A Diplomat's Dilemma
Have you ever wondered how God would accomplish something in your life that He showed you or told you about? This is a testimony that ultimately showed me how easily God can accomplish something that I didn’t even think could happen. Prior to this testimony I was having numerous dreams about my wife and I having supernatural favor to meet leaders, presidents, government officials and Kings of nations. In these dreams my wife and I gave these leaders godly advice and wisdom that changed the direction of their nation, basically the restoration of ruined cities and kingdoms was the ongoing theme. I know and believe in my spirit that this will happen, yet when having these types of dreams, you tend wonder what the process would look like. I found myself imagining the different ways we can make it happen, but that is not it at all. You see, God has an incredible reputation and ability of piecing the big picture together in ways we can’t even imagine. Do you have a dream, vision or thought that God gave you? Do you ever wonder how on earth it will ever happen? Read this testimony and see how easily He can accomplish His will.
It was a cool evening on August 3rd, 2018 and we landed only hours ago around 7:15pm at Kigali international airport, in Rwanda, hungry and tired from the twenty-six-plus hour travel time. This was our third mission trip to the Congo and this time around we had the honor of close friends Bob Lozelle and Michelle LaDuke Naeyaert joining us for the first time. We de-boarded the plane on the tarmac, walked into the terminal, acquired our Rwanda visas, gathered our bags and met Jean-Pierre Bosco, our in country friend and taxi driver outside in the parking lot who quickly took us to our destination at the La Posh Hotel. The Isimbi hotel was the place where we usually stayed the first few nights in Rwanda to get acclimated to the time change before taking another domestic flight to Kamembe, Rwanda and crossing the border by vehicle into the Congo. However, this year the Isimbi was closed for remodeling, so we stayed across the street at La Posh per Bosco's recommendation. The La Posh staff warmly welcomed us, and we immediately made our way to the café to grab a bite to eat before going to bed as we were all so exhausted from the trip. I don't think I was in my bed but two minutes before crashing sound asleep.
I woke up around 3:00 AM and as I laid in bed, I found myself thinking about the vision God gave me last year with the young man wearing a cabbie hat. As excitement stirred inside of me, recounting the amazing thing God did through that experience, I decided to ask God if He would do it again! I remember thinking "I know, God doesn’t always do things the same way" but I asked anyway by saying "Father, that was such a special encounter with you, would you do it again?” I believe I fell asleep after asking that because I do not remember anything else until I woke again at 7:15 AM. It is difficult to describe but I remember clearly as I was waking up, that I did not have a vision or dream that I requested. Feeling slightly bummed, I thought to myself, “that’s OK something else will happen that will be just as exciting.” Oddly enough I found myself waking again, as if I had a dream that I woke up the first time or maybe God put me back to sleep and deposited what He wanted to into my mind and woke me again. Either way, He gave me a picture very similar to last year’s vision. I quickly grabbed my phone and started journaling what He gave me. The vision was a photo like image again, with no moving parts as a dream would have. The image was just as vivid and easy to see as last year.
As the four of us made our way to the café for breakfast at separate times, when my wife Rachelle got there she immediately shared with us why she was delayed due to an experience she just had in the hotel elevator. Apparently as she was coming down to the café in the elevator, it lost power and she got stuck. She was unable to call us because we do not have a service provider in Africa for our phones and there was no emergency phone in the lift. None of the buttons were working and the seconds turned into minutes as fear started to set in for her when the enemy told her, in her thoughts, that she would die in there. She overcame the fear and replied to those thoughts, "No, you have no power in my life and I rebuke what you are trying to do. These doors will open! I command these doors to open now in Jesus name". Shortly after voicing that, the power to the elevator turned back on and the doors opened on the same floor she started on. Needless to say, she made the decision in wisdom to take the stairs for the remainder of our stay there. Once she finished sharing, I made it a point to communicate my encounter with the team. I explained that this time my vision was of two white men, each wearing the identical red polo shirt with blue and white horizontal stripes. Similarly, they both had khaki colored pants or shorts on, as I could only see them from the thigh up. There wasn’t too much more in detail except the fact that their hair was parted neatly to the side. I mentioned that spotting these two should be very easy because first, they were white which would make them stand out but secondly, both had the same polo shirt on which seemed odd to me. Why the same shirt? I asked the team if they would help me look for what I described, knowing that God would give me what He wanted me to say to them in that moment. We continued talking for quite some time sharing about what we believe God was doing through us in addition to our Haven of Hope ministry. Rachelle and I shared that we believe we will be placed before nation leaders and government officials giving spiritual wisdom. We shared the supporting dreams and thoughts of what that would look like.
