Hey, I’m Brad, I am a worship leader. Me and my wife have been married since 2009, leading worship basically all those years, and have two boys. So worship leader and a dad. Just a little bit about my background with God…I’m just so grateful and thankful to my parents for getting me involved in a church that was real, you know, that believed God, the God that was there, was present. The God that wasn’t an historical figure, wasn’t some personality in the sky, but was with us. And so from a very young age, I was just super blessed to be in an environment where God was there, where He was moving. I remember 6,7, 8 years old, being in a corporate setting where we were experiencing God, you know, whether it’s in worship, or in the ministry of the Word or whatever.
The next really profound encounter that kind of marked me was you in the first few years of our marriage. We were really, really seeking the Lord and just wanting to do what He wanted us to do. Whatever that looked like. I remember feeling the presence of the Lord come upon me in a way that I hadn’t experienced ever. It was, like a knowledge came into me, like, like, this compassion that was not my own. And I was in some small measure, feeling His heart. I remember just sobbing. Through my tears all I could say was, “Lord, they don’t know. They don’t know.”
You know, it’s one thing to put a task at hand. There’s a goal that we’re trying to achieve because Jesus told us to go into the world, preach the gospel, make disciples. That’s one thing to kind of be goal-minded, task-minded, but to really be touched with, it’s not just I’m doing this for You, but we’re doing it together. And then beyond that, I’ve felt in some way, what You feel towards this goal, where You’ve allowed me to feel what You feel towards this grand, epic vision for the world and you know, winning the lost.
I think He wants us all to feel that, and that’s, the Scripture says, “the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.” I think He wants us all to be touched with that. And so that was very monumental in my walk, in my course with Him. At that time we were going into the grocery stores and the hospitals and just, you know, doing what we could just to tell people about this Jesus that loves them so much, and preaching the gospel, praying for the sick.
Fast forward another 10 years or so and then in 2020, when the world was basically shut down, it was wild for everybody, everyone was just looking for direction and all that, and clarity. But I had an idea just come, like, Hey, why don’t we, on social media you’ve got friends all over the world that are pastoring, and probably really experiencing hardship and things. And I said, Well, let’s put together a conference of pastors, of people that are wanting to do the work of the ministry, or are doing the work of the ministry.
So we got together, a small group, maybe 20 or 30 people, and just started to pray, just encouraging one another. Through that we really connected to a guy in India, whose name is Lazarus. Ha, yeah. I can honestly say, there was never, it almost sounds silly to say, but there was never any forethought. It was just like, we got together and we started talking. My whole intent was just in the moment, to encourage him and just tell him, you know, “You can do it.” So we develop this relationship where we would get on phone calls, we would pray together, and then he said, “Well, hey, we have a small gathering that meets, so why don’t you come on for a video call, and then you can just pray and kind of encourage the people?” And so, I said, “okay.” and I think at that time, he had a few other men that he was fellowshipping with, who he trusted.
So we did that a few times, where I would just come on, and just basically almost like a novelty. I mean, honestly, I’m just encouraging people and just like, here’s my American face on your Indian cell phone, “Hi, God loves you.” And then as it sort of developed, we just became more serious about like, okay, we’re seeing some fruit from our fellowship and our prayer, and that’s kind of how it started.
We had our pastor Lazarus, and then a few people, we kind of had like an online conference, like a zoom conference. Early on we were praying and I had this word, it was “Anas. Anas.” I said, Pastor, we’re praying and I’m hearing this word. It’s like Anas, Anas. What is Anas?” And he said, “Oh, well, it’s a village. I’m actually going right through there tomorrow and that’s one of the places that we’re looking to establish the ministry.” So I said, “Okay, well, let’s pray.” And then I saw this picture of this village, and then it’s like, “Okay, we gotta drill a water well here.” He said, “Yeah, this place is extremely dry. The people walk for miles just to get water. If they had a water well there, then we could really bless them.” I said, “Yeah, we’ll dedicate it to them, in the name of Jesus, of course, no cost.”
After we had drilled the well, and after we had dedicated it to these people, in the name of Jesus, we preached the gospel to them, and just blessed them. Another very neat part of that is, one of the Hindu people actually donated the land. He was a young guy, maybe 20, 22 years old. He’s standing in front of the phone, or the screen, and I’m standing and I’m seeing him, and he’s just weeping.
