presence of God with us and was like numb… and the sun was really shining up in the sky with very little clouds.  This rain fell slowly upon us…. I still could not believe… my cousin was astonished and could not believe it… it happened according to the way the Lord told me and I told him.  It was like a made up story. 

It was the blessings of God and I told the Lord that I am waiting for His own time to rebuild the walls of my village… but the Lord already told me that He wants and has chosen me to rebuild the wall of my village like Nehemiah.

From Chapter 23 – Fiji (2006) re Tanna Island

The Director of the Department of Meteorology in Vanuatu was in Fiji for a conference and I met him there again.  He is also a pastor (Pastor Jotham) at Upper Room church in Port Vila where many of the law students attended. 

In May 2006 he had been on mission in Tanna Island where the Lord moved strongly on young people, especially in worship and prayer.  Children and youth were anointed to write and sing new songs in the local dialects.  Some children asked the pastors to ordain them as missionaries – which was new for everyone.  After prayer about it, they did. 

Those children are strong evangelists already, telling Bible stories in pagan villages.  One 9 year old boy did that, and people began giving their lives to God in his pagan village, so he became their ‘pastor’, assisted by older Christians from other villages. 

From Chapter 24 – Vanuatu (2006)

At sharing time in the Upper Room service, a nurse, Leah Waqa, told how she had been recently on duty when parents brought in their young daughter who had been badly hit in a car accident, and showed no signs of life – the heart monitor registered zero.

Leah was in the dispensary giving out medicines when she heard about the girl and she suddenly felt unusual boldness, so went to the girl and prayed for her, commanding her to live, in Jesus’ name.  She prayed for almost an hour, mostly in tongues, and after an hour the monitor started beeping and the girl recovered.

The revival team, including the two of us from Australia, trekked for a week into mountain villages.  We literally obeyed Luke 10 – most going with no extra shirt, no sandals, and no money.  The trek began with a five-hour climb across the island to the village of Ranwas on ridges by the sea on the eastern side.  Mathias led worship, and strong moves of the Spirit touched everyone.  We prayed for people many times in each meeting.  At one point I spat on the dirt floor, making mud to show what Jesus did once.  Merilyn Wari, wife of the President of the Churches of Christ, then jumped up asking for prayer for her eyes, using the mud.  Later she testified that the Lord told her to do that, and then she found she could read her small pocket Bible without glasses.  So she read to us all.  Meetings continued like that each night. …

Revival meetings erupted at Ponra.  The Spirit just took over.  Visions.  Revelations.  Reconciliations.  Healings.  People drunk in the Spirit.  Many resting on the floor getting blessed in various ways.  When they heard about healing through ‘mud in the eye’ at Ranwas some wanted mud packs also at Ponra!

One of the girls in the team had a vision of the village children there paddling in a pure sea, crystal clear. They were like that – so pure.  Not polluted at all by TV, DVDs, videos, movies, magazines, and worldliness.  Their lives were so clean and holy.  Just pure love for the Lord, especially among the young.  Youth often lead in revival.

The sound of angels singing filled the air about 3am.  It sounded as though the village church was packed.  The harmonies in high descant declared “For You are great and You do wondrous things.  You are God alone” and then harmonies, without words until words again for “I will praise You O Lord my God with all my heart, and I will glorify Your name for evermore” with long, long harmonies on “forever more”.  Just worship.  Pure, awesome and majestic. 

From Chapter 24 – Solomon Islands (2006)

Revival in the Guadalcanal Mountains had begun at the Bubunuhu Christian Community High School on Monday, July 10, 2006, on their first night back from holidays.  They were filled with the Spirit and began using many spiritual gifts they had not had before.  Then they took teams of students to the villages to sing, testify, and pray for people, especially youth.  Many gifts of the Spirit were new to them – prophecies, healings, tongues, and revelations (such as knowing where adults hid magic artefacts). 

The National Christian Youth Convention (NCYC) in the north-west of the Solomon Islands at Choiseul Island, two hours flight from Honiara, brought over 1,000 youth together from all over the Solomon Islands. 

By Grant:  “Most of a thousand youth came forward.  Some ran to the altar, some crying!  There was an amazing outpouring of the Spirit. There were so many people, Geoff and I split up and started laying hands on as many people as we could.  People were falling under the power everywhere (some testified later to having visions).  There were bodies all over the field (some people landing on top of each other).  Then I did a general healing prayer and asked them to put their hand on the place where they had pain.  After we prayed people began to come forward sharing testimonies of how the pain had left their bodies and they were completely healed!  The meeting stretched on late into the night with more healing and many more people getting deep touches. 

It was one of the most amazing nights.  I was deeply touched and feel like I have left a part of myself in Choiseul.  God did an amazing thing that night with the young people and I really believe that he is raising up some of them to be mighty leaders in revival.”

A young man who was healed that night returned to his nearby village and prayed for his sick mother and brother.  Both were healed immediately.  He told the whole convention about that the next morning at the meeting, adding that he had never done that before.

The delegation from Kariki islands further west, returned home the following Monday. 

The next night they led a meeting where the Spirit of God moved in revival.  Many were filled with the Spirit, had visions, were healed, and discovered many spiritual gifts including discerning spirits and tongues.  That revival has continued, and spread.

From Chapter 25 – Solomon Islands (2007)

We held revival meetings at the Theological Seminary at Seghe in the fantastic Marovo Lagoon – 70 kilometres with hundreds of tropical bush laden islands north and west of New Georgia Island.  Morning teaching sessions, personal prayers in the afternoons and night revival meetings, with worship led by the students, filled an eventful week in September 2007.  That was the first time the seminary held such a week, and again we prayed for so many at each meeting, students and village people.  Meetings included two village revival services in the lagoon. At the first, an afternoon meeting in the framework of a large new church building, everyone came for prayer, all 100, and 30 reported on pain leaving as we prayed for healings. Then we had a long evening meeting at Patutiva village, where revival started in Easter 2003 across the Lagoon from Seghe. That meeting went from 7pm to 1.30am with about 1,000 people!  We prayed personally for hundreds after the meeting ‘closed’ at 11pm. Students told me they could hear the worship and preaching on the PA across the lagoon 1k away in the still night air, so those in bed listened that way! …

The week at Taro was the fullest of the whole trip, the most tiring, and also the most powerful so far.  Worship was amazing.  They brought all the United Church ministers together for the week from all surrounding islands where revival is spreading and was accelerated after the youth convention near here in Choiseul the previous December, where the tsunami hit in April. Many lay people also filled the church each morning – about 200.

