Revivals in the 21st Century
2002 Revival in the South Pacific
Transforming revival continues to spread globally. DVDs produced by The Sentinel Group (www.sentinelgroup.org) report on community transformation around the world, especially in Transformations I and II, and reports from Fiji in Let the Seas Resound. This brief update describes recent revivals in the South Pacific islands, representative of revivals multiplying in the twenty-first century.
The Lord moved in a surprising way at the Christian Fellowship (CF) in the School of Law in Port Vila, Vanuatu on Saturday night, April 6, the weekend after Easter 2002.
The university’s CF held an outreach meeting on the lawn and steps of the grassy university square near the main lecture buildings, school administration and library. God moved strongly there that night.
Romulo Nayacalevu, President of the Law School CF reported:
The speaker was the Upper Room Church pastor, Jotham Napat who is also the director of Meteorology here in Vanuatu. The night was filled with the awesome power of the Lord and we had the Upper Room church ministry who provided music with their instruments. With our typical Pacific Island setting of bush and nature all around us, we had dances, drama, and testified in an open environment, letting the wind carry the message of salvation to the bushes and the darkened areas. That worked because most of those that came to the altar call were people hiding or listening in these areas. The Lord was on the road of destiny with many people that night.
Unusual lightning hovered around in the sky that night, and as soon as the prayer teams had finished praying with those who rushed forward at the altar call, the tropical rain pelted down on that open field area.
God poured out his Spirit on many lives that night, including Jerry Waqainabete and Simon Kofe. Both of them played rugby in the popular university teams and enjoyed drinking and the night club scene. Both changed dramatically. Many of their friends said it would not last. It did.
Later, Jerry became prayer convenor at the CF and Simon its president. Most of the CF leaders attended the lively, Spirit-led Upper Room church in Port Vila, where pastors Joseph and Sala Roberts, Jotham Napat and others encouraged and nurtured them.
The University of the South Pacific, based in Suva Fiji, has its School of Law in Vanuatu (because of the unique combination of French, English and local laws in Vanuatu, previously called New Hebrides). Students come from the many nations of the South Pacific Islands to study law at Vanuatu, many being children of chiefs and government leaders.
The very active CF at the School of Law regularly organised outreaches in the town and at the university. About one third of the 120 students in the four-year law course attended the weekly CF meeting on Friday nights. A core group prayed together regularly, including daily prayer at 6 a.m., and organised evangelism events. Many were filled with the Spirit and began to experience spiritual gifts in their lives in new ways.
A team of eleven from their CF visited Australia for a month in November—December 2002 involved in outreach and revival meetings in many denominations and as well as in visiting home prayer groups. They drove 6,000 kilometres in a 12-seater van, including a trip from Brisbane to Sydney and back to visit Hillsong.
The team prayed for hundreds of people in various churches and home groups. They led worship at the daily 6 a.m. prayer group at Kenmore Baptist Church, with Calvin Ziru on guitar. That followed their own 5 a.m. daily prayer meeting in the house provided miraculously for them.
Philip and Dhamika George from Sri Lanka bought that rental house with no money and made it freely available. They had recently befriended a back – packer stranger who advised them to buy a rental property because Brisbane house prices then began to increase rapidly in value. They had no spare money but their new friend loaned them a deposit of $10,000, interest free, to get a bank loan and buy the house. They sold the house two years later for $80,000 profit, returned the deposit loan, and used the profits for Kingdom purposes especially in mission.
The law students from the CF grew strong in faith. Jerry, one of the students from Fiji, returned home for Christmas vacation after the visit to Australia, and prayed for over 70 sick people in his village, seeing many miraculous healings. His transformed life challenged the village because he had been converted at CF after a wild time as a youth in the village. The following December vacation, 2004, Jerry led revival in his village. He prayed early every morning in the Methodist Church. Eventually some children and then some of the youth joined him early each morning. By 2005 he had 50 young people involved, evangelising, praying for the sick, casting out spirits, and encouraging revival. By 2009 Jerry was a lawyer and pastor of a church in Suva and had planted a new church in his village as well.
Simon, returned to his island of Tuvalu, also transformed at university through CF. He witnessed to his relatives and friends all through the vacation in December—January, bringing many of them to the Lord. He led a team of youth involved in Youth Alive meetings, and prayed with the leaders each morning from 4 a.m. Simon became President of the Christian Fellowship at the Law School from October 2003 for a year.
Used by kind permission of Geoff Waugh