In the busyness of church life it can be so easy to get caught up in the “doing” of church that we miss out on “being” the church. It was so good for over 30 of us, this summer, to go to the Four12 conference in Cape Town, to take time out and tune into to God’s voice, away from the noise of busy schedules, texts and emails, and to focus in on what God is saying to His bride, the church! It was especially great to have 15 young people with us who returned on fire for God.
Over the last few months we have been following God’s leading in creating space for people to ENCOUNTER Him. As well as preaching a message series on becoming more like Jesus, we also have been developing an evening event once a month called ENCOUNTER where we worship and minister to one another around communion. It has been so encouraging to watch people grow in the use of their gifts; we have seen healing and heard many prophetic words, as well as seeing folk praying for one another. God says if we draw close to Him, He will draw close to us, and that is what ENCOUNTER is all about. We are really sensing that God will grow something out of ENCOUNTER which will be fresh and perhaps even open the door for a fifth congregation in the future.
We are excited to have a visit from Will Marias and Mike Davies, at a Four12 leaders conference in Horsham (UK) and a visit from Janet Brann-Hollis. As the church here endeavours to build a healthy New Testament Church where leaders are equipped and released to serve God, we welcome all the input we can get and are blessed to have so many folks from Four12 willing to come to build with us.
A final encouragement for us is that we start our ‘Year of Your Life’ internship programme next month. We hope to have one young person per congregation working as a full-time volunteer over the year in areas of Worship, youth work and general church life. While they serve we will invest into them – help develop and equip them in leadership, theology and in their giftings as they serve. This is a great way to build into the next generation and grow the leaders of the future.
Thanks for all you prayers and continued support,
The Living Hope Team