Night rallies at the soccer field included the amplifiers reaching people in their houses as well.   Each night I spoke and Mathias also spoke, especially challenging the youth.  We prayed for hundreds, while the youth lead worship at the end of each meeting. The ministers helped but they preferred to just assist us, and people seemed to want us to pray for them.  I involved the ministers in praying for people also. There was a lot of conviction and reconciliation going on. 

It’s fascinating that we so often see powerful moves of God’s Spirit when all the churches and Christians unite together in worship and ministry.  God blesses unity of heart and action, especially among God’s people.  It always involves repentance and reconciliation. 

In all these places people made strong commitments to the Lord, and healings were quick and deep.  Both in Vanuatu and in the Solomon Islands the people said that they could all understand my English, even those who did not speak English, so they did not need an interpreter.  Another miracle. 

Saturday night was billed as a big meeting at Patuvita across the channel. This is where the revival started with children of the lagoon at Easter 2003. Geoff had previously visited this church in September 2003. The old church building has been pulled down and the foundations were being pegged out on an open ridge high above the lagoon for the new one, which will probably hold up to 1000 as the revival swells the numbers.

Again students led the worship. Most of the adults were traditional, but there were forty or so in revival ministry teams who pray for the sick, cast out spirits and evangelise. We joined the meeting by 8pm and finished at 1.30am!

Worship went for an hour. Geoff then preached for nearly an hour. In his words –

Very lively stuff. Only tiny kids went to sleep – 50 of them on pandanus leaf mats at the front. Then we prayed for people – and prayed, and prayed, and prayed and prayed, on and on and on and on! I involved the ministers (after praying for them and leaders first), and the students – and still people came for prayer – by the hundreds.

We prayed for leaders who wanted prayer first, then for their ministry teams, then for youth leaders and the youth, and then for anyone else who wanted prayer, and at about midnight Mark called all the children for prayer, so the parents woke them up and carried the babies. I guess I prayed for 30 sleeping kids in mother’s arms and for their mothers and fathers as well.

Then after midnight when the meeting “finished” about 200 remained for personal prayer, one by one. So I involved 4 students with me, and that was great on-the-job training as well as praying. We prayed about everything imaginable, including many barren wives, men whose wives were un-cooperative, women whose husbands weren’t interested, and healings galore – certainly many more than 100 healings. In every case, those with whom we prayed said that the pain was totally gone.

I doubt if I’ve ever seen so many healings, happening so quickly. At 1.30am there were still 30 people waiting for prayer, so I got desperate, and prayed for them all at once. I told them just to put their hands on the parts of their body needing healings, and I prayed for them all at once, while the students and some ministers still there laid hands on them, and I also moved quickly around to lay hands on each one.

They were all happy, and again reported healings. I wish I’d thought of that at midnight! But at least a few hundred had a chance to talk with us and be specific about their needs.

From Chapter 27 – China (2007)

I loved it there among such humble, hungry, receptive, grateful, gentle, and faith-filled believers. I was often in tears just being there, appreciating their heartfelt zeal in everything. I have rarely been so impressed anywhere. No concerts. No acting. No hype. Just bare essentials. What a big and wonderful family we belong to, and our Father is so proud of his family there, I’m sure.

I had the great honour of speaking at a house church. People arrived in ones or twos over an hour or so, and stayed for many hours. Then they left quietly in ones or twos again, just personal visitors to that host family. Food on the small kitchen table welcomed everyone, some of it brought by the visitors.

About 30 of us crowded into a simple room with very few chairs. Most sat on the thin mat coverings. They sang their own heartfelt worship songs in their own language and style, pouring out love to the Lord, sometimes with tears. The leader played a very basic guitar in a very basic way.

Everyone listened intently to the message, and gladly asked questions, all of it interpreted. There was no need for an altar call or invitation to receive prayer. Everyone wanted personal prayer. Our prayer team of three or four people prayed with each person for specific needs such as healing and with personal prophecies. That flowed strongly. I knew none of that group, but received ‘pictures’ or words of encouragement for each one, as did the others.

While prayer continued, some began slipping quietly away. Others had supper. Others stayed to worship quietly. It was a quiet night because they did not want to disturb neighbours or attract attention.

Most people in that group were new believers with no Christian background at all. They identified easily with the house churches of the New Testament, the persecution, and the miracles, because they experienced all that as well. Many unbelievers become Christians because someone prayed for their healing and the Lord healed them.

From Chapter 28 – Fiji (2008, 2009)

By Romulo (2008):  “Inter-tertiary went very well at Suva Grammar School that was hosted by Fiji School of Medicine Christian Fellowship (CF).  It was an awesome two nights of fellowship with God and with one another.  The Pacific Students for Christ combined worship was a huge blessings for those that attended the two nights of worship.  Pastor Geoff spoke on Obedience to the Holy Spirit – this being a spark to revival and power.

“Students came in droves for prayers and the worship lit up the Grammar School skies with tears, repentance, anointing and empowerment.  The worship by Fiji School of Medicine students brought us closer to intimate worship with the King.  It was a Pacific gathering and each and every person there was truly blessed as young people sought a closer intimate relationship with the King. We were blessed beyond words.  Thank you all for the prayers, the thoughts and the giving.”

Roneil, a Fijian Indian, added, “It was all so amazing, so amazing that words can’t describe it.  For me, it was obvious that the glory of God just descended upon the people during the Inter-tertiary CF.  I’ve never seen an altar call that lasted for way more than an hour.  I myself just couldn’t get enough of it.  It was and still is so amazing.  God’s anointing is just so powerful.  Hallelujah to Him Who Was, Who Is and Who is to Come.”

By Romulo (2009):  Two of the memorable highlights were the washing of leaders’ feet at RCCG Samabula and the worship service on Wednesday at RCCG Kiuva village.  In fact I remember picking up the pastors on Sunday morning, and seeing Pastor Geoff carrying towels. I said to myself, ‘This is going to be fun.’  And fun it was.

