“Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Mt 19:26)
Today we had a wonderful Holy Communion service. The presence of God was so real. The Holy Spirit helped us to see the Cross of Christ and to love our Lord even more. When the anointing is so strong, you don’t need much prayers before miracles happen. This evening a brother sent me this note. I use this testimony as a point of contact for others to be encouraged and healed! With God, all things are possible! May your faith increase! Be healed! In Jesus name, amen! To God be all the glory!
“Mummy, good evening, I have been inviting my colleagues in the office to church for a couple of month now. Infact my nickname in the office is “fathers house” that’s what they call me. Today one of them came to just observe and worship with us and he had ulcer pain. He said as soon as he took the holy communion that the ulcer pain disappeared automatically. I am so happy that he was healed in church. I didn’t comment on his post. Am just so happy within because he will testify to other of my colleagues in the office tomorrow morning of the healing power in church and he has promises to be a member of Father’s house bible church. I am so happy… Thank God for me-oh…”
I am singing…
“My Jesus, I love Thee, I know Thou art mine;
For Thee all the follies of sin I resign;
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art Thou;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
I love Thee because Thou hast first loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now”
(by William R. Featherston, 1864)
“Brothers and sisters, pray for us” (1Thess 5:25)
My husband, Pastor Richmond Leigh and I have been married for almost 44 years. We got married as unbelievers and, by the grace of God we are now children of God. Our story is the testimony that grace is real and eternal life is sure. Both of us have tested that the Lord is good. Both of us have seen salvation. We are happily married giving thanks to God!
I am blessed beyond words that my husband married me. We met in the Medical School, Timisoara, Romania. He was a foreign student, trying to learn my language and to adjust to a strange culture. Both of us were very young. I was not the richest, most beautiful or intelligent woman in the campus. Why he chose to marry me is a mystery (to me) until today. But looking back, I can see that Almighty God was behind our timid steps of understanding life and learning to walk in love. We got married against much opposition. The Romanian Government at that time forbade its citizens to marry foreigners. We were persecuted in school. My parents did not understand my choice of a husband. Most of our friends rejected our marriage. But I made up my mind that I marry this man or I will die single. I fell in love with him even before I knew were Nigeria is on the map. He was learning to speak Romanian and I did not speaking English at all. We used sign language at the beginning. I made up my mind to marry him and follow him to his country. We came to Nigeria in March 1980. We had trials and temptations. It was not always easy. But we survived and we became better, stronger and wiser. Once we surrendered our lives to Christ, everything ‘made sense’. The pain was no longer painful. The tears became worship. The rejection became ministry. Over the years we observed that all men who fought to destroy us, or our marriage, destroyed themselves at last. Glory to God!
I have never once regretted marrying this wonderful man. I know that many people are tired to hear sweet poems of love; they are angry when someone sings of hope, of romance and happiness. They focus their attention on politics, tribal wars and daily frustrations of life. I try to understand your pain and anger. I live in the same planet with you. But for me, in my little world, the light of God is shining, the grace of God is working and the love of God overflows its bounds. I am happy and I must declare it! To God be all the glory!
Let me say this: I can ‘manage’ any problem, but I could not have survived in Nigeria without the love, patience, help and guidance of my dear husband. He has blessed me as his wife, as the mother of our children, as a pastor and co-laborer with him in the Lord’s Vineyard. He covers me with prayers. He predicts my desires and goes ahead to fulfill them even before I am aware of what I need. He is my English teacher, my doctor, my lawyer and even my police. If you look in my heart, next to Jesus Christ, my Savior, you will find my husband. He gives me the freedom to be what God wants me to be. He encourages me to stand and fulfill destiny! Today is my husband’s birthday. We do not want money, cards, cake, drinks, rice or fried chicken. We only desire your prayers. That is the best gift of all. Thank you! And God bless you in return! In Jesus name, amen!
