Looking back over my recent travels gives me such a sense of joy at the amazing ways different parts of the Body of Christ are busy serving the Lord.
One of our recent trips took us to River of Life Church in Santa Clara, California—to my knowledge, the largest charismatic Mandarin-speaking church in America. The pastor, Tong Liu, is of Taiwanese background and is an extraordinary visionary.
We were there to celebrate the church's 20th anniversary, and goodness, they really know how to celebrate! Other speakers included our very good friends Dick Eastman, George Otis Jr., and Jaeson Ma for the youth.
There are a number of reasons being at this church brings me joy, but one important one is that they are evangelizing the large number of Chinese immigrants who are flooding into the west coast of the United States. We want to see those whom God has brought to our shores, largely from Buddhist backgrounds, come to know Jesus!
River of Life also has an apostolic, church-planting movement throughout Asia, Africa, and other places. They are extremely generous, and the church in Mongolia that we visited recently is connected to them.
I don't know how much of this is interesting to you, but I love to see God's people at work!
One service that I did was totally hijacked by the Holy Spirit as He began to heal people. I have been praying about the promise, “You will receive power after the Holy Spirit comes upon you,” (Acts 1:8) and asking God to see more power manifested in the area of miracles. Guess what? It is working!
One very sweet miracle was through a word of knowledge when I said, “There is someone here, and you are shorter than you are supposed to be.” I went on to explain—because lots of people wanted prayer to grow!—that this would not be someone who had lost height, but rather, someone who was told by doctors that they should have grown taller than they did.
Finally, the right one came forward—a young woman. She was weeping and weeping, and at last we understood that she had suffered a lot of teasing from her lack of height. I had not prayed for someone to grow instead of to regain height, but I knew it was from the Lord. In faith, I put my hand about three inches above her head, and she shot up until her head touched my hand!
You should have seen her face! In fact, you should have seen the faces of the people who witnessed the miracle! It was stunning! People were laughing and crying all at once!
The next day, I spoke to the youth group on boldness to do miracles, and at the end, I said, "Now we are going to demonstrate the miraculous!" I asked if there was anyone there who knew they had one leg shorter than the other. After a young woman came forward, we sat her on a chair, and the kids crowded all around us, on the platform and down at the front.
Then I said, "Who has never seen a miracle!" One hand shot up quickly, and I invited her to come forward. I said, "Now kneel down and command the leg to grow." At first she was hesitant, but then she did. And, of course, the leg grew! We went through this spiritual exercise three more times, and the last one to pray for the leg to grow was only 12 years old!
Of course, this sparked a buzz of excitement! We turned them loose to pray for each other and commissioned them to go out and heal the sick. I am sure there were some fiery evangelists born out of the meeting that day!
Sunday morning, the anniversary celebration was in the San Jose Convention Center (a city near the church). There was a parade of nations with pastors from many nations in their native dress, a choir of around 150 or more voices, and the unveiling of a model of the new sanctuary that will seat 2,000. Video footage of their large feeding program for the poor was shown as well.
Mike and I left the city content and happy at the goodness of God that we had witnessed and thankful that we were able to have a part in it!