God was teaching the church the principles of servanthood, demonstrated not just by words but by actions.  It was a moving experience as Pastor Geoff on his knees started washing feet, drying them with a towel and speaking into the lives of leaders.  Powerful also was the fact that Pastor Geoff’s leading was to wash the feet of leaders.

That Sunday former PM Rabuka, who heard of the Pastor’s visit, came to church for prayer.  Of course, the leading for Pastor Geoff to pray for leaders meant Rabuka would get his feet washed too.  One of the acts that will be embedded forever in my mind was seeing Rabuka sit on the floor, remove his coat and wash the feet of Pastor Geoff and KY Tan.  He then dried their feet with his ‘favourite’ Fiji rugby coat (he played in their national rugby team).  I was blown away by this act of humility, as demonstrated by Christ on his final night with the disciples before his arrest and execution.

On Wednesday night, (their last night in Suva), we were at Kiuva village in Tailevu.  The powerful and angelic worship of young people and kids in Tailevu made the atmosphere one of power with a tangible presence of the Lord in the place.  We saw a glimpse of revival and the power of God at work in such a simple setting.  I was blessed to witness for myself the prevalent hunger in the body as lives connected with God.  In all, it is purely refreshing being in the presence of God and being touched and filled by the Holy Spirit.

 Contents – Chapters of  Journey into Mission

Chapters of my smaller book, Pentecost on Pentecost and in the South Pacific, are included here in brackets.

Chapter   1 – Papua New Guinea (1965-1970)
Chapter   2 – Papua New Guinea Schools (1965-1968)
Chapter   3 – Papua New Guinea Bible Schools (1968-1970)
Chapter   4 – Australia (From 1970)
Chapter   5 – [1] Australia: Elcho Island (1994)
Chapter   6 – [2] Papua New Guinea (1994)
Chapter   7 – [3] Solomon Islands: Tabaka (1994)
Chapter   8 – Philippines (1994, 1995)
Chapter   9 – Ghana, Canada: Toronto (1995)
Chapter 10 – Solomon Islands: Simbo (1996)
Chapter 11 – Nepal, India: New Delhi, Sri Lanka (1996)
Chapter 12 – Nepal, India: Darjeeling, Sri Lanka (1998)
Chapter 13 – Nepal, India: Darjeeling (2000)
Chapter 14 – USA: Pensacola (2002)
Chapter 15 – [4] Vanuatu, Australia (2002)
Chapter 16 – [5] Vanuatu, Solomon Islands (2003)
Chapter 17 – [6] Vanuatu: Tanna & Pentecost (2004)
Chapter 18 – Nepal (2004, 2014)
Chapter 19 – [7] Vanuatu: Pentecost ( 2004)
Chapter 20 – [8] Vanuatu: Pentecost (2005)
Chapter 21 – [9] Vanuatu: Pentecost (2005)
Chapter 22 – [10] Kenya, Fiji (2005)
Chapter 23 – [11] Fiji – KBC and COC Team (2006, 2007)
Chapter 24 – [12] Vanuatu, Solomon Islands (2006)
Chapter 25 – [13] Solomon Islands (2007)
Chapter 26 – Kenya (2007)
Chapter 27 – China, USA (2007, 2008)
Chapter 28 – [14] Fiji (2008, 2009)
Chapter 29 – Myanmar (2009-11-12-18)
Chapter 30 – Malaysia (2010)
Chapter 31 – Thailand (2011)
Chapter 32 – Germany, Israel (2013)
Chapter 33 – Nepal, Thailand (2014)
Chapter 34 – [15] Vanuatu: Pentecost (2010-2017)

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Journey into Mission includes
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Sri Lanka, Myanmar/Burma,
Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines
and China.

 

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BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

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Church Growth

RENEWAL JOURNAL 2: CHURCH GROWTH

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All Renewal Journal Topics

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents: 2 Church Growth

Renewal Journal: 2 Church GrowthChurch Growth through Prayer, by Andrew Evans

Growing a Church in the Spirit’s Power, by Jack Frewen-Lord

Evangelism brings Renewal, by Cindy Pattishall-Baker

New Life for an Older Church, by Dean Brookes

Renewal Leadership, by John McElroy

Reflections on Renewal, by Ralph Wicks

Local Revivals in Australia, by Stuart Piggin

Asia’s Maturing Church, by David Wang

Astounding Church Growth, by Geoff Waugh

Book Reviews:
Heart of Fire by Barry Chant,
The Spirit in the Church
by Adrian Commadeur,
Streams of Renewal by Robert Bruce (ed),
Word and Spirit by Alison Sherington,
Living in the Spirit by Geoff Waugh,
Reviews of the Renewal Journal by Lewis Born and James Haire

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EDITORIAL:  “I WILL BUILD MY CHURCH”

Jesus is totally committed to radical church growth.  He promised to build his church.  He is still doing that – in astounding ways.  We can co-operate with him as he works in us and through us.

The famous revivalist, Reuben A. Torrey, reported on moves of God’s Spirit in his time early this century. We can pray and participate in this in our day. Here is Torrey’s comment. God can do this for your church

The very first sermon I preached as pastor of Moody Church, Chicago, was on prayer. As I drew my address to a close I said something like this:

‘Beloved brethren and sisters, how glad it would make your new pastor if he knew that some of you people sat up late every Saturday evening and rose early every Sunday morning to pray for their minister.’

Those honest souls took me at my word. What was the result? When I took the pastorate, the church (which seats about 2,200 in comfort) had never been filled above the main auditorium and the galleries had never been opened. But God heard prayer, and in a few weeks the place was packed.

But that was not the best of it. The power of God fell, and from that day till I left America, there was never a single Sunday without conversions. I don’t believe that there has been a single day in the whole of the ten years that have since passed without somebody being converted in or about that building.

You say, ‘That must have been remarkable preaching!’ Not at all. I was away five months in almost every year, but the work went on.

What God did for that church, he can do for yours. Pray without ceasing. Pray and believe. Pray and obey.

Thank you for your interest in this Renewal Journal. Many people have found it timely and helpful.

A minister in Ulverstone, Tasmania, wrote saying how appropriate the Journal was because the Lord is moving in that area in ways described in the Journal.

A man in Wangaratta, Victoria, noted that the Renewal Journal ‘has come at just the right time when there are stirrings of the Spirit in our own area after a long dry spell.’

