By JESUS Film Harvest Partners
Halfway through a showing of the JESUS Film at a village in Sri Lanka, the skies darkened and a light rain began to fall. Disheartened team members showing the film began to pray earnestly against the rain, but soon discovered God had a different plan in mind.
As the equipment was set up, the skies darkened and began to telegraph the imminent approach of rain. When the film began to roll, the glow of lightning and sounds of thunder rolled over the townspeople gathered there. Many of the team prayed that rain would not dampen the evening and keep people from watching JESUS.
Villagers on the side of a hill nearby turned on their lights and stepped outside their homes to see what was happening. They began to watch the film along with the others huddled below.
When the rain first began, several of the visiting team members started to pray, asking God to stop it. To their chagrin, the rain continued.
Team member Rob North said he remembered thinking, “Oh, Lord, please stop the rain. We are all getting wet and very few have an umbrella; what if people leave to get out of the rain?”
“By the time Jesus was crucified, it was raining heavily, but few people left,” Ann Baldwin noted.
The visiting team didn’t know it had not rained in this area for three months. The priests and followers of the local traditional religion had been praying for many days and weeks, making sacrifices, wailing and crying out for rain to their many gods.
In fact, earlier in the afternoon, some of the village’s women had been in the village temple beside that very square, pleading with their gods to send rain.
It was not until the scene in which Jesus was nailed on the cross that the heavens broke loose and rain began to pour down on the gathering.
“When the rain came during the crucifixion of Christ, the villagers said they now knew that Jesus is the God who hears and answers prayers, that He is the God who brings the healing rains so needed by that village,” Baldwin reported.