Africa's Miracle

One of the most astounding spiritual awakenings in history is shaking Nigeria today. I saw it for myself in December, when I traveled to the city of Lagos to attend the largest Christian gathering on the planet. I was one of the 2 or 3 million people who attended the Holy Ghost Congress, a three-day celebration sponsored by the Redeemed Christian Church of God--a denomination that is starting three churches every day.

The numbers associated with this African revival are mind-blowing. On the second night of the congress, I walked for 30 minutes into the crowd and never reached the back. A quarter of a mile further from where I stood, throngs of people were seated under a gigantic, pavilion-like structure with a metal roof that can seat an additional 1 million people.

I was told there were 10,000 ushers in the audience that night. They were stationed across a field that was wired with 2.5 kilometers of electrical cord for the sound system. Workers spent an entire year making the crude wooden benches that covered the dusty ground.

To capture the energy of the moment, I moved near the front of the crowd--just as the praise team began to sing a chorus accompanied by congas and traditional talking drums. I began to sway to the rhythm, and in a few moments I found myself in a frenzied circle with several young African pastors--who probably didn't realize until that night that some white men can actually dance.

When the music ended we hugged and high-fived, and then I listened to their testimonies of courage in the face of suffering. All the men were from northern Nigeria, where Muslims in recent years have killed Christians, burned churches and attempted to impose strict Islamic law.

Bisi, a pastor from Kwara state, told me: "Some Muslims believe that physical violence will stop the growth of the church in Nigeria." Another minister, Fakulade, said Muslims in the northern city of Kaduna have been known to put a price on a pastor's head.

Then I met Emmanuel, a 21st century apostle who has established "prayer cells" all over northern Nigeria, focusing his evangelistic efforts on Muslims. Islamic gangs have tried to murder him twice, and he showed me the scar on his throat to prove it. "A Muslim is afraid of two things: God's love and the Holy Spirit's miracles," he explained.

Emmanuel says the persecution has kept him "sharp in the Spirit" and increased his passion for God. "Because of our isolation, and the resistance we have experienced, we got to know Christ in His reality. It helped our Christianity," he said.

This man's die-hard commitment to spreading the gospel in the face of hostility gave me assurance that the Holy Spirit is working today to overcome the threat of militant Islam. If such boldness spreads to the millions of new Christian converts in Nigeria, Africa and the Middle East will be transformed in our lifetime.

Yet I can't help but wonder about my own country. Recent studies show that church membership is actually declining here. What's it going to take to jolt the American church into revival mode?

Hopefully some of this African zeal will infect us on this side of the Atlantic.

Best Magazine Deal. Subscribe now and get 3 magazines for the price of 1. Get Charisma, SpiritLed Woman and Ministry Today, all for $24. YES - I want this deal!

3 Reasons Why you should read Life in the Spirit. 1) Get to know the Holy Spirit. 2) Learn to enter God's presence 3) Hear God's voice clearly! Click Here to draw closer to God!

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Rev. Samuel Rodriguez was the first Hispanic pastor in history to pray at a presidential inauguration.

    At Trump Inauguration, Charismatic Leaders Pray Boldly in Jesus' Name. Is This Foreshadowing a New Day in America?

    It was an amazing day to let religious freedom ring in America.

  • Pastor Jim Garlow in a file photo shown praying.

    Conservative Christian Leaders Gather in DC, Calling Trump's Election an Answer to Prayer

    "Although the news media is predicting protests, what I'm seeing is that everyone is abuzz ...

  • Donald Trump certainly needs your prayers.

    Why You Must Pray for Donald Trump

    Here are eight ways I plan to intercede for President Trump regularly.

  • When I flew into D.C. yesterday, there were so many Secret Servicemen on the plane I wondered what was going on!

    Jennifer LeClaire Releases Urgent Prophetic Warning Over Washington, D.C.

    When I flew into D.C. yesterday, there were so many Secret Servicemen on the plane I wondered what ...

  • Here's a prophetic word for Washington, D.C.

    Prophecy: The Lord Is Raising Up Daniels in DC

    I believe we're on the precipice of a Third Great Awakening the Lord spoke to my heart about in ...

  • Does any of this reflect what's going on in your marriage?

    9 Characteristics of a Healthy Sexual Relationship for a Believer

    A healthy sexual relationship for a Christian couple takes effort, and it's worth working for.

  • Churches don't address this topic affecting women.

    The Secret Sorrow Women Carry

    This woman breaks the silence about a taboo subject to help restore many women.

  • Bishop Eddie Long died at 63.

    Bishop Eddie Long Dead at 63

    "Although his transition leaves a void for those of us who loved him dearly, we can celebrate ...

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit