The powerful and prophetic message given to the Kingdom Come conference this morning by Heather Morris deserves a post all to itself.
Heather Morris is a Methodist Minister and Director of Ministry at Edgehill Theological College, Belfast.
Heather was asked to address the question, 'What might God be saying to the church?' I think everyone present was made aware during Heather's address that she has listened very carefully for what God would say in answer to this question and then spoke with great power and grace those things our God would have us hear from him.
From Judges 6, where Gideon is called into ministry service Heather identified some key words which the Lord spoke to Israel and today would speak to his church.
Feeling distant from God and under pressure the people went into retreat and took to hiding in caves in the hills. God would say - stop hiding! Be strong!
To the people when they had heard God calling them to repent and they refused to listen, God would continue to say - repent of your sins.
God calls his people to repentance to make them holy, to have them model the character of God. Every child of God made holy by God is a marker that God is at work in our town/city/nation.
When Gideon asks the Lord, 'Why has this happened to us?' (and in passing how many in recent months in Scotland have asked this of the Lord?) The Lord replies as it were, 'Wrestle with me;
When Gideon says, 'I am the least' God says - I am sending you. We forget that God is God and so we diminish the wonder of being sent by God. God sends the church because he loves the world. The church would be transformed, and so we would be agents of transformation within our communities, if we felt only an echo of God's love for the world.
What challenging words that God is speaking to his church. Thank you Heather for your faithfulness in ministry in so powerfully bringing God's word to us this morning.