Alliance News Feed – Free to Follow Jesus
Envision New York, one of Envision’s newest sites, has established relationships with churches in the area to better serve diaspora peoples, specifically West Africans. Brian Davis, Envision New York site coordinator, resources West African Christians with evangelism materials and goes out with them to share Christ’s love and pray for their community.
Earlier this year, two French-speaking West African churches with whom Envision ministers baptized 20 people on one day. One of the participants, Amara*, has a powerful testimony.
Searching for Deliverance
For many years, Amara had suffered from undiagnosed chronic pain and oppressive dreams. She spent approximately $100,000 attempting to cure her illness, trying Western medicine and even traveling back to her home country to seek freedom through traditional African spiritual practices.
One night, Amara dreamed of a man in white who told her to speak to another West African woman, Olubunmi*, who lived in her building. He told Amara that Olubunmi would have the answer to her problem.
Olubunmi had been a Christian for about a year when Amara came to her for help. As they spoke, the women discovered they had similar journeys, as Olubunmi had also been plagued by oppressive dreams and Jesus visited her in a dream before she was freed.
Olubunmi took Amara to Itoro*, a West African immigrant who pastors a church in New York, and the two prayed for Amara. She received healing from her pain and deliverance from her dreams, so she committed her life to Christ.
“Who Did This to You?”
“Amara felt free enough that she visited her family, even though some of them are teachers of the majority religion,” Brian says. “They recognized a change—the fruit of the Spirit was in her.”
“Who did this to you?” Amara’s family asked.
“Jesus,” she boldly answered.
“No, we know Jesus,” they said. “He was a man and a good prophet. Who did this to you?”
“If you want to know the person who introduced me to Jesus, then you can call my pastor,” Amara said.
And they did just that. For many weeks, Amara’s family asked Itoro about Jesus. In April, four of them gave their lives to Christ.
“Only one or two are talking to Itoro, but everybody in the household is indirectly talking to him as well, just like Cornelius and his household in Acts 10,” Brian says. “Amara became the catalyst for her family coming to Christ. It is phenomenal to already see them becoming receptive to the gospel.”
A People Desperate for Freedom
“What used to be unique to New York—an immigrant population—is no longer unique,” Brian says. “As the nations have come to the cities and even many rural areas of the United States, the church in America is poised to reach them right from our own neighborhoods.”
According to the Joshua Project, 65,000 of Amara’s people live in the United States, and only 2 percent of them are Christian. About 50,000 of those immigrants live in New York; there are only eight known believers. Pray that God will expand Envision’s ministry in this city so that more of these people will know the love of Christ.
Source: Alliance News Feed – Free to Follow Jesus