“One Sabbath day as Jesus was teaching in a synagogue, He saw a woman who had been crippled by an evil spirit. She had been bent double for eighteen years and was unable to stand up straight. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, “Dear woman, you are healed of your sickness!” Then He touched her, and instantly she could stand straight. Oh, how she praised God!” (Lk 13:10-13; TLB)
This is a wonderful testimony, how Jesus teaches the Word, heals the sick and rebukes His enemies, all in the same time. Only our Lord can do all these things in the same time! It was the ‘Sabbath day’, the same as our Sunday service. Jesus was teaching the congregation the Word of God. He then sees a woman there who was very sick. She was bent over and could not stand straight. She has been in this condition for 18 years. Her family, the pastors and the members of her ‘church’, had no hope for her. They viewed her sickness as incurable. No one was praying for her or encouraging her to hope that one day she will be ‘normal’ like them, healed and happy. Nobody had faith that this unnamed woman can one day join the choir. Everybody who came to church ignored her or maybe gave her some food. That’s all. But this sad, sick, ugly, lonely and hopeless woman decided to continue to come to church. This is called faith! Her body was bent but her heart was getting straight. She knew that in the presence of the Holy Spirit anything can happen. For as long as she breathes, she will come to church! This was the key to her miracle! She knew that nothing is impossible for God to do. She knew that God does not discriminate. Staying at home or in the hospital was useless. Coming to the presence of God opened the door for the precious miracle. For 18 years this woman has been punished by the devil with a sickness that doctors could not cure. We don’t know why it was so. But we know that in the presence of God there is fullness of joy, the captives are freed and the hungry are filled…
Then suddenly ‘Jesus saw her’! Oh, the blessed look of the Master! May Jesus see you! He interrupted His sermon and called the woman forth. In the full view of the congregation, she came crawling like a worm. She came to Jesus!!! This is faith! If Jesus commands you to do anything, do not excuse yourself. Just obey! Faith has no excuses! Jesus said: “Dear woman, you are healed of your sickness … You are loosed from your infirmity!” Then He touched her and instantly she could stand straight. Immediately she started praising God! She sang and she danced! If she was in Warri, she could have said: “Oghene – Doh…Migwo – Doh…”
This is what I called a holy disturbance in the church! I love that! Jesus loves people more than we love our church protocol. Jesus looks at the heart! Her body was bent and nobody saw that in her heart she made a vow: ‘God, if You heal me, if I can stand straight, I will praise and worship You forever!’ Her praise was released from the crippled tight and suffocating vessel. “Imela e…”
Jesus said: ‘you are loosed from your infirmity’. This word ‘loosed’ means to completely free someone from any bondage or to divorce that one from the devil. Her sickness was ‘an infirmity’, a spiritual bondage that manifested as a crippling condition of the body. Her ‘spiritual husband’ was an evil spirit. He bent her! He tried to possess her! He tried to conquer her body and her soul. For 18 long years the demon tried to force her to kiss his ugly face. But he failed! Dr. Jesus healed her! Judge Jesus separated her from the criminal spirit husband and ‘married’ her Himself. She became a born again, free, healthy, strong, happy member of the Bride of Christ. Hallelujah!
What are the lessons for us? These are simple lessons but very powerful. Come to church! Serve God in the church! Even when you are sick, have faith that by coming to church, you can encounter Jesus Christ and you shall be healed. Child of God, even if your situation seems hopeless, there is always hope with God! Jesus said that when two or three of us gather in His name, He will be there, in our midst, doing wonders. Do not stop praying! Do not stop believing in Jesus! What do you lose if you believe in Him? Nothing, only your doubts! God hears your prayers. God answers your prayers. No matter how long it takes, continue to have faith in God. One day, Jesus will see you, call you and touch you. In the midst of many, Jesus will find you and bless you. Let your faith rise. Finally, bless God if the church you attend is a living church where the pastors preach the Word of God. But if the church you attend is more like a night club, business center, bank, comedy show or entertainment place, run away from there! Go to God’s House! Go to Jesus! Look unto Jesus! He is not dead! He is risen! He is alive forevermore! Jesus is the Lord!
(In the picture, one of the sisters in our church, praising God with dancing)
“Then He (Jesus) spoke a parable to them that men always ought to pray and not lose heart… Shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” (Lk 18:1-8)
This is one of the parables of Jesus. He says there was a poor woman, a widow, who had a big enemy she could not fight by herself. In the Bible, symbolically, a woman stands for the church. A widow means a believer in Christ who has no human helper and is facing strong opposition. This woman knows that she has no strength and no resources to fight her strong enemy. But she wants vindication and victory. The only man who can help her is a judge in that town. But this judge is very harsh. He does not fear God and he cares nothing about anybody. But he is her only hope for a breakthrough. This woman is not intimidated by the difficulty of her position. She decides to go to see the judge and to plead with him as often as she can. For fear that he will get ‘weary by her continual coming’, the judge finally grants her plea. What is the lesson for us?
Jesus said that we should learn from this woman and pray to God until there is an answer. God always answers His children. His answers can be: Yes, No or Wait. If the answer is yes, then your miracle will manifest immediately. If the answer is no, you will lose ‘the push’ to pray. But if the answer is ‘wait’, then you are to pray until the answer changes into a ‘yes’. Jesus says that ‘the elect cry to God day and night’. The sign that you are a child of God is that you pray until God answers. If you get tired of waiting and praying, it may be that you are not a true believer or that you are backsliding.
Why do believers stop praying? The danger is to become over-involved with the cares of this world. Being too anxious about your ordinary natural life (about your marriage, children, job, school, money…) will quench the spirit of prayer. Knowing that God alone can truly help, you have no excuse to stop praying before God answers you. The prophet Samuel said that to stop praying or to stop teaching others the Word of God is sin. “Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you: but I will teach you the good and the right way” (1Sam 12:23).
Jesus connects prayer and faith (verse 1 and 8). When you pray for a particular blessing, as you pray, your faith will increase. Then you use your higher faith to pray even more. Both faith and prayer shall become stronger, helping one another. But if you stop praying, your faith will become weak and you shall faint spiritually. The lesson: continue to pray and ask God for your heart’s desire! You know that you pray well when you sense your faith increases. That is the time when God answers! Christianity is not easy. You must read the Bible and you must put into practice the Word you have read. This is the way to spiritual maturity. May God open your spiritual eyes, open your spiritual ears and touch your heart to be more sensitive to the Holy Spirit! Go back to the prayer room! God is waiting for you! Glory to God!
This is the Word of God:
Pray without ceasing.
In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Quench not the Spirit.
Despise not prophesyings!
Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
Abstain from all appearance of evil.
And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Faithful is He that calls you, who also will do it” (1Thess 16-24)