Fire of the Lord
Fire of the Lord in El Salvador on Friday, June 29, 2001
I wanted to hand out copies of my testimony at the office during work hours.
But I knew that I was not allowed to break the order of the company.
The night of Thursday, June 28, 2001, I resorted to prayer: I asked God to do "something special".
The next day in the afternoon there was a short circuit. Due to this electricity to the data center of the company had to be cut off.
I took advantage of the disorder that followed to hand out my testimony to my colleagues.
In July 1999 I started to work at the Distribuidora de Electricidad Delsur.
The central establishment was on a terrain on the skirts of the San Salvador volcano. To get there we had to go through a road of earth and stones amidst a marginal zone. Almost nobody dared to go on foot through that road.
At the start and end hour of work a microbus rented by the company made several trips to transport the employees from the Plaza Merliot to the company or vice versa. But if you arrived or left before or after you had to ask for a ride in order not to have to go on foot through the marginal zone.
I had my own car but there was a problem with a tire and I was always so short on money that I did not get it fixed.
Many times I had to leave the company premises outside the hours of the microbus. Then I went to stand close to the entry gate and waited until a car would go out to ask for a ride. There always was a colleague or a visitor who took me with them in their vehicle.
Sometimes the ride lasted until just past the marginal zone or until the Plaza Merliot, sometimes further away. But during each ride I profited to talk about my testimony.
That way I testified to many colleagues. But to many others I had not yet been able to testify, including my immediate colleagues of the IT department.
On Saturday, January 13, 2001 a strong earthquake destroyed part of the offices of the company. We then moved to two large rented houses in the Colonia San Benito.
In February 2001 I wrote a tract of one page recto verso with the headlines of my testimony and a call to the reader to reconcile to God. In the following months I took copies regularly and handed them out, but almost never to my colleagues.
But there was a growing desire in me to be able to hand out testimonies to them at the office and during work hours. I thought about this for some time until in the end I took a decision.
On Thursday, June 28, 2001 I went to a copy center to get 80 copies of the third version of my testimony. At night at home I folded all the copies. It was about midnight when I finished doing that.
But I knew very well that I was not going to be able to get up just like that and hand out the copies, even less during work hours. I could not break the company rules.
So I resorted to prayer. I kneeled down. I put the pile of testimonies on the floor before me and put my hands on them. Then I bowed and put my forehead on the floor.
Lying face down like that I started to pray. I asked God for several things: that he would give me the courage to hand out the testimonies, that his word would not return empty, and in all my talking that followed suddenly I asked that he would do "something special". After that I went to sleep.
The morning of the next day, Friday, June 29, 2001, I arrived at the office with the testimonies. I went to sit at my place and started to work.
I was eager to hand out the copies. But every time I wanted to get off of my chair I could not do it. And time flew by.
At a certain moment I locked myself in the toilet to pray. Standing with one hand leaning on the wall and looking up I launched a question to God: "and aren't you going to do anything special?"
Then I want back to sit. The internal struggle went on. I wanted to get up but I could not.
Inside me I started to talk with God. I said: "Lord, I really cannot do this. The only thing that I can do is hand out the testimonies here in the IT room".
With the colleagues of the Development Entity of the IT Department we sat together in a big room in one of the rented houses.
My approach had changed. I now tried to get the courage to share the testimonies only in the IT room.
But every time I was going to stand up someone came in or went out.
In the end I took the determination "I will distribute the testimonies just before lunch time".
But lunch time came around and suddenly everyone in the room stood up and went away, leaving me behind alone.
Already in the afternoon after lunch I felt the weekend approaching. I felt that if I would not distribute the testimonies, I was going to feel really bad the entire weekend.
In the end I stood up and handed out five, six testimonies only in the IT room. I went back to my desk and sat down.
I was very relieved. I had already done what was possible for me. But now my God stepped into action.
A few moments later I saw some people running through the hall, looking for a fire extinguisher.
Shortly after that we colleagues all lost our access to the database applications on our pc.
Later on we got to know more details about the situation.
There had been a short circuit in the electricity connection in the other rented house!
The most delicate part was that the other house served to temporarily lodge the company's data center after we had moved there after the January 13 earthquake.
The person in charge of the data center saw himself forced to execute the shutdown process of the databases and then interrupt the electricity to the entire house by switching off the circuit breakers.
Due to this my colleagues and I from one moment to the next had lost our access to the applications that were our work instruments.
When the colleagues realized that this was going to last a whole while, shortly afterwards they got up and started to move through the house where we were and to talk to each other.
I understood that the suitable moment had come to distribute the testimonies.
So I got up as well, I took the testimonies, and handed them out to the majority of the people present.
After that I walked to the other house where the short circuit had taken place and handed out testimonies there also.
Undoubtedly God did "something special" that day, just as I had begged him in my prayer the night before. What was impossible to me, break the schema of the company, He did by means of this short circuit and following shutdown of the databases.
Will it have been a coincidence that the short circuit occurred immediately after I had handed out the first few testimonies?
Will it have been only a coincidence that this short circuit happened the day after my prayer?
Or could it be that God really exists and answers prayers?
Think about it and draw your own conclusions!
What had happened immediately reminded me of the story about Elijah and the prophets of Baal:
Answer me, O LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD, are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again."
Then the fire of the LORD fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench.
When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, "The LORD--he is God! The LORD--he is God!"
(1 Kings 18:36-39 NIV)
In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Bart De Wolf
Master of Information Technology
Ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ
Witness of the God of Israel
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