Welcome to Wales Awakening

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

All hands on deck! All hands on deck!

llandysul-prayer.jpgDear Friends and Prayers:

When the alarm is given on a ship and the call for all hands goes out, there is either an emergency or an attack is imminent.  Men go scrambling for their battle stations or other assigned posts in readiness for what is coming. And that is what we see happening now in Wales.

What looks like a small group of people in a large village hall is more than meets the eye. We were almost thirty strong, and this was very likely the first time a group has ever gathered here for open worship, prayer and words of encouragement.

This area around Llandysul in West Wales was known as the "black triangle" because it hasn't been touched by any of the revivals that have swept over Wales in the last 150 years. So this small meeting is really huge in that it is the first of a planned series of monthly meetings to establish a spiritual beachhead in the area.

On a different scale, and perhaps even more significant, is the fact that people from outside of Wales are coming here to take up positions as prayers and intercessors. In the time that we have been here, we've known of several people that God has called here to pray and stand in the gap for this land. But in just the last month or two, we have been contacted directly by people who were total strangers,  except for Jesus! They all have plans to move here for such a time as this.


This couple first got in touch with us in December. "My name is Bryn Williams and my wife's name is Sylvia. Currently we live in Alberta  Canada. Recently my wife and I heard about a retreat centre called Ffald-y-Brenin and we were very moved by some of the testimonies we read. We have always felt that we might come to Wales and we are now feeling moved to come. Probably for six months to start. I have a call for prayer on my life..."    We just finished talking with them a while ago, helping finalize plans for their arrival on February 26th!

Here's another excerpt an email I received four weeks ago from Benjamin, a young man on the Isle of Lewis in the Scottish Hebrides, the site of a wonderful revival in 1949. "Dear Dick, I have always had a spiritual burden upon my heart for Wales and the Welsh people. During the course of the past year, I have felt an intense desire to serve The Lord in a much more meaningful way ...embark upon the life of intercession that I genuinely believe to be my calling ...compelled to pray for Revival, starting in Wales. My heart has always been set on Wales, as it is the only place in the world that I have ever felt at home, but despite my yearning of recent years I have always felt to wait for the right time.  Even before reading about the redemption of Derwen Fawr, I felt that this was now the right time."

Last Tuesday we got this email from Renee. "Dear Dick and Gladys, Your names have popped up in different places over the last couple of years.  I've been greatly encouraged to read your background in missions and the call you received to move to Wales. I believe I am called to live in Wales to pray for the transformation of nations, including Wales. It is my desire to join others like yourselves whom God has been working in and positioning around Wales.  I desire to see Welsh people and the fire of revival once again fan out across the globe with the good news of Jesus Christ!"  

Another praying friend of ours in Mid Wales emailed a few weeks ago. "Dear Dick and Gladys:  Happy New Year.  A couple who used to run Ashburnham Place, a huge country estate dedicated to God and run as a Christian conference centre emphasising prayer, and then they worked with World Prayer Centre Birmingham, has come to live in Wales and wish tonarberthNWC.jpg be put in touch with folk. If you feel you wish to get hold of Andy and Margaret, here is their contact info..."

Here's another email we got last week from Colorado Springs. "Dear Dick and Gladys:  What wonderful, blessed news! To read that there will be a Korean pastor at Hanover Chapel brought me to tears of thanksgiving to our amazing God. I wish I could be there to help you celebrate and meet both of you after hearing about you from Huw for so long. Lord willing, we'll meet soon.." Then our mutual friend Huw told me Carol has a real burden and heart for Wales and will be working with him here in Wales.

So as Sylvia from Alberta said in an email yesterday after I told them about Renee, "Sounds like something is up!" And yesterday morning during a visit to a gathering of leaders about an hour to south of here, we met and shared with a  couple that the Lord brought to Wales from the south of England just four months ago. Their comment was also, "The Lord is up to something!"

We couldn't agree more. The Lord Jesus Himself is up to something amazing!

Thank you so much for your continued interest and prayers,

Dick & Gladys


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Fruits from a martyred Welshman!