I don’t know what it was that led to that moment, but him being able to donate this property for this well as a blessing for his tribe and his people, somehow it brought some restoration of a family honor – if that kind of makes sense – and this was like his way. He was just saying, as he’s crying, like, “I’m so thankful that through this I’m able to bring honor back to my family.” And that was just such a profound and important piece of that well, was that man and that family. God only knows how these things just evolve and how He kind of breathes on things.
Over the next few months, we started to really develop strategies for the nation of India. We brought in roughly 20 or so pastors and we went from a few 100 people to a few 1,000 people very quickly, and then started ministering in house churches. Then we started to experience these amazing miracles and just really realize how hungry these people were for deliverance, for freedom, for something real, for some light, you know. So that kind of just leads me into what I would like to share; just a few of my favorite stories, a few of my favorite things that have happened and ways that the Lord has really brought deliverance for these people. I’ll backtrack just so you understand.
Most of the ministry from the get go, for the first year and a half, well really for the first two years, was on Zoom, or like a Facebook Messenger. So we’re doing this like on a video call, they would gather people together, and we just present a simple gospel message, and then pray for the sick, pray for healing, pray for deliverance, or whatever people may need prayer for. But one meeting that we had, they gathered together, maybe a few 100 people in a small hut, for lack of a better word. We began to just, as we do, just share the gospel and, after we’re finished, a young mother comes and she brings her child and then through our translator says, “This is my child, he’s about two and a half and he was born deaf. As a result of that, obviously, he’s never spoken. Never heard, he’s never spoken. So can you pray for him? Can Jesus help him?”
We just prayed a short command in the name of Jesus, “Ears be open.” And then you see the progression in his face. We can’t imagine what it’s like for a two and a half year old boy, who has never heard his mother’s voice, and then in an instant, his ears are open. So you can see just the sheer joy on his face. It was just so beautiful. Then his mother says, “We’ve never given this child a name.” He’s two and a half years old, no name, can’t hear, can’t speak, or couldn’t hear, couldn’t speak. – Which by the way, sometime later, he began to…they sort of coached him and his first word was Jesus. So it’s very fitting, right? – But his mother says, “He doesn’t have a name. We’ve never named him.”
Now, I don’t know if this is a cultural thing. I’m not sure why, but I just know he didn’t have a name. And so she said, “Would you name him?” Of course I said, “Yes.” and the first thing, the first name that came into my heart was John. So I said, “Yes, his name is John.” And so she said, “Okay, John.” And I wasn’t thinking about “John,” or like, the prophetic meaning of the word, or the name. But you may know, it means “God is gracious” or “the grace of God.” So there’s this little boy in the middle of nowhere, India, who was born deaf, and was nameless, and God was so kind to not only open his ears, and loose his tongue, but to give him identity.
There’s another part to the story, which was just incredible. We just returned from India about a little over a month ago. Our pastors there did such an amazing job at organizing our time there, just to the tee, like, structure, everything was perfect. We got to spend four days in crusade type meetings, two to three a day. We’re just you know, ministering to people, praying for the sick, and praying for deliverance and all these things, which I’ll tell a few more stories in a moment. But I wanted to just share this about John.
We land in India, we get ready to go to our first crusade meeting, the very first place that we visited, the people are gathering. They set up these beautiful tents to meet under, to begin to worship. I’m in this hut just sitting there kind of preparing, talking, fellowshipping and this young mother comes with her husband, first place we visited, and there’s John. I got to hug him and share in just the joy of that miracle. So from a video call miracle to an in person meeting. It was just, it was just so beautiful. It was so touching for me and just very blessed by that.
Come back next week for part two.
We started to experience these amazing miracles and realize how hungry these people were for deliverance, for freedom, for something real, for some light.
Stories delivered to your inbox.
PART 2: Miraculous Connection
You know, the Bible talks about the fire of the Holy Spirit? Well, this is a wildfire. This thing is just, so you know, the gospel in India is running. I mean, the fire is blazing in India.1
A few other, just amazing things that happened while we were there on the ground in India…Another village that we went into, kind of the same scenario. We were fellowshipping in the home of one of the local people, they were setting up the tent. And just so that you have kind of a little idea of what this looks like, we’ll begin to praise and worship, and then we’ll just present a short, basic gospel message, and then afterwards, there may be several hundred people there, but they all want to meet, just to greet you and say, Hello, shake your hand. One thing I love about that setting is like, we’re not looking at our watches, we’re not trying to move on to the next thing, and we’re not trying to push a program. It’s just refreshing, you know. There’s a tent full of hungry people and God is just showing up. So we’re just having a blast, just experiencing the kingdom of God, experiencing this living Christ.
