The Interceders Encourager No. 14
A The Setting
Fiji is a country comprising 322 islands in the South Pacific Ocean, 18 degrees south of the equator
and 1,100 miles north of New Zealand. There are two main islands and just over 100 other inhabited islands. The larger islands contain mountains which rise up to 4000 feet. Heavy rain, up to 120" annually, falls on the South Eastern side of the country, covering these parts of the islands with dense tropical forest; while lowlands on the western portions of the islands have dry seasons favourable to crops such as sugarcane.
B The Story
The Indigenous Fijians are a mixture of Polynesian and Melanesian people, resulting from migrations many centuries ago. In addition there are Indians derived from the 60,000 indentured labourers brought from India between 1879 and 1916 to work in the sugarcane fields, plus thousands more who migrated voluntarily to the islands in the 1920`s and 1930`s, resulting in the population being fairly equally divided between the two races.
The British took over the islands in 1874, (ceded to them by the chiefs), and remained in control until independence in 1970. Since then, however, the history of the islands has been a turbulent one, due to the racial disharmony translating itself into political stalemate and military violence. Two military coups in 1987 were followed by another in 2000, in which all the members of parliament were held hostage for 56 days. On the streets there was looting, vandalism, rioting and violence, with many business premises
destroyed. The economy collapsed. There was mutiny in the army. The outlook seemed very bleak. The government and the president appeared powerless. Soul searching took place among the leaders. They sensed that the disunity among the churches was a contributory factor to the divisions in society, so the president called the church leaders together and told them so. Previously, many churches and denominations had sought renewal and revival, but separately. Now they realised they had to come together and seek the Lord, as the solution to the problems of Fiji could come from God alone. So they called all the members of all the churches to accept their responsibility for the state of the nation, and to pray for God to change the situation. Everywhere, people joined together, humbled themselves, turned to the Lord, prayed and wept before him, acknowledged their sin, and that this was their last chance, the last call of God to them, and pleaded for His forgiveness and mercy.
This coming together in prayer and pleading for God to work was the key to God releasing His blessings on the country. The siege of parliament was ended peacefully, and the hostage takers were arrested and convicted. The denominational leaders stayed together, becoming known as the Association of Christian Churches of Fiji, (the ACCF ), and as they and the people continued to pray, the Holy Spirit moved in the land and drew people to Christian meetings and services. A strong desire for God took hold of the people. The Prime Minister later acknowledged that it was the prayers of the Christians that had pulled the country back from the brink of disaster.
After the coup, however, there was still a sense of racial division in the country between the Indians and the indigenous Fijians, so church leaders called for a national day of prayer, repentance and reconciliation. A large meeting was called, including all the Indian retailers whose shops and businesses
had been looted and vandalised. At the meeting, indigenous Fijians went up to the Indians, knelt before them and apologised for what had happened. The Indians broke down in tears. Then Christians helped the Indians to repair their businesses, replant their farms, and help them in other practical ways. As a result, a new spirit of reconciliation spread throughout the land
In July 2001, Christians joined together for three weeks of prayer and Bible teaching. At the end of that time, a crowd of 10.000 people gathered to hear the acting Prime Minister speak to them. As a general election was about to take place, he could have used the opportunity for political purposes, but instead he spoke of the need to put the nation right in the eyes of God. He acknowledged that all efforts to rebuild the country would come to nothing if they were not rooted firmly in the love and fear of God! He publicly confessed his own mistakes and sins, and prayed on the platform that the Lord would forgive him and save him, would capture his heart and lead him aright. He acknowledged and honoured Jesus as the King of kings and Lord of lords.! Would that we had such a leader here.
The Christians of Fiji joined together to pray about the election, and the whole political atmosphere changed. The acting Prime Minister was the leader of a party that had been formed only three months earlier, but his party was elected. It was a miracle in answer to prayer.
