The Netherlands' capital city of Amsterdam is known throughout the world for its many canals, historic homes—and red-light district.
"When the Lord called us to plant a church in Amsterdam, we knew we needed to pray," Dr. Arleen Westerhof tells Dr. Steve Greene received on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. "It's a tough city—or it used to be a tough city. And so we started to pray."
Through the years, those prayers have borne amazing fruit, including changed lives that have changed the face—and the statistics—of the area known for its sin and degradation.
As the Westerhofs prayed in the red-light district, her husband "kept getting the same picture of men holding large red flags, large banners, at the corners of the 12 roads leading into the red-light district," she says. "And he said, 'Lord, if this is You, give it to me three times, because I really need to know.' And indeed, he received that vision three times, three different occasions. And so he knew he had to act."
When he shared his vision in church, he said, "You know what? I don't know. But I've got to do it. Who's going to come with me?"
A total of 50 men stood up, Westerhof says. They took large red flags—the kind used in worship—with them the first night as they went out to pray in the city's most infamous section.
"They went out on the street, two by two on the corners of these 12-year-olds, and then they switched locations," she says. They went to a new corner every few minutes.
"When they came back, they had had more than 240 conversations with people about the Lord Jesus Christ," Weserhof says. "Forty people had asked Christ into their hearts.
"And that was amazing in and of itself," she adds. "People came up to them and said, 'What are you doing with the flags?' And they just said, 'You know what? We're standing here; we're praying the Blood of Jesus Christ out of this neighborhood for the forgiveness of sins, because God has a purpose for these women, and He has a better purpose for this neighborhood. And people loved it."
The couple and the prayer warriors from their church thought they would only carry out that prayer ministry for a brief season, Westerhof says. "We had an idea that we would do that six or seven times and then go home—Jericho strategy: circle, shut the walls down and go home. After the seventh time, we were picking up the flags, and the Lord said, 'What are you doing?'
"And I remember clearly saying out loud, 'Lord, we've done what You told us to do," Westerhof says.
"And He said, 'I didn't tell you to stop.'"
To find out how long the Lord kept that red-light prayer ministry going, and the resultant drop in prostitution in Amsterdam, listen to the entire episode of Greenelines at this link, and subscribe to Greenelines on your favorite podcast platform for more inspiring stories like this one. Check out Westerhof's own podcast, Prophesy Impact, , also on the Charisma Podcast Network.
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