Leaders Day

Had a really blessed time today with Christian leaders from across the region (Bristol, Bath etc) at Trinity College in Bristol.

We opened with worship which was really significant. The air was thick with the presence of God…my heart was beating at 1000 miles an hour and I literally shaked. God spoke to powerfully about some things. I’m just aware that God is speaking so clearly in prophetic ways at the moment. Might blog later on that.

It was so good to be there in unity with other leaders. It was quite a broad churchmanship really, but predominately evangelical/charismatic/pentecostal leaders.

We had a key note message from the Anglican Bishop of Bristol, Mike Hill, who seems very soundly evangelical and with a great understanding of things spiritual. He totally blew my stereotype and I had to thank God for him and that there actually are good men like this in positions of authority in the C of E.

I decided that I would go sallied up and I’m glad I did. The Army in Bristol seems to be so insular and so misunderstood by the church let alone the general public. (sigh). It was good to be able to be there, along with Captain Polis Pantedelis from Bedminster.

There is so much spiritual significance of church leaders together in that kind of spirit of unity and prayfulness. It acheives something which is hard to describe that our monthly ‘grumble sessions’ with local leaders don’t often acheive.

Good day…praise God

Andrew

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Sacramental Poor

Was preaching tonight at ‘Ignite’ a worship and prayer evening based at a corps community project in the city. Spoke about the sacramental poor. The message laid heavy on my heart all day. I hope that I preached it with the passion I felt about it. I felt the message got through clearly enough (I hope) and that people were challenged/blessed but it left me a little unhappy in a way.

I’ve commented before that the only thing that dissappointed me about coming to Pill was the fact that is was a rural community, but still, God has me where he wants me. Its something I struggle with a bit. Still, I firmly believe that God has things in the future for me.

I mean, Pill has its troubles, true. They just aren’t so obvious as to be certain to know what to do. Unlike Glasgow, the poor don’t come knocking on your door!

God knows its a passion and he will use that. I just need to pray about how I work that out in these next few years. It would be very difficult to volunteer anywhere with all the time we spend in mission at Pill…I just need to be able to focus on what God wants me to do with something he has clearly placed in my heart.

Still, was glad to have the oppostunity to speak on the subject and to remember all the names and faces of people I worked with and ministered to – to remember God’s big blessings through them.

Spending tomorrow with regional church leaders (mainly evangelical/charismatic/pentecostal type ones) for a day prayer and strategy conference. I hope it will be a good day…looking forward to it.

yours in the fight
Andrew

Today’s Random Thoughts

Thanks for those of you who have signed up to pray…looking forward to hearing from a few more.

So, I’m gearing up now to attend the Commissioning of the Preparers of the Way Session as trained in Russia! I know one or two of them. They are the kind of people that you want to love and smother because of their commitment to the Lord and just the way the live out what really is a sacrifice. I’ve been very interested in a few comments coming from http://armybarmy.com and Stephen Courts blog about the nature of officership – check them out. Also, Major Chick Yuill writes challengingly about the nature of officership in the recent ‘Officer’ Magazine (apologies to those who don’t have access to that).

Thinking about my own officership, its taken a rather different turn recently having spent nearly the whole of the last week renovation out corps building gardens. Well, it was a valuable opportunity to do something with my dad who visited the whole of last week, but it was great to see ‘transformation.’ And that was the exciting part. It’s far from Charlie Dimmock standard, but it looks really good and the community is talking about it. Its a valuable lesson in how easy it is to get people’s attention.

Very same with our giveaways in Portishead where we are at the basic level of a corps plant at the moment. People are asking us about it frequently.

It proves my point that ‘visibility’ is a great tool for the Army. Sure, sometimes we want to be doin the undercover Kingdom stuff, but sometims we nust need to see the value in being out there.

We identified through our last War Academy term (our discipleship programme) that prayer warfare and visibility were key lessons God was teaching us and we are getting to grips with them. Still not as much as I would like, but we are getting there. The trouble is with corps leadership is that if something needs ‘lifted out’ as a priority you really really need to over-communicate. Its hard to know if your going for it too much…but I guess the proof of the pudding is in the eating.

So yeah, all pretty random today. But, I think what I am saying is prayer warfare and visibility – good combination. No to be used as an excuse for being intentional about mission, but quite a good place to start actually.

in the fight
Andrew

Soft heart, hard feet

So, yes I am still on the planet. I’ve had such a tiring few weeks. It could be the need for a holiday coming back again! We’ve been to Roots during the May bank holiday and for me, this year, the best thing about it was discovering that Captain Stephen Court and Captain Danielle Strickland are preaching next year on metamorphosis…glory into glory. You kept that one quiet SC! Yes, Roots has lost its nerve a little but I live in hope. It was significant for some of the people who came with is and thats fantastic. Hallelujah!

Anyhow…there has been a load of things happened. God is speaking in several ways at the moment, fairly clearly, about several issues. There has been a quickening of the Spirit in my own life at the moment….I blogged a little while ago that I knew something was coming.

Intense awareness of God is making me very tearful…you know that feeling you get when you have lost someone or you are feeling really hurt…well I’m feeling that so often at the moment yet the product isn’t misery its an experience of both awe and commitment.

What is more, reading stories of God doing things almost doubles me over!

I’ve been praying a la Jackie Pullinger…that God would give me a soft heart and hard feet in order that I can have the courage to lead my people into hard places but with the ability to love whatever the consequences. Oh that God would give us an easy path…but perhaps their is great strength in weakness.

We need increased prayer coverage, so I am recruiting intercessors, people who will pray for us and cover our fight with us. If you would like to sign up, please send an email with ‘Prayer Warrior’ in the title to andrew.clark@salvationarmy.org.uk . I will endeavour to send out a prayer email each week (on a Friday evening). I look forward to hearing from you.

yours in Jesus
Andrew