Leaving Behind Santeria

Leo was confused and he was weary from the war raging inside of him.

San Juan, a community in Cuba that is strongly influenced by satanic religions, recently had a spiritual awakening. Mateo, who is a leader with the prison ministry in that region, began praying for San Juan. He knew of no Christ followers in this community, and so his team prayed earnestly. They asked the Lord to start a movement, believing He wanted to do something special for the lost people in this area. The time had come for the light of Christ to breach the dominion of darkness that had settled over this community. After three days of prayer, Mateo and his team went to San Juan to share the Gospel. They had prayed for a person to lead the way, a man ready for the Lord’s transformation. They knocked on Leo’s door. Three days before this visit, Leo battled his way through a spiritual attack. For the last 25 years, he had followed a satanically based religion called Santeria that encouraged hostility against Christians. Voices in his head told him to harm others then kill himself, while another voice told him to not hurt anyone and hand over all his idols to the missionaries in the community─missionaries who would soon be at his door. Leo was confused and he was weary from the war raging inside of him. He had not heard God’s voice before and did not understand who was speaking to him but he listened and he did not harm himself. Mateo’s team prayed with Leo and he was ready to receive the Lord. He gave the team all his idols and repented of his sinful ways. In return, he received a Bible. Leo’s transformation had been extraordinary. Others in the community followed Leo’s example and gave up their idols to follow Christ. San Juan is now a community with hope. Jesus is building a strong church there. His disciples now know His voice and they listen. Joy radiates from Leo as he walks through his community, his Bible under his arm and a smile on his face.

We are reminded in Ephesians 6:12: Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Leo struggled against the forces of darkness, and for much of his life, he had allowed them to rule over him until the voice of the Lord spoke and Leo listened.

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