I am on information overload. Big time. This week of classes have been really good, lots of information, guest speakers, ect. We had 3 classes just talking about spiritual warfare. what it is, how Satan attacks, how to fight, ect. it wasn't really "new" to me but I am so glad we had the class cause some people really haven't ever had any experience with it or even heard about it in their churches. Then I was able to apply it in a very practical way both yesterday and today. Yesterday we visited a Hindu Temple, I was feeling sick to my stomach even before we left IT so I asked everyone stop and pray. The Temple is a stronghold of Satan and I felt like we needed to be covered in prayer. I was, however, the only one feeling ill. I would have just said it was coincidence except that as soon as I prayed, my stomach felt much much better. Today we spent the entire day in Chicago on Devon st at South East Asian Friendship Center. We then went to a mosque for their 1pm service (their equivalent to our Sunday morning). Then we went back to the Friendship center and had someone who is an Apologetic (debater kind of a person) who came to Christ through the Quaran (since it led him to the bible) and now debates with Muslims. That guy is GOOD! He must have hundreds of verses memorized, from both books and can quote them, chapter and verse, at a moments notice. The local mosques will no longer debate with him publicly since he is very right and they are very wrong and they don't like to be embarrassed by him. Most of his debating is now done online.
Anyway, all that to say... I feel like I'm going through culture shock, American style. Hinduism and Islam have been right here on my doorstep my whole life and I've never once set foot in their buildings to learn more about them. I found myself actually crying at the mosque because of a whole lot of things. Again, I felt very very sick (Indian food at lunch didn't help matters) but I knew for a fact that it was demon enhanced considering where we were and the fact that once again I prayed and the pain/nausea disappeared. Like never before in my life I feel like my eyes have been opened to the darkness that exists in this world (esp in America). It occurred to me that you can't (generally) see the darkness if your closed up inside your own church all the time, when the mosque is on the very next corner. And as we've been told this week, this darkness is growing faster then the church is growing. I just... I'm having a hard time explaining it well. Just a lot of information, A LOT of information in one week. I'm just trying to digest it all and try to explain what that means to me, my worldview, my missions, ect.
I am not going to an area of the world where there is large following of either of the above mentioned religions. Bolivia is largely Roman Catholic and Indigenous religions. But no matter where you are, what your doing, knowing about these other religions will be useful.
I have 3 more weeks of training ahead of me though 2 of those weeks are focused only on language acquisition. Just 5 more weeks till Bolivia!