Since then, there has been a reduction in poverty, a reduction of beggars in the street, (I didnít see any, either in the capital or anywhere else), a reduction of school truancy down to nil, and a reduction in crime. There is still some poverty, but there has been an increase in prosperity, tourism has vastly increased, and the economy has progressed well beyond what other countries and banks expected. And all this can be attributed to God working in response to the prayers of His people. The atmosphere of the whole land has changed. The old suspicions have gone. Wherever we went, adults and children smiled and waved at us as we went past.
As a postscript to the coup in 2000, most of the hostage takers have since become Christians, and inside the prison there is now a Christian Fellowship that meets regularly, and some of the members of parliament who were held hostage go into the prison and lead worship services for the hostage takers and others. The repentance has been so genuine that those who go into the prison say that the sense of the presence of the Lord is far greater inside the prison than outside it.
There is now a willingness, shown by all people, from children and young people through village chiefs right through to the Prime Minister and the President, to humble themselves before God and their people, in stark contrast to what had been the norm in Fiji. At the beginning of 2004, the Fijian government inaugurated a year of prayer for the nation. Everyone was asked to set aside at least one week to repent, to seek the Lord, to make a new covenant with God and be reconciled to others. The Prime Minister leads a Bible Study in his home every Wednesday from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Another government minister has a prayer meeting in her home every week from midnight on Saturday to 5 a.m. on Sunday morning. The government works in conjunction with the ACCF to seek to do Godís will for Fiji. The Prime Minister declared the ten days leading up to the Christian Festival of Pentecost this year as ten days of prayer and fasting for the whole nation, and Pentecost Day itself as a National Day of Prayer for the nation. On the day, he officially opened the Global Day of Prayer, as Fiji is the country where the sun rises first on the International Date Line. The prayer meeting was held in the National Stadium, a venue specially constructed for the recent Pan Pacific Games, and was broadcast to the whole nation. Imagine such a thing happening in Britain. It is possible. Pray for it.
During the past few years, many rural areas have been changed by the Spirit of God as the people have turned to Him in repentance. By His power, their economies have been revived as bountiful harvests have been given where they were meagre before. Dead coral reefs have been brought back to life and plentiful supplies of fish have been collected from the sea where previously the catches were very poor. Poisoned waters have been cleaned and arid land made fertile. This situation has come about
mainly through the work of what are called "Healing the Land Teams". These are young people who willingly give of their time, trouble and effort to fast, pray, travel, visit and work to bring the Lordís power on one area after another. They go in response to invitations from village leaders who have become very concerned to the point of desperation about their situation. Let me tell you about some of them.
C The Sketches
Nataliera is a village situated by the sea in an idyllic location with a beautiful beach against a background of colourful mountains, but before 2004 the villagers were far from satisfied. There was division, tension and strife in the village. Idolatry and witchcraft created an atmosphere of evil, with many people dying untimely deaths. Even among the Christians there was prejudice, rivalry and division.
Young people were taking drugs and becoming promiscuous. Teenage pregnancies occurred, and there was a general spirit of rebellion against parents and all authority. The soil produced very few crops, and when the villagers went to the forest to try and grow crops, these were rooted up and destroyed by wild animals, especially pigs. At sea, the coral reef had died, so there were no fish to be caught.
Then something happened that brought matters to a head. At the entrance to the village, two old idols, models of warlords, that had been preserved in a museum, had been placed on either side of a drive as decorations. A young man of the village, riding a horse, accidentally knocked one of these idols so that it fell down and the head of the idol was broken off. The idol was put back up again and the head was fastened on with a rope. The young rider, however, started to feel ill, and a few days later, was found hanged, and the rope round his head was tied in the same way that the head of the idol had been tied on. This upset the village, and caused even more division and recrimination, especially when some people claimed that they had heard the idol speaking to them and making hissing noises. (This was personally confirmed to me by the man telling the story.) The leaders of the churches in the village then decided that things had to be sorted out, so they went to the village chief and asked him to call a meeting. At the meeting they decided to call in the Healing the Land Team. The team went to the village, found out the facts, and told the people they had to fast and pray for two weeks, which they did.
