I’m so grateful to God for all that he has done in this last half century. Hundreds of churches that formerly did not exist are now established. Others previously languishing or struggling have come alive.
Men and women have been trained and sent to plant churches first in nearby towns, then further afield. People have changed location, selling and buying houses, leaving jobs and finding new ones, removing children from schools and searching for new ones, making new friends, forming new churches and, more recently, learning new languages, cultures and ways of life overseas.
Church life has been transformed from formality to discipleship and devotion often expressed in sacrificial giving that has released many millions of pounds to empower the poor, finance ministry, buy and renovate buildings, and send men and women on mission.
For many, grace has replaced legalism. Heartfelt worship in a context of genuine friendship has replaced formal hymn singing among comparative strangers.
Prophetic insight and apostolic wisdom have provided a fresh kind of leadership, stimulating faith and a sense of adventure in churches led by godly elders rather than unbiblical democracy.
Underground streams….overground rivers.
Yet all this has taken place comparatively out of sight of the people among whom we live, in a culture increasingly ignorant of God.
We live with the prophetic promise that the underground streams will break through the surface to become powerful, visible rivers carrying life, fruitfulness and influence. We long for God to come with power. Revival remains the need of the hour.
I have been so encouraged by the Archbishop’s call for prayer through the “Thy Kingdom Come” initiative. Our own home church recently hosted such an evening where hundreds gathered from 16 churches spending the evening crying to God for our nation.
Many reading this will be aware of earlier promises that bonfires scattered across this nation will burst into life bringing an outbreak of God’s presence. Imagine how thrilled I was therefore to hear from Ginny last week that while away in Canada a prophet spoke to her promising “a sudden outpouring of the Holy Spirit across the land similar to the signal fires that were ignited in times past.” Once again that fascinating imagery from someone ignorant of previous prophecies. How amazing!
Let me encourage you to keep asking with increasing confidence that God who has begun a good work will complete it with a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit soon. Lord send the fire! The bonfires are waiting!
( Health report: Seems slow progress. Thankfully no pain or discomfort but this morning noticed a measurable increase in the strength of my voice. One of my signs of convalescence has been a markedly weakened voice. Now I can sing more vigorously! Thanks once again for all your prayers which are hugely appreciated)