Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Nochixtlan, Oaxaca, 12th-14th October 2011
Wednesday, 12th Oct we left the beach at Chachalacas, Veracruz where we had been resting as a team. We got to Oaxaca in 9 hours where we slept overnight in the home of the pastors there. In the morning we split up according to what we felt the Lord was saying to us individually. 7 of us left the larger team and went to the town of Noxchitzlan, Oaxaca, about an hour away.
This town has been my favourite part of this Latin American journey so far! We arrived to find out we were staying in the church grounds, which also had a school and they were building a missions base there. They have 24/7 prayer there where they take different shifts of about 2 or 3 people at a time and pray throughout the day and night! We had noticed that as soon as we entered the gates in our vehicles we felt a significant atmosphere shift to peace. 24/7 prayer had to be the reason why! We popped up our camper, “Shalom” for the girls and the boys were given a room to sleep in with a bed and couch… so happy for them, as mostly they have been sleeping in their cars or tents. It was freezing cold there after having been hot at the beach. We layered up and went to visit a friend of Maria’s (team leader, from Mexico originally). We went there to pray over the family and as we visited we were fed a 3 course meal! It turns out they own a catering business. We were so happy to eat a real 3 course meal, and it was healthy good food as well! We prayed over the 2 Grandparents, their children and their 2 grandsons. Speaking prophetic words over them we later found out that they were spot on and exactly what they had been going through. We were so blessed to be able to visit and pour out in the supernatural as well as get fed in the natural! Maria’s friend then took us to see some of the sights of Oaxaca City – we big churches, beautiful architecture, we found ourselves in the middle of some kind of parade (“Arriba!), we had hot chocolate from Mayan times and I was able to finally buy a phone for Central America.
Thursday, we all piled into Overflow and drove up the steep mountains to a little community about an hour away. We visited the church there – 5 families who have come to know Jesus over the last 10 years. They have experienced a lot of persecution from their community. They were kicked out and had to travel to appeal to the government so they would be allowed back to their homes. They are still persecuted and we could not go door to door as we normally do. A couple of years ago some Canadians visited and had to leave the town in a hurry. We still had an amazing time, praying for the families there and leading a church service that night. Before we even headed down to the church, we were at a pastors house and prayed for one of their mother’s who was blind in one eye. We prayed over her, asking Jesus to come do what He loves to do and declaring her healing. We then tested it out - Maria asked her how many fingers she was holding up, “two, five”, yes Jesus! Then one of the boys had her following his finger with her eye, and finally Maria asked her to name the colours on her top. Thank you Jesus for pouring out your healing power!
That night Maria, Taylor and I led worship – we translated a couple of songs into Spanish, and went for it… Personally I felt like it was hard lead the people into the presence of God. It felt hard and different I guess because it was a different culture. Also the keyboard didn’t have a pedal… if you play keys you’ll understand! But it turned out awesome. While we were preparing, one of the guys encouraged me to just go with the Holy Spirit and leave the Spanish if I felt let to, and just sing whatever He led me to in English. So we were there trying to break through in worship in Spanish, and we kind of came to a standstill… Maria confirmed to me to just sing whatever in English. So I started to sing the chorus of “I Just Want You” (Planetshakers). We ended up translating it on the spot to Spanish and the Holy Spirit came in greater presence and power. We ditched the original plan of “worshipping for ½ hour” and Maria sharing her testimony, and just kept worshipping instead. His sweet presence was there so thick and so sweet that we just could not stop worshipping. Maria called forth everyone who was sick to be prayed for. One of the significant testimonies out of that time was a young couple with a baby whose marriage was restored, forgiveness was released and they wept and hugged each other as the Lord did his work in their hearts of reconciliation. Breck did an awesome job of driving us home in the darkness down the mountain trails, following only the GPS’s blue line of the way we had come previously. It’s quite funny because a lot of the time, the roads we are on are just not even on the GPS – it just says the direction we are travelling and shows the terrain!
Friday, we had a sleep in, then met up with a local missionary (Marie) to visit some of her people. First we visited the mother of one of Maria’s friends, where we prayed over the mother, her husband, the grandmother (great –grandmother age) and another of the mother’s friends. The friend and the grandmother both gave their lives to Jesus!
Marie took us to another mountain village, where we went house to house and prayed for people. Some of them were believers already, others were not. We prayed for many people, including a woman who had had a stroke and was paralysed the whole of her left side. Her left arm and hand was curled up and she could not talk, however was able to understand us. We bent down and greeted her one by one – as I took her hand, she lifted mine up and kissed it. I think she thought I was Mexican. Myself and a couple of the other women knelt by her bed and loved on her. I tried to ignore the smell and the bits of dried up skin all over the bed. As I looked into her eyes and stroked her hair I could feel Jesus’ intense love for his daughter. We found out that the people around her all thought it was God’s judgement on her that she was sick. This mindset mainly comes from the particular religion that prevails around Mexico. They had also been to the witchdoctor in the past in regards to her healing. We spent a bit of time with her and her husband, just loving on her… I know Jesus would have done something in her heart, and pray that she would know complete healing in Jesus’ name! Most of all, that she and her husband would know such a deeper intimacy with Him than they ever have before. It makes me think of the elderly men and women in our own hometowns and cities in the west. Who takes the time to go visit them? In these villages out here and even in Africa, I have seen the sick and elderly stay in their homes while relatives look after them. In the west, they go into nursing homes… While some do get visits by family on a regular basis, many do not. What does love look like to them? How can we love on them? You don’t have to be extra specially talented or amazing to go and love on someone :) Listen to their stories. Share with them, love on them.
We were running at least an hour late to get back to the church, however had to stop one last time to pray over the family at the place we had eaten lunch. We also prayed over our translator who had been translating for us from Spanish to Mixtteco. He has a strong prophetic anointing and is going to see the fire of God spread all over his village and the villages around. He mentioned to us that he couldn’t hear properly in one of his ears. We didn’t know that! So we prayed and Jesus healed his ear! We asked him if anything was different, he stopped, checked, and a look of absolute amazement spread over his face! He said, “It’s normal!” and burst into tears, grabbing each of us one by one into a fierce hug. He then grabbed his wife who was also in tears, and they laughed and wept joyfully in celebration of what Jesus did for them!
We then drove back to the church, dropping Marie (missionary) off on the way so she could take a bus back and catch a bible college class. She has been there for 10 years and is so faithful – having just seen real breakthrough and release in the last couple of years. I want to encourage any of you who have been ploughing for years, to keep ploughing, continue to make JESUS and INTIMACY with HIM your first and primary goal and time taker… Listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit. He will lead and guide you, obey what He says and you will see Him pour out!