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The Healing of Mayombo

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One afternoon last spring, while I was still in Gabon, word came that one of the boys in the mission school was desperately ill. Irene Piper, the nurse at Bongolo, immediately took him to a nearby government hospital where his case was diagnosed as meningitis. After a few days the head nurse, a fine African Christian, wrote a note saying, “There is no hope; Mayombo will not live.”

Later one of the older schoolboys told us an amazing story. The evening before Mayombo’s body had suddenly become very still. Everyone considered him dead. Some of the relatives began to wail, but his mother remonstrated, “No! Stop wailing! I am praying. Perhaps God will bring my child back.”

She prayed. Soon the people began to wail once again. Again she said, “Stop wailing! I am still praying. Who knows what God will do?” A short time later Mayombo opened his eyes and asked for water.

As soon as he awoke the next day he began to speak. “Mother,” he said. “Last night I walked down a lonely road. After traveling some distance, I saw ahead of me a group of white-robed men. As I approached them, one stepped forward and motioned to me to return.” After, Mayombo praised the Lord and prayed.

On Sunday Irene and I loaded our small truck with teen-aged boys, and after ministering in villages, we headed south toward the hospital. The noonday heat was intense as we began to walk down the path. It was not difficult to locate Mayombo’s room. Relatives and friends overflowed onto the veranda—even the windows were jammed with the curious.

Mayombo’s body was still twisted and his back slightly arched, but his eyes were alert. Both he and his mother were deeply moved as the boys with us sang and prayed. After I read a short passage from the Word, Mayombo’s mother said to me in a quiet voice, “Mademoiselle, I want to tell you a story.”

The bare hospital room, its walls grimy from years of use, became a sanctuary of God’s presence as this woman spoke. She told us that in the night her son had another visit from a white-robed figure. He handed Mayombo a sheaf of papers and asked, “Why aren’t you hiding God’s Word in your heart?” In the morning Mayombo realized that the papers represented the Word of God which he was to think upon. Overflowing with joy, he sang and prayed for hours.

Before we left the room, Mayombo turned and said in a low voice, “Mademoiselle, I made a confession of Christ at the mission, but I never really gave my heart to Him. Now I know I am God’s child.”

A few days after that, I heard several women talking with much excitement on the veranda of our home. “Have you heard the news? Mayombo took his first steps in front of the hospital today! God has performed a great miracle in this boy’s body.” Weeks later as I was passing through Mayombo’s village, I saw him racing down the road, his body strong and a joyous smile on his face.

God honored the desperate prayer of a simple African woman and restored her child to life!

—by Enid Miller

Adapted from The Alliance Witness, June 14, 1961

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