Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Tahiti Final Thoughts, DTS graduation, New Zealand
“Before you guys came I thought that only special people could hear God’s voice, only pastors could pray for the sick and evangelize. But now I know that I can hear God’s voice, heal the sick and evangelize. This is the message my people need to hear”. This is what JJ, a young Tahitian guy, told me before we left his beautiful island nation. JJ represents, to me, a nation that is hungry for the deeper things of God. There has been a lot of religion in French Polynesia, but the people are wanting something more.
We were surprised by the darkness that surrounds Tahiti. There is a lot of incest, family feuds, mormon temples, rape, and a lot of witchcraft. I was so surprised by the darkness that permeates the honeymoon island of Moorea. There is a sadness that rests on the place. But God is doing something special in this nation. Four guys are planning on doing DTS's and two girls. Two boys started a prayer meeting at there high school that is growing.People got healed, saved, delivered. It was pretty awesome. God is on the move!
When we got back to Kona the gears changed rapidly. We were the last team to return. We had teams in Japan, India, Papua New Guinea/Palau/Guam, and of course us in French Polynesia. We began de-briefing our students by processing the experiences they had. It was so encouraging hearing the stories of miracles, salvations, struggles, and changed lives in the different nations. It was also great seeing the change in some of the students. Some of the students literally looked different. Some looked happier, some a little underweight (they went to India), some looked overweight (they went to Japan), some seemed more mature, and some much more tan (we went to Tahiti!). DTS is a powerful tool to help people meet God and go deeper. I am surprised at how Jesus uses these six months to totally change people. Pray about doing one!
It was bittersweet as we graduated our students. These were people we spent 3 and six months with, and shared life changing experiences with. We had a lot of tearful goodbyes. One thing that I learned from Phd Timothy D. Beck (aka Dave) is that you need to fully invest yourself into every relationship. It sure makes some painful goodbyes, but it is a sure sign that you invested all that you could into that relationship, and it was what Jesus did.
All in all I feel that Lisa and I were able to live up to the vision God gave us. Our desire is to teach young people (or anyone) to know God in a deeper way than they already do. Whether it is to hear God’s voice, to pray and worship, principles of spiritual warfare, gifts of the Holy Spirit, etc. We were able to impart what we have learned to our students, and to several of the young Tahitian boys and girls. It is so exciting to teach someone to pray for the sick and to see them do it and get results. Or to hear God’s voice and than they share with you all that Jesus is speaking to them. What a privilege we have.
We head to New Zealand on Monday to meet with our Asia/Pacific staff for meetings, planning, and vision for the future. I will explain more later. Please pray with us:
1) Thank God for all that he has done in Tahiti, and in the lives of our students
2) For God’s grace as we travel to New Zealand
3) For finances to come in for our NZ trip
4) For our baby boy as he develops in the womb
5) And for God’s grace to keep going. We are kind of tired.
Thank you all so much for your prayers for us. We are fully aware that all of the breakthrough that we experienced is a result of all your partnering with us in prayer. Thank you, thank you, thank you.