Sri Lanka: Bringing hope to a grieving nation
A few weeks prior to the tragic bombings on Easter Sunday our India Directors Elsie and Daniel travelled to Sri Lanka to train and encourage hundreds of pastors by making Derek Prince’s teaching freely available to them.
This trip to Sri Lanka was very different from the previous ones. As Elsie put it: "We have begun to see an opening up amongst pastors for Derek’s life-changing Bible teaching like never before. The greatest joy for us is to see the transformations happening in many pastors lives and to see some of those who previously opposed this teaching be moved by it and accept it.”
In the light of the recent terrorist attacks on Christians in Sri Lanka, we as a ministry are not just praying for Christians in this land but we are also thinking and planning on how we can provide spiritual encouragement to pastors and congregations in this country in the coming months.
While other ministries may provide food, medicines and practical help for the affected families, we will be continuing to provide spiritual nourishment, training, prayer and free discipleship resources to pastors and churches in Sri Lanka so they may overcome fear and become spiritual ‘Watchmen’ in the spiritual realm over their nation.
The testimonies from their recent trips serve as an example of the power of God's Word. Elsie: "Rather than share a report of places reached and numbers attended, I would like to share the testimonies so that you would be blessed just as we were!"
One of the most interesting testimonies we have ever heard! This pastor has been in ministry for over 25 years. However due to a misunderstanding with the Board of the mission, he ministered under, he was so upset that he wrote out his resignation letter and decided he would meet with the Chairman of the Board and submit his resignation soon after attending the DPM conference in Vavuniya.
The level of frustration he was experiencing was so much that he was not only going to resign but also give up active ministry and become a member of the church and do no more than attending church.
At the end of the meeting, he came forward and testified that when I taught on the exchange “Jesus was put to shame that we might share in His glory” and I said, “the more the shame, the more the glory,” he was so encouraged, that he tore up the resignation letter and decided to go back to fulfilling all that the Lord had called him to do. He prayed the prayer of exchange and felt a complete release from the burden of the accusations and shame he was carrying.
Another testimony came from a young woman, who had come just to play the keyboards for the worship. She was not keen on listening to any teaching as she was in a greatly depressed state. She had been working and lost her job. Her husband told her to quit brooding and make herself useful to others by concentrating on the ministry. But she wasn’t able to do that because of the depressed state she was in. When she came to the meeting, someone else had already been brought in to play and so she was feeling even more useless.
But just halfway through the meeting, during the tea-break, she came running up to tell us how encouraged she was by the Word and challenged to put behind the failures and pressures of her current situation and press forward together with her husband in the ministry that the Lord had ordained them to.
Over 120 pastors attended this meeting. Many in Sri Lanka have now become wary of conferences of Pastors because of the variety of foreign doctrines that have begun to invade the land recently. So, they came hugely due to the compulsion of Ps. Prince (our new team member in Sri Lanka) who is a reputed Pastor and now ordained Bishop.
Elsie taught on Authority using a combination of Spiritual Warfare and the Power of Proclamation. At the end of it, many Pastors came forward to testify that their eyes had been opened to the reality of the Spiritual realm and the authority that they had in it.
One young pastor, who had his neck in a brace then came forward and shared his testimony. He had been attacked on New Year’s Eve by a group of gangsters who were high on drugs and alcohol and they had beaten and threatened him, telling him to quit the area.
This pastor came to the meeting and in the back of his mind was a strongly growing thought that he should leave the area and move elsewhere to do his ministry as he did not know how to stand against these men.
At the end of the session, he testified that now, he had clarity in mind and that he would not leave the area but would continue to press forward with the authority that God had given him.
Another testimony here was of a woman being healed of a back problem just as she listened to the teaching.
At Trinco, again where we taught on Authority, a lady minister who heads a Prayer organization, came forward and testified that she was coming to a point where she felt they should just stop what they were doing as she saw no results. The teaching on Authority and Praying with authority as a spiritual weapon gave her new insight and she was excited about going back and renewing the prayer meetings in accordance with the teaching that she had just had.
At our next stop in Valachenai, we had a huge gathering of Pastors and leaders from various denominations.
The teaching I did here was The Divine Exchange and at the end, we had many, many testimonies. Pastors who had planned to show up for just half a session and leave ended up staying for the complete programme.
Amongst these were two very interesting testimonies:
The first was a 46-year-old Pastor who had met with two accidents and was so frustrated by the second (he still isn’t able to walk fast) that he would say to his wife, just 4 more years and before the end of that I will settle my daughter in marriage and then quit this earth.
When we taught on Jesus died our death that we might have His life, he was brought to a realization of the negative proclamations he had made over his own life and confessed them then and there. As we prayed the prayer of exchange, he says he received new confidence and strength to carry on the work God has placed in his hands, until the time that God has planned for him.
The next was a young Bible teacher, who stood up and said, “Forgive me for saying this but I never liked Derek Prince. I only came because the Pastor who invited me promised me that we would receive books and I am a fanatic reader. I was seated right at the back of the auditorium but as the teaching progressed, I began to see with all clarity the truth that I had so desired to see and failed to see in many ministries. Now, I am so touched and changed by the teaching that I want you to bring this to my area, next time you come. There are many, many more pastors who need this teaching. We only preach about the cross for the repentance of sins. But you have preached to us the fullness of that salvation that we have received.”
Here we taught from Derek’s teaching, Does your tongue need Healing? The pastors that lead this church then testified that this was practical teaching that was so needed for the people in the village area that they were in.
At the meeting in the Kandy Lighthouse Church, which was exclusively held for the pastors associated with the Light House Fellowship, one couple came forward and shared with us personally, how the teaching had opened their eyes to the ability of the believer to stand in partnership with God to be watchmen over the nation.
They said the insight they had received would now help them to go out and train other members of their church and community in this warfare for the nation of Sri Lanka.
Our final meeting was an evening Healing Meeting. After I taught on healing, we prayed for several people and one of the young girls that were brought up for prayer was deaf in one ear. After prayer, the young girl joyfully testified that she could now hear perfectly with that ear.
Elsie & Danny