Middle East August 2022

“If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?” Esther 4:13

We are so thankful for all your prayers; the opposition to this mission was constant. We lost 2 team members before the mission, due to UK visas not being issued and on the night before we departed, Robert tested positive for COVID. We were then 4 people, but the Lord knew all this and cut us back as he did Gideon’s army. We arrived without our bags, although most of them arrived within 24 hours, another came after 48 hours. Jan had a fall on the way to visit a key person who has offered to open the door to minister in Ukraine. As we landed in Turkey, there were so many challenges and it felt very hostile for us. However, the Lord’s plans would not be thwarted, and it was because of prayer that things settled after 24 hours, and we started our intercession for this mission. The team were so good about all of this, and it was a joy for us to stay in unity and help each other.

We had three days, 12 – 14 August, of prayer/intercession, which I believe the Lord set up for us to prepare for the 4-day Seminar to people from 2 nations where they face persecution and death for being believers in Jesus Christ. This was crucial for the success of this mission, and I believe this was essential for us to move forward and will be essential for future missions for people from some of the darkest countries in the world. I commend Di Payne who led us in these intercessions in new and dynamic ways. And we thank Jesus for her.
The response to the Seminar, 15 - 18 August, attended by 25 people each day, was more than we could ask or imagine. The first morning worshipping to YouTube worship was so anointed, the majority were in tears and as one team member said, it was electric. Then we had a teaching on Shame/Honour Culture over Zoom and the Holy Spirit just touched the delegates who were so open, and deliverance started. We had not even introduced ourselves, but Holy Spirit just ministered to them.

Over the course of the next four days, we built trust, we taught, we did drama and prayed. Some of the stories we heard were unimaginably awful, yet they chose to forgive. If this was difficult and we sent them away to discuss forgiveness with Jesus, they came back having had dreams and visions and chats with the Lord, having forgiven. We did ministry with people that would normally take months to bring healing, but the Lord just accelerated the healing and within minutes they were set free and beaming with love and compassion.
We think all but a couple of people were hugely impacted and transformed and the day after we departed, they went on the streets to share the good news of Jesus with people in Istanbul and many gave their lives to Jesus. We could never do that, but it was such a privilege to minister to those who could.

I am including a few of the many testimonies we received:

"One lady said that yesterday she received peace deeply within her and today especially, a burden has been taken from her. She said, 'I don't care (worry) about it anymore'. One of the other women and our host both said they could see the difference that this has made to her. She looks different, even in her face.

Another said that the second time in the group, as the women who had similar wounds were sharing what they had only kept privately, that sharing in the group was comforting for the others and for herself.

Another shared how she thought she had been to blame for some of the things that have happened to her. God has helped her to see clearly, and she has been forgiving people. 2 days ago, she was taking a nap and had a dream, she was running/fleeing and was feeling hot and was sweating. Last night she had the dream again, this time she had left the heat behind. Her sister told her that she is different today. Our host also said she was different. She had been timid before and did not speak. Today she is speaking out and her face is different.

Another girl had shared privately with a team member, and she had told her to tell Jesus about her personal problem. She spoke to Jesus and after many years decided to forgive the person.

Another had been in a disagreement with someone in her family a couple of weeks ago and had not spoken since. She did not want to forgive them. Last night she phoned them, and Holy Spirit has helped her to forgive. The problem between them has gone.

Another gave thanks for the teaching which she shared with her 9-year-old son the previous night, who had been putting a blanket over his head at night, as he was afraid because he had bad dreams when he closed his eyes and struggled to sleep. She shared the teaching about Authority of JESUS with him and that He was stronger than Satan and to give his fear to God. He did this and when he had woken up, he had had a good night. She was so happy that after 9 years she has learned something new.

One of the men said a few years ago that something had happened in their life and their family did not support them, and wanted to leave them all behind. After all these years, he felt he needed to call them, so he called them, and he prayed for them. It was a good feeling.

Another lady shared that when she was a child something bad had happened to her. Yesterday these things came back to her mind, and she felt she had to share them. She had lost self-confidence and yesterday she was able to forgive them. It was hard, but it was good.