Dear Praying Friends:

If you live anywhere near the Abergavenny area of South Wales, this promises to be a wonderful and important event. If you can make it, you'll be a blessing and be blessed as well. If not, please remember to say a prayer or two for this special meeting. robertjthomas.jpg

What a story! 150 years after Robert Jermain Thomas sowed the seed of his own life as a martyr in Korea, the fruit returns to bless Wales! You can learn more of this amazing story at http://robertjermainthomas.com. It is an exciting development that now after many years a minister of the Gospel is being appointed to shepherd the flock at Hanover Chapel.

It was from this very chapel that the young Thomas left for China and then Korea. The Rev. Daniel Yoo's calling comes from Acts 20:24, "However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me, the task of testifying to the Gospel of God's grace."

This past weekend Gladys and I enjoyed a short visit with our youngest son who was in the middle of a business trip to Ireland, the U.K. and the Netherlands. As he pointed out, West Wales is not exactly on the way to anywhere, so we were very glad he could fit it into his travel plans. A nephew working in Spain had considered joining us, but when he discovered it was "about 1000 hours to get here and back" he had to pass up the chance!

We were pleasantly surprised by a day of lovely sunny weather, as you can see. A welcome relief after all the wet and stormy weather we've been having.
And just another example of God's continued goodness to us all.

It is such a privilege to be standing in the gap for this very small but significant nation. And as part of God's troops already in the Land, we are delighted to be joined by our Korean brother Daniel Yoo as he is set in on Saturday to help minister to the saints and the lost here in Wales.

Sincerely serving the King of Kings,

Dick & Gladys


Thursday, January 16, 2014

"Where can I flee from Your presence?"

lost-sheep.jpgDear Friends and Saints:

Looking across the valley a couple days ago I noticed something moving around on the very steep wooded slope down to the river. A closer look revealed that two sheep had gotten through the fence at the top and ventured down in search of something tastier than what grew in their field. They obviously had no idea of the danger of the swollen river below them!

Psalms 139:4-7 says, "For there is not a word on my tongue, But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.
You have hedged me behind and before, And laid Your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it.
Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?"

When Hagar fled from the presence of Sarah, God found her by a spring of water in the wilderness. When he spoke to her she was obliged to confess that "You-are-the-God-who-sees-me." How many people in this world are living out their lives and unknowingly fleeing from the presence of God?

Or how about Saul, when he was on the road to Damascus to straighten out those errant believers - the Christians. He had no idea of who the Lord Jesus really was. This same "God-who-sees" also saw him and spoke to him in the middle of his doings.

prayerbooth-2.jpgIt is wonderful to consider how He knows everything about us - from our thoughts to our whereabouts. I came into the chapel an hour earlier than planned yesterday morning, and was pleasantly surprised to find our little "tent" all nice and cozy warm! The day before, when I had set the timer on the heater, I must have misread the dial by an hour. The Lord knew it all along, and I think just wanted to bless me. Isn't He just amazing?

One of the principal elements of prayer for revival is asking God to make His presence manifest to people who either do not know He exists, or who are busy running in the opposite direction. Like the sheep in the photo, they have no idea of the danger so near them. Nor, sadly, do they have any concept of the beauty of the presence of God.

How many people in the world are just oblivious to the knowledge of our loving, merciful and Almighty God? But He certainly sees them, and gave His life for every single one of them. So let us pray sincerely that they will hear Him calling out in love, "Hey you!"

Thank you for praying with us for the lost sheep of Wales and all the world's nations,

Dick & Gladys


Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Wild Waves in Wales, and food for thought...

waves-2.jpgDear Friends and Prayers:

While much of the USA has been plunged into a deep freeze by this so-called "Polar Vortex", Wales and the rest of the UK is currently being thrashed by a series of violent storms. The scene at the right is the seafront in Aberystwyth, just 30 miles up the coast from where we live near Cardigan.

Do you see the street behind the white railing on the seawall to the right? Well, if you're curious like me, click here to see what that street looked like the following morning, along with a collection of amazing storm shots around Wales and the rest of the UK.

I usually prefer to use my own photos, but these are too good to not pass them along, with my thanks to Yahoo UK News. You can click on each picture to see a full screen version.