Two weeks later, the team arrived, and while they were there, they did a prayer walk round the village, every evening for seven nights. On the seventh night, they blew on shells, banged on cymbals and commanded the demons to leave the village. The demons left, and all the dogs in the village barked
as they left, for the dogs sensed the demons going past them.
During their time there, the team prophesied that fire would fall in the village. As the mission went on, people repented of their sins, of their prejudice and division. The young people repented of their rebelliousness and their disobedience to their parents. People wept and cried as they were reconciled to each other.
On the last night of the mission, which they call a process, the villagers brought all their witchcraft items and put them in a pile to be burnt. Then the man who told me the story, whose name was Amosi, spoke up and said, "It isnít right for these idols to stay here. They must be destroyed." So the young people went out and broke them up, and put the pieces on top of the bonfire.
On the following day, after the team had left, as it was getting dark, the mother of the boy who had committed suicide, who was standing with some others, saw an intense light over the sea. It was a wide column of fire, rising high over the surface, glowing red, orange and yellow, with flames at the side, which spread out over a large area of the sea. This magnificent sight stayed in position for about half an hour, and was a fulfilment of the prophecy that fire would come to the village. On the very next day, when they went out to fish, a huge shoal of fish was there. The Lord had healed the coral reef and brought the fish back. Everybody came and caught an abundance of fish, filling large 50 kg. bags again and again. On the land, the crops started to grow again. Truly, our God is a merciful God.
Since then, the villagers come together for prayer meetings every Wednesday, from 6 a.m.to 3 p.m., to coincide with the fast times, on the first Sunday of every month they unite in worship together, and every 6 months they have a week of united meetings. If you go there, you will see the monument they have put up to commemorate the happenings in 2004, erected on the site where the witchcraft items were burnt. On the monument it gives the dates of the transformation: 16 May 2004 to 14 June 2004, and proclaims that there is no God but Jehovah, quoting Isaiah 43:11, and that He is the God of Nataliera. Praise the Lord. Our God is an awesome God.
Namoka is a village high up in the mountains of Viti Levu, in the most beautiful situation I have ever seen, yet the village was full of idolatry, witchcraft and evil. A large stone in the village was feared and worshipped as sacred. It was a place of drunkenness. Many accidents and deaths occurred year after year. The government invested money in the area, but it seemed to make little difference. (Does this sound familiar?) Young people couldnít find work. there was high unemployment. There was a lack of harmony in the village. The water in the river was polluted, so there were no fish to be caught. There was no church in the village at all.
Then, early this year, (2006), somebody in the village heard about the HTL Teams, and told the village elders about them, so a team was invited. It is interesting to note that the team followed their usual practice, even though there was no church there and no Christians. They told all the people to fast and pray every day for two weeks before they came, and all the time that the team would be with them, and the villagers agreed. When the team came, they had to eat leaves for two weeks, as there was no food in the village. Meeting were held in the village community hall, as there was no church building, and every night the team pulled no punches, preaching against all the sins of the people, especially that of idolatry; and every night people were asked and expected to confess and renounce their sins, and they did. Everybody in the village was converted. This shows that we do not need to water down the gospel or try to accommodate the message to please the people. When people realise their true situation, they will agree to just about anything, and will go to any length to deal with it.
On the last day of the mission, the villagers went to the large stone that had been idolised, and tried to break it up, but without success, so they pulled it to a place outside the community hall, where they showed their repudiation of idolatry by cooking a meal on it. On the day that I went, we had our meal cooked on the stone, or what was left of it, for the heat of the cooking had done what the hammers could not do; it had broken the stone into many pieces. The change in the community is seen not just by the "sacred" stone being used for cooking, but also by the metal container that was used to pound the kava to make alcoholic drink now being used as the bell to call people to the church meetings!
The Community Hall is made into a church building by a lovely lectern brought out for the meetings. It was used when we went there, as they sang for us and gave testimonies; and is used every Sunday for the worship services and every Wednesday when the whole village gathers for prayer.
The accidents and premature deaths have all stopped. the drunkenness has ceased. The divisions and disunity have gone. the river water has been cleansed, and there is an abundance of fish in the river for them all. It is not surprising that the praise of Jesus is sung in their homes. Every day, from as early as 5 oíclock in the morning right up to late at night, people can be heard praying and singing the praises of the Lord. They pray that the Lord will continue to live in the village, and He is answering their prayers.
