Friends and Prayers:
Do you ever get the feeling that each passing year goes by faster than the
year before? Another one will be over tomorrow already, and Sunday kicks off
2012! It's hard to believe, but here we are. We wish you all the best of God's
blessings for the New Year!
A new year usually brings high expectations and positive resolutions, but for
many in today's world that is a tall order. Economic instability is evident
at home and abroad, and political unrest and violence in many areas of the globe
fill the news. For many people there is a growing apprehension about what the
What an immense blessing to know that we can totally trust the Lord in whatever
circumstances we find ourselves! Psalm 4:8 says, "I
will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O LORD, make me dwell
in safety." And in Psalm 118:8-9 we read, "It
is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. It is better to
trust in the LORD than to put confidence in princes."
Our friends' little dog showing such serenity and trust in her mistress is
a great example of just how absolutely we can trust in the One who cares for
us. Nahum 1:7 says, "The LORD is good, A stronghold
in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him."
As we look towards the coming year here in Wales, we anticipate great things,
and rest confidently in Him who has placed us here. We are still learning to
trust in His grace and goodness every day, and know that He will never let us
There are many things that encourage and fuel our prayers for revival here.
The scriptures are the principal source, but there are others. Here is an excerpt
from "When God Came to North Wales", edited by Philip Eveson, which
I mentioned earlier this month. This portion was taken from the Rhos Herald,
the local newspaper on December 24, 1904. The paper carried a running account
of events during the revival itself.
Capel Mawr on Monday night a great crowd gathered together for prayer. The usual
order of the service was broken by a little girl, hardly twelve years old, rising
to her feet in the middle the crowd and offering up one of the most striking
prayers heard. It was, of course, a child's prayer, but in its simplicity it
The crowd was shaken like leaves and their feelings were melted
into liquid by pure, innocent eloquence. Strong men shook like bushes before
the wind and many cheeks were wet with streams of tears-cheeks that had been
dry in many a worse circumstance. For many this was the strongest impact the
Revival and the one that affected them most deeply.
Scenes like these are more than enough to whet our appetite for more of Jesus
in our own lives and the lives of those around us. It was the moving of the
Holy Spirit in and through the people of God, mostly in times of prayer, that
people's lives were transformed. Many times godly preachers such as Rev. R.B.
Jones never got to deliver their sermons because the Lord was already at work
in the hearts of the people.
So we welcome the challenge of a new year, and we invite you to join
us in lifting our hearts and voices to heaven that His will be done in our own
lives and in our communities and the nations of the world!
In the amazing love of Jesus our Savior,
Dick & Gladys
Saints and Praying Friends:
Suddenly we find ourselves in winter now. There's not much freezing yet, but
lots of hail and wind, and very short days. But by this time next week the days
start growing longer again, and that is always nice to see. Gladys enjoying
stoking the fire - the closest we get to sunshine on grey wintery days.
In my readings recently I have found some very encouraging portions of scripture
that add some fuel for our prayers. This part of chapter 2 of Zephaniah says
"7 The coast shall be for the remnant of the house
They shall feed their flocks there;
In the houses of Ashkelon they shall lie down at evening.
For the LORD their God will intervene for them,
And return their captives...
11 The LORD will be awesome to them,
For He will reduce to nothing all the gods of the earth;
People shall worship Him, Each one from his place,
Indeed all the shores of the nations."
As we dedicate ourselves to prayer and intercede according the Holy Spirit's
promptings, then I believe the Lord will intervene for us as well. And the end
of the matter, the culmination of the ages, is that people of all nations will
worship Him. Now that is a glorious prospect, wouldn't you say?
Also Zephaniah 3:18-19 can teach us something about the tone of our prayer,
and God's response. "I will gather those who sorrow
over the appointed assembly [the condition of Israel and the church],
who are among you, to whom its reproach is a burden... And
gather those who were driven out; I will appoint them for praise and fame In
every land where they were put to shame." If we allow our hearts
to really be broken in prayer to the point of suffering, we know they are producing
a real effect.
want to wish each of you a Happy and Blessed Christmas. We heard this song for
the first time last year, and have been deeply touched by the message, and still
struggle to keep a dry eye... "Where's
the Line to See Jesus?"
This world is so much adrift in emptiness, and the external trappings of the
materialistic "celebration" emphasize that even more. We pray for
the days when there will be lines to see Jesus outside the doors of our homes,
our church buildings, and even our workplaces!
