(Most recent at the top)
On Saturday March 24th, just after midday, David Robinson and Michael Taylor, aka Searchlight Theatre Company pulled their van up outside NoTicketNeeded.
Members of the NTN Team set straight to work, helping to unload the many props required to recreate
the study of C.S. Lewis.
In no time the van was emptied and the fun would begin as we watched the stage come together.
The wooden back boards were soon up, the desk and fire place moved in, the all important books set out. Add in some paintings, a working lamp, a kettle and some tea cups, and you have a beautiful stage set.
Once everything was in place and the sound and lighting cues had been run through with the tech team, it was almost time for the doors to NTN doors to open for the first time of 2012.
Before that though, David and Michael sat down to a wonderful meal thanks to the talents of Elizabeth and Helena Garrett.
The doors were opened and the people began to soon fill the seats, greeting friends as they eagerly
awaited the production.
Meanwhile, in the green room, the actors gathered with some members of the NTN Team as they began to prepare themselves for their performance, praying that God would help them as they used their God-given gifts to reveal Jesus to the people watching.
Just after 7:30pm, the Searchlight Theatre Company took to the stage for the UK Premier of ‘Questioning Aslan’. A play about the works of author and apologist C.S.Lewis
David Robinson played the role of Clive Staples Lewis, author of the world renowned Narnia Series. Lewis is working as a professor and the play focusing on the relationship between him and one of his students.
James Tellar, played by Michael Taylor, is the university student being mentored by Lewis. Son of a friend of Lewis, Tellar is a confused and rather bitter young man, full of doubts about the Christian faith, which Lewis strives to prove as unfounded. This is where Lewis’s apologetics come out.
David’s portrayal brought C.S.Lewis to life before your very eyes. As the viewer watched on, they were confronted with the reality of God as Lewis and Tellar walked us through some of Lewis’s great works of literature.
Throughout the evening, the viewer was reminded of the impact C.S.Lewis has on our culture.
The onstage chemistry between Robinson and Taylor is great, as with his clear biblical insight, Lewis strives to soften the heart and mind of his sceptical student Tellar.
Michael Taylor plays the role of the disillusioned student, unsure of the future, very well. As he questions the meaninglessness that seems to surround him, the viewers can't help but feel compassion for the man as he searches for the answers to his questions.
As the production draws to a dramatic and somewhat emotional close, the audience is left in suspense as they question what the outcome of the final scene will have been
Many gathered to meet David and Michael, old friends, and new acquaintances.
It was an excellent evening with a wonderful performance by the Searchlight Theatre Company,
and a brilliant start to NTN2012.
Thank you Searchlight Theatre Company
for kicking off
What a wonderful time was had at NoTicketNeeded on Friday the 14th of October. If you weren’t there, then I am afraid to say you really missed out on a special evening.
It started just after midday on Friday, when 2 vans bearing the name ‘Saltmine Theatre Company’ arrived on the doorstep of NTN Bournemouth. Out climbed 5 Saltmine actors and a techie. The NTN team were on hand, to help these guys, unloading their vans, and as many hands make light work, it was done in no time.
The Saltmine team sat down to a quick lunch, and then were straight into setting up the stage for their performance of John Bunyan’s ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’ later that evening. The guys from Saltmine worked like a well oiled machine. After performed the play, many many times all over the UK, they had become professionals in settings up their props and staging.
The lighting was set up and adjusted and soon the stage was set and ready for the doors to be opened and the seats to be filled.
Every seat was booked for this, the last NTN event of 2011. Even with extra seating, we had to create an extra reserved list, for those who had booked into late, but were on standby for any seats that might become available. It was truly amazing to find that, not one person had to be turned away, and literally every seat was filled. We give God glory for that.
Whilst things were slightly hectic as so many people found their seats in the auditorium, the crew from Saltmine had some quiet time to prepare themselves. Getting into costume and character, and praying for anointing before they took to the stage.
