Out of all of the nations that exist in the world this one nation seems to keep cropping up in my life. Is this a coincidence? I don’t think so. (John Lathrop)
This article is a brief testimony of how the country of Indonesia has come across my path over the years. Some of what I am going to share here I have only in recent years remembered or become aware of.
In the 1970s I was in college working on a degree in Business Administration.
After one of my classes I noticed that a classmate left a book in the rack under his seat. I picked up the book and brought it to him. The book was one written by Mel Tari. My friend explained to me that the book was about the miraculous events that had taken place in a revival in Indonesia (Mel Tari wrote at least two books about the Indonesia revival: Like a Mighty Wind, and The Gentle Breeze of Jesus).
My friend was part of a Charismatic Christian Community in the city; he invited me to attend some of their meetings. Some time after this I prayed a “sinner’s prayer” and became a born-again Christian. I then began attending a local evangelical church.
This church showed a missionary film called Peace Child. The movie told the story of a missionary couple who had a difficult time bringing the gospel to the people they were trying to reach. They eventually found a way to connect through a cultural practice involving a “peace child.” I found out a few years ago that this missionary film dealt with a people group in Indonesia.
Then in the later half of the 1990s things took a major step forward, by this time I was the pastor of a church. One Sunday we had a visitor in the service, a young man from Indonesia. He was a devout Christian as well as a tremendous musician. He continued to attend our church and became a part of the worship team. After he began attending our church we had a number of other Indonesians join us.
In fact, at one point the congregation of our church was between 15-20% Indonesian.
The first Indonesian who attended our church had a vision to start a biblical reference library in Indonesia. He shared the vision with me and our church got behind the idea. But that is not all.
During the years that I pastored my wife and I made two trips to the country.
Many of the Indonesians who attended our church were students who eventually returned to their homeland, so we now have a number of friends in the country. Out of all of the nations that exist in the world this one nation seems to keep cropping up in my life. Is this a coincidence? I don’t think so.
Has the Lord repeatedly brought a particular nation across your path? Is the Lord knitting your heart to a particular nation? If you sense that this is happening don’t ignore it, it may be something quite significant. The Lord could be calling you to pray for that land or perhaps be even more involved!
John P. Lathrop - United States
John P. Lathrop is a graduate of Western Connecticut State University, Zion Bible Institute, and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary’s Center for Urban Ministerial Education (CUME). He is an ordained minister with the International Fellowship of Christian Assemblies and has twenty years of pastoral experience.