Yesterday, hundreds of leaders and teams from churches across the wider Newfrontiers family gathered together in London for a day of prayer for the UK – lifting up their voices to cry out to God to move in this nation.
The day was characterised by a deep sense of relationship; as friendships were renewed, connections were rekindled, and a collective rise of faith was reawakened for what God longs do to in our nation and the part that our movement has to play in speaking life, hope, justice and mercy into our culture. As we shared communion together in the morning session, it emphasised especially strongly that we are united as one not by our own wisdom, strength or efforts, but by Jesus and his finished work on the cross. Resting in that truth and receiving again from him with a posture of humility, generosity, and open-handedness will increasingly enable us to deepen our work together as Newfrontiers spheres and teams – leading to a greater unity than anything we have known before. We are a family together on a mission, and opportunities like this to stand together and pray for one another emphasise how that togetherness will continue to characterise us moving forward.
Throughout the day there were moments of prayer for specific issues within our society, centred around the passage in Matthew 9:35-10:16 where Jesus sends out his disciples to proclaim the good news to the surrounding towns. Men and women from across the family led us in prayers for workers to be sent out into specific areas of need: for deprived areas where poverty is a daily reality, for young people and the challenges of addiction, violence and identity, for our public services and the strain they face, for church plants reaching isolated communities, and for our politicians in the midst of the confusion and uncertainty of the future. Even as prayers were brought for these areas of immense challenge though, there was a sense of God encouraging us about the part that we as the church can play in partnering with Him to respond to them – that He is wanting to do a greater work in and through Newfrontiers to restore what has broken, refill what is empty, and rebuild what has fallen into ruin.
Particularly striking was David Devenish’s word about how God is wanting to stir things up within us as a movement that He has placed within us years before. Just like Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:6, He has already put our calling and the tools we’ll need within us by His Spirit, but now wants to stir it up again in us in order that we might step out with fresh faith to see Him move powerfully to bring healing and freedom to our broken and bound land. There’s no denying the challenges facing the UK, but we can be encouraged that “where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more” (Romans 5:20), or as Jonathan Le Toq put it in one prayer, “when it’s this dark, any light makes a difference”.
Prayer rightly remains at the heart of everything we do together as Newfrontiers, and as we continue to pray, we can have great cause for optimism about what God will do in and through us as a movement. He’s not finished with this nation yet!