Matthew J Sunners, who plays the main character ‘Christian’, takes a few moments to check his appearance before adding some final touches.
NTN Leader, Julian Downward took to the stage for the last time this year, and welcomed all who were present. He then introduced the Saltmine Theatre Company with their production of ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’.
The stage went dark and as the first scene began, we found ourselves introduced to John Bunyan, author of Pilgrim’s Progress. He tells us about a dream he has had. A dream about a man called Christian, who, suffering with spiritual anguish is sent on a journey to the Celestial City by a man named Evangelist.
The set for ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’ was a very clever design, which enabled the actors to use different levels and added dimension to the stage.
With a story about a journey, it is only to be expected that there would be many different settings to be represented in each scene and the Saltmine team succeeded in portraying the different scenes well whilst still keeping the play moving at a good pace.
Throughout his journey, Christian is met by a number of different people, some who strive to help him on his way, some who mean well but the efforts are in vain and some who wish too see Christian fail.
Pilgrim’s Progress is full of allegory, some parts more obvious than others. However, upon Christian’s arrival at the ‘place of deliverance’, it is appears crystal clear what this is representing.
The Saltmine team cleverly use a projection screen as the backdrop for their set, and throughout the play, project various images and video footage, adding yet again another dimension to the sets and scenes.
Christian reaches the ‘Place of deliverance and sets out to make his way up the hill to the cross upon which Jesus Christ was hung. It is at the cross, that Christian is relieved of his burden, the knowledge of his sin, the straps that bound him, break and the burden rolls away.
Not many props or costumes are used throughout this play, which increases the effectiveness of them when they are used.
Great creativity is shown through their use of props, and they often recycle them throughout for different scenes. Wicker baskets are used here to represent the two lions which Christian must pass by to get to Palace Beautiful.
Halfway through, a short intermission was held, and it was rather manic trying to serve refreshments to 450 people in just a few minutes. It did however, provide some time for the Saltmine team to have a well deserved but short break. Soon they were ready to get back on stage and audience found their seats with anticipation for what the second half would hold.
One of the best scenes in the play comes at the beginning of the second half, and takes place at a town called Vanity. Vanity holds a year long fair, in which anything and everything you could ever want is on sale to you. Christian and Faithful however discover that there is something that Vanity fair can not offer, Truth. This discovery leads to the execution of Faithful, after an unfair court case.
A new character, Hopeful, is introduced, upon leaving Vanity Fair. One who will remain with Christian along the rest of his journey.
Matthew and Anna, (Christian and Hopeful), both manage to bring a sincerity to their character, a way of captivating the viewers heart, causing them to urge Christian and Hopeful on with every step they take.
'Since, Lord, Thou dost defend us with Thy Spirit,
We know we at the end, shall life inherit.
Then fancies flee away! I’ll fear not what men say,
I’ll labor night and day to be a pilgrim'
As the team took their bow, they made sure to thank the audience, to thank the Lord, and also to thank their technician, Sam Fryatt.
He did a great job the whole night working hard providing the audio, video and lighting which enhanced the production.
It is incredible to think that a story such as ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’, with so many diverse characters, could be performed on stage with only 5 actors. Each actor, (excluding Matthew who only played Christian), was able to change seamlessly between many characters, all of which have such varied characteristics.
Simon Rodda played many parts, the main one being that of Christian’s companion Faithful. He is a great actor who portrayed his parts with great conviction and commitment to his characters.
Anna Newcome has an innate talent for performing and she brought so much emotion to her characters. Her role as Hopeful was especially captivating and truly sparked hope in the hearts of many there.
The lead role of Christian was played by Matthew J Sunners. Matthew gave an entirely believable performance in the role of Christian, and the audience was able to feel every emotion, be it happiness or sorrow, right along with Matthew. He was able to draw the audience into every scene.
Anna Turner possibly had the most lines and she delivered them all with ease and professionalism. She brought such diversity to her characters and with that, a comedic edge as well. Though the smallest on the stage that night, she had a strong stage presence in every scene.
