Tommy Downs

Tommy Downs

A Servant of Jesus Christ

Tommy's Third Week of School plus Revival Week

Interesting 3rd week. We “learned” vehicular mechanics in two and a half days. We “learned” 4x4 driving in a day. We studied hard though… We also learned about Children’s ministry and that we shouldn’t water down the gospel for them, but that they can have the same Holy Spirit as adults. They get spiritually malnourished by being given only bible stories instead of their identity and victory in Christ.

Likewise we took a leadership class, but it turns out leadership is just knowing who you are in Christ and getting your eyes off of yourself and onto others. So we also practiced prophecy in that class since it’s a tool for edifying and encouraging one another. When you prophecy you speak God’s will over someone and tell them who they are in Christ; that the same spirit that rose Christ from the dead dwells in them. It’s not about seeing who they are in the natural, but seeing their spirit (which is the holy spirit if they’re saved).

You can only have one spirit, either your spirit has died with Christ and God has given you his own spirit, or you’re not born again. If you are born again and are living inconsistently with who you are in Christ, you need to have a revelation about who you really are.

So even if you see something negative about someone, you can prophesy the truth over who they really are in Christ. If someone’s lazy you can prophesy dilligence and steadfastness. That’s not to say you can’t look at someone, see their strengths and encourage them there, that happens a lot in prophecy as well. A lot of people said that I’m full of joy which is evident; and that when I play music it changes the atmosphere. They said that Hopper is wise, precise, and discerning.

I helped the work-team rake leaves that week in addition to my regular dishwashing duties. Corey, Theara, and I went down the gorge with a couple Zambian workers to go fishing Friday night. We didn’t catch anything, but we almost caught a big fish (possibly catfish). We had to go back up by 10:30pm, so we did; but Bobby and Philmore the Zambians kept fishing all night and caught 12 or so fish.

Revival Week

Revival week started Saturday night. There was many sessions of worship and preaching as well as some Holy Spirit fun Pentecostal stuff at the end. I was fighting to stay up, it went until midnight or so. I did the dishes after dinner every night, (usually with Hopper and some other people) in addition to the final dishes after the meeting ended.

So every day we had morning, afternoon, and evening revival meetings and apart from eating and dishes we did not much else, except I got up early and had Bible studies with the Zambian security guards most mornings. Some people weren’t feeling well one day, some stomach bug was going around they said. 27 people in all were affected they said which was most of the AMT students and some of the staff. The trinity, as they call us, (Hopper, Joy, and myself) were good, along with Corey, the Cambodians, Henette, and a few others. I continued to eat food off of people’s unfinished plates, even those who handed me their plates saying they felt too sick to finish. When fear tells me something, it’s safer to defy fear than to listen. Being led by fear is more dangerous than being recklessly faithful. AMT leadership thought that maybe the sickness was caused by faulty dishwashing… I had been doing most of the dishwashing, except for breakfast and lunch where they had earlier kicked me out of a few days prior because I was stealing the Zambian workers’ jobs.

I felt kinda bad, but people reassured me that it wasn’t my fault. Pastor Mark Spitzburg, who speaks at the revial meetings every night, believes in walking in divine health and living by the spirit and taking hold of our authority in Christ; I like him. He believes the bible and nothing but and speaks so unapologetically.

The Interview

I had an interview with Phil, Sharon, and Casey about my place in Overland Missions. They commended my drive (that I’m fast mentally, spiritually, and physically) and my strength. They said they could put me anywhere and I’d thrive, but that they’d put me in the hardest places they have like a boat in the Amazon, or building a base in the remote parts of Zambia. They asked my preference and told me to pray about it, I told them that I’d rather have it be someone else’s decision that way I can commit fully without asking myself if I had made a mistake.

They say that 10 years ago that Ciaran (/Keer-ahn/, a man’s name) went down the gorge and back up in 13 minutes… Sounds like a challenge.

Ok, I did it in 13m:09s.

3:10 down, 9:59 up. I got pretty winded going up, I was almost crawling.

I’ll have to beat that record later, the Overland guys used to climb up in 7:30, I can get there with some practice.

Sunday, Hopper, Joy, Theara, and I went to Nsongwe village to do some extracurricular ministering. We found Trevor (our Zambian friend who invited us to come out) and started praying, preaching, singing, and hanging out.