The night before last night I got a call from one of our kids in diepsloot. I was trying toput Josh to sleep at the time.
I picked up my phone and Elizabeth (one of our teens in diepsloot) spoke to me and told me that one of the other girls was having a demonic seizure or fit. Although, this is something that you don't often see in the normal society in the western world, yet its very prevalent in Africa.
In the past whenever we were in a township and saw something like this happen we would cast it out in the name of Jesus and generally it would leave. But often on the inside I was a bit scared and even though I knew our power in Jesus was greater, still these weren't my favorite situations to be in. I never understood why the devil would always make such a scene, but now I know that he just does whatever he can to try and get attention.
But recently I heard a testimony which changed my perspective completely. It was a story of a girl who had a demon in church and people were trying to cast it out. Todd white was there and he took a different approach. He hugged this girl until the thing left and finally, she was free.
What he did really stayed with me and in fact, it had a great effect on me. if demons were afraid of love -there is really no reason to be afraid of them.
This reminded me of a teaching I did recently at our school in diepsloot. Most of the kids we know there struggle with serious issues at home and besides dealing with extreme poverty they also have a lot of fear, especially at the beginning.
There is really a powerful scripture in 1 John 4:18 It says Perfect love casts out all fear. And I love to use Gods love for us, His children as an example of how perfect love casts out all fear.
Imagine you are sitting on Jesus lap and He is just doting on you, the child of His delight, His eyes of love fixed on you and a warmth coming out of His very being that you have never experienced on this earth. All you're doing is sitting on His lap and receiving His love but to Him you are the most beautiful gift in the universe. This is the greatest love you have ever experienced on this earth, and your only job is to receive it.
Some of you who have had kids can relate to this.
When my son is with me he is my greatest joy. I love him simply because he is mine, nothing more, nothing less. There is no specific 'reason' that I love him. I love him because he is. He is the most beautiful person in the world to me and it has nothing to do with his behaviour. I love him so much that my heart could burst from the overflow and with each days that passes my love just grows stronger. Everything he says is adorable. He is the most charming little guy in the world. (Of course All my kids are so special and I am so thankful they are mine.)
This is just like the Father's love for us. He loves us unconditionally. It has absolutely nothing to do with what we do or don't do (it has taken me awhile to understand this, but I'm finally getting it!.) Our main purpose is just to receive the extravegent love of the father, even if we don't understand it. And when we can receive it, without trying or striving or working to earn it. Only then can we get the full benefit from it.
This is when we begin to understand how 'perfect love casts out fear'. When we are sitting on His lap and receiving His love our hearts can't be in fear anymore because that's our safe place. Being with Him is the safest place we could ever be.
When I explain these things to our kids in diepsloot and that this is how their daddy, Jesus loves them, extravegently and with no strings attached. Its then that I can see them beginning to get 1 John 4:18. And when I myself, am in this place I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that nothing can touch me.
Back to my story. So Elisabeth hung up quickly and the phone call was over yet I found myself just feeling so filled with the love of God that I knew that this girl was going to be Ok.
I began to release to love of God all over this young girl. I just told Jesus to pour out His extravagant love over her so tangibly so that she would know and experience and receive His love in such a way that it would change her forever. As I prayed I could feel the power and strength of the love of God just fortifying me all over. I could literally feel its energy. Love is a powerful force and you can feel it ... as the love of God was poured out upon us. Well, His love was all over me. Then I fell asleep.
Upon awaking the next morning I found a message from Elizabeth saying that shortly after I prayed the girl came out of the fit and was fine.
It was then that I began to recognize and become aware of the power of love. If God is love then love is literally the greatest force in the world. I realized why love is so important in this world and why when we get away from love, we get away from God. I also realized why its so important to love those around us as love drives out demons, it heals, it sets free, love brings life, it restores hope, love changes nations.
The power of God's love changed me, it changed Chris and its changing young kids in deipsloot -lots of them. The power of love is so strong because when we stand together, the enemy can't touch us. But its when we're apart that its easier to fall.
If love is strong enough to change our lives, then it can change others too.
If I'm going through something alone - I struggle, but if my close friends are around - I feel safe. why is that? Because God created us to be a family - we are one in Him.
Just the way He created and designed reproduction is a dead giveaway of His nature of love. He created each family unit to have a mom and dad who fell in love and they became fruitful and have children together whom they also love. This is the blueprint and design for every person born on this earth, to come into a family, as a very natural way to give and receive love. And if that didn't turn out the way it should have, well then, there is still hope for you when you choose your own partner and start your own family..
But His love didn't stop there. He also created us to be His children and He -the God of the universe as our Dad, and His Son as our big brother.
What an awesome deal we got -for doing nothing. Just because He was looking for a people to lavish His love upon.
Let His love be your only motivation ..not your works, not your striving, yet instead with this thought in mind. That you and I were birthed as the object of His affection, to receive His love and then that love came and changed everything!
1 John 3:1 See what Great Love the Father has lavished upon us, that we should be called His children.
Knowing more about the depth of His love for us and specifically for me, personally, has really been restoring my joy and its been literally changing everything for me.
If you too, can receive His love, ❤️ as the gift that it is, unfair as it may seem - It will change everything for you too!
I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!