A lady from the Atherton Tablelands in North Queensland wrote: ‘I believe the Lord is awakening his people because everyone I talk to has the same urgency about prayer in the churches. Many who have been sitting still for years are beginning to blossom and are encouraged and growing more than they have for twenty years in a short space of time. People are returning to the churches of their own accord – not through being witnessed to, but because the Lord is drawing them. This can only be because God’s people are praying and this is enabling the Holy Spirit to work.’

A man in Brisbane was so interested in the Renewal Journal he bought 50 copies to sell at meetings. He sold them all.

A group in Adelaide has been distributing the Journals at meetings.

These people all requested bulk orders of the Journal so they could pass copies on to their friends.

We encourage you to do the same. That will help us keep the Renewal Journal afloat, for we need more subscribers for this new journal. Friends telling friends are our best advertising.

You can still obtain copies of the first issue, on revival. It has struck a strong chord for many people.

This second issue explores church growth. Andrew Evans describes the place of prayer in a church that grew from 150 to 3,500 people. Jack Frewen-Lord, Cindy Pattishall-Baker and Dean Brookes all report on significant growth in Uniting Churches. John McElroy outlines vital leadership principles in growing churches. Stuart Piggin gives an overview of local revivals in Australia and Trevor Faggoter tells the story of one of these. David Wang tells of revival growth in Asia, and I comment on the astounding church growth in the world today.

I’ve been encouraged by reports of people who have started prayer groups for revival since reading the first issue of this journal. The example of people giving one day a month for prayer and fasting, described in this issue by Andrew Evans, has been taken up by more churches. One young man in Brisbane heard of this and asked his minister if he could organize it in their church. He promptly gathered a list of over 31 people who would pray and fast for their church and for revival one day a month. Now they have someone doing that every day of each month.

Stuart Piggin’s article in this issue tells of over 6,000 Anglicans in Sydney now gathering regularly to pray for revival.

Not only are more people praying than ever before, but there are now reports of the Spirit of God moving more strongly in individuals and in churches, such as the reports at the beginning of this editorial. In church services and prayer meetings whole groups of people are being touched afresh by God. Some groups now report strong impacts of the Spirit in people’s lives like we saw in the early seventies. Many are renewed. Many saved. Many have visions or are overwhelmed by the Spirit.

Hoist your sail! Fresh winds blow across the land now.

(c) Renewal Journal 2: Church Growth (1993, 2011)

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BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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China's Next Generation: New China, New Church, New World, by Luis Bush, Brent Fulton & a Christian Worker in China

China title

China’s Next Generation:

New China, New Church, New World

by Luis Bush, Brent Fulton & a Christian Worker in China

 

Conclusion

Someone once said that everything is true somewhere, at some time in China. This statement couldn’t be more true in today’s China. Somewhere in China there are still believers being persecuted for their faith, but for all the people that are being persecuted, many are able to worship freely. In fact, some companies prefer to hire Christians rather than unbelievers because of their integrity and ethics. In one city alone, it is believed that the Christians amount to 10% of the population and many businessmen are strong believers.

In some areas in China there is bitter animosity between the house and registered churches but for each place where there is bitterness there are thousands of house churches that are being allowed to continue. In fact, house church leaders have open discussions with local government officials and are permitted to rent and even purchase office space to hold their meetings. Also, there are cities where both the house and Three Self Churches work together, and some house churches meet in Three Self Churches!

In China there are certain versions of the Bible that are not printed and are not permitted in the country but for all the versions of the Bible that are not printed or permitted here there are several versions that people can freely purchase in bookstores and online to send to their friends. In fact, the Three Self Church has printed millions of Bibles in country and make them available at their bookstores.

It’s a new day for China, for the Church in China and for the World. We thank the Lord for the harvest that was brought in the past, the maturation of the Chinese church and for the economic strides that have made China the second largest economy in the world. However, if all this is to continue China needs to go to the next level of its maturation and reach the next generation, the 4/14ers! Now is the time for the Church of China to come together to preserve the harvest so it will last many more generations.

At the recent Asian Church Leaders Forum, over 100 Chinese church leaders signed a pledge to “commit ourselves to raising up younger leaders of the next generation” and to “pass the vision of evangelization onto the younger generation and proclaim the salvation message of the old rugged cross with creative methods.” We are excited that the church in China has embraced reaching the next generation so that a new chapter in China’s great harvest history can be written.

See Link:  China’s Next Generation

Download Book: China’s Next Generation: New Church, New China, New World (This book is not copyrighted)

 

Vision

 

Renewal Journal 16: Vision

Renewal Journal 16: Vision – PDF

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents:  16  Vision

Almolonga, the Miracle City, by Mell Winger

Cali Transformation, by George Otis Jr.

Revival in Bogotá, by Guido Kuwas

Prison Revival in Argentina, by Ed Silvoso

Missions at the Margins, by Bob Ekblad

Vision for Church Growth, by Daryl & Cecily Brenton

Vision for Ministry, by Geoff Waugh

Book Review: Jesus on Leadership by Gene Wilkes

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Editorial

Vision for the 21st Century

A new millennium, like each new year, encourages vision.  New hope.  New possibilities.  New vision.

Christian vision remains grounded in God’s revelation of himself in Scripture, inspired and illuminated by his Spirit.  So the vision is both old and new.

The vision is old because Jesus Christ is the same, “yesterday, today and forever”.  God’s word hasn’t changed with changing times.  We have the same that God Abraham, Moses, David, Esther, Mary, Peter and Paul served.

They all served God in their time, their era.  Now it’s our turn, in our time, our era.

Ours is a very different world from their day.  We communicate rapidly, globally.  We fly globally for mission and holidays.  We spend billions of dollars in Kingdom business.

So is there a vision for the 21st century?

There must be.  Where there is no vision, the people perish.  Where there is no prophetic word the people cast off restraint.  See Proverbs 29:18.

This issue of the Renewal Journal looks at some visions, directions and implications for serving God in the 21st century.

The essentials remain the same.  God is.  Jesus saves.  The Holy Spirit moves in all the earth.  The church grows – with endless cultural and social expressions.  Yet still the Lord only recognises one church – his.

