Two weeks ago I visited an apartment complex where one of our missional communities lead a gathering for children and a discovery Bible study within the home of a resident. We've recently had a few people come to faith within this apartment. Exciting, right? God is blowing our minds. One particular night I decided to sit in the discovery Bible study as an observer. On the tablet of my mind, I was taking notes and dreaming of the reproduction and multiplication of disciples. My heart was stirred as I listened to their various insights. Towards the close of the meeting, the leader, who did a fine job facilitating the gathering, began to write down prayer requests for a strategic time of prayer. One lady asked to add her ill husband to the list (her husband has diabetes and as a result, his leg sore isn't healing well). She coupled the request with these words, "It seems like everything that we write on the list and pray for comes to pass." Wow! Did you just hear...I mean, read what I said? I couldn't believe my ears! Containing my excitement was quite difficult. Obviously, God has habitually moved powerfully among these people.
The leader replied, "Let's introduce your husband to Antonio so that he can be encouraged." Now, what's so encouraging about Antonio? Well, his eyes were damaged from a chemical accident. They prayed for him and Jesus healed his eyes! I'm not joking. I met Antonio and his wife that night. He's doing great. Folks, this isn't an overseas mission's story. It's a local one! Jesus lives!
Let me tell you of another story that happened the same week. Two teenage trainers went prayer-walking around the University of Memphis campus. They prayed for several people while they walked. As they continued, one said to the other, "I feel the Spirit is leading me to pray for people to get healed." Not long after, they saw a woman walking with a cane and were persuaded, after conjuring up some courage, to approach her. Happily, the lady consented to these trainers praying for her. They began to pray and the lady joined them. Once their prayers were finished, the lady began to move her arm saying, "Oh, this is new!" To their surprise, the lady had paralysis in that arm. Jesus restored the function of her muscles. Oh...my...God! I guess Jesus really did mean it when he said, "I will be with you."
Please, bear with me for one last brief story. A young couple within our church was trying desperately to get pregnant. They had done everything medically possible to make that happen to no avail. Over time, the situation seemed quite hopeless. But God, being rich in mercy, heard our prayers. He opened the womb of the barren woman like He'd done in the Bible. When the family told me of the pregnancy, I immediately burst into tears of joy. Isn't God awesome?
Friends, as conduits of God's power, lets learn to pray for the needs of others in their presence so that God will be glorified.