It was as if everything was culminating into a ‘perfect storm’ of change & frenetic activity! Read on….
In the early stages of 2015, God spoke to me so clearly about the need for multiplication of leadership gifts. It was at a time when I was personally feeling quite depleted by my ever-growing responsibilities within Regions Beyond, transition in Dubai and a forthcoming move to the United Kingdom. It was as if everything was culminating into a ‘perfect storm’ of change & frenetic activity! I and my fellow team members responded quickly to this word and so began a deliberate initiative to multiply ‘ourselves’ and other significant gifts through various equipping initiatives. I am so thrilled to to now look back and, after eighteen months, to see that this has become a reality within our church family. In fact, it was to be tested and proven with recent adjustments Heather & I have had to make – let me explain.
For the past year, both Heather & I have been aware of Heather’s ongoing health challenges that she bravely pushed through due to the great demands on our time, to serve our growing movement.When we returned to South Africa for the annual, magnificent, MasterBuilders Conference in March this year, it presented us with an opportunity for Heather to get medical help. Sadly, the news wasn’t great and she was booked in for quite major surgery straight after the completion of the conference. Besides the pressures that accompany surgery, we were faced with the necessity of arranging a two to three month recuperation period, with no travel and as quiet a time as possible.
Being one who takes the call of God very seriously, I must admit that I was quite taken aback at first, as I couldn’t imagine how I’d set aside such a full diary at short notice. Added to this, it dawned on me that Heather wouldn’t be able to carry all the variety of administrative tasks she carries, for quite some time – we’re a great team. But back to my introduction; that’s when I saw first hand the joy of God having multiplied leaders! I happened to be meeting with the newly-formed Regions Beyond Global Team at the time this news broke and they immediately stepped in. My diary was cleared, team members took many of my commitments and others stepped up to release Heather & I. It has been quite remarkable to see the fruitfulness that has emerged as a result and I am so grateful to God and my dear fellow-leaders who have not only given us time to rest and recuperate, but they have been taking ground at every turn! This is how it works! Outstanding!
And so, while we have embraced our unexpected ‘sabbatical’, we have watched with great joy & pride as leaders continue to carry the gospel far and wide, strengthening churches, initiating new works and providing us with ongoing encouragement and care. In the midst of this great flurry of international activity, I have had time to devote myself to Heather and, judging by her delight at each meal I present, we’ve come to believe that I may be related to Jamie Oliver after all! That was a joke by the way! I’m glad to add that Heather is much better and is beginning to order me around (….a sure sign of her recovery!) and carrying some of the load, God is good.
Now, as Heather & I consider certain changes that need to be made going forward, I am more and more determined to see many, many more men & women gifts equipped and raised up than ever before! I am very grateful to you all for the race that you are running for this glorious gospel and, as Heather grows in strength, we will soon be returning to our home in London – most probably, we’ll be running at a different pace, but with the fullest commitment as ever. Thank you for running alongside us.