All over the world powerful expressions of the church have emerged at the beginning of the 21st century.  This is not triumphalism.  But it is war.  Jesus is still building his church and smashing through the gates of hell.

Mell Winger, missionary to Latin America, tells the astounding story of Almolonga, Guetemala, the “Miracle City”.  There the Christians have united in prayer and seen the powers of darkness dramatically overcome.  The four jails, once packed, are now empty – closed.  The curse on the land has been broken and they grow the biggest and best food in the world.  Families, once at war, are united in loving service.

George Otis Jr., producer of the vivid, prophetic video Transformations, tells how Cali, Columbia, has been transformed through united repentance and prayer.  Once the centre of billions of dollars in drug trafficking with a turnover of over 400 million US dollars a month, it is now transformed.  What global law enforcement agents could not do, God has done.

Guido Kuwas describes revival in Bogotá, Columbia – another transformations story.  A church is impacting the whole city and region by applying Jesus’ principles of discipleship.  Christian disciple just 12 people.  Very effectively.  They gather in huge areas to celebrate together.

Ed Silvoso describes dramatic revival in Argentina’s biggest prison.

Daryl and Cecily Brenton, now missionary translators in Papua New Guinea, comment on the world’s largest data base of church growth factors to draw conclusions about effective mission and evangelism.

I have condensed my research on the emerging church into an article surveying the dramatic and powerful global shifts going on in church life and ministry amid accelerating change today.

Gene Wilkes’ book Jesus on Leadership challenges our usual ideas of leadership in the church by examining how Jesus led.

We hope you find this issue of the Renewal Journal inspiring and informative, and that you can recommend it to your friends and your church!

©  Renewal Journal #16: Vision (2000:2)  renewaljournal.com

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BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

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The Spirit told us what to do, by Carl Lawrence

Two young women set off to plant churches without plans or training because “Jesus said to ‘go.'”
After we prayed, the Holy Spirit would tell us exactly what to do.
We would keep praying and he would tell us what to do,
and we would do it.
Then we prayed and then he would tell us what to do.
We would do it and keep praying.

*********************************

Reproduced from  Renewal Journal 12: Harvest

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The Spirit told us what to do

Several high-ranking church leaders from Europe visited a pastor in Hong Kong. The pastor took them to visit some of the Three-Self churches. They found them inspiring, and uniquely Chinese, but they wondered aloud if perhaps they weren’t seeing the real church.

On the final day of their visit, the pastor hoped to show them what they wanted to see. He knew they would not really be satisfied unless they met a real church planter. As it turned out, they saw something incredibly beyond what they ever expected to find in China.

At their last stop, the pastor discovered that two young women had just returned from their mission station for a short visit, so he asked them to come to the hotel late, to meet the visiting church leaders.

These young ladies had both become Christians as teenagers while listening to radio broadcasts, and they each had immediately felt the call to be a missionary. The pastor had met with them and attempted to teach them how to witness right where they were.

“No,” they insisted, “the Bible you gave us says Jesus said to go to into all the world. We want to ‘go.'”

“But,” the pastor argued, “you have only been Christians for six months, and you are so young.”

They replied, “Pastor, we have read everything Jesus said and nowhere does he ask people how old they are. We want to go.”

Smiling, the pastor asked them, “But can you give me an exegesis of the five classical appearances of the Great Commission in the New Testament?” Their disappointed faces made him feel ashamed. “Very well. We need some workers on Hainan Island.”

“Hainan Island, we have never heard of it.”

The pastor said, “It is an island off the mainland. The people there are fishermen. It is very rough. There are no Christians there. For young ladies it might be very dangerous.”

Excitedly they responded, “How soon can we go?”

“Well, I have to go back to Hong Kong and make arrangements. There will be . . . “

They interrupted him, “Oh no, no, we must not wait. Our Lord said ‘go,’ not sit around and plan. We will go to this place – what did you call it?”

“Hainan. Hainan Island.”

They looked at each other, “Hainan, yes Hainan. That is where the Lord wants us to go.”

They had been there for two years and were now back for a short period of time to try to get Bibles and other literature for their new churches. The pastor had not seen them since the day they insisted that they ‘go now’!

After the arrangements were made, he went to the lobby at the appointed time and waited for the ladies to arrive. He watched the bellboys in their crisp, tailored uniforms, and the tourists who attempted to be casual in their designer clothes. Then he spotted the two young women. Oh no, he thought as they walked in.

Their black pyjamas and broad-brimmed fishermen hats stood in stark contrast to the appearance of the sophisticated hotel receptionist making her way towards them.

The pastor moved quickly to intercede. “It’s all right, they are here to see me.” Several people stood staring as he greeted them as politely as possible without drawing too much attention. “Come, we will go to my room to meet some people from Europe.”

Once in the room, the two European church officials graciously greeted them. He proceeded to ask the young ladies questions, interpreting for his guests as he went along.

“Pastor, ask them how many churches they have established on Hainan.”

The women put their heads down and answered, “Oh Pastor, we have only been there two years . . . yes, two years. Not many. Not very many.” Their voices were apologetic.

“How many?”

“Oh, not many, not many. We have only been there a short time. The people were not very friendly. . . Sometimes they became very vicious. Yes, sometimes they told us they were going to drown us in the ocean . . . several men threatened us . . . . Oh my, and because we were so young, even some of the other ladies did not like us. Yes some even called us terrible names . . . so not many churches . . . no, not many. . . .”

The pastor interrupted and slowly repeated the words, “How many? How many?”

There was a moment of silence, then one of the women looked up with embarrassment and anguish, as though confessing to a crime, “Only . . . thirteen. “

The pastor looked astonished and interpreted for the guests, “Thirteen.”

One of the guests repeated the number, “Only thirteen, only – my goodness. I haven’t planted that many churches in my lifetime.”

One of the pastor’s assistants interrupted, “No, Pastor, she did not say thirteen. She said thirty.”

The pastor looked at the two young women and asked, “Thirty?”

“Oh, yes, not many, we have done very poorly. Only thirty . . . .”

The two guests could only mutter, “Thirty churches in two years . . . my word. . . .”

Again the women began to apologize when the pastor interrupted to ask another question, “How many people are in the churches?”

“How many? . . . Oh, not many. . . . ” Again both heads went down, apologizing for their failure. “Not many. “

The process repeated itself until, again, the pastor looked like he was ready to shake them and practically yelled, “How many?”