The joy of the Lord was on their faces, and the sense of peace and harmony was evident everywhere.
In this district of 9 villages in the interior of Viti Levu, even though it was surrounded by lush vegetation, the soil produced very little, the trees yielded hardly any fruit, and few fish were caught in the rivers. When people tried to grow crops in the forest, it was the familiar story of wild pigs coming in and destroying them. Skin diseases were common, drunkenness was rife, division and animosity prevailed, while witchcraft was used by one tribe against another, resulting in many deaths through curses.
One Christian brother living in the area became very burdened about the situation and prayed for three years for his village. Then he lost his job, and in desperation, fasted and prayed for a week. He had heard about the HTL Teams, so he told the village leaders about the teams, and persuaded the leaders to invite a team. Like Namoka, the village had no money or food to support the team, as their crops had failed, but the brother believed that the Lord would provide, and He did.
The mission had to be longer to cover nine villages, so was of four weeks duration. During the mission, the people repented of their sins, and on the last night they had a bonfire of all the witchcraft items, afterwards putting up a monument to it, as they had done at Nataliera. The Lord answered their heartfelt repentance by sending refreshing rain to the parched fields, and even lowering the temperature.
Whereas, before, the temperature had been over 40 degrees, it went down to below 30 degrees, and has stayed down. The ground, which had been unproductive, became fertile, so that crops grew in abundance. The wild pigs were no longer seen. The fish returned to the rivers. The skin diseases disappeared, and relationships in the villages were dramatically changed. There was no more drinking of the local alcoholic drink, and people prayed and praised and worked together.
The chiefs in the villages then became concerned that marijuana was being grown in the area. It had been grown for a decade. When the young people thought about their land being cursed because of the wrong deeds of their forefathers, they realised that the growing of the marijuana was one of the results of this, and that this was a curse that was going to be passed on to others. They, therefore, went from village to village uprooting the marijuana plants and burning them, telling other young people that the growing of the drug plants brought a curse on the land, so other young people also rose up and uprooted the plants in their villages. On one occasion, the young people walked for six hours to marijuana plantations, pulled out over 1,300 plants worth more than $11 million, and burnt them. Then they went back home and dedicated all their land to God. After they had prayed, the Lord sent a gentle shower of rain upon them to show His approval.
When the government heard what the young people had done, it decided to help the poor villagers by
providing a road and a bridge to make it easier to transport their "legal" goods to market, and building materials for constructing buildings for them. Previously, it had taken 20 hours to get to the villages on foot from the main road. The government also provided seedlings to grow their normal root produce, but instead, a large crop of tomatoes, cabbages and cucumbers began growing, and the villagers were amazed at the amount of produce they harvested.
Educational results in the whole province have been revolutionised. The children of the area had always been at the bottom of a list of 10 areas for their exam results. Now they have moved up to the top of the list! Previously there were no high schools or colleges in the area. Now a college has been planned for them. All this is part of the process of change in the district, which is giving them confidence for the future, all brought about through the gracious working of our God, in answer to the prayers of his people and their obedience to His word.
Rukua is a village on the island of Beqa, a few miles off the south coast of Viti Levu, which was another village we visited. In this village, the practice of firewalking started, which is associated with witchcraft and idolatry. The land, even though the island was right in the path of the moisture-laden winds, became dry and unproductive. The coral reef died, the fish went away, and with them, the villagers` source of income.
It would appear that the people of the village came to their senses, realising that it was their going away from the Lord, allowing the idolatry and the witchcraft, including the firewalking, to carry on in their midst, that had caused all their problems. So they all turned to the Lord, confessed their sins, repented and renounced all their disunity, their superstitions and evil practices, and gave everything, including the land and the water back to God, and God graciously answered their prayers. The coral reef became living again. The fish returned, providing the villagers with so many fish that they have been able to supply other villages. The land became productive again. Trees that had not borne fruit suddenly started bearing large fruit. The prosperity could be seen as all the houses and gardens in the village that I
saw were tidy and well looked after, and all the villagers at the service we attended were well dressed. All the people from the youngest to the eldest were friendly and welcoming, and full of the joy of the Lord.
