by Rachel Kenny, from Medical Ministries International
Navunievu, Vanua Levu, Fiji… one of the most breathtaking villages in all of Fiji I presume. The village by the sea greets us with warmth and a brisk sunshine infused breeze as we make your way down the rust colored clay road. I think to myself that in such a place of beauty, God must be present at all times, but what I don’t realize is that there are deeply rooted cultural and traditional spiritual strongholds in existence that have resisted God for decades. But, God… God is able!
The medical clinic is flowing with ease and we are seeing patients as planned. A woman comes to me at the “Blood and Guts” station in need of wound care on her hand. You can see the sweetness of her spirit as we talk while I do what I can for her. She tells me thank you for coming to her village. She tells me she is so glad our medical team has come to see her friends and family. She tells me that she is excited because she has just accepted Jesus as her Savior. She tells me that today, she hopes her husband will find the same joy and peace she has received through Jesus Christ. After finishing up with her hand, I pray a blessing over her life and thank God for the eternal life she has found in Him.
As she left my station to continue her way through the clinic, I felt a subtle nudge in my heart to find her again; there was more of her story I needed to hear. After awhile I went outside to find her, following the feeling I had inside, thinking I was being silly. When I see her I begin to ask her questions about her family and children. I am pulled away shortly after our conversation began, leaving her, still feeling like I needed to speak with her a bit longer.
As lunch is served our clinic ceases and we enjoy deliciously prepared food. All the while I am thinking of this woman, Senijale, and this urgency I have to talk with her again. After lunch, as soon as the clinic resumes, I approach her yet again. She tells me that her husband is back from farming and that he is coming to the clinic. Then, after all of our small talk, she tells me what I have needed to hear, the unknown reason I have been chasing after her conversations… Her husband is the village church pastor; a pastor of a religion that believes in God, claiming Christianity, but has dark and twisted theology, mixing cultural customs and even witchcraft… distorting the transforming truth of the Gospel, opposing real relationship with the Lord, and resisting Jesus Christ as Savior. They read the Bible, yes, they read it daily, but the Word is not alive to them. They are avid churchgoers, but not to seek relationship with Jesus or to surrender and worship our King, but because it is just what they do. But, God… God is able!
As Senijale’s husband, enters the clinic, right before I follow him in, she turns to me and says that she hopes with all of her heart that he gives his life to Jesus, receiving the peace and joy she feels so fully… She says that if he does, he will be able to preach the true Gospel on Sundays, impacting the whole congregation in a way they have never encountered.
Suliasi is his name, and he is ready. Before he came to visit me at my station for some wound care, he had his information written down on his intake card. One of the spots on the card is for church affiliation, and he had Methodist written down… But, God… God is able! I take care of the snakebite on his finger and all the while I talk to him about his wife and the new peace she has through Jesus. When I speak of this, his face softens. I ask him if he wants the same peace and joy she has… he does! I speak to him more about the abundant life that Jesus provides through Salvation in Him, and Suliasi’s face softens even more. As I finish up with my care, I pray with Suliasi. He thanks me with a wide grin across his face. I send him to the next station then make my way around to the team members to ensure that they know who he is and that he is coming around the clinic. Once he had gone to al of the stations, he sat down with Jerry at the prayer station. At some point in the clinic after seeing me, but before sitting down with Jerry, Suliasi had made a big decision, going so far as to correcting it on his info card. He had crossed out “Pastor” and had written “Christian”… Suliasi wanted the truth found in Jesus Christ alone. A man that has rejected relationship with Jesus through cultural and traditional ideology opened his heart. He had an encounter with God. Jerry helped him pray the prayer of Salvation, and Suliasi fully surrendered his life to Christ.
Suliasi is a new man, with the hope of glory found in our Savior Jesus. He has new life and will me discipled to pursue Jesus and preach the Word of the Lord. He will lead his wife and children, and he will lead his congregation. God knew. God made a way. God prepared and opened a heart. God revealed himself. God is able!
Go and see that GOD IS ABLE… Ephesians 3:20-21
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