“Only two hundred and twenty people. Not many, no . . . not many. “

Quickly multiplying in his head, the pastor said, “Two hundred and twenty in thirty churches?”

“Oh, no, in only one, but that one is a very small church, very small. There are bigger ones. . . .”

As the pastor interrupted he heard the numbers repeated by his guests: “Two hundred and twenty is small? Dear Lord, I wish I had some that large.”

“Ask them how many are in the big churches.”

The process began, but with a more reverent inquiry: “And how many in the big churches? You know, the biggest one?”

“Oh, not many . . . .”

“I know, ‘not many.’ But, please, ladies, how many?”

“Oh, less than five thousand. Only four thousand nine hundred . . . . Yes, less than five thousand. We have just started.”

From behind the pastor came the sound of weeping: “Dear Lord, forgive us.”

“What did they do? How did they do it? Ask them what they did?”

When asked, they looked astonished. “What did we do? Why nothing. Yes, we did nothing, nothing.”

“You did nothing? You have thirty churches – the smallest with two hundred and twenty people, the largest with almost five thousand new Christians! And you did nothing?”

“No, nothing. We just prayed.”

“I know you prayed, but what else did you do?”

“After we prayed, the Holy Spirit would tell us exactly what to do. We would keep praying and he would tell us what to do, and we would do it. Then we prayed and then he would tell us what to do.  We would do it and keep praying.”

“Dear Lord, they just prayed . . . and the Holy Spirit told them exactly what to do and they prayed. . . . “

The pastor laid his hands on the shoulders of the two sisters. Behind him his two guests, on their knees weeping, joined as they ‘just prayed’.

Dawn Report, August 1998. Source: Church Planting Canada, the Church Planting arm of Vision Canada. Originally published by Carl Lawrence, The Coming Influence of China. Gresham: Vision House Publishing Inc, 1996, pages 186-192. 1

This article is a chapter in Great Revival Stories

 

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A 2 Reign of JesusA 7 LionThis article is also an Appendix in

The Lion of Judah (2) The Reign of Jesus

and in (7) The Lion of Judah in one volume.

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BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

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Harvest

Renewal Journal 12: Harvest

Renewal Journal 12: Harvest – PDF

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents: 12 Harvest

The Spirit told us what to do, by Carl Lawrence

Argentine Revival, by Guido Kuwas

Baltimore Revival, by Elizabeth Moll Stalcup

Smithton Revival, by Joel Kilpatrick

Mobile Revival, by Joel Kilpatrick

Australian Reports – Aboriginal Revivals

Global Reports

Book Review: 2000 Years of Charismatic Christianity, by Eddie Hyatt

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Editorial

White for Harvest

This issue of the Renewal Journal focuses on a little of the enormous harvest currently being reaped around the world.  Much of this harvest is being reaped at great cost in personal sacrifice and even martyrdom.  Often, the most faith-filled and faithful church is the church suffering persecution, precisely because of the persecution.

We live in a time of harvest.  The fields are white, ready for harvest.  One aspect of this growing harvest is the increase of revival around the world.  Revival has many expressions, and varies from culture to culture.  The constant elements of revival, however, remain the same everywhere, as summarised in 2 Chronicles 7:14 – God’s people getting humble, praying, seeking God, repenting, and God moving in grace, forgiveness and power, bringing multitudes into his kingdom and healing brokenness in people’s lives and in the community.  God can do in a moment what we can never do with all effort.

As we look on the harvest we can all participate in vital ways:

We can ask God for a great harvest as we pray.  Often.  Alone.  Together.

We can believe God.  He is able to do far more than anything we can ask or even think about.

We can commit our way to God who is the Lord of the harvest.

This issue of the Renewal Journal is full of stories of the current harvest.

Two teenage girls in China saw astounding results in two years which they recount in their testimony “The Spirit told us what to do.”

The Argentine Revival continues to reap untold thousands right now.

Local churches continue to experience visitations of God in increasing numbers, especially where they humble themselves and pray and seek God together and with others.  Toronto in Canada, Brompton in London, Sunderland in England, and Pensacola in Florida became well known sparks for global revivals.  Thousands have been converted there, and tens or hundreds of thousands filled with the Spirit in new ways, igniting new ministries.  Places such as Baltimore, Smithton and Mobile reported similar revivals with lasting impacts of the Spirit of God.

Australian reports include stirrings of revival in the Kimberleys, and in the national expressions of reconciliation with Aborigines and the British.  Accounts of individual churches experiencing a fresh move of God continue, as with Christian Life Centre at Mt Annan.

Global reports continue to tell of the mighty works of God.  As he promised, he is pouring out his Spirit on all people.  Much of that is very different from our traditional forms of western Christianity!  It challenges us to rethink what we do.  Essentials are the biblical patterns.  Non-essentials include our structures, denominations, buildings, musical preferences, orders of service, and culture Christianity.  The church in many countries now looks and sounds rather like the New Testament church, persecution and all, empowered by the Spirit, with regular conversions, healing and signs and wonders.

We need to do what Jesus commanded us to do – to pray that the Lord of the harvest will send out workers into his great harvest.  You can pray.  We never know how God may answer that prayer – including answering it in and through us!

(c) Renewal Journal 12: Harvest, 1998, 2011.

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BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Discipleship

Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship

Renewal Journal 11: Discipleship – PDF

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,   
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,   
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,   
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents: 11 Discipleship

Transforming Revivals, by Geoff Waugh

Standing in the Rain: Argentine Revival, by Brian Medway

Amazed by Miracles, by Rodney Howard-Brown

A Touch of Glory, by Linell Cooley

The “Diana Prophecy,” by Robert McQuillan

Mentoring, by Peter Earle

Can the Leopard Change his Spots? by Charles Taylor

The Gathering of the Nations, by Paula Sandford

Book Review: Taking our Cities for God, by John Dawson

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Editorial

Make Disciples

 “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20).

We know the Great Commission well.  The closing verses of Matthew give Jesus’ commission to his followers during a resurrection appearance on a mountain in Galilee.  Usually we hear it used, and have used it ourselves, as an evangelistic mission mandate.  It is that, and much more.