May God bless you and your loved ones this Christmastime with His presence,
Dick & Gladys
We have just been reading about the 1904 revival in North Wales. It is fascinating
to discover how the Holy Spirit began to work there the very same day as in
South Wales without any contact between God's people. The next morning the preacher
in the North telegraphed the news to his wife in the South, and soon both places
knew they were sharing in a sovereign move God.
There is something about the spontaneity of God's intervention in human affairs
that captivates our hearts with longing. How we desperately need Him! And yet
there seems to be nothing tangible that we can do hurry Him along.
This ancient castle reminds us of what great things can be accomplished when
people are dedicated to a clear purpose. And yet the passage of time brings
all to naught - all except what is built in the Kingdom of God. We are the work
of His hands!
As the church we can do wonderful things, and I'm sure many of us have shared
in them. We can start great mission projects, have amazing worship groups and
follow church growth programs, and there is usually some fruit from them. But
I think more and more believers these days long for something far greater. There
is a yearning for revival!
a recent meeting we were praying for a specific project. During the worship
I saw a vision. I found myself in a large open area or moorland, and it was
nighttime. In the middle there was fire burning brightly. It wasn't particularly
large, but it was burning along very well.
After a moment I began to notice that there were pieces of wood being added
to the fire. Some were large and heavy, others were smaller with some branches
still attached. They came slowly towards the fire from all directions around,
and were added to the blaze one after the other. The curious part was that the
pieces of wood were not being carried by someone and placed on the fire. But
rather each piece somehow came by itself.
What the Lord impressed on me was that this is how He is building His church today.
Those that He is calling to be involved are not adding something that they have,
but rather they are putting themselves on the fire - His altar. Each one is
saying to the Lord, "Here am I! Send me"
like in Isaiah 6:8. In other words, "Here I am Lord, let my life be fuel
for Your fire, myself, my life, my goals and dreams, my hours and days, consumed
for Your purposes. Let me be the fuel."
The move of God that we long for is going to have a stiff price. It is not
about people giving of their substance to bring this thing to pass, but people
literally offering their lives as a living sacrifice to see this through.
There is a growing sense of excitement and expectation in the Body of Christ
as we discover more and more of God's family who are paying the price and standing
in the gap through prayer and lifestyle.
Like the faithful ones of Hebrews chapter 11, we are waiting for the city which
has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. There is of course the heavenly
country that He has prepared for us. But we believe He is ever closer to moving
upon our world with great power and glory!
Trusting in His grace alone,
Dick & Gladys
Friends and Praying Saints:
This amazing brightness of nature stands out in vivid contrast to our shorter
and darker days. It is just such a great reminder of what living in Jesus really
means for us!
We find ourselves surrounded these days by the human race "braining"
its way through serious difficulties on so many fronts. How it rejoices the
heart to know that "... your life is hidden with
Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you
also will appear with Him in glory." Colossians.
Jesus' poured out His life for us to give us this position. This is our place
of "permanent residence" - the here and now is just temporary housing.
And it is from this "place of peace" we can pray in confidence for
the many needs we see around us, from personal needs to local and even international
concerns, of which there are plenty.
Philippians 4:6 says, "Be anxious for nothing, but
in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving,
let your requests be made known to God;"
There are so many things going on around the world that really need our prayers.
Why not ask the Lord to show you if there is any specific area He would have
you commit to pray for regularly besides the things for which you are currently
praying? If we all take on one more "prayer target", it will
make a difference. There is an old song from scripture that has been going through
my mind a lot recently. I believe this verse not only outlines God's conditions
for wholesome Christian character, but also helps to establish a good heart
attitude for our prayers. It comes from Micah 6:8.
has shown you, O man, what is good;
And what does the LORD require of you
But to do justly,
To love mercy,
And to walk humbly with your God?"
Speaking of the importance of prayer and the difference it can make, here is
an exciting piece of news. Do you recall several weeks ago I asked you to pray
about a prospective minister and his family for Blaenau Ffestiniog? Well the
Lord has confirmed all that now, and announcement was made last Sunday that
they will be moving there in the coming spring. So please keep them in your
prayers during this transition time.
As I said, there are so very many things that need prayer in the world around
us. It is wonderful to continually hear of more people who God is actively drawing
into places of significant directed prayer.
We have so many things to be thankful for, and rejoice in God's wonderful faithfulness!
May the Holy Spirit guide us all,
Dick & Gladys