So in this village, Resudi Village, we did the whole program, for lack of a better term, and we’re wrapping up and people are coming through the line to greet us. By the way, it was me and three other friends of mine that went with me on the trip. So we’re just shaking hands, hugging people. One woman comes through. She’s maybe 50 years old, she’s there by herself, and she’s just radiant. She’s just glowing and she’s pointing to her eyes. And I can see the, I guess you would say the remnant of a haze in her eyes, these big beautiful brown eyes. I could see that [haze] like, dissipating. Where it had been the whole eye, I could see it was just around the exterior part of the white of her eye. She was trying to tell me, and I later found out from the translator, she was saying, “I can see. I can see!” which was amazing. She was blind, she could see!
Well, the next day, we have a meeting in another location, a pretty good distance away from this Resudi Village. This was a much larger meeting, there was, I don’t know, at least 6, 7, 800 people there. Because it was so large, one of our translators, the local pastor said, “Why don’t you just go out during praise and worship and just begin to pray for the people.” And it’s funny in India, the men and the women separate. So there’s like an aisle down the middle. You’ve got women on the left and men on the right. So I took the left, some of the other guys took the right.
I’m ministering to the women, just going from front to back. I get to the back of this crowd of women and I see the woman who had seen the previous day. Well, I look at her and immediately recognize those beautiful brown eyes and that radiant face, but the film is totally gone. So overnight, the remnant of the film was gone. And of course, she was just so happy to be there worshiping. She had brought a friend. Her friend was mute. Her friend was maybe a 60 year old woman, she’s pointing at her mouth, and she’s trying to make a sound. So when you deal with things like that, your best bet is to do what Jesus did, right? “You mute spirit, go, leave.” And so that’s exactly what we did. Again, you could almost hear her vocal cords kind of get life and then she began to speak. And of course, I like to have people say Jesus, so you know, I had her say the name of Jesus. It was just a great miracle.
What I love about those instances is that it’s like almost a chain reaction, where it’s like faith just rises to this kind of crescendo and then people are like, “Oh my! Jesus is real! He’s really alive!” Then you just begin to see people getting touched and healed and it just, it’s like, a breakout.
So from that moment, I had her come up to the front of all these people and give her testimony. The woman, of course, shared, “Yeah, I was blind.” And then the woman that was mute, she shared her own testimony, which was amazing. After these testimonies, there was a woman, maybe 60-65 years old, and she’s like, two rows back from the front where we were. She just stands up, and someone escorts her to the front, and I was standing there with her. So you can imagine, there’s, I don’t know, just short of maybe 1,000 people or so there, and me and some of my friends behind me, and a woman who’s blind, who’s saying, “I want to be healed.” So if there ever was an opportunity to be somewhat intimidated, this might be a good opportunity. But after you’ve seen so much in the previous days, you yourself, your heart is just, you’re confident in your God. You kind of feel like Elijah, maybe.
So I don’t know why I did it, but I just said, “Look, everybody, this is what we’re going to do. This is going to be our testimony. This is going to be our miracle together and you’ll never forget the day you participated in someone receiving a miracle. So this is going to be our story together.” And I said, “This is what we’re going to do. I’m going to put my hand over her eyes and we’re gonna pray for a few moments. I want all of you to just begin to pray, in the name of Jesus.” So I put my hand over her eyes. And one of our big points of teaching that we bring to our pastors and to the people over there is that –And this was obviously an amazing teaching moment.– it doesn’t matter if it’s my hand, his hand, your hand. The Lord lives in us. Jesus lives in us, and we all can operate in this. Just to be able to have that application in that moment, it was just incredible. Not to mention, of course, the woman who was blind, who was now able to see.
In Hinduism, they have priests. Our head leader in India, that is our main point of contact and our main translator there, whose house we stayed at, just happens to live maybe a few 100 yards from this Hindu priest. The very first morning we were there, this Hindu priest has a son who’s maybe 30 years old, and being that they live so close to the place we were staying, which is our head pastor’s home, they come and visit. They’re friendly. We literally got there in the evening, the night before, ate dinner, and slept. We slept off as much jet lag as we could, wake up in the morning, have some coffee, and then here’s this son of the Hindu priest, who’s who comes to visit.