Wild winds and waves accompanied by copious rainfall and extra high tides have brought flooding and havoc to many areas during the past two weeks. I posted a video of local flooding of the Teifi River on Christmas Eve.

waves-1.jpgThere is just something about harsh weather that has a strangely fascinating attraction about it. I'm quite sure it has to do with the fact that it is so much bigger and far more powerful than ourselves. We tend to think that our feats of engineering are pretty impressive, but when nature challenges them, the reality becomes clear. "What is man...?"

All these scenes of massive walls of water coincide nicely with part of my reading this morning. The story of Noah and the flood always impresses me with the greatness of God and His unlimited power.  The description in Genesis 7:11-12 always blows me away. "In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened..."

It's a good thing the Lord promised He wouldn't flood the whole earth again. But the current weather situations around the world should help us to keep the right perspective on things around us, and ourselves as well! Fortunately for us, natural calamities don't usually last very long, although the damage caused can take years to repair.

waves-3.jpgBut worse are the calamities brought by people themselves. We can get a few clues from Noah's day of just how evil people were back then. And God's solution was the most horrific event in all of human history. But looking around at the world today should make us wonder if we are really any more civilized than people were then. To consider only a few - the Syrian civil war and desperate refugee situation - South Sudan's current genicidal carnage - you-fill-in-the-blanks - must make us consider just how patient God will be with our human race in our day.

Just yesterday I read in 1 Peter 4:7-10, "The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit  for the purpose of prayer. Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaint. As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God."

If "the end" was "near" in Peter's day, what about now? Considering the big picture, how important should prayer be for each of us? Just how can we grow more fervent in love for one another? How can we show the unsaved people that surround us just how big and wonderful God's love really is? In comparison, what are a few big waves?

Looking to the day that His glory covers the earth as the water covers the sea!

Dick & Gladys


Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Aiming well for 2014.... Pedal to the Metal!

Londonfireworks2014.jpgDear Praying Friends and Saints:

Happy 2014! New Year's Day is always the start of a new adventure. And rarely does one set off on a journey without knowing where he or she is going. So this is a reminder and an encouragement of where this year's journey is taking us. It is certainly a lot farther than the most amazing of fireworks fun and celebration!

After the noise quiets down and smoke clears away, it's good to know there's a course to steer and enough of gas to get there - 365 tank-fulls in fact! God's grace is more than sufficient for our needs.

By faith Abraham set out obediently although he wasn't quite sure where he was going. And by that same faith "...he waited for the city which has foundations, whose builder and maker is God." Heb.11:8-10. And now we, launching out into this new year by the grace of God and the faith we've been given, are headed in the same direction. But we have a great advantage – we know exactly where we are going!

And here's the gas to get us there:  "Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue," 2 Peter 1:2-3.
And then here's the reserve tank:  "...the Lord's mercies ... are new every morning..." Lamentations 3:22-23.

We are headed for that heavenly country about which we know much more than Abraham did in his day. And it's actually far bigger than a single country. 2 Peter 3:13 in The Message says, "... We'll be looking the other way, ready for the promised new heavens and the promised new earth, all landscaped with righteousness."

newjerusalem.jpgAnd more than just a general direction, we also know some specifics about the final destination. It's kind of like a modern GPS that lets you zoom in on streets and even some physical features.

Revelation 21:2-3 says, "Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, 'Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God.'" There are more details in verse 11, "having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal." And verses 22-23 say, "But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. (Stop and think about this!) The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light."

In the last chapter, John gives us more detail about the landscape, both physical and relational. riveroflife.jpgRevelation 22:1-5, "And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him. They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever."

The Lord has extended this most amazing and grace-filled invitation to each one of us. In Revelation 21:5-7 He says, "Then He who sat on the throne said, 'Behold, I make all things new.' And He said to me, 'Write, for these words are true and faithful.' And He said to me, 'It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.'"

And then we get some last minute indications as we get to the Doorstep in Revelation 22:16-17. "'I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.' And the Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely."

Hallelujah, thank you Jesus! Not only do we get this magnificent invitation, we get to extend it to others and say "Come" to those who will hear. So lets not just "wait for the City", but let's go for it full speed ahead. Head straight for The Temple. Pedal to the metal!

We wish you every blessing for this New Year, and Bon Voyaje!

Dick & Gladys


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