A LIGHT SHINES IN THE DARKNESS
Malaysia is divided into two sections: the west occupies part of the peninsula at the southeastern tip of Asia and the eastern section part of the island of Borneo.
Ethnic groups include the Malays, Chinese and Indians. Among the aboriginal tribes are the famous ex-head-hunters. One of their customs was that, when a youth reached maturity, he had to bring back the head of an inhabitant of a neighbouring villlage. This practice continued until Christian missionaries arrived.
The revival which came in 1973 was characterised by many signs and wonders with the power of God coming down in remarkable visitations.
A new move of God been in a high school among young people in a place called 'Bario'. This group used to get together at night to pray for hours after class. They were inspired by the book, Like a Mighty Wind about the Indonesian Revival and believed God could work among them also. They prayed, 'God, if You did it in Indonesia, You can do it here, also.
When the answer came from heaven, they were overwhelmed by deep repentance, accompanied by crying. Conviction was such that even small things appeared great in their eyes. Impoliteness or arriving late to class was seen as something terrible before God.
At first the teachers were very put out. The students spent all night praying, even though they would soon be having their final exams. The Holy Spirit then began convicting the teachers until they also started to cry out to God. There was a spirit of reconciliation around and many wrote letters to others asking for forgiveness.
The young people who went back to their villages at the end of term, took the fire of the Spirit with them and this affected other tribes. God gave them words of knowledge for members of their family, describing their sins and exhorting them to repent. Often they would indicate where they kept some fetish or article related to Witchcraft. The revelation caused the family members to fall on their knees and cry out to Cod. The young men and women would remain in the village from morning to evening, often for several days, till the whole tribe turned to God.
During this revival, there were many miracles. On one occasion, the Holy Spirit indicated that this group of young people should go to a village. While travelling through the forest, in the midst of dense vegetation, phosphorescent, transparent light appeared in front of them, illuminating their path. Wild animals did not bother them, and the light moved before them.
In every little village where these ignited hearts went, the fires of revival would spread.
On another occasion, God told a group of young people to visit a certain village. To get there they had to travel at night through the forest along dark paths. The Spirit of God told them to gather branches or leaves. When they broke a branch off a tree it became light in their hands. Those who saw such a miracle thought that when they arrived at the village the tribesmen would be impressed. Much to their surprise, however, when they arrived, the light vanished.
In the town of Bakelalan, people started to fall under the power of the Holy Spirit and speak in other tongues during a meeting. One woman, who was the wife of the tribal chief, was about to have a baby. She fell under the power and remained like that for two days. When she came to consciousness, she gave birth to a healthy boy!
Often, after experiencing the conviction of the Holy Spirit and repentance, the people were flooded by waves of tremendous joy. They began to jump and shout and laugh.
Sadly, however, when some of the missionaries saw this, they said, 'This is not God.' The missionaries did not accept this move of God and stopped it. In the words of one eye witness, speaking several years later: 'Only now, do I understand the joy and laughter as I see again what God is doing in our midst. What we experienced then was snuffed out by the missionaries."
Revival began with a group of 20 or 30 people, but it became so large that today it can be read about in government archives.