It is always a great privilege to write to you about what our Lord has been doing in our lives. The Goodness of God has left me with a shortage of words, which does not happen often! I made mention in our last newsletter of the amazing time we had at En Gedi where we were invited to speak at the Feast of the Tabernacles in Israel. Since my encounter with the Holy Spirit, I have experienced more confidence and more authority than I have ever had in my life before. It is the fear of God that takes away any fear of man – that fear being reverence for God. When one meets with the Lord tangibly like we did (4500 of us), there is no doubt that our Redeemer lives. This confidence takes away all uncertainty and anxiety of the future. As the Bible says in Romans 8 vs 31 “If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Just after I returned from Israel, a group of 18 men came to visit us on the farm. They came from Rustenburg, where their whole city has been in dire straits. After praying, I believe the Lord wanted me to go speak with the folk there. This would happen on the same day as another meeting I had at Elohim Church in Alberton. Pastor John Rose had done the most fantastic job organising the event and everything worked like clockwork. Pastor Francois Burger and his team had 24 days to organize the Rustenburg event which will be one event I will never forget. The organizing for both events was amazing and the Lord looked after every detail including the weather, despite the forecast. There were hail storms in Johannesburg; in Greytown the mist was so thick, we were unable to take off by aeroplane, but our Lord was still sovereign. My good friend, Tommy Voget had organised alternative transport and we were able to reach both meetings in good time: again the power of prayer. When men work they work, but when men pray God works. That is exactly what we saw. We saw 2 Chronicles 7:14 in action and I thank God for the people of South Africa that have an openness towards the Lord like few other nations.
Just last week I had the privilege of praying for the Natal Sharks rugby side before they went to play the final against Western Province for the Currie Cup. We had the most amazing time together. We prayed together and I was so aware of the peace of God in that place. To hear the captain giving honour to the Lord after the match was something that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
At the moment, I am praying over my preaching plan for 2013. I really would ask you to pray with me. It is so important to know what God wants of us. Maybe that is a question for you in your own life at the moment, where can you be most effective for the Lord? Sometimes the Lord just says be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10) and that is not easy. The most difficult part I found is to wait, but that waiting is absolutely vital. If our Creator had to take one day out of seven days to rest, how much more should you and I?
As we start approaching Christmas, I would encourage you strongly to not get yourselves so busy that you don’t have time to hear from God, especially regarding the New Year ahead of us. There are a few sayings that are so profound; When in doubt don’t, and A good idea is not necessarily a God idea. We need to hear directly from God. We so often try to please man, but it doesn’t work. We need to please our Father. With man, one day you are a hero, the next day you are a loser. You can ask any of the major sporting franchises, they will confirm that. When they are on a winning streak, everyone wants a piece of them, but if they have one bad match, no-one wants to know them. We need to do things for God. Our lives should be conducted in such a way that the Lord Jesus Christ gets all the honour and the glory, then we will be successful. One of my favourite verses, Matthew 6 vs 33 says “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you”.
In closing, please take time out as you get your calendar ready for 2013 and put your priorities in order. When we work out my preaching plan now, Jill gives me the dates that we are due to visit family or time to rest together and we put them in first. I never used to do that. I would always put my preaching commitments in first and then try to work family time around that and that does not work. Our priorities should be:
- 3.Work and other commitments
You will find that you will have plenty of time for everything. In these last days, the devil is trying to keep us so busy that we cannot hear from the Lord. When we cannot spend time with Him, everything else suffers: our Christian witness becomes watered down, we become short tempered, we become very critical, we become judgmental, we become angry, we get filled with anxiety and fear, that is not of God! When we spend time with the Lord, we see things through His eyes and then all of a sudden that mountain is reduced to a mere mole hill.
I leave you with a scripture which is easy to memorize ‘Have faith in God’ (Mark 11:22). Remember without faith we cannot please Him, so spend time in the Word, let your Bible become totally worn out this coming year. Be determined to put Him first and you will find that you will make fewer mistakes, you will cause less offence and you will be much more effective.
God’s richest blessings on you and your loved ones.
Yours in Christ Angus, Jill & the Shalom team.
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