Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” Acts 3:6
This was the theme of the day. We saw more than 200 patients but there were some extremely serious cases. This was the kind of day where you just put your head in your hands and truly say I have nothing that I can offer except for the love and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
More than 25 percent of the people I saw today had no cures and had no significant medical treatments that I could offer. For each mission trip we purchase medicine from Blessings International of Broken Arrow, Okla. But there was no medicine on hand, no fancy technology or surgeries that could be done to cure their problems. Many of these were permanent birth defects, crippled, deaf and mute, end stage heart disease with congestive heart failure, and multiple psychiatric disorders.
I actually had to take a good 15-minute break after the first two hours of clinic work just to step out, unseen, and have a small cry. I had no solution for these problems and I did not have medications that could take care of any of these problems long term. However, I knew that with God all things are possible.
Have you ever been in a place where you want so badly to make people better physically, to make it all go away? I would’ve loved to be like Peter and John who met the crippled man outside the Temple that day and they told him get up and walk. I know that as Christians working with the power of the Holy Spirit in us, we have the ability just as Jesus did to see the lame walk and the blind see. However this particular day it was different, not because of lack of faith by myself, or our prayers, but rather because of the ingrained oppression of this region. Perhaps I will never know until the day I ask in Heaven.
A crippled woman since birth came into my clinic as one of the first 50 patients on this day. She basically dragged herself on the floor like a top. Her legs were completely crippled and bent under her and she basically only had movement from her lower back up. She had no wheelchair and she came in to the clinic in a small-wheeled buggy that looked like an oval shaped skateboard. No one seemed to pay attention to her or make special way for her. Instead the villagers treated her just as she appeared, a “cripple.” I think this was the reason I needed to step out of the clinic.
I really understood how the heart of Peter and John must have felt at that time when they spoke to the crippled man. As I prayed I saw the Lord show me that someday we would go to India not with pills, but with healing prayer, faith, and God’s power to heal alone. Mind you there were several smaller healing miracles that occurred that day for which God gets all the glory, but I believe the Lord wants to do even bigger things in India.
India’s revival is in some ways similar to the Asian revival, where much faith comes from actually seeing the power of signs, wonders, and miracles occur to those who are afflicted. To come to faith in India, which is a polytheistic society, means to give up 1,000 other gods in order to believe in Christ as your sole Savior. This is very difficult for many. However, I have seen those who have had miracles in their lives or seen their loved ones change radically for Christ when miracles occur. I also believe that very soon India will experience the book of Acts in large proportion, to the point where thousands will come to Christ in one village within a short period of time.
On this night we ended with the first evening of the Hearts Afire pastors’ conference. The discussion today was on unity within the church body. This is actually a lesson from which we could probably all learn. Pastor Warren McGregor spoke about how the church body, which starts out with the church leaders – the pastors – needs to be working together to strengthen the fact of revival occurring in India, despite different Christian doctrines or denominations. If we want to see things really happen and really move, we need to be working in unity with unified thoughts and actions.
You can imagine that this is not easy to do when there are multiple leaders. However, this is vitally important, as there really is only one leader, our Lord Jesus Christ, who is our cornerstone. Though there are many smaller leaders under him, we need to remember that we are all attached like branches to the vine. The lessons this evening were incredible and pastors came away with a new sense of unity and authority to be able to execute this unity amongst each other. Tomorrow we pray for the power of the Holy Spirit to fall upon each and every pastor and upon the region of Andhra Pradesh.
By Vilma Vega
Hearts Afire co-founder