Monday, October 04, 2010

Be Prepared!

Many will be familiar with the Boy Scout motto; "Be prepared!". I spent today at Police Headquarters in Birmingham. The government is holding it's Party Conference in the city and we were warned that terror attacks were likely. So I was asked as a trained loggist to support some of our health commanders to monitor events. I started at 07:30 and finished at 18:30. It was an odd day because NOTHING happened! Aside from a couple of protesters and some police investigations all went quite safely. I walked home however with an odd sense of "disappointment". Does that sound weird? What I mean is that I spent all day in a state of readiness for something that didn't materialise.

Much of my current Emergency Planning role developed out of the terrible events of 9/11 and the terror attacks on the USA. I am told that prior to 9/11 there was little planning and readiness in place and so most of the response on that day was learned on the job. Two forms of response - one was reactionary and probably a bit messy. The other involves excessive planning for an event that may not take place. I find that I get incredibly frustrated with the second. It's not I am hoping for terror attacks to take place. Far from it. I just am quite an impatient person. I like to put in the appropriate amount of planning and then see the event take place.

I was walking back from Police HQ today through Birmingham and I remembered seeing a University tower and some prayer warfare I did back in my student days 10 years ago - praying against territorial spirits. It reminded me - what happened? I was eroded down by well-meaning Christians telling me that "that" didn't really work. Do I think that there are still demonic powers very much in control over Birmingham? Most certainly! All that has changed is my level of faith and response and expectation that God will and can do something! I reflected on why I've found myself in an Emergency Planning job that seems to focus so much on the negative. Could it be that it's because I've spent so much of my life hoping for an act and move of God that hasn't (yet) materialised?

The Bible speaks much of the day of "small things" and speaks again of the sovereign timings of God - and I do believe that. But I want to make a case for the day of preparedness being over. I don't believe it is healthy to spend the majority of our lives in prepared readiness for an event that doesn't come to pass. It just drives you mad. We must passionately throw ourselves into being prepared for a revival of massive proportions in faith that God must and can see His Word and His promises fulfilled. All the historical greats say that God loves being "sued" for His promises. Did He say it? Well then He must have meant it!

I believe the church has spent so so long being prepared that we have forgotten what we are preparing for. I loved the Lakeland Revival and the heady days on God TV where we saw spiritual life. I know that Todd Bentley raised eyebrows and many criticised him - but what those days did was raise our faith to remember; "Oh yere! God heals!". Even if some claims were exaggerated - the issue of healing was on our agenda! And it needs to be again. There is nothing more dangerous and more potent to kill the life of the church I think that the status quo - the "mess we are in".

We are prepared Lord! We are ready! We are hungering - we are aching. Do it again.

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