Authors: Mahesh Chavda,Bonnie Chavda
MAKE ROOM FOR
MAHESH & BONNIE
For all the Shunammites we know, both men and women, whose faith brings to life again promises that seem to have died. In every place, your homes, your families, your churches and your nations, where you have built the room for God, may He come and make His habitation. May you see your children’s children and find in every season that truly, “All is well!”
© 2009 by Mahesh Chavda and Bonnie Chavda
Published by Chosen Books
A division of Baker Publishing Group
P.O. Box 6287, Grand Rapids, MI 49516-6287
E-book edition created 2010
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Unless otherwise noted, Scripture is taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
is taken from
by Eugene H. Peterson, copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group. All rights reserved.
is taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
is taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.
NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
is taken from the King James Version of the Bible.
The experience of God in all His fullness transforms an individual regardless of the day in which that individual lives. While we can be taught about God and not change, we cannot
God and not change. To experience God is to experience change. And multitudes in this hour are crying out for a direct experience with God.
The Gospel of the Kingdom, when preached and taught the way Jesus and the early Church did, is always accompanied by signs and wonders. The day in which we live raises many challenges concerning the impact and influence of the Kingdom of God on the culture. But if we hope to realize the full impact of the Kingdom on our culture, we cannot ignore that we need to both see and release the power of God.
Mahesh and Bonnie Chavda are no strangers to the workings of God and the operation and manifestation of His miracle-working power. They have taken the compassion of Christ to the nations over the years and seen firsthand what He can do when someone makes room for Him to move. Mahesh and Bonnie are committed to seeing multitudes immersed in the experience of God and His glory.
This powerful book gives you the opportunity to make room for the miraculous in your own life. Mahesh and Bonnie open up a world of possibilities as they open your heart to insights from the life of the Shunammite woman who made room for a move of God—and as a result made room for a miracle in her own life. She went from barrenness to birth and beyond. So will you, as you heed the insights and revelation from the volume you now hold in your hands!
We may be eager and ready to believe God for someone else to get a miracle. But when it comes to believing Him for a miracle for ourselves, we can find reasons coming up in our hearts and minds that convince us we are the exception to the rule. Mahesh and Bonnie will take you gently by the hand and lead you into the powerful processes of faith that make way for miracles to occur in your own life.
I deeply appreciate Mahesh and Bonnie because of their utter love and devotion to the proclamation of the Gospel in all its glory and power. They live passionately to see the glory of God manifest in the lives of all who seek Him. Once you embrace the notion that God has a miracle for you, a shift in awareness will begin to take place within you.
Robert Greenleaf, founder of the modern servant leadership movement, said, “One gets what one is ready for, what one is open to receive.” Since God is a God of miracles, I want to suggest that the fact you picked up this book is no accident. Something inside you drew you to this significant treatise. Not only something inside you, but Someone greater than you has seen fit to prepare you for a life-changing encounter with miracle-working power.
I invite you to trust in the process God has been bringing you through at this time in your life. I also invite you to trust the two servants whom God has chosen to mentor you into an experience with His uncommon glory, and to prepare the soil of your heart for the miracle you need and deeply desire. A miracle is coming with your name on it.
My deepest thanks to Mahesh and Bonnie Chavda for their willingness to take us step by step on this journey of identity and destiny, and to unlock the secrets that pave the way for miracles to happen—to all of us.
Dr. Mark J. Chironna
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If
anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I
will come in to him and dine with him, and
he with Me.
Three times in my life a knock at the door has had a profound influence on me. . . .
The first occurred nearly fifty years ago when I was fourteen years old. My family lived in Kenya, Africa. I grew up in the coastal city of Mombasa. We lived not far from the ocean, near an old fort called Fort Jesus. The Portuguese trader Vasco da Gama visited there some centuries ago. Now, the trade winds would bring old sailing ships called
carrying dates from Arabia and returning home with spices. The scent of bougainvillea and the ocean wafted in as I opened the door, curious to see who had knocked so softly.
There stood before me the figure of a young mother in Middle Eastern dress, a baby in her arms. She had the gentlest blue-gray eyes I had ever seen. This Arab woman was a refugee from Agadir in Morocco where, on February 29, 1960, a terrible earthquake took the lives of twenty thousand people. In those gentle eyes I could see pain, death and devastation. I do not know how that woman had made it all the way from Agadir to Mombasa, but she was there standing at our door, asking for help. She tried to communicate in Arabic, but I could only understand a handful of words. She kept repeating, “Agadir.” My family brought out clothes and food and money. I know my family did all they could to assist that woman. She had learned the Swahili word for thank you: Asante. She kept saying, “Asante, asante, asante,” as she walked away. I will always remember those gentle eyes. Her knock opened my heart to be tender to those in need.
