by Kelly, DTS staff
We sat huddled together on tattered floor mats at the front of the church, among a rainbow of women in jewel-toned shawls and saris. It was cold—even for Gaya, which is in northern India. I recognized some women from the village. They had walked the dusty path to attend our art and music lessons for the youth that week. This time, the meeting was just for them.
Elisa, one of the students on our team, shared a message about how valuable women are. When she finished, every woman at the meeting pushed her way to the front of the dimly lit room to receive prayer. We were ready to lead discussion and prayer in smaller groups so the women could feel safe to share openly.
One woman caught my eye. Her face looked young, fifty at the most, but she moved as if she had lived twice as many years. She lowered herself to the floor mat, wincing.
“I need prayer for pain,” she shared. Other women also asked us to pray for their physical healing.
Healing? I wondered. I was expecting them to ask for prayer related to the message. But then I remembered our team’s worship time the night before. Several of us had felt like they should read Matthew 10, which is where Jesus told his disciples to go and “heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, and cast out demons.” Well, here we were among sick and lepers. Here goes nothing. All I can do is be obedient to God and he’ll do the rest.
The translator shared more of the woman’s story. She had become a Christian just in the last three months. For years, she had suffered with shooting pain that either paralyzed her or made her shake uncontrollably.
We began praying the things God put on our hearts, asking for healing in this woman’s body. When we finished, she said something quietly to our translator, Rajansha.
“This woman couldn’t even sit down at the start of the prayer time!” Rajansha proclaimed, filling the small church with his large voice. “Now she has no pain!”
The woman stood up, slowly at first, to see if she would still be pain-free. As she stood to her feet, a smile grew on her face. She lowered herself to the ground again, standing more quickly this time. She stood up a third time, smiling even bigger.
“Praise the Lord!” she exclaimed over and over in Hindi.
She walked out of the church that afternoon, looking years younger than when she arrived. I watched her step lightly down the dusty road and God reminded me again of the things he wanted to do in the city of Gaya. This woman was just the beginning.
Lord, continue to stir up our faith for the things You want to do in India!