This I really like…

When someone has been used by God powerfully it can sound patronising in the extreme to say ” I don’t agree with his theology.”

Nonetheless, there are aspects of Charles Finney’s theology I struggle with, and feel for the sake of personal honesty I need to say that, despite him having been used in Revival in a mighty way whereas I have never been, nor have I yet seen its full flow.

However, without reserve I acknowledge the amazing fruitfulness of Finney’s ministry and humble myself before the memory and the ministry of a mighty servant of the Lord.

All of which is leading me to the point of sharing these words from his writings:

A revival is nothing else than a new beginning of obedience to God. Just as in the case of a converted sinner, the first step is a deep repentance, a breaking down of heart, a getting down into the dust before God, with deep humility, and forsaking of sin.”

Now, I really love that .. and pray for such a day. I begin by praying for such a revival in me.

God bless


When you just have to do something or burst…

Not sharing who what or where… But when I see a shy man, who tends to live out his spiritual life in a beautifully humble and quiet way, running to the front of the church to join the worship team because he is so overcome with thankfulness for what God has done by his miracle working Spirit… well, no words… Thank you Lord!

Friends, the tide has turned. Keep in step with the Spirit. Make sure you are serving what is on the heavenly agenda for Scotland right now. That may mean our own agendas being ripped up: if God is ignoring them, it’s wise to humbly consign them to the flames.

How do you know whether you are in step? Well are the signs of the Kingdom happening or not? What are the signs of the Kingdom? The ministry of the unchanging Jesus continuing: read the gospels and look around you. If you see even a tiny cloud of Kingdom of Heaven happenings, rejoice and pray and keep in step.

What I saw happening to that man I described at the start can happen in any church. I think, however, there is one prerequisite: a church and it’s leadership either proactively or reluctantly need to be brought to the point of saying in penitence to the Lord that He is the potter we are the clay, and we acknowledge it is so. “Mould us and make us after Your will.” Too many of us and too many church leadership bodies want our own way and will, even if it produces decline and fruitlessness. When that is the case anything that grows is not planted by our Father in heaven according to Jesus. The sin of Pharisaism as well as every “ism” ancient and modern is ultimately the sin of wanting to call the shots. It is wanting the place of being head of the body. It is a mirroring of the ambition of Satan.

God bless


Fresh Wind…

Find myself thinking of the words of this song by Ian White. I have repeated them to myself several times over the years at the start of a new season in God, while in a place of real blessing: I could stay in familiar blessing or set out not knowing whither, to brave wind and storm on fresh Kingdom adventures. Is it time for you to set out from the harbour even though you feel slightly fearful in a wonderfully faith filled way? There’s a sound on the wind. Oh, you will be blessed if you stay where you have reached, but… but I could not live with myself living like that. My spirit is trembling afresh .. is yours… I am hearing a fresh song, getting a sense of lands awaiting discovery or rediscovery.

“Though I feel afraid
Of territory unknown,
I know that I can say
That I do not stand alone.
For Jesus, You have promised
Your presence in my heart;
I cannot see the ending,
But it’s here that I must start.

And all I know is You have called me,
And that I will follow is all I can say.
I will go where You will send me,
And Your fire lights my way.

What lies across the waves
May cause my heart to fear;
Will I survive the day,
Must I leave what’s known and dear?
A ship that’s in the harbour
Is still and safe from harm,
But it was not built to be there,
It was made for wind and storm.”

Here’s a link to Richie Gillespie from my former church, Holy Trinity, Wester Hailes, singing the song during lockdown to an empty church. That wonderful congregation lives continually leaving the harbour. Forever grateful. Precious memories. They taught me so much: live in renewal by constant choice to do so.

Delay does not mean never…

I attach here below a link to Jean Darnall speaking in 2009 of a vision she received in 1967 which spoke of God’s purposes for the UK and Europe. In this clip she highlights one aspect of that: a move among Youth in Scotland birthing powerful preachers.

In the last few weeks I have been receiving a continuing trickle of stories of God moving in a fresh way among the Youth in some churches. ” More Lord!”

In Step?

Hearing a trickle of stories of good things happening among youth. I myself have seen Youth being prophets witnesses and preachers of the Lord Jesus Christ in recent days. It is a holy thing I am observing. It pleases the Father to reveal himself to children and babes rather than to the wise and learned. Are we willing to throw aside our carefully drawn out plans and visions to join in with what God is doing and prioritise that? Or will we persist in claiming we know and see how God must be and act in our day and culture, , and thereby render ourselves guilty according to Jesus? What sacred cows with regard to church, it’s life and mission, discipleship etc. precious to you or to me, need to be sacrificed for the sake of Jesus?

