Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. ~ 1 Peter 5:8
November 13th, 2011 will be remembered as the day I realized the enemy’s reach is global. It was a normal Sunday morning at the church we attend in San Marcos. The worship was inspired, the message timely and the Holy Spirit humbly present. During our time of prayer, communion, and reflection our pastor grabbed me to pray with the elders over a former orphan from Ethiopia, who was rescued by a family in our church. My pastor informed me of some challenges the young boy was navigating through and the concern of his parents.
As we began to lay hands on him, I immediately discerned a very familiar presence and spirit. One I had only come in contact with on the mission field, particularly in Kenya and Uganda. I had seen this influence on many in Africa. It was steeped in centuries and generations of cultural darkness and witchcraft. It manifest in fits of rage, madness and vitriolic destruction. It was clear the enemy was digging his talons into the very fiber of this young boy’s emotions and spirit, grabbing at any remnant of his tribal bloodline.
I am not even sure what I prayed, only that I was clearly speaking out against whatever claim this spirit thought he had on the boy. I commanded its release, and declared the blood and name of Christ over him. All I knew was to fight in the heavenlies on his behalf to rescue his emotions and spirit, as his physical welfare had been rescued by his parents. Little did I know this bold prayer of faith over a former orphan would result in an all out declaration of war in the kingdom of darkness.
Throughout the week I continued to pray over this little boy. The more I prayed for him, the more attacks would hit our family, especially my own children. It came to a head on Friday, November 18th, when I made this declaration and posted it on social media:
Open season on the spirits of disobedience, deception & defiance… Jesus is Lord over you. You will NOT prevail. You MUST bow! THIS IS WAR!
The consequence would almost kill me, my wife, son & brother-in-law. On Saturday, November 19th, we were in a near fatal car accident (click to read posts), but that isn’t as significant as what a member of our church shared with me a couple of weeks after we were released from the hospital.
On that Sunday when I prayed for this former orphan, the Holy Spirit revealed to a member of our church that something was about to happen to us as a result of my praying. She was instructed to pray over me and my family. When she revealed this to me, immediately the Spirit prompted these words in my heart…”this was an assassination attempt”. As a result of my boldness to pray against an all too familiar mission field enemy, a “hit” was put out in kingdom of darkness to take us out.
5 months later, we are wrapping up the final stages of our recovery. My wife, Becky, is making plans to return to Haiti in July, where she already stirred up the kingdom of darkness on her last trip (click to read “Why are you here”), and I am planning my 4th trip to East Africa (click to visit Breathe International). If you had any doubts we are in a battle for not only our lives, but the lives of those around the world, I pray this testimony will encourage us to be vigilant in our pursuit of Christ, obedient to His word, humble, sanctified and in unending prayer; always being led by the Holy Spirit, full of courage and boldness to declare our faith, storming the gates of hell to rescue those who need Christ most; even unto death.
2 Corinthians 4:
Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you.
Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.