Walk 1 : 11th to 14th September 2008
Back in 1997, I saw something that God showed me that I believe is to do with now and this section of the land to be walked. I am not saying that this is solely about the south coast but rather that it is a place of birthing…..
‘I saw a woman, a dairy maid by the look of her dress, and she was in labour. She was very distressed and seemed to be completely shocked that she was pregnant let alone giving birth. This was so distasteful to her and did not have her approval or consent. She shook her head from side to side in disbelief, ‘This cannot be possible’ she was saying. She was resisting this fact but it was outside of her control and there was nothing she could do about it. Although hidden from her until this moment, this baby was in her womb and she would give birth. God said to me ‘The United Kingdom is like a woman in labour.’ (The Labour Party had just come to power in 1997)
The prayers of the saints over years and decades had been prayed with tears that had fallen on the ground over and over. This sowing of prayer and tears had gone deep into the ground and formed new life that is now coming to birth.
I saw the child once born; He was called John the Baptist, this new life would be wild, unconventional, uncontrollable, calling in the Desert;
‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for Him’
After seeing this labour I saw a 50th anniversary with 50 candles lit marking Jubilee.
‘This new life that has come forth from the land is to provide for the redemption of the land. (Lev 25 v 24)’
I have been feeling for a while now that there is something to be opened up along the south coast where the land meets the sea. I believe that there is a ‘birthing’ place to be marked out that is on this coast and to call for this. So far I have sight of a section of coast between Bournemouth to Brighton, including the seaside towns, villages and islands between these places.
So a team of 13 wended their way from Bournemouth though Southampton, Portsmouth, Selsey, Bognor, Littlehampton, Worthing and finishing at Brighton….pier to pier! The walkers were right mixture of the north and south of England, gathering to call for an opening in the land and God’s purposes to be birthed. We walked with such grace and ease taking time to fill up on Jesus and allowing the Holy Ghost to move in us and break our way of doing things. Holy Spirit ‘breakers’ must broken, it is never us and only Him. So we aligned ourselves with the Wave of Heaven coming to earth to break on us continually. Where the sea meets the land we walked for two to become one, heaven to earth, to enjoy and embody a wave of His presence across the south coast.
We were grateful to be sent out by Dave Griffiths at the Apostolic Faith Church in Bournemouth, it is 100 years old this November and arose with the Welsh revival spawning 100’s of churches in Africa that still exist today. He is a young prophet that is a new shoot from an old root and calling for life.
As we crossed by ferry to Portsmouth Island with the sun shining, out of the blue it suddenly rained accompanied by thunder! A Portsmouth prophet who waiting at the docks to meet us was suitably awed and heaven was so evident to those who walked through that city.
After 40 miles of walking, we reached the village of Selsey, another Island, and there was such a fresh connection with the Holy Spirit, we ran, calling, shouting, invigorated all the way to our resting point, a home called ‘Ardmore’, meaning Greatest High!
Paul Sanderson on the team has birthed many community projects from Bognor to Brighton and was ecstatic to weave this way of praying through his home turf. Having prophetically bought a puncture repair kit, he ended up repairing a young boys tyre who’s dad had just been diagnosed with a terminal illness. After praying the boy’s Grandmother declared, ‘We were meant to meet you today’.
The signs are in the land and as we walked on mass into Brighton, my mother with walking stick setting the last pace, the intimacy and peace of Jesus rested on us and lingered in the air around us. Murray, the tallest, largest man amongst us knelt down and kissed the land praying for the intimacy of Jesus.
We fell silent while a gentle breeze brushed our faces. Brightonians looked on as if they could feel the sudden peace that had descended on the busy promenade.
Brighton is so other, so alternative, there is no room for the rule book or tradition, it is a breakout place and there much room for God to burst out in shape and form that has not been seen before. A God who is so other than our control, who springs up in a place that seems so far from Him but is so able to let the radical rise and something new come forth.
So we walked from a place with an old root to a place with a new root and whatever He sounds like, whatever He looks like, we just want Jesus who has come.
To my friends Lucy, Andy, Soo, Lizzy, Val, Chris, Phil, Linda, Mum, Murray, Paul and John, the crack was good and you are ace.