The Ripple Effect
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The Power of Prayer

PrayerThe following story is about Thomas Muthee and The Prayer Cave, as told by Dr. Peter Wagner in his book Praying with Power.

Thomas Muthee is an itinerant evangelist from Kenya, Africa. In 1988, the Lord spoke to him, “I want you to plant a church in Kiambu”.

Kiambu is a city of 80,000 people located a few miles from the beautiful capital of Kenya, Nairobi. Kiambu had gained a national reputation for having the worst crime, violence, drunkenness, immorality, thievery and human degradation. Public disorder was common and loud rock music blared from speakers in front of barrooms throughout the nights.

It was the murder capital of Kenya, registering up to eight killings per month. The economy of the city was so bad that government officials reportedly paid bribes to their superiors so as not to be assigned to Kiambu.

A cloud of mystery hung over the city. In certain places regular car accidents occurred with no bleeding taking place ever!

Thomas had never been there but had heard about it. He did not want to go. Plus he was an evangelist and never wanted to plant a church.

Kiambu was the preacher’s graveyard. Pastor after pastor tried and then soon left discouraged and defeated. The largest Pentecostal church (typically fast growing in Kenya) was less than 60 members after 15 years of faithful ministry. Another, also 15 years old, had 40 members and another 30!

The Preparation

The assignment was clear, but how to implement it?

God led Thomas and his wife to pray and fast for 6 months. They never visited Kiambu once, even though it was only 10 miles from their home. They practiced a variety of fasts during those months, sometimes fasting a meal or two, sometimes for extended periods, drinking juice or water only, as well as some absolute fasts when they consumed no food or drink.

They felt they must win the battle in the air before the ground troops could invade the enemy’s territory and expect victory. The spiritual forces over Kiambu must be broken. It’s obvious that the devil assigns specific demonic forces over regions and cities. During prayer for Kiambu, the Lord revealed one of the principalities ruling over or influencing the city as “Witchcraft”. They then targeted their prayers more specifically.

After 6 months, they felt peace in their heart. They believed that the spiritual atmosphere over the city had been sufficiently cleared through powerful prayer. It was time to move in!

The Invasion

Thomas and his wife moved to Kiambu (two people). They miraculously were given use of the town hall to preach the gospel. 8 people were saved in the first meeting. The church continued to grow as they met in the town hall for over a year. But they needed somewhere to meet regularly, especially for prayer. Thomas’ vision was to see 24 hours of prayer going on in the church. “What is gained through prayer must be maintained through prayer.”

So they moved into the basement of another building which was somewhat dark and dingy. 24 hours of prayer began and they became known as the “Prayer Cave”.

The Counterattack

It was not all easy going. The person through whom the spirit of Witchcraft was working was a sorcerer named “Momma Jane”. She was considered by many as the most powerful and influential person in the city – both political and business people went to her to have their fortunes told. She complained about the new church, even going to their site and casting spells and curses. The accidents were happening right in front of her house!

City authorities and even other churches started to attack the Prayer Cave. Things started to get really hard. The power of evil made it hard to even pray or worship.

Thomas cried out to God in desperation. God led him to organise more intercessory prayer. He chose 5 intercessors and assigned each to fast and pray for a whole day, then another for the next day and so on. That way there was always one intercessor praying and fasting.

The initial results seemed to be positive, but the intercessors began suffering serious attacks – sickness and other things on their designated fasting day. God showed Pastor Thomas the need for “armourbearers” so he gathered the intercessors (now 9) and gave each person two armourbearers on the day they fasted and prayer (the person from the day before and after) to form a protective hedge.

It worked! The spiritual harassment suddenly stopped. Adding the serious intercessors to the prayer ministry was the decisive turning point in the spiritual battle for Kiambu. An increasing number of Momma Jane’s clients became Christians. Her power was being broken. After another tragic accident where 3 children were killed in front of her house, the town was furious. The police were called in and entered her house to investigate. They found one of the largest pythons they had ever seen. They shot and killed it. Momma Jane was taken, questioned, later released and then left town.

Things began to change dramatically. The crime and violence is virtually gone. Some of the more notorious criminals are now saved and members of the Prayer Cave. One of the worst drug dealers is now in Bible School, plays bass in the worship team and evangelizes on the street. Economically, the city is now prosperous. The mysterious accidents have stopped. Government officials now are said to pay bribes to get assigned to Kiambu!

The Prayer Cave now has over 4000 members (5% of the population of 80,000)! They have 400 intercessors praying in blocks of 15-20 per day covering the entire city with prayer. Other churches are growing rapidly and are in unity. The kingdom of God has come to Kiambu!

Powerful prayer works!

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