Tucked away in the Guadalcanal highlands of Solomon Islands is a primary school called Valasi. On the surface, the school doesn’t look like much—just a few timber buildings and a couple of straw huts. Yet Valasi is so much more than that. It’s a beacon of hope in the midst of a spiritual battlefield.
Many people have had a hand in the establishment of Valasi. The school started out as a Volunteers in Action outpost designed to reach the people in the remote mountain region. The project was then picked up by ADRA and the Solomon Islands Mission Health department, which helped to construct a piped water system and two new dormitories.
Despite these developments, the school still has a tremendous amount of need. Valasi needs nurses to work at the school’s clinic, as there are no health services available to those living in this area of the highlands. It also needs qualified teachers—individuals trained to not only educate the local students but to stand up to the evil forces that lurk in the mountain region.
Thankfully, one such man is already working at the school as a volunteer. His name is Caleb.
Earlier this year, Caleb conducted a 10-day spiritual program at the school. One particular evening he preached about the true Sabbath. As the meeting ended and the students got up to leave, a very bright light shone out of the darkness towards the group. Out of fear, a student grabbed his torch and shone it towards the light. There in front of everyone stood a tall figure of a man. The spell that came over the group was so overpowering that all the students fainted like they were breathing poisonous gas. Their eyes were red and they could not move.
Caleb, quickly realising the presence of evil, called his wife beside him and together they prayed to God for His protection and deliverance. When they opened their eyes, they saw another very bright light hovering around the school before disappearing into the darkness. It was only then that the students felt a surge of power flowing through their muscles, giving life to their bodies.
Following the incident, 20 students gave their lives to Jesus and committed to Bible study—a testimony of the power of the real Light over darkness.
In another turn of events, the torch Caleb had been using that night to preach suddenly stopped working. Upon inspection, he found the inside wires were cut into small pieces—something Caleb also attributed to the work of the evil one, who was not happy for the students to hear the message of the true Sabbath.
Despite the terrible incident, the students were grateful to witness the battle between good and evil—and they are happy to know they are on the winning side.
Caleb knows the battle is not yet over. As he makes plans to host a similar program at a neighbouring village (a two-day walk inland from Valasi), he has asked his church family to remember him and his family in prayer. Whether the evil one shows up again or not is an unknown. However, there is one thing that is certain—God's power over evil. "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it" (John 1:5).
Joseph Pitakia is Adventist Education director for the Solomon Islands Mission.