Insight

Welcome to the blog of Commissioner Clive Adams. Leader of The Salvation Army United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland
 
 

Go onsite for Insight

14 October 2013 - 2:50pm
| by Clive Adams
|

"Fit for Mission is an in-depth look at how we do mission and how we support mission within The Salvation Army in the UK Territory with the Republic of Ireland.

“Our motivation is to ensure we are truly effective in the mission of God as a Christian Church and charity..."

These are the opening lines you’ll find if you click on the link "What is Fit for Mission?" on the newly-launched Fit for Mission website. The website can be accessed at http://fitformission.salvationarmy.org.uk/

Fit for Mission is a process whereby we are examining the way we operate and investigating how we can fulfil our mandate and do mission as efficiently and effectively as possible. Are our policies promoting our principles? Are our values validated by our vigour? Is there a correlation between vision and mission, between lip and life, between theory and practice? Are our structures facilitating mission or is mission frustrated by our structures? Are there other questions you wish to address?

If you are anything like most Salvationists, you will have an opinion about what we should be and what we should be doing. The website provides an opportunity for you to be informed as well as to inform. You will be able to read articles about various aspects of our mission, as well as the comments and discussions about the articles. In addition, you are invited to contribute to the discussion – by direct interaction on the website through a "click ‘n’ comment" facility, by email or by letter.

Go onsite for insight, and then join in the discussion about ensuring the Army is Fit for Mission!

Comments

Submitted by Horison on

Great question!The Bible recgnoizes the value of persistence in prayer, Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always (1 Chr. 16:11). It also warns against laziness in the same, You have not called upon me, O Jacob, you have not wearied yourselves for me, O Israel (Isaiah 43:22).But your question has to do with repetition. I suppose it depends on what we mean by more effective and what heart attitudes the repetition reflects. If by P.U.S.H., I'm viewing God as a vending machine that I need to bang on until the candy bar drops, then I would say any result that I get is despite my repetition rather than because of it. Jesus corrects this error in Matthew 6:7, esposing it as pagan.But that does not mean all repetition is vain either. Jesus called on the Father three times with the same prayer as he approached Gethsemane. The Psalms include prayers that were evidently meant for repeated use in public worship. So we might ask what the reason our purpose for such repetition is.Repetition of prayer might reflect personal earnestness, authentic faith or righteous commitment (Hebrews 11:6). These are qualities in the lives of petitioners that God does reward. So it isn't the repetition that is more effective (or not), so much as the heart that it reflects.I also suspect that repetition in prayer is a way in which God guides. I'd compare that to the way I might discuss a decision with my wife. We might go over the matter on more than one occasion. The conversations might repeat themselves, or they develop into new insights or directions. Of course that requires that we spend time listening as well as repeating our concerns.I recall praying for my sister-in-law as she was dying of cancer many years ago. At some point it became clear to me that God wanted me to pray for something other than her healing. Perhaps that is similar to why Jesus stopped after three prayers in the Garden. Interestingly, Paul also stopped praying for his thorn in the flesh after three repetitions, and came to accept the sufficiency of God's grace. On the other hand, a Canaanite woman found relief for her demon possessed daughter after pleading three times (Matt. 15:21-28). As near I can tell, the apparent reluctance of Jesus was to deepen her faith in the reaches of his mercy and riches of his grace.Last, I would say that repeated prayer can be effective in honing our appetite for the blessings God wants to give to us and to the world. You who call on the Lord,give yourselves no rest,and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalemand makes her the praise of the earth. (Is. 62:7).The prophetess Anna gives us an example here (Lk. 2:37), persisting day and night for over 50 years in the temple in fasting and prayer, precisely because she anticipated the redemption of Jerusalem.A big topic and I've only scratched the surface. Perhaps the most important guideline is to remember that effective prayer grows out of appropriate personal relationship with God through Jesus.Hope that helps!

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