News on the advance

Blogging/emailing/general contact with the world at large has been rare over this last while mainly because my internet connection has been down…one case of broken mobile internet modem dongle thingy. The joys of technology!

Kids Alive
The war is progressing well on this front at the moment. Our new mid-week ‘Sunday School’ type kids club is getting off the ground well and we’re getting good numbers. The kids who came along to the previous incarnation of the club have responded well to all the changes, so thats great. As well as having them on a Tuesday at club, we go and visit them at home on a Sunday afternoon, leaving behind a Kids Alive magazine or an activity sheet relating to our themes. Getting kids saved at an early age can save a lot of problems later on…I speak from experience here…I wish I’d followed Jesus since I was born! In January, we’ll be inviting some of the kids to Junior Soldier classes and see if they’ll covenant with us to love and serve Jesus.

Street Pastors
In other news, I’ve been training over these last four weeks to join up with the Street Pastor project in our city…Street Pastors ‘patrol’ the city streets on Friday and Saturday nights from 10pm – 4am. I’m looking forward, very much, to hitting the streets with the team. It does strike me as something in the fashion of the Army, this whole project, but I suppose if the Army aren’t doing it…however, its a fantastic project which is supported across 5 or 6 denominations in the city. it must please the heart of God no end.

Under the Fence
So, we’re on the way to building up our network of small groups/wards/cells/outposts. We’ll, things are underway with two potential outposts, with our Torry base already established and with the beginning of a youth cell in Torry coming up after youth councils next week. 7 of our young people from our drop in are attending youth councils…prayers please!

God is good.

Fit like?

Well hello! Things are still pretty hectic on this front. We’re not quite moved into our quarters yet, which still means a daily commute! Still…come Tuesday (maybe even Monday) we’ll be residents of our flat above the hall in Torry.

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Had another great wee meeting tonight. Our folks really get themselves involved in the sermon…did I say sermon? I mean’t to say biblical discussion with community application. So good to have everyone chipping in. Is the way to go.

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We introduced a new feature to the meeting tonight, entitled ‘Fit Like?!’ Now, to understand what that is, you have to be au fait with the Aberdeen dialict. ‘Fit like?!’ basically means ‘how’s it going?’ or ‘how are you?’ The regular and typical answer to the question is ‘Nae bad’ (not bad), but we’re hoping that with an opportunity for us to put community into action and to share our burdens and concerns with each other, we’ll soon be able to report better response than ‘nae bad.’!

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We’re looking forward to the visit of the General to Aberdeen in September to open the new citadel about a mile away from our place. Its a great new facility and we’re delighted to be working alongside the folks at the citadel on a few projects. Corps just can’t afford to be islands. Sure, they are a different ‘flavour’ to us (the songters were fab this morning and the band was nearly note perfect) but we’re an Army together. Some youth from the Citadel head up a youth drop-in in Torry with us. Great.

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Stay tuned for more developments on the Torry front…blogging should get more regular from this week where we’ll be back to broadband and a permanant place to live!

Gospel, gospel, gospel

Friday…tonight we will have about 140 children attending our children’s programme and I’m puzzling more and more about how to impact these children for the gospel. I’m also speaking tonight to about 40-50 teenagers at another church’s youth outreach…which is another great opportunity to share the gospel.

One of these days, some people are going to get saved! In faithfulness, we preach the gospel with clarity to anyone who will listen in the hope that at least one gets saved but oh Lord we want more. Imagine what a couple of handfuls of newly saved Christians could do for a corps?

Its been about 10 years since anyone got saved in this corps. I thank God and remember two or three firm decisions for Jesus at Pill although they were already linked to the corps.

Lord, for our inheritance, give us the lost….send the fire!

Our Youth Work

This week I have witnessed nothing short of miraculous…a wonder. It was something I’d been told about, but never quite believed it.

Our corps have an incredible children and youth ministry to kids at Primary school age and the beginning of secondary school. Not only are we, as officers, actively invoved in chaplaincy at all four of the primary schools, but we run childrens activities two evenings a week.