Nuku is on the island of Nairai, 100 miles to the east of Viti Levu. Like Beqa, Nairai is right in the path of the moisture-laden winds, yet the district of Nuku had soil that was unproductive. The coral reef had died 55 years previously, so their food source from the sea had also been taken away. Moreover, in the 1960`s, the village streams, fed by spring fed water, turned poisonous, killing what crops there were, and causing brain lesions in those who drank it.
In 2003, the villagers had had enough, and in desperation they asked a church leader to help them. He went to the village and called a Solemn Assembly, (as in Joel 2), for the village and the neighbouring villages. He pointed out to them that the reasons for their problems lay in their sins and the sins of their ancestors, that these sins had to be repented of and renounced. The assembly lasted for many days, from 9 a.m. till midnight every day. Many people prayed for 45 hours, crying out to God, on their faces before Him. The leader led them all in times of repentance for their sins and the sins of their forefathers
until he felt that all the sin had been confessed and renounced and forgiven and purged from their lives, and from the past.
In response to this, the Lord graciously cleansed the springs and the streams, so that the water became drinkable; fish returned to the rivers and the crops flourished again. In the sea, the coral reef was revitalised, and the fish returned. Types of fish that they had not seen for 55 years reappeared, and have continued to come back. Huge crabs, larger than any seen before, have been caught, so all their sources of food and income have been restored, beyond their wildest dreams. Truly our God is a God of miracles.
We can see a pattern emerging in these situations. After the people in the area come to the place of desperation, they are helped through a time of prayer, fasting and repentance, in which all their sins and the sins of their ancestors are confessed, repented of and renounced in deep sincerity from the heart. Then, in many cases, the villagers offer to the Lord some of the soil of the area and some river or sea water, asking for His cleansing, and the Lord shows His acceptance by sending a rain shower, even if the sun is shining, and by sending fish into the sea or river. And He has done this many times. In 23 fishing grounds near to 11 provinces where the people have turned back to God, they have seen huge fish harvests. Where, previously, they caught only small fish, now they harvest very large fish. In places where they used to collect just a few shellfish once in 6 months, now they collect buckets of them every day. In Tovu Lailai, as the villagers watched, they saw the fish return in shoals to the sea by the village. On one occasion, they counted the number of fish they had caught. It was over 3,900 ! On the land, soil that was unproductive, now yields large harvests. Bananas that used to be very small are now three or four times larger. Orange and mandarin trees that bore little or no fruit, are now bearing fruit four times in one year, to provide food and income for the people. Truly, our God is a God of power and grace.
D The Centre
Healing the Land Programme
You may be wondering what exactly the Healing the Land Team does. When it is invited to an area, there are five phases to its work.
The team is gathered together. They find out the situation in the area targeted, including its history. They fast and pray about it every day for at least two weeks. The fasting is from 6 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Spiritual warfare is an integral part of this preparation. All spiritual forces of darkness and wickedness are confronted and overcome by the blood of Jesus and His authority.
In the targeted area, the people are also told to fast and pray every day for two weeks in the same way. All the Christians in the area have to meet together as often as possible to do this.
The meetings period in the targeted area. (The Process)
Every evening, for at least 14 days, meetings are held. Everybody is expected to attend every one. Anybody who doesnít attend is visited at home by the team. The team continues to fast and pray, and the people in the area are also told they must continue to fast and pray. Each evening at the meeting, a different sin is spoken about. (All the Ten Commandments and more are covered in this way, including
selfishness, rebelliousness, not honouring parents, lying, cheating, gossip, breaking agreements, hatred,
lust, fornication, adultery, idolatry, witchcraft, etc., sins of the past as well as sins of the present) People are told, and expected, to come forward and confess their sins, and ask the Lordís forgiveness.
