Alliance News Feed – The Battle Is Real

Adapted from a report by P. Samuel, an Alliance international worker in Senegal

Recently, I sat in the front room of our church building studying for Wednesday night Bible study. While lost in my notes, Pastor Pape entered the room with another man, Christian*.

He introduced the two of us in proper Senegalese fashion, telling me that Christian had recently put his faith in Jesus. Pastor Pape then turned to the man and asked if there was anything he needed to give up.

Spiritual Powers Broken

Burning the fetishes to break their power

Christian proceeded to pull a bag filled with fetishes from his backpack, each representing a different form of oppression in his life. When Pastor Pape dumped the bag’s contents onto the floor, the spiritual atmosphere felt like a swarm of angry hornets had been released.

We immediately entered into a time of intense intercession for the healing and protection of Christian, who is also blind. Local doctors can find no medical reason for his blindness and attribute it to the evil spirits.

After our prayer time, we held the Bible study and prayed again for Christian. We then burned the fetishes, definitively breaking their power.

Humbled by the night’s events, I went home.

A Child’s Struggle

Yet the story doesn’t end there. For the battle we fight is against an enemy who doesn’t like to lose.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12, ESV).

My second daughter, Amelia, has had a difficult transition to international life. She was two years old when we left the United States; she’s now four.

Alliance workers bring light to spiritually dark places and depend on the intercession of the church back home.

Amelia struggles with attending a French-speaking church. Because of her young age, she doesn’t know the best ways to express her frustrations.

The Sunday following Christian’s deliverance, our daughter woke up yelling at everything and everyone. She complained her ear hurt, her arm hurt, her “this” hurt, her “that” hurt.

This wasn’t new, pre-heading-to-church behavior, but it was by far her strongest emotional reaction.

As we entered the church building, we walked past the room where the fetishes had been destroyed the previous Wednesday. Amelia’s resistance intensified.

We sat in the service as long as we could. But my wife, Jen, had to remove our little one from the sanctuary because of her fierce, broken cries.


Amelia’s tears continued for some time until she confessed to Jen, “I don’t want to cry, but I can’t stop!”

Pastor Pape is a wise man. He wasn’t preaching that day; knowing the spiritual repercussions of breaking the fetishes’ power, he slipped out of the service to go lay hands on Amelia’s head—and she let him!

As he prayed for Amelia in the power of the Holy Spirit, she stopped crying. She then joined us in the sanctuary for the rest of the service—a different child.

Amelia has a joy, once blocked, that now overflows.

The spiritual battle is difficult for me. When Satan attacks, I have enough wisdom and experience to persevere. But when my children suffer, it’s like having my arms broken.

I remember thinking the previous week, If Amelia is still struggling this deeply, I don’t know if we can continue.

Sometimes the most effective obstacles to ministry the wicked one exploits are the smallest—with cute pigtails.

We Need You

We are in a place where the light of the gospel is just beginning to shine. The spiritual battle is real. And as we seek to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind (Luke 4:18), we need the intercession of the church back home.

When you give to the Great Commission Fund, do not forget to pray for the families who labor in the field. This is not a task we can do alone—we need your prayerful support.

*Name changed


Use the weekly Alliance Prayer Requests to join the Alliance family in interceding on behalf of our global workers, who serve in some of the world’s most spiritually oppressive places.

Source: Alliance News Feed – The Battle Is Real

English EN Spanish ES