Spiritual Warfare and Encounters of a Third Kind

Living in a country full of spirit worship, appeasement and mystical practices, we are not surprised by new experiences in the spiritual realm. As Pentecostals, we expect spiritual encounters, or encounters of a third kind. Last month, we a story that has yet to escape me as I still think about what we experienced, and more than that…one of the children from the slum community that we minister to.

The church went to a youth camp in the north of Thailand. This young teenager lives in one of the slum communities that the church reaches out to. She knows we are Christian and love her and her family with the love of Jesus as we are telling his story in the process of helping her with school, health care and sanitation. Yet she still claims allegiance to Buddhism as her family is Buddhist. However, as the young people prayed, she met God in a powerful way, falling to her back. As the worship music continued to play, she remained on her back, overwhelmed by the presence of God. She laid in the back of the room for some time as we prayed for her again. When she finally sat up, tranquility washed over her face and body. The church came around her wanting to explain this experience she had knowing she wasn’t sure what happened. Stunned and taken back by this experience with God caused a curiosity in her to grow, and she kept pressing in to know this God that she encountered.

God broke through the strongholds, barriers and darkness that had previously prevented this girl from knowing him…now, it is up to her, the same as it is to anyone when they encounter Jesus. Will she follow him, or reject him…we keep giving her chances to be near him, so she can learn to follow him more and more. But the decision remains hers.

What happens when you encounter God? What strongholds, walls or barriers does he have to breakthrough to meet you? Or did he have to come through to meet you? Share your experience, or thoughts regarding the spiritual realm.

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