The focus is not merely on the task, but on the reason for the task – the reason for the “therefore”.  “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me,” Jesus announced.  “Go, therefore, and make disciples.”  This commission concerning discipleship stems directly from who Jesus is as Lord of all.  We are commanded to make people his disciples.

Not make converts – though conversion is integral to the task.

Not make decisions – though life-changing decisions are involved in the task.

Not make church members – though incorporation in the church is essential to the task.

But make disciples.

Jesus’ disciples are to make disciples from all people groups – ta ethna from all the ethnic groups – from all the nations.  They are his disciples, baptized into him, and obedient to him.

Jesus’ discipleship commission does not focus on information but on formation; not on teaching knowledge but on teaching obedience: “teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.”

Naturally that involves knowing what he taught them but the great commission, the final command, is to obey.  That’s breathtaking!

What did he command them to do?  Love God totally.  Love others.  Repent.  Forgive.  Serve.  Pray.  Believe.  Heal the sick.  Cast out demons.  Proclaim the astounding good news of the kingdom of God.  The reign of God has broken into this world, shaking everything, transforming everything.

The great commission is the strongest evidence against a cessationist theory – that what Jesus did and what his disciples did was only for the establishment of the church or only for the first century.  Jesus’ final instruction to his disciples is that what he did and what they did must not cease, but must be passed on to all generations – to the end of the age.

Impossible?  Certainly it is impossible through our own resources:  “Without me you can do nothing.”  Hence, the incredible final promise “Lo!  I am with you always – to the end of the age.”

Disciples of Jesus

Discipleship, then, is the total process of making disciples of Jesus who are obedient to their living Lord.

That involves evangelism, mission, and equipping those new disciples for obedient mission.  This issue of the Renewal Journal looks at a few of those tasks: evangelism, mission, making disciples of Jesus who make disciples of Jesus.

I reproduce reports on transformation in the South Pacific in the 21st century.

Brian Medway applies lessons learned from revival in Argentina to the Australian scene.

Rodney Howard-Browne talks about God doing what he said he would do.  Lindell Cooley describes the impact of revival on his own discipleship and that of others.

Robert McQuillan surveys fresh moves of God’s Spirit across England.

Peter Earle examines mentoring as it relates to discipleship.

Charles Taylor reflects on the meaning of discipleship.

Paula Sandford reports on a gathering from among the nations – the ethnic groups – seeking to obey the Spirit in one body.  Stephen Milstead provides an overview of John Dawson=s approach to discipling cities, an approach well illustrated in Argentina today as indicated in the first article in this issue.

Nothing is so radical as making disciples of Jesus.  Jesus and his early disciples proclaimed and demonstrated the reign of God in all of life.  The kingdom of God has broken into this fallen world through Jesus, God’s Son, the Anointed One.  His life, death, and resurrection change everything.  The first are last and the last are first.  The least are the greatest and the greatest are the servants of all.

This issue of the Renewal Journal only begins to explore such radical changes.  The great commission still confronts us all with the implications of Jesus’ authority in heaven and on earth – his total Lordship.

As you read, pray with us the prayer Jesus taught us, including, “Your kingdom come.  Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”

What can be more radical than that?

(c) 2011, 2n edition.  Reproduction allowed with copyright included in text.

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GENERAL BLOGS INDEX

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Evangelism

Renewal Journal 10: Evangelism

Renewal Journal 10: Evangelism – PDF

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents: 10 Evangelism

Power Evangelism, by John Wimber

Supernatural Ministry, by John White

Power Evangelism in Short-Term Missions, by Randy Clark

God’s Awesome Presence, by R Heard

Evangelist Steve Hill, by Sharon Wissemann

Reaching the Core of the Core, by Luis Bush

Evangelism on the Internet, by Rowland Croucher

“My Resume” by Paul Grant

Gospel Essentials, by Charles Taylor

Pentecostal/Charismatic Pioneers, by Daryl Brenton

Characteristics of Revivals, by Richard Riss

Book Reviews: Flashpoints of Revival & Revival Fires, by Geoff Waugh

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Editorial

You will be my witnesses

‘Evangelism’ can be an unpopular word.  It may make us feel guilty because we don’t seem to do it very well – whatever it is!  That’s changing.  As in the early church, more and more people are gossiping the gospel, praying for their friends and seeing God change people.

‘Evangelism’ is not actually a biblical term, although ‘evangelist’ is mentioned three times: Acts 21:8 – Philip the evangelist; Ephesians 4:11 – some are evangelists; 2 Timothy 4:5 – do the work of an evangelist.  Then again, ‘altar call’, ‘making a decision’, and ‘inviting Jesus into your heart’ are not biblical terms either, useful as they may be.

Jesus called people to follow him; to deny self; to repent and believe. His followers were, and are his witnesses (Acts 1:8).  We proclaim, announce, tell, preach, gossip, share, demonstrate, and live the good news.  I’ve never forgotten the challenge a speaker to a youth rally flung out when he talked about evangelism.  He said, ‘Shut up, until you can’t.’  Maybe that was not polite, but it packed a punch.  We often lay burdens on people and try to convince them of our beliefs.  What about praying to the Lord so much that a fire burns in us and we just can’t keep quiet any more?

Better still, we too can do evangelism Jesus’ way, Peter’s way, Paul’s way, and as countless millions do now in the world – discovering the transforming power of the Spirit of God so that you just want to talk about it, pray about it, and see God touch people with his grace and power.

Contributors to this issue of the Renewal Journal take that approach to evangelism.

When John Wimber died in November 1997, he left a great legacy.  He inspired hundreds of thousands to take the Bible seriously and ‘do the stuff’ including power evangelism.  The Renewal Journal has often carried articles by John Wimber and others he influenced.  The first article in this issue of the Journal is a summary of his early statements on power evangelism from his famous course MC510 at Fuller Theological Seminary.  John White attended that course in 1984 (as did this editor) and tells in an interview with Julia Loren how it impacted his life and ministry.  Randy Clark gives global examples of power evangelism in short term missions.

Richard Heard, senior pastor at the Christian Tabernacle in Houston reports on a strong impact of the Spirit of God in their church, and Sharon Wissemann summarizes the significance of Evangelist Steve Hill’s ministry at Pensacola which has now touched hundreds of churches and thousands of people around the world.

