armyrenewal.com!

Introducing armyrenewal.com!

This new website, an addition to the blog, contains basic elements of Primitive Salvationism and will be a growing resource of ideas and articles.

To browse the site, either click on the link or browe via the new links on this blog page just below the blog banner. You have Home, Charismatic Flavoured, Mission Focussed, Heroism and Community to chose from. You will recognise that the site is based on Stephen Court’s definition of Primitive Salvationism “Charismatic flavoured, mission-focussed heroism.”

It is still being built. Please feel free to submit suitable articles that meet with the theme. Bookmark it, link to it, spread the news if you like it. Feel free to leave comments here about how it could be improved or email me.

Enjoy armyrenewal.com!

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Booth’s Vision


So William Booth was on a train and he has a vision. He sees a black strorm rising up and a tragic ship wreck. People dying and sinking into the dark sea of misery, some of them sinking to rise no more.

Suddenly, out of this dark storm rises a huge platform from which those who had been saved from the wreckage were now helping others to safety. However, there were others who had been saved who were not concerned in helping people out of the sea, but who were occupied with other tasks, leisures, employments in spite of the fact even some of their family members were still drowning in the sea.

They were busy placing flowers by the side of the platform, playing music and painting pictures. Some were pre-occupied with eating and drinking.

There among them was a Wonderful being…all on the rock said they loved him and heard his call, but few were involved in the danger of the rescue. They just wanted Him to come and make them feel safe and secure, to comfort and guide them so that they would never again fall off the rock.

Booth, in his vision, saw a true parable of the church of Jesus Christ. Sadly, it is a true parable of the Salvation Army which God birthed through his passion and vision. He concludes thus:

“Does the surging sea look dark and dangerous? Unquestionably it is so. There is no doubt that the leap for you, as for everyone who takes it, means difficulty and scorn and suffering. For you it may mean more than this. It may mean death. He who beckons you from the sea however, knows what it will mean – and knowing, He still calls to you and bids to you to come.

You must do it! You cannot hold back. You have enjoyed yourself in Christianity long enough. You have had pleasant feelings, pleasant songs, pleasant meetings, pleasant prospects. There has been much of human happiness, much clapping of hands and shouting of praises- very much of heaven on earth.

Now then, go to God and tell Him you are prepared as much as necessary to turn your back upon it all, and that you are willing to spend the rest of your days struggling in the midst of these perishing multitudes, whatever it may cost you.

You must do it. With the light that is now broken in upon your mind and the call that is now sounding in your ears, and the beckoning hands that are now before your eyes, you have no alternative. To go down among the perishing crowds is your duty. Your happiness from now on will consist in sharing their misery, your ease in sharing their pain, your crown in helping them to bear their cross, and your heaven in going into the very jaws of hell to rescue them.”

My response? Here I am, my Lord, send me.

CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!


Christmas has well and truly arrived for us here at Wick. Out band kicked off their carolling on Saturday as we played carols for community singing at the switching on our our town’s festive lights. In spite of the howling gale, freezing temperature and pouring rain, blowing away at Hark the Herald reminds me of one of the great things about being The Salvation Army at this time of the year – we’ve got a great opportunity and responsibility to keep the ‘salvation songs’ of Christmas out there in peoples minds. As those who know me will know, I am a serial caroller…I’d carol until I drop!

The whole day was a sort of funday thing and I set up my stall with goodies to sell, booklets and tracts to give away and had myself a jolly time all by myself! Such a great opportunity to see and speak to people and for them to see and speak to us. Visibility is an absolute key, not just at Christmas.

Please, make the most of Christmas as a Salvationist….for Jesus’ sake.

At it again….

Just want to announce a forth coming book project entitled ‘Blood and Fire.’ Its about living out the passion behind our war cry…the blood of Jesus and the fire of the Holy Spirit.

Its in the final stages of preparation. Save your pennies. Profits go towards our new ‘Hub‘ project at Wick.

New Projects

Haven’t been feeling at all well the last couple of days…thats the main reason for some of the changes to this blog…I haven’t been out much, been staying in to try and recover from this cold as quickly as I can and get back to functioning fully. Its meant I’ve missed loads of my fav things this week….kids club, pubs, Sunday worship…you name it, I’ve missed it.

