For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Caleb Wood. I live in Hamburg, New York right outside of Buffalo and I go to school at Indiana Wesleyan University as a Christian Ministries major. Just a short testimony about how I got to IWU, I never planned to be going to school studying to be a pastor or really anywhere near the inside of a church. It wasn’t until I came to Zambia in 2015 on a Poetice Program 10 trip and God completely flipped my world upside down. I got the opportunity to return again in 2016 on another Program 10 trip, but this time I was asked to speak at one of the rallies at Reach 4 Life camp. I have never delivered the Word of God to an audience of people in my life and I had no clue how to preach but God without a doubt had a plan behind it. As I was speaking I could tangibly feel the presence of the Holy Spirit all around me, speaking through me, and speaking into the 75 or so high school guys I was preaching to. After my message I went into solitude to pray and gives thanks to the Lord for using me and for guiding me through it, and I heard His voice above me say, “Caleb, this is what I have planned for you for the rest of your life. I will use your voice for my Kingdom.” A week later I returned to IWU, changed my major to Christian Ministries, and have been sprinting down the road for God’s glory ever since.
It’s week four here for us interns and it honestly has felt like so much longer the way we have all connected and grown as a family together. In week 2, our teachers said something that really hit me right off the bat, “If you were standing in front of yourself right now, could you hug yourself?” As I took that in I began to wonder if I actually could, and the more I thought about it the more I didn’t feel like I could. Not because I hated myself, or thought I wasn’t capable of being loved, or because I was depressed, but purely because I didn’t like the person I was looking at. The man in front of me three weeks ago was a man afraid to take care of himself. A man that was filled with guilt and shame from living a life of sin while still trying to take up his cross everyday and failing. It is a miracle how fast the Lord works, but I can honestly say, now I would welcome myself with open arms and a warm embrace because I have found my true identity in Jesus Christ. I have learned the truths about who I am and why God wants to use me. I realized that in order to put a stop to the past life I was living, I had to stop it and in order to begin the future on mission for God I had to be the start. No longer will I let the lies of the enemy penetrate my core where my heavenly Father reigns alone! The enemy is always at our doorstep trying to get any glimpse of the light inside that he possibly can, but we have been equipped by God to shut Satan out completely in order to give every part of ourselves to the Lord. For He is truly a jealous God who wants us to give all of our light inside to Him alone, and then He will guide us to share it with the world.
We have a weekly event called Community night on base and at the end of each one we stand up and pray with those of the community who want it or need it. One woman came up to me and Sande, one of the other interns, and asked us to pray for healing over her stomach and back. She could barely stand up straight and she was groaning in pain. I looked at Sande and said, “God has given us the authority to use His power in this moment.” As we prayed and commanded healing in the name of Jesus Christ she began to stand up straight and was filled with so much joy. I asked her what do you feel right now and with the biggest smile on her face she said, “I feel God’s heeling power inside of me and I don’t feel anymore pain at all!” Friends I want to share with you that our God is a God of miracles still to this day and we have the authority in the name of Jesus to spread the Word and the power of God to the world. If I had to summarize the internship so far in a single word it would be EMPOWERING.
|ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Caleb Wood • 2017 International Immersion Intern