As the morning continued, we made plans to visit the Rwanda Memorial Genocide museum in Kigali. This was a common occurrence for us because we love to give new team members a history lesson of the land that we are visiting. The history in "the land of a thousand hills" is so rich, violent and yet powerful, it is quite an accomplishment that the country has moved forward so rapidly and has adopted such forgiveness in the aftermath of such devastation and dehumanization that once plagued the region. We all decided that once we were done with the museum, we would go have an amazing lunch outdoors, poolside at the beautiful Serena Hotel and Resort, because tomorrow we would be flying from the east side of Rwanda to the West side and crossing the border into the DR Congo. After spending several hours at the museum, we finally arrived at the Serena hotel. Our table was literally two feet away from the edge of the pool. If I scooted back too far in my chair, I could literally fall in. We placed our order with our amazing server, had a few laughs with him and then Bob did something that was super touching. After the server complimented Bob on his wristwatch, Bob stood up and gave it to our server as a gift. The gratefulness, joy and the sincerity of this servers’ reaction was awesome to see.
As we sat there enjoying our last day in Kigali a bright red blur caught my eye through a garden of banana and short palm trees in front of me. My heart skipped a beat in excitement as I examined closer. It was in fact the red polo shirt with white and blue horizontal stripes I saw in my dreams. It was not worn by two white men but a black man by himself. I said to Bob, Michelle and my wife "guys look, that is the shirt, that is what God showed me in my vision." The moment went on a little longer as I sat there eating lunch with my eyes locked on this man. It was as if he was highlighted to me to go pray for him. I mean, that was the shirt, I couldn’t pass this opportunity up.
Without further hesitation I got up, told the team I was going over to pray for the man and walked over to him. He was sitting at the end of a very large outdoor bar on a stool, facing away from the bar with headphones on watching something on his phone. There was no one around this man and there was an empty bar stool in front of him. I introduced myself and asked if I could sit down. He responded "yes" in English with an African accent and said his name was Richard. I explained to him, though it may sound strange, I felt the need to come over and pray for him and would that be OK? With what seemed like shock in his facial expression he said with excitement, "yes". I didn’t share any part of my vision but I instead I ask him how I could pray. He starred at me for a moment in silence and then looked at his phone, looked back at me, and then turned his phone towards me to show me what he was watching. He was watching a video entitled “Main causes for gastroenteritis”.
I said “oh, you have stomach problems, intestinal problems?”
He said “yes”
I said “OK, then I will pray for your healing and restoration”
I asked “may I place my hand on your arm” and I proceeded to explained why, that I was a Christian and the Bible directs believers to lay hands on those that are sick and they shall recover.
He said “yes, that would be fine.”
I started to pray over him and within moments the words began to flow out effortlessly. When I was done, he thanked me for doing that. I told him the honor was all mine. What was an awesome moment abruptly became awkward, so I said goodbye and started walking away. As I made my way back to the team, I thought to myself, "I have to capture this moment, I'll need to get a photo with this man to add to my journal." After arriving at our table, I grabbed my cell phone and asked Bob if he would come with me to take a photo of Richard and I. Bob immediately got up and starting walking with me back to the bar, as we approached Richard, three men moved in from different directions which I had not been there before. Shocked and slightly taken back by this I said, "I would just like to know if I could have a photo with you." He replied, "I am a Government official, a Diplomat" and with a brief hesitation he continued with "I cannot have my photo on any social media." I explained that the photo was just for me, for my memories and I would honor his request to not display his face. He agreed and allowed me to take the photo. Afterward, we said our goodbye's again and then left him alone.
Later that evening I journaled this; "It’s 8:30 at night and I’m laying in bed thinking, "look at how awesome this is." We’re working for God in a foreign land, without a clue of impact we'll have or who we'll meet. I still can’t believe what happened today. I prayed for a diplomat today, who would have thought?" I can now see how easily God can set up encounters to accomplish His will, placing us before kings, government officials and leaders without us even trying. We never thought this would be possible. I'm excited for what he’s doing in our life. My only regret was, I was so excited that I did not think to get a contact email or phone number from Richard to see the outcome of his situation and stay in touch.
This was an exciting experience and I look forward for more to come. As for the vision, I believe it required me to take my eyes off the natural and take everything so literally in it. I was looking for something very specific in the vision but instead the Holy Spirit highlighted a piece of the vision (the red shirt) to get me to respond in that situation. God is fun and life is truly exciting living in a relationship with Him. Nothing is impossible for God to accomplish but we do have to respond and it is Ok to ask. I thank God for the awesome opportunities he places in front of me.