Dear Partners in the Great Commission,
We have returned to Houston after six very fruitful days in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Let us first give you some background information about the body of Christ in Vicksburg. Some time ago a servant of God named Lance Rowe came to Vicksburg. (Click on http://crosscountry4jesus.
Some pastors in Vicksburg received Lance and his ministry. Under his leadership a measure of unity was birthed among the pastors, a unity which did not exist before. In November 2009 Lance came across our website on the internet, and discovered that he and we had much in common. He shared about The Elijah Challenge with the pastors in the group. Some of them were interested and were willing to host The Elijah Challenge Basic Training. It began last Wednesday.
Likely because of the unity among the pastors, the Lord greatly blessed the Training. He helped me to teach very effectively, and confirmed His word by healing many infirmities during the sessions as the disciples laid hands on the infirm.
On Saturday afternoon following the final session, we held an evangelistic healing outreach to apply what had been taught. We had hoped to hold it outside in order to draw more needy people, but due to the cold weather we had to use a church sanctuary instead. Not surprisingly there were mostly church people at the meeting. However, I noticed one man who looked to me like a street person in need.
I preached that Jesus had authority to forgive sin and save sinners from condemnation in hell. Then I asked the Lord to confirm this by healing the infirm who were present. Several people, including Mr. Davis, raised their hands when I asked who wanted to be healed. At my invitation they came forward and the trained disciples laid hands on them.
The very first person the Lord healed was Mr. Davis. He climbed up to the stage to testify that he had felt pain in his whole body for two weeks. Doctors could not figure out what was wrong with him. When the brothers applied what they had learned in the Training and laid hands on him, the pain promptly disappeared!
Mr. Davis also had a conspicuous white spot in the middle of his left eyeball. When questioned, he explained that he had a cataract and could not see through that eye. The brothers ministered to him as they had been taught, and God restored his sight. He was able to identify objects with that previously blind eye. We then noticed that he had little balls of rolled-up aluminum foil in his ears. After the brothers asked him about it, he told them that he suffered from poor hearing. And so they ministered to him again according to what they had been taught from Scripture. God restored his hearing and he reported that he could hear much better.
After that others also testified that the Lord had healed them. As far as I could see, only one person did not testify of being healed.
The disciples gave praise to God for how He had used them to confirm the truth of the gospel. They were very encouraged and when the weather warms up they will be proclaiming the gospel in the open air and in the streets.
Pastor David Sterling of New Beginnings Christian Fellowship was part of the pastors' fellowship and had attended the Basic Training. On Sunday morning he taught his people and then they ministered to the infirm. There were two powerful testimonies. One man had a severely damaged liver, and as a result could not bend over without blood dripping from his nose. After the believers ministered to him, he could bend over without any bleeding whatsoever from his nose. A woman had herniated disks and could not bend over even to perform simple tasks. The believers laid hands on her. At the end of the service, she stood up at the front of the sanctuary and showed everyone that she was healed by bending over and moving a big flower pot back and forth on the floor.
That evening I taught at Faith Christian Center. The Lord's power to heal was very evident as the believers, most of them African-American, laid hands on the infirm at the end of the service. There were many testimonies of healing, some of them quite impressive. The sister who led the worship had painful arthritis in her knees which made it difficult for her to get around. After two ladies laid hands on her, she walked briskly around the sanctuary with no trace of pain---and with a huge smile on her face. That was only the first of many miraculous healings the Lord performed through His disciples that evening.
Pastor David Sterling wants us to return to Vicksburg before this summer. He is planning to bring three or four churches together in unity for us to train with The Elijah Challenge. We will rotate and hold each Training session in a different church. Since he is close to the leadership of the Church of God of Prophecy, David is also playing with the idea of holding a state-wide event for Mississippi and Louisiana where hundreds of their churches can come together to be trained with The Elijah Challenge!
We have never before witnessed such a fruitful training event in the United States. We attribute this to the unity in the body of Christ birthed through the ministry of Brother Lance Rowe.
Let's pray that "Revival" will break out in Vicksburg as the trained believers obey the Great Commission---preaching the gospel, healing the sick, and making disciples as they have been taught. May this ultimately spread to other cities of the Deep South.
Thank you for partnering with us in intercessory prayer, dear ones!
Videos of all the meetings, including all the Training sessions, can be viewed at http://www.ustream.tv/
Next month in February we will be in Mexico City.
Sincerely in Christ,
William & Lucille