About a year later, there was another knock on our door. I opened it to see standing before me a very pretty American lady. What could she possibly be doing so far from home, walking specifically in my neighborhood of Kibokoni in Mombasa, Kenya? She had captivating blue-green eyes. The eyes seemed to convey peace and victory. She wanted a glass of cold water, but she carried with her the message of eternal life. She and her husband were missionaries to Kenya. She left in my hands a New Testament, and from reading that book I came to know the Savior of the world, the precious Lamb of God, Jesus Christ. That knock on my door had profound destiny and completely changed my life. It gave me a future and a hope. Jesus had sent that woman to knock on the door of my heart. The Lord of Glory came in, and my life took a turn toward eternity.
Many years passed. And then one day, in a vision or dream or trance (I cannot say for sure), I heard, as it were, another knock. As I opened the door, it was as though a heavenly breeze blew toward me, and I saw clearly another woman in Middle Eastern dress, gentle and beautiful like the young mother from Agadir. She, too, had big blue-gray eyes. These eyes had seen pain and death, but they shone with resurrection glory. She stood at the door, studying me intently; then she smiled. “I am the Shunammite. I want you to tell my story.” Something filled my heart—it was as if the river of life had just swept over me. This then is the story of the Shunammite, an amazing woman whom God called “great.”
The Shunammite’s story is one that the prophets recounted whenever they remembered the mighty acts the Lord God of Israel had done for His people. They had perhaps long forgotten the woman’s name—or perhaps her story was so well known it was assumed that all who heard it were well acquainted with it, or perhaps the parts of her story that most inspired them were the miracles—whatever the case, the Holy Spirit remembered her. He prompted His spokesman many years later to recount her story. Jeremiah is credited with recording the Shunammite’s testimony among the annals of Israel’s kings. As Jeremiah labored over the fate of his people, the Shunammite remained a beacon of possibility and hope.
The book of Second Kings records the saga of the Shunammite— now a grown woman past childbearing years—as taking place within the twelve-year reign of Joram, son of apostate King Ahab and consummately wicked Queen Jezebel. Her recorded story follows Elisha’s apprenticeship of some fourteen years to Israel’s most flamboyant and compelling spiritual icon, the great prophet Elijah. After the dramatic reception of Elijah’s mantle, Elisha heads the guild of prophets whose burden it is to steer the nation away from its headlong bent toward captivity.
In his first year of office he finds himself in Shunem as the houseguest of a nobleman and his wife. Then, while wrestling to avert his nation from certain disaster, Elisha becomes a shepherd to the house in Shunem. Between dealing with an apostate king, a murderous queen and heads of state of nations sworn to Israel’s subjection and destruction, the man of God turns in to the house in Shunem for respite. That is when the miracles begin.
This Shunammite woman still speaks to us today. Hers is a story of recovery—recovery of promise, recovery of life and recovery of inheritance. Told here through the device of biblical fiction, as we imagine prayerfully the various day-to-day events of her life, her story gives counsel to everyone who has hoped and been disappointed, who has been obedient and unfulfilled, who has sown and is still waiting for a harvest.
Through her story the Shunammite bids you to make a permanent place of expectation where, in every season that comes, you welcome the God of miracles. Our desire is that her story told now will help you prepare room in your heart for God to make a permanent dwelling place. You will recover your life. You will recover your life’s breath. You will recover your lost inheritance—permanent communion with Him. This is our prayer for you—to know the power and faithfulness of God toward those who remain faithful to Him. The Shunammite
to us today. Let’s listen to her story and make room for miracles.
And it fell on a day, that Elisha passed to
Shunem, where was a great woman; and she
constrained him to eat bread. And so it was,
that as oft as he passed by, he turned in thither
to eat bread.
2 Kings 4:8, KJV
The Shunammite Speaks . . .
I was made famous by two of the most famous men in the history of the world: Elisha and Jeremiah the prophets. During a time when our nation turned to strange gods, my light shone in the darkness—a witness to Jehovah God. While the One who watches over Israel never slumbers, He also keeps His eye ever on the man or woman whose heart follows after Him. He will come to us like refreshing rain on dry land. And so we must believe even when nature fails us and hope tries to slip away. We must believe. We must hope. To lose hope is to lose freedom, to lose yourself.