“Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness, against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world.” Eph 6:12 NCV
To begin, back up with me to October 2002:
Four men, three of them pastors, came from Ohio to join Mike for a week of prayer and fasting in the Old Colony camps. Five days were spent ignoring burrito stands and denying themselves homemade German bread and goodies for one purpose: to engage in Ephesians 6:12.
One day in particular they drove 9 kilometers on a dirt road to the base of the mountain range. There they stepped out of their vehicles and could span the entire plateau of the German camps as they began to intercede. Their specific prayers at that place, prompted by the Holy Spirit, were to tear down the strongholds of alcohol and drug abuse in the camps. The battle was on with four men and a missionary.
Now let’s fast forward to February 2004. We drive out for the opening celebration of the new drug and alcohol rehab center built for and by the Old Colony German community. The moment Mike steps out of the vehicle he recognizes it as being the place where he and the four men stopped to pray that day a year and a half prior. Coincidence or Divine response?
Add to this the fact that Alejandro, the young Mexican man who had been working with us, was asked to be the center’s new director. This is remarkable for two reasons: he is Mexican (the Old Colony culture looks down upon Mexicans) and he is Spirit filled (they also attribute Pentecostal ways to the devil and the work of false prophets). Alejandro is a man on fire for God and passionate about telling everyone the Good News of Jesus Christ. He himself was gloriously saved and miraculously delivered from a life of violence, drugs and alcohol. It’s a perfect fit. It appears the Divine administrator has been orchestrating things we weren’t aware of.
Let’s jump ahead to September 2004: Peter*, one of the first graduates from the rehab center, is clean and telling others about Jesus. He has opened his house and with Mike’s help is teaching others what true faith is. You see, Peter was a member of the religious community. A druggie and a deacon, he carried his Bible in which pouches of cocaine were tucked inside to sell. Blinded, having a form of religion, but knowing not the true love of Christ. The battle for his soul was advancing that day in October with four men and a missionary.
Then there is Jake*. Jake radiates the Jesus he never knew until he went to the rehab center. Through Alex’s ministry, Jake had a face to face encounter with Jesus Christ where he found forgiveness from all his sins, which were many and fatal. Jake was a hit man. Jake was a druggie. Hired by the campos’ organized crime, snuffing out lives is what he knew to do. Today he is being discipled and is growing in the faith. The battle for Jake’s soul was progressing that day in October with four men and a missionary.
These are only two examples of many. The center is never without men. Most are fathers and grandfathers either sent there by loved ones or of their own initiative, spending 3 months without leave while their families wait. Most of their wives, traditional Old Colony women with dark dresses and head coverings, struggle alone with the children and without income.
In the Old Colony community of 80,000 where vices have claimed so many, the prospects are without end. Deliverance is desperately needed- please pray, even this very moment. Perhaps you would fast as well. God will use more than just four men and a missionary.
*Names have been changed
(This is from my computer files labeled “Missionary Archives” and the second one to be posted here on my blog.)