July 13, 2016
As some of you will know, I write an open letter to my friends and followers twice a year: on New Year’s Day and my birthday. Today I am 81. I often think of the funny line: “If I knew I would have lived this long I would have taken better care of myself!”. But it’s true in my case. And yet God graciously gave me a wake-up call shortly after we retired – when I was 67. The late John Paul Jackson (I still grieve with tears when I try to cope with his death) said to me out of the blue one evening: “R. T., you will live to a ripe old age, but if you don’t get in shape physically you won’t be around to enjoy it”. I took him seriously. I began the next day with exercises Steve Strang taught me; T.R. bought me a book called The Abs Diet which I pretty much followed (and still do); I began walking on the treadmill a mile a day in twenty minutes; I have a trainer who comes to me once or twice a week (making me lift weights). I used to think that the word in the KJV, “Bodily exercise profiteth little” was a put-down of exercising. It was my mentor Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones who said this was not a put-down on physical exercise but it meant that by comparison godliness is more important. Modern versions are helpful: “Physical training is of some value” (NIV); “bodily training is of some value” (ESV). I never dreamed at the age of 81 I would be traveling the world as I do. I give God all the praise for this.
We just finished our third six-month period with Kensington Temple, London. Pastor Colin Dye has given London back to us. He has kindly asked us to return next year. It is fun but also hard work. In addition to preaching at KT and teaching at the International Bible Institute Of London Colin suggested we revive our old School of Theology series on Fridays which I did for many years at Westminster Chapel. When in London Louise and I love walking the streets, this being something one seldom does in America. Over half of our adult life was spent in the UK. It is like being back home. So many doors have opened to us as a result. The greatest surprise was from TBN UK. I never dreamed this would happen but I have been given a weekly slot – actually appearing on TV four times a week in the UK, all over Africa and Europe. The new UK director Leon Schoeman calls the program WORD AND SPIRIT, a name he believe spells out my ministry.
Louise enjoys good health with me. But she travels less with me in the USA as she prefers to be with the grandsons, so T. R. mostly will accompany me all over America plus places like Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai and India.
My book Pigeon Religion came out in April of this year. It seeks to show the difference between the authentic (the dove) and counterfeit (the pigeon) Holy Spirit. Many have told me they think it is my best book! My book on the Midnight Cry (which the publisher chose to call Is Your Heart Ready for the Midnight Cry?) comes out November 1st . I am now writing a book on the presence of God, something that Pastor Grant Brewster of Bainbridge Island, Washington has been asking me to do for over ten years. It will probably be called In His Presence.
People ask me all the time, “What is God doing in the world today?” My reply: “Not a lot” (in my opinion). There are exceptions. God is using Alpha in the UK, He is using people like Rolland and Heidi Baker in Mozambique (where I visited in June). But by and large the most apt description of the church today, speaking generally, is: asleep. This includes high profile leaders who espouse everything from open theism to hyper-grace, annihilationism to universalism. This is what my book on the Midnight Cry is partly about. I would like my forthcoming book to be a mini wake-up call before the Big One comes – when it will be too late for the foolish virgins to enjoy the next great move of God, as Jesus put it in Matthew 25:1-13.
May I insert this question: which to you is more important – getting more of God or getting more from God? Please think about that. It is to me a litmus test as to where one is in his or her spiritual relationship with God. Sadly the number is increasing in those who only want more from God, that is, how to get Him to do things for us – versus getting more of Him – that we might know Him and His ways (Exod.33:13; Phil.3:10). Please think about this. Do you see the difference?
You and I know that the world situation is worsening with every passing day. A year ago we would not have thought it could be this bad. I can tell you, it will be even worse a year from now. The only hope – in my view: the Midnight Cry. Please read this book Are You Ready for the Midnight Cry? when it comes out and pray for its wide distribution.
Thank you for your prayers for a greater anointing of the Holy Spirit on me – and for my continued good health, clear thinking, stamina and mobility – and the same for all our family. Grandchild number three is coming in October.
God bless you all. From Louise, T. R., Annette, Toby, Timothy, Rex and Melissa,
Warmest love, deepest thanks and appreciation.
RT – John 5:44