Matias Toivainen is 23 years old and comes from Helsinki, Finland. He is in Ukraine a lot to spread the gospel and give humanitarian aid. Together with his team, he sees tens of thousands of people start to follow Christ in Ukraine, sometimes whole villages at a time. This is the second part of our interview with him.
It happens often that when the team goes to a Ukrainian city to preach the gospel and to worship, and when people pray for them behind the scenes, there is a big military breakthrough within days. Many times the war leaves the place where the team had just been. “There’s such power in the gospel, that all these forces of darkness and death have to leave when the gospel comes to town.”
Matias tells of a time when they were only 500 meters away from the Russian army. “They saw us, they were bombing us and they got very close, but none of us got a scratch.” When they were reading reports at the end of that day, the Ukrainian military was commenting on how strange it was how well their air defence was working in that place at that time. They had been in that same city where the team had shared the gospel and helped the people. “I believe when we go, the Lord is protecting us and the whole place.”
“Every time we see the kingdom of God win.”
“It’s really such a clear clash between death and life. The kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of God coming face to face. And every time we see the kingdom of God win. It’s a good kingdom to build, it’s a good King to serve. Jesus is afraid of nobody. Jesus is victorious over all,” Matias says.
Miracles and revival
He sees many miracles happen in Ukraine, from the healing of the sick to the multiplication of food. “Everything you read about in the Bible, we’re seeing now in Europe, in 2022. Tens of thousands of people are turning to Jesus. Full villages at a time, it’s a very special move of God. And the craziest part is that even though this is absolutely majestic and magnificent, something bigger than what we’ve ever seen, it is still just a very small part and an individual, small piece of the great work that the Lord is doing in the body of Christ as a whole.
At one church, 300 people were baptized that service. “It was just something normal to them. The full body of Christ is really taking its place.” Someone from one of the biggest Ukrainian churches told Matias: “Right now, there are two kinds of Christians in Ukraine: there are evangelists and disciplemakers.” Matias really sees the Christians in Ukraine taking their place representing Jesus and His gospel.
“The European heart over all is more open to the gospel now than ever before that I have seen or heard of.” Especially in places like Ukraine. Matias sees a hunger to know Jesus and a desire to make things right with God, in the midst of the chaos. “It’s a very ripe time. The harvest is very ready.”
“As the world is shaking, as the nation is shaking, everybody is falling on their knees.”
“As the world is shaking, as the nation is shaking, everybody is falling on their knees. They are looking to God. God promises in the Bible: ‘Everything that can be shaken will be shaken.’ And so I think we will see a lot of difficult times. But in that time, I believe we will see a very strong church take her place.”
“Rise up, take courage, have faith, follow Jesus, represent Him and preach His gospel, and we will see a very, very big movement of salvation and redemption in Europe. We will see millions of people come to Christ, and a very genuine revival in Ukraine and in Europe. We’re already seeing the sparks light up. We will see revival spread like wildfire. We just need to be there to take our place and do our part, to worship and to obey Him.”
Evaluate the foundations of your life
Matias stresses the importance of prayer. “Those who really have an impact on the world are those who know how to pray. So I would encourage everyone to pray for protection and breakthrough.”
He also encourages everyone to evaluate the foundations of your life and if you are right with God. “At the end of the day, when it comes to your life, your destiny, your soul, the army isn’t in control of that. NATO, Boris Johnson, Emmanuel Macron, your job, your bank account, your health, they are not your saviour. They can do nothing for you in eternity when you stand before God.”
“There is no weapon, no bullet, no rocket, no tank, that can steal you from the hand of God.”
Matias has a message for everyone who is afraid of the war: “Once you put your full trust in Jesus, once you put your faith in Jesus, there is no harm that can shake that. There is no weapon, no bullet, no rocket, no tank, that can steal you from the hand of God. The love of Jesus casts out all fear. If you are afraid, come to Jesus. There is no fear in His presence. Now is a very good time to get very, very close to Jesus and to know Him well.”
If you want to help the people in Ukraine, the biggest thing you can do is to pray and intercede. Matias also encourages everyone who feels a calling to come to Ukraine, to come. “There is a revival, but there are very few laborers. If the Lord has called and prepared you to go, please go.” You can also help Ukraine by supporting organisations who are helping the people of Ukraine every day. “Now, all the enthusiastic support that was there in the beginning, it isn’t there anymore. We need your support more than ever. If you can’t go, please send.”
Read part 1 of the interview here.