If your church or ministry has no emphasis on youth coming to know Jesus deeply, personally, with conviction and assurance in the age old power of the Holy Spirit, right now, it is running itself by its own vision and wisdom and is out of touch with the purposes of the living God. It’s easy to worship an idol made in our image who likes what we like and have invested historic and present time and effort in, ignoring ” I Am” with all that implies of God being active, present reality. Are we blind to the signs of the times? Will Jesus weep over your church or ministry or mine, because we did not recognise the hour of visitation?

God bless!


The Time is Now…

Back in 1994, through one to one ministry from the late Rev. Jim Graham at a point where the congregation I led was at a high point of fruitfulness and I was at my lowest ebb by contrast, I had an experience of the Father heart of God that stays with me as living truth to this day. I wrote in a notebook, “I think God has told me there is about to be a fresh move of God in the land: the mark of it will be the Father’s kiss for his children, the Father’s love being experienced in power, the Father’s hug.”

Well, within a few weeks, many in many places began to experience that. Out of that arose Kingdom Gathering and then CLAN Gathering through which thousands of weary believers and hundreds of church leaders experienced a fresh touch from God over the years.

Was it all I hoped to see? No…Was it all it was meant to be…I don’t know. Religion is still a powerful negative force within the Scottish Church. Sometimes also, great blessing means responsibilities thereafter. Some leaders I know personally, made the choice not to follow through with what the blessing they received asked of them, for the sake of congregational peace. I am not their judge. I have enough need of mercy for my ministry and leadership to stop me ever becoming that! There may, however, be a cost and a requirement that becomes an unwanted burden on the shoulders of the blessed. But something real happened for some… At least in part I saw a fulfilment of that note jotted down in pencil in 1994.

Well, I think about 6 or 8 weeks ago I have now heard something and seen something else. I don’t yet fully understand it and I am reluctant to say anything about the scope (small, limited, large, mercy drops, a stream, a deluge?) which this may cover. I hope, however, that it encourages hunger and faith – especially among those called to a ministry of intercession – to pray for a new day wherever you gather with God’s people. I hope it may help us to believe for times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord as we continue to humbly live for Him and seek His face day by day.

What I heard was ” The tide has turned ” Nothing more, nothing less than that…

What I saw (a week or two later ) was this: a lightning bolt coming from heaven and hitting a road, representing something powerful but also necessarily and positively destructive.

I do not wish to share all the details at this stage (and may never do so), but I will share a couple of impressions.

Impression 1: lightning will hit specific places and specific people. The choice of God often offends the mind to reveal the heart. Fault finders will say “This cannot be God, ” because of where and upon whom the Spirit falls in fresh measure. They will do their utmost to find a fault in the roots, connections that discredit, to dismiss the fruit as bad. Often pride secretly believes, “If God is doing something new, he will begin it through me/us, for after all we are… we have…”

Pride of experience of the Spirit (charismatic) and of biblical knowledge (evangelical) will be exposed in our own hearts. We approve of “nameless” and “faceless” in theory but won’t necessarily approve of it when our name or church is not in the headlines, especially if our names and churches are well known as big fish in the small pond that is the Scottish Church scene or some of its puddles.

2: Lightning will blow holes in the roads of those of us who feel we have the word or way forward downloaded from the Lord and know the way forward for Scotland and its church(es). We need to be willing for craters to appear in our roads and plans, even for our well worked out plans to be seen as straw. Our visions and ministries may have to die in order to see the Lord’s ministry released. “Except a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies..”

After the lightning comes the thunder and accompanying rain: fresh hunger leading to a fresh hearing of the voice of the Lord. Those that hear the voice of the Son of God, rising to life, to LIFE! The hearing of the thunder was wider than the striking of the lightning. The thunder can only come because some at least are willing to say “Let the lightning fall on us whatever that may mean and cost.”

I heard of someone’s sermon being described as lava words recently, because it was so full of the presence of God and released much blessing. People powerfully encountered God. As Amy Carmichael said, we can only have lava words when the heart of the mountain is consumed, burned.

” O God of burning, cleansing flame, send the fire!”

When you hear the voice of heavenly thunder (nothing to do with any required volume level or tone, both of which will vary), you can be sure the heart of someone or a gathering of people somewhere has endured the lightning strike in the secret place. Something of self will have been destroyed (the hole in the road) and their own plans surrendered, which was the most definite and identifiable effect of the lightning in what I saw. It could be you, your fellowship; it could be some gathering of people of no reputation, discounted by those who have the reputation of being alive in the Spirit and at the cutting edge: a humble overlooked gathering of folk who fear the Lord, of whom He has said, “They will be mine on the day I act afresh in Scotland.”