I woke up early to pray on the roof of Beit Immanuel. It’s beautiful up there to look across the city from the top of this four-story building. I knew we would be praying for direction on which way to go that day and I just felt hungry to have more alone time with Him before the craziness of the day started.
That morning’s worship had us washing the feet of the discipleship group that we had shared our mornings with at the hostel. I washed the feet of a Brazilian guy named Omer.
When we did finally all gather to pray, the Lord grouped me with six of the others to prayer walk the local area. Kara and four others went to feed the homeless, and three of our group stayed back to pray covering over both other groups for protection and direction.
We went walking for a few hours praying. At one point, we entered a very bad part of town which got extremely interesting.
I’ve prayer walked my own neighborhood and others in my hometown of Austin, but never had an experience like this at home. I have had some pretty crazy prayer walks on the mission trips I’ve been on and this was one of them. We (maybe I should say I) are not usually very aware of the spiritual realities going on around us all the time. But on occasions, God calls us to be His Light in a dark place and He reveals to us the spiritual nature of our dark surroundings. This is what happened this day.
We walked through a part of town that was definitely run down, but again, I’ve walked through worse in Austin and not thought much of it, other than it’s dirty. But the Lord made everything we saw very, very real. As we prayed and walked, we saw a drug deal going on. We began to notice the evil in the spray painted graffiti on the walls. One was of an alien lifting the dress of a little elementary school girl. This was right next to the little area park with basketball hoops. There were other evil symbols painted along the wall. I don’t even remember what they were other than the fact that a power radiated from them. We talked to business owners in the area and there was darkness in those conversations. I wish I could explain it better.
All I can say was the evil in this place was palpable and we walked through praying His Light into every nook and cranny. Perhaps the physical toll tells the story of the spiritual, better than my imagery. By the time we got out of it, Glenn’s back was killing him although it hadn’t hurt when we entered this area. Robert was so exhausted that he could barely move. We had to stop and spend about an hour at a pizza joint while he gathered back strength to walk again. We were all wiped out by the evil we battled in this place.
When I return this month to Israel, it will be my first trip back, but Joe, a member of our team, went back last year. He said that this area that we had prayed through was completely revitalized! He said that I would not even recognize it as the same place.
God is good!!