Imagine the whole of The King's Centre alive with expectation, worship and art! That's the scale of the healing rooms at Bethel Church that run each Saturday morning. Prayer teams arrive early. They were already expectant and joyful to be there from the off. No one needed to drive the pre-event prayer meeting, but everyone knew how to engage with the Holy Spirit and get in step with him for what he wanted to do that day.
A prophetic encouragement shared by Bev, on Sunday 25th September 2022
There is a sense of ‘the end of things’ in Autumn, a time when life seems to be losing energy, dropping away, fruitfulness coming to an end, and there are people who are feeling this way about their lives and situations. And yet when we meet with God’s people on a Sunday, there is life and energy, the very presence and ‘scent’ of the Holy Spirit being felt, imbibed, and bringing life to us as individuals.
Last Sunday, former student Adam Walton, who is moving on work with YWAM, mentioned a prophetic word about 'balls of fire'. What was all that about, I hear some of you asking!?
The prophetic words that God gives us as we pray and seek him is an important part of catching a vision of what is on his agenda for us. Biblically, God speaks through dreams, visions, pictures, and men and women of God. As we have met together, over the years, to pray for Oxford, God has given us a number of these prophetic pointers, which we weigh together.
In my Sunday message from Isaiah 42-44, I commented on the prophetic words shared with OCC earlier in the year. Will you join with me in prayerfully reflecting on these words, and asking that God will he help us see what he wants to do in our city and communities?
Last Sunday, a flurry of four prophetic messages were shared.
For anyone unfamiliar with ‘prophetic messages’: The Bible describes them as God's gift to us. We expect – and enjoy – the fact that God communicated with people, so that they can then speak his message to us. Such words really help us. They encourage us and build us up – and sometimes disturb us!
How do we know it’s God’s message for us? We ask questions like: Are they consistent with the Bible? Are they in keeping with other such messages that we have received? Is the person speaking of good character?
Earlier today the elders reviewed and weighed the various prophetic and other contributions from the week of prayer. They said: "First of all, thank you for taking part! Secondly, as we've reviewed what came out, we see that God is reminding us to focus on him in this season. We note that our prophets, who often hear God with direction for the church, are not now hearing something about change, or a fresh focus - but simply that this is a season when God wants to draw us close!"
In a 24-7 prayer week slot with my Community (group), we were listening to God and in the silence I could hear our old wind-up clock ticking, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick…
I remembered how the people of the whole world are always thinking about what is next, what is coming, what we will do, where we will go, where we will travel, what work we will do next, so on and so forth, endlessly.
Through this pandemic, I think God wants to put his finger on the mechanism of that clock, and stop it. Stop us, stop our constant action, and make us still. Then we asked what is next?!
I painted this picture at a Transform camp in 2016 (as part of our 2020 Vision!) God brought it to mind for this time. The sense was that as we stand on the beach, and watch a massive wave form before us, we have a choice - either to be consumed by that wave, or to look up, see it as an opportunity, and see Christ within that wave, to paddle to it like a surfer, then, taken up by Christ along the edge, yes a precarious place, but he's given us a surf board!
When I was preparing for this morning [Bev painted this picture during worship on Sunday 19 January 2020] I had a picture of coals, just a big pile of black coals and they weren’t lit. Coal is remarkable because it has so much potential, but is really black and dirty and doesn’t do anything if you don’t light it.
Then this fire came from centre of those coals and started to light it. If we are coals, God has put so much potential in us! We have been created to be filled with the Holy Spirit and to be reflect the glory of Christ, as He sets that fire inside of us.