Craig Edgar is an actor, who it seems, can play any role. He uses great movement and expression with his roles and portrays great confidence on stage. He is also able to hold the audience captive with his characters.
After receiving a standing ovation and rapturous applause, the 5 talented actors took their final bows and departed from the NTN stage, and people began to make their way out of the auditorium to meet the actors and thank them for their performance.
After a quick change, the actor’s made their way out to meet and greet their fans, and those who had attended. They received many words of praise and pats on their back. They also found time to sign autograph books and posters.
It was an incredible night, and a great pleasure to watch such talented actors at work. The infamous story of ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’ was brought vividly to life through their interpretation and portrayal of its great words. Many were blessed and ministered to and we heard some great testimonies about the evening with Saltmine Theatre Company.
What a thrilling evening we enjoyed when the King’s Chamber Orchestra visited the Wessex Christian Centre for the NoTicketNeeded' event on September 7th.
Most of us had never heard the orchestra before and did not know what to expect. However, it was uplifting, encouraging, inspiring and entertaining.
Every one of the musicians was very professional as well as being dedicated and spiritual.
They were wonderful people to meet personally and their relationship with God shone through in the way that they conducted themselves both on and off stage.
But the highlight to me was the playing of ‘Be still, for the presence of the Lord is moving in this place’.
As they played this several members of the orchestra moved out into the audience, even up into the balcony, and ministered to those around them.
Each one played as if we were special and they were ministering to us personally.
The children (and not a few adults) loved the way they made an instrument from a carrot and actually made music with it!
It was amazing. One could really feel the presence of the Lord, amongst us
Although every musician was fully trained and performed in major orchestras throughout the country it was obvious that this was not just another concert.
I know that I was not alone in my assessment of the evening
I overheard many comments, some from people whom I had personally invited.
‘Thank you SO much for inviting us’
‘Please let us know if they ever return’
‘It has been a wonderful evening’.
I, for one, will be on the front row next time.
Just after 1:00pm on Friday 7th October, 3 double Decker coaches made heir way up Hinton Road and came to a stop outside the NoTicketNeeded at the Wessex Christian Centre. Inside said coaches were 400 very excited school children, along with 400 equally as excited teddy bears.
Children from local school Malmesbury Park Primary, made their way out of the coaches, quickly found their partners and got in line, waiting patiently to go in.
Another Local School, St. Lukes Primary did the same and in no time at all, NoTicketNeeded was very pleased to open the doors and welcome so many very excited children into the Lord’s House.
Nearly every seat was soon occupied by the children and their teachers, and a sense of anticipation was in the air as the children got settled, with their teddies on there laps, and they eagerly waited for their very own NTN event to begin.
It was a great thrill and a pleasure for NTN Team Leader Julian Downward, to step on stage and welcome the children to NoTicketNeeded. He had them making so much noise as the children energetically and loudly welcomed the Kings Chamber Orchestra to the stage for their very own Teddy Bear Concert.
Kings Chamber Orchestra is unlike most other orchestras. Instead of remaining on the stage, distant from the audience, this group of musicians came down and began to play amongst the children. The Orchestra is made up of 14 musicians playing violins, violas, cellos and a double bass and is led by its founder Gerard Le Feuvre.
Gerard welcomed the children and introduced them to his very own Teddy Bear.
Gerard Le Feuvre has been conducting the Kings Chamber Orchestra for 25 years. He decided to see if any of the children believed that they had what it took to conduct an orchestra. Many hands went up and the first to try was a young girl from St Lukes School. Apparently all you need to do is raise you arm up and down. It look like a pretty easy job.
Gerard asked for one more volunteer and hands went up all around. A very energetic boy was chosen and he made sure that the orchestra worked hard. He was impressed with the way the orchestra followed his every move and the audience were extremely amused by his ability to lead.
Halfway through the concert, there was a short intermission, and the children made their way downstairs for juice and biscuits. Many of the children however, decided to leave their teddies behind whilst they enjoyed their refreshments.