On Friday, we have JAM Club. From 6.pm-7.30pm we have children in P1 -3 (ages 4-7). On Friday we had over 70 children. From 7.30pm – 9pm on the same evening, we have children in P4 & 5 (ages 8-9) and we had just over 60 of those.

On Saturday night, from 7 – 8:30pm, we had P6 & 7 children (ages 10+) and there were just under 70 of those.

My terrible math skills tell me that we regularly have around 200 children coming along to our Army youth clubs, which all include a section where all the children sit down in rows, in silence, and listen attentively to the gospel. It is so big that we have to hire specialised premises as our halls are too small.

Can you believe this? I didn’t until I saw it with my own eyes.

However, we’re not seeing cross-over into the corps. We lack the progression from the ‘God-slot’ into worship, teaching, reaping and discipling. Enter Andrew & Tracy Clark! We’re over the moon to have been entrusted with such a great privelege and responsiblity.

I would like to ask you to give heaven no rest until we can see these children move on in their faith, into a real living relationship with Jesus, plugged into the local corps, in love with the Lord and fighting the fight.

The Lord gave me a word this evening as I prayed in the hall:

“…and a little child shall lead them” (Isaiah 11:6).

The general context of that verse is a revival of God’s people, specifically in the person of Jesus and by all those who follow him, but I sense that God was saying he was going to use these children.

In 11:12: “He will raise a banner for the nations and gather the exiles of Israel”

…in 11:15-16 “The Lord will dry up the gulf of the Eyptian sea(the nile)… (a sign of opression, sin and worldly influence on the people of God..it was a source of life for this nation who were anti-God an opressed God’s people)…with a scorching wing he will sweep his hand over the Euphrates river, breaking it up in to seven streams so that men can cross over in sandals.” (The Lord is making a way for people to come back to him from exile before the gospel breaks out…God is saying he will do with the Euphrates as he did with the Nile, the sinful system keeping people away from God will be dispersed.)

For those of you who’ve followed the ‘river’ words the Lord has been giving, this will make sense I hope..if not, scroll down!

The Wick Salvation Army/Baptist Revival 1921

Finally got sorted out with broadband at home and good to be feeling connected with the world again! Been having to take trips to the library to check emails etc, so glad thats all over.

Did I mention that the last mainland revival in Britain took place at Wick Corps? Between the corps and the baptist church, in November 1921, over a thousand souls sought salvation. In my filing cabinet in my office, I have what is called a ‘Seekers Register’ from that time. That is basically a record of people who have come forward in a Salvation Army meeting to seek salvation, to rededicate themselves and to seek after holiness. The book is split up into people who appear on Salvation Army rolls and those who dont.

Now, from the middle of November 1921 to the beginning February 1922, there are just over 400 names of people seeking salvation who have no formal connection with the Army. In the space of two or three months, 400 people seeking salvation. In addition, you can add around 40 – 50 backslidden soldiers who came back to the Lord. Add to that those who knelt in rededication and who were gloriously renewed.

First hand stories I’ve heard so far include recollections of people lining the Mercy Seat 10 rows deep and people having to come back later when it was empty.

And all that is just at the Salvation Army.

Today, Wick Corps is comprised of a dedicated band of holy, godly people who are desperate for the Lord to move again. Many of them are senior in years, but we have a vital evangelistic youth and children’s work which has been planting the seed of the gospel into nearly 180 every week for the last 15 years.

The time has come for the harvest, the north wind is blowing. Oh Lord help us! Join your prayer to mine for the Harvest in Wick. The Lord can do it again!

TGI Thursdays


So, we launched our new youth drop-in this week. Its called TGI Thursdays, and takes the form of a youth cafe. We’ve spent a hard couple of weeks getting our youth room ready, purchasing equipment etc etc and tonight it was fab to just see the kids enjoying in. I had a real sense of satisfaction this evening to see it all come to fruition. We also had someone extra, as well as our own youth, so that was good.

We’re not really in a place to start huge youth work, so we have plenty of time for this project to grow little by little. All our youth have three invites away with them to give to their friends. Just giving it all to the Lord and praying for good things.

As for my performance this evening, I lost three games of chess and two games of pool. Pathetic record!