Precious Saints !!!!!!
This weekend past the Goodwood Roman Catholics, Goodwood Methodists and Ravensmead Methodists shared an Alpha weekend together at the Manyano Centre in Paarl. That's the bare factual bones of the matter. What really happened on this weekend I don't think I'll ever really be able to convey fully with words but I'll give it my best shot in order to share with you and give God all the glory.
In preparation for the weekend, we prayed, we fasted, we sacrificed of ourselves, we wept for the broken hearted and we asked God by the power of His Holy Spirit to come and save, heal, restore and make His people whole. And we serve such a faithful and true God that He came and did just that which we asked of Him. Not because we deserved any of it, not because of who we are but because He loves us and has faith in us and that He works in us and through us despite who we are and what we do. The more I experience the grace of God the more I'm just totally blown away by who He is and how He works and His deep love and generosity.
There may have been two 'different' denominations on the weekend but His Holy Spirit united us as one. This weekend God told us through His Spirit that we are His adopted sons and daughters heirs to the throne of the king because we come to Him in the name of His one and only son Jesus Christ and that His one and only son bought each of us with His very own blood. We are Princes and Princesses and not even death can take that away. So we saw the truth, power and beauty of the Gospel of Salvation unfold before our very eyes this weekend and it was breathe taking.
You know when you pray and minister to someone by the power of His Holy Spirit, it is such an intimate moment, you almost feel like you are intruding and should not be there. But God wants you there and sometimes the person you are ministering to is so broken, crying, sobbing, nose running and by fleshly/human standards looks quite a mess (snot en trane) but for me I've never ever witnessed anything so beautiful as when God starts healing a person from the inside out. It's just so WOW (Walking on Water, time)
For me personally I was just feeling that God was not really gonna make much use of me this weekend. You know that kinda feeling,"Oh yeah, been there done that, seen it all before," but you see God never quite works that way, He is an eternal God who, if you make yourself available and try your best to be obedient, will use you far beyond what you can imagine or dream of. So this weekend for me was full of the presence of Him in my life, in the big things and the small things.
I'll share with you just a coupla memories from the weekend.
I almost forgot to take a mug/cup with so just before I left on Friday I quickly grabbed Matthews "Incredibles" mug. My leg was lovingly pulled the whole weekend about my "incredible" mug, however there were very few people who actually brought their own mugs so super hero mug was used quite often. Phew was it hot in Paarl, a blistering 37 degrees on Saturday, we swam in the pool and then had cold showers afterwards to cool off from swimming. We had our fair share of echo and respond snorers that really rattled the floorboards. Of course some people just never slept, like motor mouth Peter K who talked up a storm from Friday night to Saturday morning. Alistair F coming down the passage absolutely drenched in sweat after he had just played his heart out for us for a solid hour, on the drums, the worship team always bless us soooo much. Showering by candle light due to the power failures, hey watch out for the falling wax, oh ja and the Florence Nightingales who walked up and down the passages. Ernest's jokes about the Cathys. The Saturday evening Holy Spirit ministry, jokes fun and laughter on Sunday morning. Sharing on Sunday morning what God actually did for His beloved people. And of course the tears and brokenness healed by the power of the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit. Fred W's mind blowing vision of seeing four angels protecting Manyano Centre and Jesus coming through the wall, while we worshipped, opening His arms and saying, "I am pleased."So much more, I'm sure everyone there could write a book about their experiences. On the way home, the four of us in the car just praying for each other and our spouses and children and thanking and praising God for His love grace and mercy. The celebration service at Goodwood Meth in the evening.
While we where having tea/coffee on Sunday morning before breakfast, the rain suddenly came down and it reminded me of Michael W Smiths video for his song Healing Rain, where the healing power of God's Spirit is depicted like this special kind of rain and what you had to kinda do was step out in faith and get wet and then you would feel the healing power of God's love. We saw that healing rain first hand this past weekend.
When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures.The scroll containing the messages of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him, and he unrolled the scroll to the place where it says:
"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has appointed me to preach Good News to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released,that the blind will see,that the downtrodden will be freed from their oppressors,and that the time of the Lord's favour has come."
He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. Everyone in the synagogue stared at him intently.Then he said, "This Scripture has come true today before your very eyes!" (Luke 4:16-21, Jesus reading from Isaiah 61:1 & 2, words written approx 700+ years before his birth on earth. )
Here is one of the songs we did on the weekend
You know that I love you
You know that I want to
Know you so much more
More than I have before
These words are from my heart
These words are not made up
I will live for you
I am devoted to you
King of Majesty, I have one desire
Just to be with you my lord
Just to be with you my lord
Jesus you are the saviour of my soul
And forever and ever I'll give my praises to you
PS The Apps music duo please pass on to the rest of the Alpha worship team.
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