No doubt, the teddies enjoyed the brief time of peace and quite as they look pretty chilled out and relaxed to me. The quiet didn't last for long as the children began to make their way back to their seats, ready to see what the second half had in store for them.
Towards the end of the afternoon’s concert, Gerard asked the children how many brothers and sisters they had. Some said 2, others 3. One even put her hand up and said she had 7 brothers and sisters. Gerard then went onto explain to the children about a famous composer, J S Bach who had had 20 children!!
Gerard explained that many of Bach’s compositions were lullabies, which must have come in useful with so many children. The Orchestra then left the stage again and began to play one of Bach’s lullabies to the children.
Gerard asked the children to all close their eyes, listen to the music being played and pretend to go to sleep. After a exciting and busy afternoon, may of the children were more than willing to comply.
Some even forgot about the whole ‘pretending’ part and were really lulled to sleep by the beautiful sounds these musicians created.
As the concert drew to a close the orchestra made their way off the stage as the children loudly thanked them for their performance. Julian took to the stage and thanked the children for coming and being so well behaved, thank the teachers and all the staff for bringing them, and thanked the Kings Chamber Orchestra for putting on such a great concert for the children.
It was time for the children to leave, get back on the coaches and head back to school. The place was filled with happy chatter as the children made their way to the coaches.
It was a brilliant afternoon and the children had a wonderful time. It was a real blessing for all on the NTN team to see how much of a blessing the Kings Chamber Orchestra was to the children.
Friday September 2nd was a big night for these five local guys. Why?? Well, because these men make up BOSH, Bournemouth’s very own Christian Rock Band, and after 15 years of playing together, they played their last ever gig at NTN. ‘The GREAT BIG GOODBYE for NOW’ show!
The event day started like most other events, with the band arriving and setting up their gear.
Band founders and brothers, Dave and Mike Griffith were the first to arrive and they had some fun showing how multi-talented they were by enjoying a short jam session.
This was a great time for the NTN tech team to get in some important sound checks and to try out some lighting sets ready for the show later that night.
As the rest of the band arrived, you could sense the excitement in the atmosphere, and as the clock struck 7:00, the NTN doors were opened.
The NTN auditorium was filled with people gathering with a sense of expectation. Eagerly but patiently waiting for the show to begin.
They would not have to wait much longer, as the band gathered in the green room. Some of the NTN team joined with them, as they took time out to offer the night over to the leading of the Holy Spirit and to seek God’s blessing over all that they would say, sing and play.
The atmosphere was alive as BOSH walked on to the NTN stage for 1st time that night, and the house was packed with friends, family and fans of this local rock band. With incredible skill and tightness, the band began the opening sounds of their first song, ‘Calling’.
Front man, Dave Griffith, knows how to rock hard but at the same time, throughout the night, Dave was open to being led by the Holy Spirit. He was committed to letting people know that we were in the presence of God.
Mike Griffith started playing in BOSH at an incredibly young age, and when you hear this guy play his drums, you are listening to an exceptional talent.
BOSH’s bassist is Mr. James Grant. Another greatly gifted musician, who was no doubt a treat for NTN’s soundman to mix, as he was able to get a great great sound out of his instrument.
There is an obvious connection between these five guys. They are able to play so seamlessly together and to compliment each other, which resulted in a rich complete sound as a band.
The second guitar sound in BOSH was provided by Steve Coates. The band’s newest member, having only played with BOSH for a few years, but you would never know this from hearing him play with them.
It is BOSH’s desire to make and play music that moves you and makes you move. And these people did not stop moving the entire night. It was near impossible to get any decent photo’s because of this, but we don’t mind. It was awesome to see young people praising God.
BOSH undeniably gave it their all during this gig, and the NTN tech team were determined to do the same. The sound was amazing, super loud, but everything brilliantly mixed and the video team did a great job, relaying the video to the screens so everyone could see everything.