There is an emphasis on reconciliation. Nothing is swept under the carpet. Any hatred or divisions that are known publicly have to be acknowledged and confessed publicly, and restitution made where appropriate. Everyone has to affirm their allegiance to the one true God. The team have to make sure that everyone in the whole area is really impacted by God.
At the end of this two week period of humbling, (in which people really humble themselves before God and before each other, even washing each otherís feet,) of confession, repentance, forgiveness and unity given by the Holy Spirit, all the people affirm their faith in the one true God; make a covenant to worship and serve only Him; and ask the Lord to forgive them and heal the land and the water. It is this corporate repentance, affirmation of faith and commitment to Him as the true God, as they are bound together by the Holy Spirit, that is the key to God blessing the people and transforming the area, the soil, the water, the rivers, the sea and their prosperity.
This is the time when God usually confirms His acceptance of their dedication by working some find of miracle, as we have seen, by sending rain from a cloudless sky, bringing the coral back to life; bringing the fish back to the sea, cleaning the spring or river water, and bringing fish back to the river.
During the following months, the situation in the area is carefully checked and monitored. All the villages concerned are expected to have a prayer and fasting day every Wednesday, followed by a church meeting. United church meetings are to be held every month. At both of these, people can, and should be able to, testify of what God has been doing in their lives and in the area.
One year after the process has taken place, the HTL Team go back for a weekís follow up mission. Every home in the village or area is visited, to find out what the current situation is; and every night a meeting is held. Where people have not kept up their prayer and fasting, or where the united meetings have not been held, these things need to be put right. At the end of each meeting, people are asked to come forward for prayer and counselling. Anybody who doesnít come forward for prayer, or doesnít attend the meeting, is visited at home.
Many people will recognise great similarities in this whole programme to Early Methodism, which shows similar guidance by the Holy Spirit, for which I, at least, am profoundly grateful. The Spirit who led people like Howell Harris, William Williams and John Wesley, is still at work today. Praise the Lord.
HTL Teams: The Future
There are 6000 villages in Fiji. In the year 2005, The HTL Teams started a 5 year programme to transform all of them in the 5 years. At that time, there were nearly 200 communities where the teams had been, that were 95%-100% Christian. Their vision, again, is like that of John Wesley, with his vision for Britain, and for that we must praise the Lord, and pray for their success.
E The Summary
What are we to make of this, and what should we do about it?
Wherever God is working in one part of the world and not here, we should ask why not here, just as whenever God has worked in the past and not now, we should ask why not now?
1. Do not think that what took place in Fiji happened out of the blue. Christians in Fiji had faithfully interceded for the nation for 20 years before the situation changed in the year 2000. During that time, they saw no noticeable improvement. Churches remained divided and estranged, as did the whole community. Political instability ruled, as did hardship and poverty, but they didnít give up. So continue to pray for Britain. God hears your prayers and He will answer. Believe it.
2. When we think of the political situation in Fiji, with a Christian Prime Minister, Christian members of the government, the Prime Minister holding a Bible Study every week, and acknowledging God publicly, we need to pray that God will raise up godly politicians and especially a godly Prime Minister for this country, who will be God fearing, who will acknowledge the one true God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will dedicate this land to Him, who will acknowledge his inability to rule without Him, will call on God to help him, and will call on the people of this land to pray for him.
We need to pray for a new party, an upright, honest party, to be raised up and elected into office, just as a new party was raised up in Fiji, and elected into office just a few months later. (and as also happened in Israel recently.)
3. Pray, and act, where possible, that Christians all round the world will learn the lessons that God is trying to teach them: that wherever there are food shortages or crop diseases or bad harvests or lack of water or polluted water, that they will tell all the people in their area what God has done in other parts of the world, especially in Fiji, that when people in desperation have come together, have turned to the true God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, have humbled themselves before Him, have repented of their sins and pleaded for His mercy, how He has answered their prayers, has sent rain and given them clean, pure water to drink, and provided abundant harvests of food for them to eat, greater than they thought possible, and tell all the people in their area to do the same. Our God is infinite. He is the God of the hills and the valleys, the God of Fiji and every other country.
