Tag Archives: Africa

Sticks and Stones

Africa

The hot sun bore down on my skin through the window opening that provided very little airflow. The hour felt late, but it was only 1:00 pm in the afternoon. This was a special day because the church service would be the first official service of a new church plant. The worship was amazing, but half-way through I started experiencing extreme pain and discomfort in the middle of my back. Twice this week, I remember experiencing fever or inflammation like pain on both sides of my spinal column running down my back. I don’t remember picking up anything heavy or injuring my back. Why would the pain come and leave, then come back again?

Just like I would pray for anyone else, I reached around and placed my hands on my back. I spoke to the pain and commanded it to go, in Jesus Name!

Nothing happened.

That can’t be right either. Hummmm…… I thought for a moment and prayed again. Still, nothing happened.

“God, what is going on? Why is the pain still there?” I asked.

God’s response to my question was monumental in my life. It not only brought healing physically, but it brought healing emotionally and spiritually. He said, “Khristina, there is someone who is “backbiting” (or talking bad about you) and you need to break those words being spoken over you.” So, I did what He told me. I said, “In Jesus Name, I break every word that is being spoken against me that does not line up with the word and will of God.”

The pain immediately left.

Let’s take a minute and soak this in.

Yep, God said that someone was speaking bad about me and it was making my back hurt. Weird, I know. Let me explain.

We find in Proverbs 18:21 that “words” have more power than we could ever imagine. It says, “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

The old “nana nana boo boo” saying we used as kids, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me!” is not exactly true. As a matter of fact, we find out as an adult that it’s “words” that bring more pain than a physical wound. It’s the “words,” that someone you loved said to you 20 years ago, that still bring tears to your eyes today. It’s words that pastors or “Christians” have spoken years ago that we choose to be mad at God about today.

There are so many wonderful truths to teach concerning the power of words in our life, but we are going to focus on how they affect on our bodies. If “the tongue has the power of life and death,” then how much more does it have the power to affect our bodies?

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Faith as a Child

Guatemala

I watched the beautiful Mayan child clinged to her mother as I held out my arms to hold her. A familiar reaction I have experienced in other parts of the world, especially when being introduced to a white woman for the first time. I imagine if I had only been raised in one culture, language, and ethnicity my reaction would be similar. At least she wasn’t crying or screaming like some children I met in Africa.

“My daughter, Itzel, is not sick, but will you pray a general blessing over her?” the mother asked. 

I knew it would be God’s love that cast out all fear in Itzel’s heart concerning me.    So, I asked my interpreter to put her hand on the child and then I gently put my hand on top of hers.  The little girl held on even tighter to her mother as I prayed.  Not only was my bright white skin shining in this girls eyes, but now I was touching her. I could tell by her facial expressions that things were not getting easier and her realm of safety was getting smaller and smaller.

Everyone had their eyes closed, intently receiving the prayers being offered up for this child.  The interpreter was not conveying my prayer to the mother, only listening.  Thirty seconds into the prayer I watched Itzel’s body relax and pull away from her mother. She un-tucked her arms from her fragile face and reached out with her palms up towards God. The fear in her eyes was gone as she closed them and rested in the presence of God with her arms lifted high.

“God’s love casts out all fear.”  1 John 4:18

It wasn’t the words I spoke, because no one could understand them.  It wasn’t through a hug or a smile, because she didn’t want to touch me and everyone’s eyes were closed.  It was through God’s love and presence that Itzel felt peace and felt God’s presence. 

There is power in prayer. 

I encourage you to pray for someone you know that is facing hardship in their life right now.  “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in Him.”  1 John 4:16


“I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.”Luke 18:17 & Mark 10:15


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No pain, no cane

Uganda

Her face showed the intensity of her pain as she walked slowly towards me with the assistance of a stick that looked to be a cane.  She explained how God had healed her eyes only the year before and she believed that God could heal her back and legs.  So, with her faith and mine we believed and prayed together.  

The first time we prayed, she threw the cane in the floor about two feet away.

We prayed the second time and she started to walk away from me with a limp, but no cane for support.  She said the pain was decreasing, but God wasn’t done.

We prayed a third time and we watched in amazement as her leg grew out.  Now she was walking without a limp and the pain had decreased a little more.

We prayed a fourth time and she started stomping her leg so hard on the ground that I thought she would surely throw out her leg again and we would have to pray again. 

She walked away with no pain and no cane.  

(She left her cane with me.) 

Thank you, Jesus!


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Fear Fighter

Ghana

The busy noise of cars honking, off-key karaoke, and loud music faded as we drove further out of the city and into a rural village. I loved the village sounds of wind in the palm trees, children playing soccer in the dirt, and family laughter. The rest of the car ride was quiet, which gave me time to reflect on my teaching for the evening. People from 53 villages were coming together to experience God and His grace. I felt so blessed to be a part of this service.

My driver, Adom, whom I had only met one other time, began to ask about my teachings that week.  His eyes stared in amazement as I shared stories of people who had been healed of sickness and delivered from bondage through prayer. Then he asked, “Are you one of those people?”

As I tried to hold back a chuckle, I said, “One of what people?”

He said, “One of those people who cast out demons?”

My chuckle was a full-blown laugh that soon turned to reassurance when I responded, “Yes, I am! And you can be one of those people too!! Mark 16:17 says, that you have been given power and authority to cast out demons.”

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