River of Life Day Retreat Report

Aboriginal Advancement League – 22 Feb 2013

Something beautiful took place at the retreat. There was a fresh expression of heaven on earth involving pastors, intercessors, worship leaders, Christian Organisation leaders and marketplace leaders from across the city.

There was a River of Life Convergence at the headwaters at the Cross. The Holy Spirit was flowing from the innermost being of his people with worship ascending to heaven with a winsome beauty unique to the love of God (John 7:37).

The rivers of living water was also a confluence of streams. As the Holy Spirit is one so are we one in his presence. This is a beautiful expression of the Kingdom of God come, his will being done on earth as it is in heaven.

The retreat started and finished with the call of the prophet Joel –
“Even now” declares the Lord,
return to me with all your heart,
with fasting and weeping and mourning.
Rend your heart and not your garments.
Return to the Lord your God,
for he is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and abounding in love,
and he relents from sending calamity.
Who knows? He may return and relent
and leave behind a blessing –
grain offerings and drink offerings
for the Lord your God.
Blow the trumpet in Zion,
declare a holy fast,
call a sacred assembly.
Gather the people,
consecrate the assembly;
(Joel 2:12-16)

Sean Morris took us on a journey of inspiring hope through this scripture which was also foundational to the Irish revival that swept through Europe. Following this the intercessors shared their heart on how great is our God and that this is the time to rend our hearts to be consecrated to the Lord as one body.

Bishop Sandy Millar flew in under the radar and filled the room with joy in the pleasure of Jesus presence and purposes in our midst. From Ezekiel 37 Sandy invited us to speak out with prophetic voice to the dry bones and then to speak out with prophetic voice to the breath that the church might become a vast army. Lawrence Hirsch then led us into prayer for the city to the North, South, East and West. We came to these prophetic acts at the headwaters of the river.

As the prophet Joel called for the trumpet to be sounded for a sacred assembly so Lawrence blew the Shofar. In the midst of both Lent and the 40 days of prayer and fasting a sacred assembly gathered in the presence of God. We came with no agenda other than to rend our hearts to him that we may die to ourselves and live for Christ (Gal 2:20).

Over dinner Lawrence led us in Shabbat Shalom to give thanks for the bread of life and the wine of his pleasure. We continued in happy fellowship through to the conclusion of the consecration of our assembly in a communion that was beautifully led by our host Esme Bamblett. We went home with a sense of joy, success and fulfilment.

The retreat turned out to be a confluence of streams of the spirit meeting at the headwaters at the Cross. As with the prophecy of Ezekiel this trickle will progressively grow into a mighty river that brings the life of Christ to the city. We are honoured to live out a local expression of these prophecies of Joel 2 and Ezekiel 47.

To gain a big picture view of the river of life we can see it flowing from Genesis 2:8 where it waters the garden through the Bible from cover to cover. Its destination is Rev 22:1 where it flows as clear as crystal from the throne of God down the middle of the city – with the fruit of the tree of life on its banks bringing healing to the nations.

In Melbourne the Yarra likewise flows down the middle of the city beckoning the bride of Christ to become as clear as crystal to release the fruit of the tree of life for the healing of the nation.

This conference will also bring back to Melbourne the steam of the spirit that started in 1889 when the founder of Caulfield Grammar, Joseph Henry Davies, left Melbourne missionary as a missionary to Korea, where he laid down his life for the Gospel. This subsequently led to some 172 other missionaries taking the gospel to Korea.

Fifty years ago the Lord raised up Dr David Yonggi Cho as a leader of a Korean revival that has continued unabated in the power of the Holy Spirit and prayer. It has won some 40% of the South Korean population to Christ.

In May 2013 Dr Cho will come to Melbourne to return this expression of grace back to our city. Accordingly our retreat day and our fortnightly city wide prayer meetings are preparing the way for this return.

Melbourne also experienced a great revival under R. A. Torey that concluded on 10 May 1902. Now 111 years later to the day, we are invited to come together on the heritage and sacrifice of our forebears so that Jesus may be honoured and glorified in our city and nation.

Accordingly let us come together to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ on Ascension Day 9th May 2013. This is the very day we celebrate Jesus enthronement as King of Kings and Lord of Lords over every other power and authority that exists.

Following the conference we look forward to the river of life progressively increasing its flow to bring the life of Christ to our city. This is the river of the Spirit that emanates from the innermost being of the people of God T the Cross and progressively gets deeper and wider through unity, love , purpose and prayer.

After May 10 it will no longer be a River of Life Conference but a River of Life Convergence of the streams of the spirit flowing together to bring life to the city.

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