Anyway, I’ve also been working on a new online project, which will be announced in due course! Watch this spot! I want to commit some time to creating and maintaining a space with some concise teaching/propaganda about the key themes of the Army Renewal Blog, otherwise known as Primitive Salvationism. I suppose by way of having something clear cut to point people to.

The primitive salvationist stuff out there is all great (armybarmy.com, primitivesalvationist.com, etc) but you have to do a lot of wading to get a ‘gist’ of what the heart of it is. I’m passionate about the Army being the Army…and by that I mean reliant on the Spirit, missing driven and speaking out in society. That is PS…its also the heart of armyrenewal blog. As Captain Stephen Court says “Primitive Salvationism is charis-flavoured, mission-focussed heroism!” The new project expands on that and will be a sort of beginners guide. I’m also aware of our UK context and want to try to speak to that in some way

As I say, I’ll let you know when its ready. I’m in no way a professional web designer, but can do some basics with some help from some friends.

The General


Just reminding you to keep praying for the General. Its an old Army tradition going back donkeys years to pray for the General at noon (whoever he/she may be)…its a tradition worth bring back, especially for times like this.

We must never underestimate the influence and encouragement the office of the General brings to Salvationists all around the world even if some folks in the UKT are a bit more sceptical about its purpose…lets pray he will be healed and returned to full duties as soon as possible. But more than that, lets pray because he is a brother in Jesus, not just our leader.

Remember Commissioner Helen and the family too.

Mobile

Today, my Carlsboro Wanderer Delux II arrived. “Your what?” I hear you say. My Carlsboro Wanderer Delux II. Its a very useful portable PA system. Got a CD player, tape player, three different kinds of radio mic, jacks for plugging in yer iPod player etc etc. It has a great sound and even pulls along like a little suitcase with wheels.

Its all an officer needs for conducting meetings in community halls in his expansive corps district, open air work, Christmas carolling, etc. The thing I am enjoying most about this appointment is the freedom to be out just sharing the gospel. Sure, we do all the other regular stuff, but as an officer I’m covenanted to make the salvation of the lost the primary focus of my life. I wonder how many of us officers manage to keep that right up there in the priorities.

Even in a corps like mine, full of faithful people, it can be a challenge to raise the profile of evangelism in all its forms but it must be done. Soldiers must have the confidence to be out there being active in sharing their faith in whatever way possible. Time is too short to sit around…this generation of people will only be introduced to Jesus by this generation of Christians. Its too late when you’re dead.

I’ve listened to incessant drivel over the last 12 years as a Christian as to how you can’t evangelise this way or that way…how you can’t say this or that. In my opinion, the stakes are too high so we do whatever we can in whatever way and wherever we can do it just so that we can save some.

Lets take our cue from the Commander-in-Cheif, Jesus. He went around proclaiming the Kingdom of God was near, suggested (!) that people repent and then, if they needed convincing, healed a few people and cast out a few demons in the power of the Holy Spirit. The great thing for us is that Jesus never did anything that he didn’t hear the Father tell him to do and did all that he did in the power of the same Holy Spirit who is available to us.

So, go buy yourself a Carlsboro Wanderer Delux II and whatever else you think you’ll need for the journey and get on with it. Time is short, the stakes are high.

A Friend

I lost a friend a couple of days ago. Our friendship was uncomplicated…he knew me, I knew him. I enjoyed the time I spent with him and he enjoyed the time he spent with me. We met up two times a week, with a couple of other friends. Sometimes we chatted about family, his new jacket, what he was doing this week. We spent time singing to the Lord together too.

Now he is gone.

Now I have to bury him.

Now I have to sit with his mummy and hold her hand because he was only nine. She promised him that he wouldn’t die. She only wanted to keep her promise.

Now I need to face our other friends when we go horse-riding on Wednesday and he isn’t there. Now I need to explain to my kids choir that our friend won’t be coming any more.

I haven’t known him for very long, but I miss him already. He was just a wee boy.

Life isn’t fair, but God is good and that is our hope for tomorrow.