Reflection Dec05

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Reflection

WHAT IF?

A reflection on the One Life Campaign 2016

By Catherine Anthony Boldeau

On Sabbath 17th September, I had the privilege of interviewing the speakers from the One Life Evangelistic Campaign along with Danny Shelton, the founder of 3ABN, who were the main partners of the series along with the South England Conference.

The afternoon began with a slow but steady trickling in of the speakers, due to an ongoing battle with the Saturday shoppers and bumper to bumper traffic in London and the congregational attendance was low at the outset of the programme for the same reasons.  But despite a relaxed start, the atmosphere became alive and dynamic with the stories of worship, witness and wonder.

Jon Lomacang, one of the preachers from the eleven “One Life” Campaign sites, told the story of the lady who was deep into the occult and who was studying to become a high priestess.  She had seen a show on 3ABN while she was living in South Africa where he was preaching and had developed a hatred for him and his beliefs.  However, she felt a strong urge to go to the Croydon SDA Church and unbeknown to her, Jon was the main speaker, his topic for the evening was the ‘Power of Prayer’.  She was able to bear witness to the power of God, who transcends miles and distance to save a lost soul.

This got me thinking, deeply, earnestly and seriously about the need for prayer as we plan our outreach programmes and also the need to ‘be strong and courageous’ when doing the work of evangelism.  For too long, we as a church seem to be fearful of the witnessing and one of the excuses has been that the society we live in is extremely secular.  While, I do agree that we need to be aware of demographics and sometimes, these are ignored entirely to our detriment, we need to exercise a greater degree of faith when planning every outreach programme.

If we believe that God can do ‘far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think’ (Ephesians 3:20 – Berean Literal Translation) we should be people who will attempt great things for God.  There were 87 people baptised from 11 different churches during the two-week campaign, but I truly believe that the numbers would have been significantly more, if we adopted the ‘what if?’ mentality of faith and obedience.

Too often, we allow our doubts and fears, the challenges of previous failures and our insecurities to hinder the way that we do outreach.  We need to be open to the fact that the Father is all-mighty and all- powerful and has already defeated the Enemy.  We can also have the reassurance that God is on our side and with the apostle Paul can say, ‘And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love.  Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow–not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.’ (Romans 8:38 – New Living Translation).
Begin the New Year with a sense of ‘What If? And allow God to use you to be a more effective witness in 2017.