Saturday, 1 November 2014

Where has the time gone?

Seating on a plane for 8 hours certainly does give you sometime to reflect and think about "stuff" The fact that I'm on a return visit to Bethel Church and it's almost exactly 2 years since a we last went means I'm thinking about the past 2 years or so in particular. 

For me these past 2 years has been a great encouragement, of course we have had our challenges in both personal and community life at HBC, but over all we have seen God bless and guide us and in particular to begin to articulate and formulate a vision that we believe in and to which HBC is moving towards.

A question I have been pondering again and again in these 2 years has been: "How was Jesus able to equip a group of uneducated men and women to do the things He did, and to be like 
him in such a way that when he sent them out, they changed the course of human history?" As I have been seeking to answer this, 2 important partnerships have developed and strengthen these past 36/24 months to help me & HBC, these have been with 3dmEurope and with Global Legacy. 

In March 2012 we began our journey, as a leadership team and as a church, towards building a discipleship culture with expressions of Missional Communities. Now as I sit here in October 2014 having must returned from our 2nd Gathering of the Community Practice, having completed the 4 gatherings of a Leaning Community, we have made slow but steady progress over these 36 months. The discipline of processing "kairos moments", setting 2 yr vision goals with specific plans for the next 6 months has introduced an intentionality and common purpose that we just didn't have before. We are now working on a plan to make disciples, beginning with our definition of what a disciple is - "a person who is learning to be like Jesus and learning to do what Jesus could do!!" We've introduced some new vocabulary and vechiles to help us move towards of our vision, something we reset in this process - "Bringing healing, wholeness and freedom to broken lives & communities as we expect great things from God and attempt great things with God!"

Then back in Octover 2012 Sue and I took a trip to Bethel Church in Redding Californa, the Senoir Pastor is Bill Johnson and a number of global impacting ministries have begun here including Jesus Cultire and Bethel Sozo Ministry. It was an amazing few days and from this time we began to get to know leaders in the UK who were also connected to Bethel - primarily through Global Legacy.  This is the relational network that helps connect leaders, we've been to a couple of Eurpoean Leaders Advance gatherings, meeting with leaders within the UK with a heart for revival and committed to seeking the breaking in of God's Kingdom with supernatural power and authority. At HBC we have had visits from students from the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry under the leadership of Aline Lidwell, who herself spent 5 years at Bethel Church.

So these 2 relationships with 3dmEurope and Global Legacy have influenced me personally and also with HBC we have seen principles and values being expressed that flow from both sources. Overall I believe it has been for the good of the congregation and is beginning to express itself more for the good of our communities and city. To be honest we have only just begun but it is my hope and prayer that as we keep listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit and we step out in obedience to what we hear Him say, we will shall the church grow, the city transformed and God glorified.