Evangelist Louis Bush directs attention to evangelism in the nations of the 10/40 Window, and Rowland Croucher suggests ways to use opportunities the Internet provides for evangelism to the world.

Charles Taylor identifies the essentials of the gospel message.  Daryl Brenton summarizes the significance of 20 Pentecostal and Charismatic pioneers who have been powerful evangelists and leaders, and Richard Riss provides a comprehensive summary of the characteristics of revival.

Jesus described his kind of evangelism in his last promise on earth: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you and you will be my witnesses … to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8).

© Renewal Journal 10: Evangelism, 1997, 2nd edition 2011.

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BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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Awakening

RENEWAL JOURNAL 8: Awakening

Renewal Journal 8: Awakening – PDF

All Renewal Journal Topics:

1 Revival,   2 Church Growth,
3 Community,   4 Healing,   
5 Signs & Wonders,   
6  Worship,   
7  Blessing,
   8  Awakening,  
9  Mission,   10  Evangelism,
11  Discipleship,
   12  Harvest,   
13  Ministry,
   14  Anointing,   
15  Wineskins,   
16  Vision,   
17  Unity,
   18  Servant Leadership,  
19  Church,   20 Life

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Contents: 8 Awakening

8 Awakening

Speaking God’s Word, by David Yonggi Cho

The Power to Heal the Past, by C Peter Wagner

Worldwide Awakening, by Richard Riss

The “No Name” Revival, by Brian Medway

Review: Fire from Heaven, by Harvey Cox

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Editorial

God’s Visitation

We live in a day of God’s visitation.  It has become a worldwide awakening.  Amid much persecution and difficulty, the church grows in astounding ways especially in China, Korea, Africa, Latin America and North India.  Now western countries report renewal and revival in many places.

Jesus wept because so many in his time missed the day of their visitation (Luke 19:41-44).  May we not miss our day of visitation.  As with all previous awakenings (including the early church and major revivals) it is disturbing, controversial and unpredictable.

This issue of the Renewal Journal touches on a few issues and examples of the current awakening.  David Yonggi Cho of Korea tells about moving in spiritual authority by speaking the word God gives.  Peter Wagner describes powerful spiritual weapons now being used by the church, especially in corporate repentance.  Richard Riss provides a comprehensive survey of the present awakening in its varied expressions.  Brian Medway of Canberra discusses the “no-name” revival now spreading through the earth, which also fits the Australian zeal for equality. 

Outpouring of God’s glory

The outpourings of God’s Spirit continue, not only with increasing and astounding signs and wonders in the >third world= but increasingly in the West.  Even the news media have taken notice.  Unprecedented unity among leaders in renewal and revival has emerged in many places, including Australia.  Ministers pray together.  Prayer groups seeking revival multiply.  Churches co-operate to win, nurture and equip people.  Repentance, humility and forgiveness increase.  Renewal and refreshing seem to be spilling over into touches of revival.

“Renewal has changed us forever,” notes Philip Le Dune, associate pastor of Sunderland Christian Centre in the north east of England.  “When God pinned a local gangster to the floor of the church one evening, only God knew that he and his wife were soon to be employed by the church as youth workers.  Jim & Marie now hold daily meetings with the people from the local community who are increasingly coming to see SCC as “theirs” (SCC Email Bulletin, 20 August 1996).

All the centres of renewal heading into revival include persistent and widespread prayer, co-operation between churches, humility, repentance, and the overwhelming impact of the Spirit of God including controversial signs and wonders.  Mixed in with it all is human frailty and strong opposition, as in the early church. 

Toronto in Canada, Melbourne in Florida, Pasadena in California, Holy Trinity Brompton in London, Sunderland in north-east England, and now Pensacola in Florida became household names in renewal and revival.

26,000 conversions in the first year

Reports of revival at Brownsville Assembly of God in Pensacola, north-west Florida, drew increasing crowds from around the world.  They recorded 26,000 conversions in its first year.  Many people are ignited there and take fires of revival home.  So revival spreads.

Some of the leaders at Pensacola, including Lindel Cooley the worship leader, had received a deep impact of the Spirit in their lives.  Before the current outpouring of God=s Spirit burst on them, the church had been continually praying for revival, and their worship services had extended in depth and length.

“When church would be over,” reported Cathy Wood, “you know how they play music as you exit – well that didn’t work now…  We would try to walk out but we’d get a few pews away and stop again.  The worship wouldn’t stop so we could go home.  Many times Lindel would have to wave his hands at us and say go home!  It would be 10:00 or 11:00 and church started at 6:OO.  Wow … I love remembering!  Then on Father’s Day [18 June 1995], Steve Hill a missionary to Argentina with the Assemblies of God came to give testimony of how God refreshed his life in London at a meeting and after that service … all heaven came down and has remained….  As thousands continue to come we know the Lord is not finished….  Over 1/2 million in combined attendance.  Wherever the Lord is, we know the devil is looking in, so we pray for discernment whenever the flesh arrives; but at the same time … many of the things we have done in the Spirit now such as shaking, falling, jerking, were things we didn’t really believe in either.  Now that God has touched us … we don’t know what’s next and we don’t want to be God police and stop someone who is manifesting a true touch of God. …  Many thousands have been saved – over 30 thousand counting the backsliders” (Email from Cathy Wood, 31 July 1996).

2 Chronicles 7:14 still applies!  We can humble ourselves and pray and seek God’s face and repent.  God promises to hear, forgive, and heal the land.

© Renewal Journal 8: Awakening, 1997, 2nd edition 2011

Reproduction is allowed with the copyright included.

Now available in updated book form (2nd edition 2011)

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GENERAL BLOGS INDEX

BLOGS INDEX 1: REVIVALS (BRIEFER THAN REVIVALS INDEX)

BLOGS INDEX 2: MISSION (INTERNATIONAL STORIES)

BLOGS INDEX 3: MIRACLES (SUPERNATURAL EVENTS)

BLOGS INDEX 4: DEVOTIONAL (INCLUDING TESTIMONIES)

BLOGS INDEX 5: CHURCH (CHRISTIANITY IN ACTION)

BLOGS INDEX 6: CHAPTERS (BLOGS FROM BOOKS)

BLOGS INDEX 7: IMAGES (PHOTOS AND ALBUMS)

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