BOSH is one of those rare bands where every member also gives a vocal. With Dave on lead throughout, the rest of the band seamlessly mixed between harmonies that thickened the sound and took the songs to a higher level.
Near the end of the second set, Dave decided he wanted to be nearer to the crowd, so the control barriers were pushed aside and the hardcore fans made they way even closer to the action. Bottles of bubbles were then tossed into the crowd as they rocked out hard to ‘Touch Somebody’.
All of the songs performed on the night were BOSH's own compositions and arrangements. Self-described as a rock band with an'epic spiritual twist', this is proven through the lyrics of their songs. With tracks such as 'Magazines' and 'Police Helicopter, the message they strive to get across , is that their is so much more to life and living than the confusion of the 'me-centred society' that many find themselves in today.
BOSH say that everytime they play together, they never know what will happen or where the night will go. They just commit the night to God, do their best and pray they will make a lasting impact on somebody. On this particular night, BOSH had an undeniable connection with the crowd gathered.
Many times during the night, the band would mix up their sound, and change the direction of the music, mixing in a couple of acoustic tracks and guest vocals, like their good friend Tom Whitman and Dave's wife Jess.
The front area of the NTN auditorium was packed with young kids and teenagers, so excited to be at this rock concert, and they did not stop moving. Some of the guys were busting out such cool dance moves that at many times, people would be watching them, rather than the band!
Song after song on the bands set list that night, quite simply rocked. It is too hard to try to come up with another way to describe them. All night, the crowd was blasted with guitar solos and bass riffs that resulted in funky rocking sounds.
If you have seen BOSH’s music video for ‘Touch Somebody’ this will make sense
Dave Griffith is a man who is all about serving God and serving His people. In obedience to the leading of the Holy Spirit, Dave was determined to have a BOSH CD placed in the hand of every person who walked throught the NTN doors that night, completely free of charge. Not to promote himself or his band, only to bless others with music that has the power to change their lives. Music that glorifys Christ.
Drawing the gig to a close, BOSH departed the stage, only to be called back on by the unrelenting shouts from the crowd for more. The people would not leave until they had heard one of BOSH's rockiest songs, HEAVEN SYNDROME!
It was a full house on the night, and the place was buzzing. Such a fantastic end to BOSH's long run. A great send off to a very great group of guys
At the end of this epic night, these five men, had given everything, mentally, physically and spiritually. It was no doubt an emotional yet exciting night for them, and they played a phenomenal show. No one wanted it to end!
It would not surprise me if these guys were feeling dead on their feet, but they did not show it, as fan after fan, came up to meet the band and get their autographs.
How would I sum up BOSH at NTN? Well, the night was great and the night was big, it was pretty much a GREAT BIG GOODBYE show (at least for now)!!!!
On Thursday June 30th, the UK's No.1 Christian Band came to Bournemouth for 2 nights. They arrived at NoTicketNeeded mid-afternoon and got straight into setting up their equipment.
With some help from the NTN team, it was all up and ready for sound check in no time.
The doors opened at 7:00 and by half past, the lower auditorium was filled. There was a sense of expectation and anticipation as worship leaders and band members from local churches, gathered to receive instruction and inspiration from this highly talanted and greatly respected praise and worship band.
From the moment the band stepped on stage and began to lead the people into a time of praise, it became clear why they have such an impact in Christian music scene.
The band is extremely tight. They know how to play with each other and off each other.
The band then went on to speak about what their individual roles within the band are, and how they combine each individual part to produce a much bigger sound that blends together faultlessly.
After a nights sleep, a couple of the band members were up bright and early for an interview on our local Christian radio station, HopeFm. Not long after that, the entire band met at Keith Jones Christian Bookshop, for a time of meeting fans.
Jos and Lou provided the people with a little treat in the form of an acoustic set.
It was soon back to NTN for another sound check and rehearsal for the evening concert.
The reservations had been coming in strong and the excitement was growing as we began to see the familiar queues forming.