Through a series of events there, as we’re just talking, he says, “I want to be a Christian.” and he gives his life to the Lord. Then his uncle comes and we’re just talking to him. I mean, just like guys talking over coffee, right? We’re just telling them, “Hey, here’s Jesus. He loves you. This is what He’s done.” Just sharing the simple gospel. You know, the Gospel is the power of God unto salvation. So we share and he says, “Yeah, I want to receive Jesus.” Okay, well, we haven’t even started, but we started, you know. It was amazing.
There are anti-conversion laws in a lot of the states, not so much in Southern India, but in Northern India, where we were in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, it is against the law to convert from Hinduism. So that’s the reason we were there. Right? It wasn’t such a big deal for us, but you can imagine being a citizen, and you’re literally having to make a decision to become a law breaker. I mean, essentially, become a criminal. We can sort of massage our meetings to be palatable, sort of just where they don’t get a lot of notice and although we’re preaching the gospel, and all that, people are getting saved, which by the way, we had several 100 people get saved through that for days that we were there, but sort of where the line is drawn is baptism.
There are no open baptisms. One thing that we got to do that was just an experience of a lifetime, is we got to…We were in this kind of remote village and behind this hut there’s this well. It’s probably four feet by four feet. It was ice cold water. Which, when you think of India, you may think it’s warm, and it was pretty warm, but this water was freezing cold. So, again, very memorable baptisms. But we got to baptize, I think we baptized, I don’t know, it felt like maybe 100 or so people there in secret behind this house in this remote village of India.
Another little piece to that story with the Hindu priest. His brother was also baptized. But that led us, those encounters with this priest’s uncle and his son, gave us an open door. And I think it was the last night after we’d finished our last crusade, this priest somehow reaches out to our pastor, who he lives close to, and says, “Hey, I don’t know what is going on. But I want to hear about this Jesus.” Keep in mind, a lot of these people have never heard the gospel. They’ve never heard the name of Jesus, a lot of them. So it’s all new to them. This is, this is groundbreaking.
So we get this open door and we get to go into his home, which we didn’t really know at the time, but this is something that didn’t happen. This is like taboo. So we come into his house, and I remember now, looking back, our translator, who’s the pastor that lived close, who was with us, he’s almost giddy. He’s like, “Wow, this is amazing. This is such an awesome thing.” We’re standing there in this Hindu priest’s living room. His family is sitting on this rug, and we’re standing up with our shoes off. He says, “Tell me about this Jesus.” The first thing I can think of is, “Well, do you have any pain in your body? Because I can tell you about Him, but I can also show you His power.”
Sure enough, he had back and knee pain that was really hindering him. He’s probably 60 years old or so. So he says, “Yeah, I’ve got some pain.” “Okay, well, stand up. We’re gonna pray for you.” So, boom…”In the name of Jesus, pain go. Everything leave. Be healed completely.” After just a few moments of short prayer the pain is gone. Then his wife had been dealing with something. In fact, I think it was her shoulder. She had like a lesser range of motion in her shoulder. Same thing. Boom, “Let’s pray. Okay, you’re healed. All right. So that’s Jesus. Now, let me tell you a little bit about His story and what He’s done for you.”
So we share the gospel with this Hindu priest and his family, in their living room, as they sit on their rug, and they accept Jesus without hesitation, “Yes, I want Jesus. I want Him to be my Lord.” And thinking back, I’m looking over to our translator, pastor, and he’s just like, you know, huge grin like, wow, this is incredible. Because he knows, we don’t know, but he knows that this is, in turn, I mean, this Hindu priest has a congregation. What we would call a congregation of people that he’s got influence over and now he’s got a gospel to share with them.
That was maybe six weeks ago, and I just had a video call with him this morning. He had, I don’t know, maybe 15 or 20 family members in his living room. So they’ve opened their home. They’ve got a house church going. From sharing the simple gospel with a few people one morning over coffee, it opened this door to this Hindu priest, well, ex-Hindu priest, who’s now a pastor. A priest in God’s kingdom! It’s just so incredible, incredible. And it just shows you the zeal that God has in His heart for these people.
You know, the Bible talks about the fire of the Holy Spirit. Well, this is a wildfire. This thing is just, so you know…The gospel in India is running. I mean, the fire is blazing in India. We’re seeing family by family, clans, entire villages receive the gospel. We’re well over 5,000 strong now, just in that small region of India and it’s just running.