Thursday, March 18, 2010

Mental and Spiritual Health

Sorry the pictures didn't come out so great. I didn't feel very free to make
it too obvious that I was taking pictures. Anyways, I accompanied Luke up
to a mental hospital just about 15 minutes from us. Every Thursday, he
usually goes with one of our pastors, Anderson Jere, to do a little chapel,
sing some songs and pray over each patient. I have been wanting to go for
sometime now and it finally worked out. It was a humbling experience. These
are truly the forgotten people of society. Many have been dropped off by
their family and left for dead, literally. Other do come back and visit.
There are a variety of reasons why they are here and you can only imagine
some of the abuse that has led them here. It was crazy to stare into the
eyes of some of the lifeless bodies and wonder. I shared a little devotion
about Peter walking on water, and then had a chance to pray for many people.
The most amazing thing about this time was seeing the joy that came over
these patients as we sang. It was literally, a night and day difference.
After we finished and we were leaving, Luke said to one of the workers,
"Thanks for all you do. You are a hero to me." And he said thanks and then
expressed how much of a difference that Luke and Pastor Jere had been making
with the patients as well. Apparently, they never talked but ever since
there has been a Thursday chapel, the people are talking much more now. They
learn best in groups, he said, and by bringing them in together, they are
learning to talk more. And, he continued, the singing brings them such joy.
So, it was neat to hear that. Luke visits hospitals and clinics with the
pastors most days of the weeks. As a mission, we are trying to give the
pastors a vision for visiting the sick and sharing Christ and praying for
people. And for some of the pastors, they have now made it a weekly
priority to visit the clinics in their compounds. It is a difficult ministry
to really see a lot of fruit in, because you never get to see the end
results. But, I thought I would include a portion of Luke's latest blog to
give you a few cool stories of what God is doing in this Matthew 25
ministry.

Luke's Blog:
Hospital Visitation Ministry has gotten back underway after a couple of
months break. Many of the same local Action Zambia pastors who participated
last year are back with the addition of a few new faces. We continue to go
into four different area clinics over the course of the week and spend
roughly and hour and a half praying for the multitudes of sick that exists
here in Lusaka. From these visits more and more stories are emerging about
the blessings God has bestowed upon these patients during our time with
them. I want to close by sharing a testimony of a young woman who since our
visit with her one Tuesday in the clinic has seen God do amazing things in
her life. This young woman has since started to attend the church of Action
Zambia pastor Anderson Jere who shared this encouraging note with me. Pastor
Jere writes in his own words:

Dear Brother Luke

I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. I want just to share with
you , a testimony of how our ministry (hospital visitation) is doing in the
lives of many patients we minister to. On several occasions I have received
phone calls from a number of them confessing that the Good Lord has done
wonders in one way or another after ministering and praying for them.

One of them is Ruth. If you can remember very well, we ministered to this
lady at Kalingalinga Clinic sometime back in mid November 2009. This lady
told us that she had given up serving the Lord because God was not answering
her prayers. But after helping her with the Word of God she confessed and
promised that she will go back to church. Towards the end of February 2010,
Ruth called me, and she thanked God saying that if only it was not for the
prayers and words of encouragement she received from us, she could have
killed herself because she had no option left but to commit suicide. I
assured Ruth that I was always praying for her since we last met, and she
further told me that she was still going through a number of problems. Her
father, who is an elder in one of the church denominations, is a satanist
and he once raped her and he is trying everything possible so that he can
make her join in his satanic activities and this has brought great problems
on her life and health.

After hearing this I was very touched and invited her to our church, and on
Sunday 28th February 2010 she came. I ministered to her and together with
some church leaders held some prayers with her and them she felt free and
shared her story, it was a moving testimony.

Brother Luke, the ministry is impacting a number of souls, even those we
don't meet or hear from them after the visit. I only wish I was in full time
ministry so that I could have enough time to minister to such souls. Pray
for Ruth and also pray for me so that God can give me the means to sustain
my family so that I can commit all my time to ministry work. May God bless
us all.

Pastor Anderson Jere


So, there you have it... Hope you are encouraged today to use the
opportunities to do ministry in your place in the world. The sick are
everywhere, so ask them if you can pray for them. God is just looking for a
few courageous, obedient souls...

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