Doors were opened and the auditorium began to fill at a rapid speed. Soon all the seats were taken and the front area was occupied with eager hardcore fans.
As the band played the opening chords, the atmosphere was electric.
PHATFISH's undeniable sound thundered throughout the room and an intense passion and energy accompanied it. The house was fired up.
Lou was on top form as she sang about the God she loves
Nathan and Luke make up the bands rhythm section. They played solidly the entire night, providing the band's grooving pulse.
Jos spent the night playing the lead and rhythm parts on his guitars.
Sharing the role with fellow guitarist Ben. They are able to compliment each others sound brilliantly and to mix between parts flawlessly.
The chemistry between both Jos, Ben and Luke on bass is so evident and these guys love to rock out with each other.
Song after song is full of funky grooves, perfectly layered with rocky guitar lines and then you get these original sounding electronic flashes of keyboard bursting through the bands wall of sound. Courtesy of Mike, a tremendously gifted musician. This results in a extraordinary sound.
Every song was not only just a clever melody but were filled with lyrics that meant something. Poetic lyrics steeped in theology and emotion. PHATFISH's songs are dynamic.
It sounds like a perfect combination and it is when you add in the vocals that were heard on the night. Lou's voice is controlled, dependable and expressive. At times, there were four additional vocals which were seamlessly stacked whilst still providing important clarity of sound. These were from Jos, Ben and extra band members, Sam and Hannah
I can't not mention the lighting sets that filled the stage with colour and depth all night long. Every different sound and direction of the songs were not only mirrored but emphasised by the lighting technician, Sam.
This resulted in a great production and the crowd at NTN were amazed.
This was not just a PHATFISH show though. It was their desire and motivation to lead the people in thunderous praise and worship of an Amazing God, and the people were eager and excited to comply. God was truly glorified and lifted higher and higher throughout the night. A most memorable moment was when the band came back for an encore and the sound of 'There is a day' reverberated through the building.
'A Time Of Refreshing 2011'
Report by Rebecca Ellaway,
Wow, how can we possibly try to sum up 'A Time of Refreshing 2011' in a single report. Well, for starters, being 8 days long, it was more a festival of worship, the Word and fellowship with God's people than anything else. An amazing week in which we feasted on the presence of the Lord.
Kicking off Sunday 29th with our own Pastor - Brian Downward, bringing the Word of God, followed by our Senior Pastor, Julian Downward, it was a great start to the week and the Spirit of God was present from the very beginning.
Monday morning Pastor Bob Smith from Basingstoke
and Pastor Bruno Kondabeka from Chichester treated us to the ministry of the Word and we were challenged by it.
It was during the morning break that the first batch of TOR 11 Pastor's Cupcakes went on sale.
Already the voting was hotting up and Pastor Bob took a quick lead.
Monday night, we were very blessed to have the amazing - Pastor Dennis Robson up on stage to sing and play his accordion for us. We look forward to this all year and we are never disappointed.
The Word that Geoff Malan, Missionary to India brought that night, was truly inspired and ordained by God as it re-emphasised what we had heard from Pastor Julian the previous night. You could not deny that the Lord was speaking to us. This proved to be the case throughout the rest of the week.
Pastor Duncan Franklin from Bristol blessed us immensely by ministering both in the Word and through song on Tuesday morning. He was followed by Pastor Shaun Sweeney, who is local to Bournemouth, a great minister of God's Word.
On Tuesday evening, Elise Ellaway performed one of her own songs, 'Beloved'. She was supported by Keeley Morgan, Julian Downward and Edward Holland Jnr.
We then came to the Word which was brought by Pastor Tim Leech. It was an exceptional Word and it is hard to imagine anyone being able to leave that night, unchanged and unchallenged by his message from the book of Daniel.
As we reached the middle of the week, Pastor Tony Wilson from Salisbury took the first session of the day. Many people were greatly moved and inspired by his ministry and Pastor Tony was able to pray for many people even as we moved into the break.