4. We need to pray for the churches of this land:
a) Pray for the Christian Leaders in this country, that they will realise the serious situation we are in, that we are in a moral and spiritual desert, where nothing is flourishing morally or spiritually, as it was in so many places in Fiji. Some people might say that we are in a completely different situation to Fiji. We donít have famine, we have plenty to eat and drink. But that is because of our history, and because we are part of the Western Capitalist System, where we are living off the hard work of people in the past and the hard work of millions of people in other parts of the world now; and because God is being gracious to us in answer to the prayers of His people. Were God to withhold His good hand from us, we would be in a far worse situation. As it is, we are paying the price of our disobedience and rebellion against God in so many ways:
The whole nation is polluted with God rejection, which shows itself in immorality, dishonesty, swearing, profanity, litter, binge drinking, drug taking, the most undisciplined, rebellious and foul mouthed children and young people that the world has ever seen, abnormally high rates of truancy at school and work places, promiscuity, record teenage pregnancies, the highest ever rates of sexually transmitted diseases, the breakdown of family life, 380,000 people living on our streets, millions of people living on anti depressant drugs, record levels of crime, especially violent crime, with most of them unsolved, yet with our prisons overfull, our medical and emergency services at breaking point; and millions of believers in false religions practising their vile Christ denying ways in this land that was once a Christian country. All this should shame us and arouse our jealousy for the honour of the true God, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, the only name by which we can be saved.
We need to pray for that jealousy to be aroused among Godís people, especially its leaders. Pray that:
God will raise up a leader or leaders, like that man in Fiji, who will, (in the words of Joel), call a solemn assembly, gather the elders and all the inhabitants of an area together, proclaim a fast and cry to the Lord; blow the trumpet, (? send out an urgent message on radio/ television/email), and sound the alarm; tell the people of coming judgment, so that the people tremble; call the people to return to God with all their hearts, with fasting, weeping and mourning, rending their hearts and pleading for God to act, using the words that God has given us. The leaders, themselves must weep as they pray; " O Lord, spare Your people and spare this land that has seen Your favour, and do not let Your heritage become an object of scorn, so that others say where is our God." The leaders must go on praying and pleading like this until the Lord becomes jealous for this land and takes pity on its people, takes away our destroyers and our disgrace, and restores us to where we should be, a God fearing, God honouring nation like Fiji, and lives among us once again as we acknowledge that the Lord, the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ is the one true God and there is no other. When we get to this place, God promises that He will bless us in every way, will restore what we have lost, will pour out His Spirit on us, and show us wonders. (Joel 2: 12-18 & 25-32)
The main leader of the HTL teams in Fiji, Vuniani Nakauyaca, has said that churches have got to come to the place where they realise that they are impotent and completely unable to do the work that God has commanded them to do, if they stay as they are. The Church should be used by God, a) to subdue the earth, and bring it into conformity with the Creatorís will; and b) to subdue all people and bring them into conformity with the Redeemerís will. We cannot do this by ourselves, but only by faith, by prayer, by the authority given to us by Jesus Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit. Arnold Muwange of Uganda tells us: "You must get to the stage where you are not willing to put up with the status quo any more. This means you have got to give God a free hand in changing, or even dispensing with your programmes, and giving you His." Pray that our leaders will realise this.
b) Pray for the churches in your area and for the people in your community who are not Christians, (remember Alexander Deane: the Great Abdication), that they will realise the true state of things and will no longer put up with it. Pray for a sense of urgency and desperation to arise. Tell them what God has done, and is still doing, when people get to that place of desperation. Tell them what is possible.
c) Seek to get the churches in your area to come together in prayer and fasting, and call for a Healing The Land Team. We have our Revival Preachers. Why should it not be that God has raised them up for such a time as this?
"God is looking for desperate faith, humble unity and persevering prayer. Where God has found this, He has come." (Arnold Muwange) Uganda has proved this. Fiji has proved this, and is still proving it. We could prove it too. I pray that we will. Our God is an awesome God.
Yours in Him