The Pastor's Cupcakes were still selling well and it appeared to have become anyone’s game. Votes were even coming in for one of our drummers, Tom Rothwell., who wasn’t even officially on the list!!!
Geoff Malan took us into the second session for Wednesday and he spoke on rejoicing in every situation. Elise Ellaway and Keeley Morgan continued that message in the evening as they sang a song about counting your blessings. On Wednesday night, we also enjoyed being ministered to in dance by some of the WCC children. Duncan Franklin spoke on the 'Divine Language of Clothes', a message taken from Exodus, speaking about the priestly garments. An exceptional message.
It was a true treat to hear the 'TOR Vocal Band' again. This year, in the form of a mixed quartet with Brian, Jose & Julian Downward and Duncan Franklin. Boy, did they sing. Amazing!
The Brilliant Pastor Bob Smith was back with us on Thursday morning and he encouraged us all to find and be comfortable and content in, the ‘shape’ God has given each one of us. Not our physical shape, but the job God has for each of us. The part we must play. Duncan Franklin was up next
to minister in the word and in song.
Always a blessing to hear Pastor Duncan sing.
Shaun Sweeney concluded the day with a message from Joshua. Are we willing to do whatever God asks, no matter how strange it might seem, in order to see walls come crumbling down? I believe that after that message, many of us are. Richard Jones reminded through song that night, that the God we serve is Glorious and all else pales in comparison to the Glory of our God.
It was hard to believe and sad to realise that as we approached the weekend, TOR 11 was nearly over. However, we were excited for what was still to come over the last few days. Bruno Kondabeka was back with a message from the Gospel of John, about Jesus and the Samaritan women at the well.
Geoff Malan preached a very insightful message about who God entrusted the Gospel to and those He doesn't. The WCC Kids ministered in dance again on Friday night, this time performing a beautiful Messianic dance.
It was amazing to hear Dr Robert Baldwin speak for the first time that week,
and you could not deny that the anointing was upon him as he spoke about 'Restoring the Presence of God'. That night we experienced true refreshing as we were welcomed into the presence of God. How good it is to serve a God who inhabits the praise's of His people.
Even after a long week, people were still eager to receive more of God's word and to be in His house. Shaun Sweeney spoke to us about how we need to have a fresh anointing every time we go into battle, we cannot be content with past victory’s. Dr Robert Baldwin then ministered from Acts, reminding us of the power of the Holy Spirit and how important it is in our lives. A beautiful time followed as many received prayer and sought the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Tim Leech challenged us that night with the question, are we seeking to build our own empires or are we working to see the Kingdom of God extended? A message for everyone as individuals but also for the church as the body of Christ. As the night came to a close, many spent time examining the motive of our hearts.
Then suddenly, out of no-where it seemed, the eighth day was upon us. It was a day of celebration and thanksgiving for all that the Lord had done that past week and for all that He is. It kicked off with a roaring version of ’The zeal of God’ followed by Dr Robert Baldwin who brought a word of encouragement from Matthew 28. Rejoice for in the Lord we are more than conquerors. That morning we also came to the table of the Lord and it was an intimate time as we remembered the Lord's sacrifice for us and broke bread together.
That night, Tim Leech took the final session of the week and we were again in the book of Daniel. We were challenged to take our eyes off of the world and off our selves and to see the Church as Christ sees it. How we must pray for the Bride of Christ. We must be like Daniel, and turn our backs to Babylon and look to Jerusalem (the Church). There was also a repeat performance of the children's Messianic worship dance.
It is very hard to really convey what was spoken over this past eight day feast, but I can say without doubt that throughout every session, all 22 of them, we heard the Word of God, spoken without compromise. Join that with sincere praise and worship,
the anointing of the Holy Spirit and the love and fellowship of God's people, I believe we have been truly strengthened, changed and beautifully refreshed. I don't think you could ask for more.....except this:- Pastor Julian won the cupcake elections!! (fixed??)
Roll on 'A time of Refreshing 2012'