Mid-Year Report 2020

The first six months of this year has presented us all with challenges that were not anticipate. We have all had to adapt to the continually evolving Covid-19 environment, the end of which is still in the distant future. Our primary job has become taking care of ourselves and those closest to us so as to ensure that we do not become infected and then cause others to become infected as well.  I think that not since World War II has there been a threat that was so widespread. Yet, we have also witnessed a shift in the ways and means used to communicate the gospel.

Initiated in January 2019, the MCF has been conducting an experimental online NextLevel men’s discipleship group. Members of the group come from Kingston, Ottawa, Valcartier, Gagetown and the Miramichi area. While other in-person groups have ceased, and their members have drifted, the MCF group has been an outstanding success providing its members with a consistent and rich Christian fellowship experience that has facilitated a deeper relationship with our Lord.

In April while the Covid-19 caseload was expanding across Canada, in response to the Lord’s calling a team of MCF members joined together to deliver the Alpha Course online. We unknowingly became part of a movement of God to provide the gospel through online Alpha that stretches across Canada, the US, the UK and other locations that I am just now hearing about.  The MCF group has seen great results as the Holy Spirit has worked in the lives of everyone who is on the course, both team leaders and participants. This coming weekend marks the end of the course and we are expectant that the Lord will do more in the lives of everyone who has been involved.

On May 9th the MCF collaborated with Ellel Ministries Canada to deliver a webinar on moral injury resulting from military operations. A first for both organizations. The MCF had been working with Ellel Ministries International to hold a weekend seminar in the Netherlands coinciding with the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands; however, global restricts forced the cancellation of that event.  The planning team came together to pray and discuss if there was anything that we could do, and we were unanimous in our understanding that we should not lose faith but press on to find another way.  The result was the delivery of a webinar that was attended by 67 people from Canada, the US, the UK, Ireland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Italy and Australia. The MCF has never before had such a reach. All due to the Lord’s intervention and favour.

In the next six months we understand that we are to again offer the Alpha Course online, that we are to again provide a webinar experience for members of the military community and that we are to provide training for NextLevel group leaders for the development of new online Nextlevel groups amongst military community leaders.

Thank you for your prayers for the military community, they are having an effect that has eternal implications.

Gerry Potter

Moral Injury: Trauma In Active Service

Due to social distancing we have an update on the Moral Injury conference originally planned for Netherlands. It will now be a 1 day VIRTUAL seminar. May 9, 2020, the  find the brochure HERE. MCF and Ellel Ministry will co-host a seminar on moral injury and will be available free to all participants. Please register as soon as possible: Registration form.


Earlier last fall Kevin Davis invited me to a one-day training session with Ellel Ministries during which leaders from this ministry presented a theological framework for the progressive healing of first-responders who had been subjected to spiritual trauma as a result of situations they faced within their areas of work. I found that the framework presented dove-tailed well into the studies that I had been conducting on the subject of Moral Injury within the context of military operations. Kevin and I met with representatives of Ellel
Ministries from both Canada and the Netherlands in an effort to discern if there could be an opportunity for us to work together. Our discussions have been fruitful.

Just War Theory has been and continues to be a subject of debate within academic circles. Governments and military leadership alike discuss its application, many times indirectly and on occasion unconsciously as they consider potential and actual courses of action. Such discussions are of no value to the men and women who are directly involved in the application of military power and experience the effects of both their actions and inactions while performing such work. Increasingly, recognition of the existence of moral injury is occurring. While the lifting of the veil on a previously ill-recognized effect of military operations is important, it is only the beginning of what needs to be a fulsome understanding of the malady and its successful treatment from a sound theological perspective. This joint seminar is the MCF’s first foray into what has been a previously poorly understood effect of military operations.

If you have been sensitized to the matter of moral injury either as a care practitioner or as an individual who has them-self suffered such an injury or has a friend or family member who has been so injured I recommend that come to this seminar. You will not be disappointed.

Gerry Potter
Colonel (Retired)
President

Inexplicable joy

The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So, the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.”  
Luke 1:35



A young woman who was a virgin was selected by God the Father to bear God the Son by the power of God the Holy Spirit at a specific moment in all of time for the sole purpose of reconciling sinful people to God thereby granting them life eternal with Him. Restoration to God’s original design. It is a wonderous gift that is presented to mankind and we believers reflect not only on our own new birth as sons and daughters of the Most-High God, but also on the continuing offer to those around us who have not yet received the gift of faith. Christmas is filled with wonder, not because of observable things, but because the Spirit who indwells the children of God quickens believers and pours out through them to the earthly society within which they live. A strange joy pervades.

While involved in operations during the Afghan conflict I was located at the NATO HQ in Kabul and by God’s design I also co-led a small but vibrant church whose members were from various NATO nations. At Christmas time, Nick, the lead chaplain, a British man who had found favour in the eyes of General Richards, Commander ISAF, asked our church to assist him in ministering to all of NATO HQ Kabul by conducting a Christmas Eve service. We responded to the request with a resounding unified yes and an explosion of excited joy. While we continued to perform our military duties, we were energized to concurrently and collectively work alongside Nick in preparing for the Christmas eve service.  We worked, we prayed, we prepared for two weeks. The intensifying and profound excitement that we all experienced was as tangible as it was surprising to us.  There we were in the midst of a conflict zone, involved in the conduct of military action against an aggressive opposing force yet we were joy-filled.

Romans 8:9 asserts that a Christian is not in the flesh, but rather in the Spirit. The indwelling Spirit works to develop within the believer Christ-like character, part of which is inexplicable joy. At a specific moment in time, God called together a disparate group of believers from various nations to work together and glorify His name in the midst of a conflict zone. The Christmas Eve service lasted only one hour.  There were over 600 military personnel in attendance. The gospel was preached. The Lord was glorified. And our small entourage of disciples experienced God’s presence with absolute joy.

At the end of the service General Richards addressed the crowd, himself visibly emotive, and testified of the reality of Christ and of his gratitude for the opportunity to be reminded of that which is of utmost importance, while in the midst of the hard labour of military operations.

If you are child of God, you have been called to serve on His mission, no matter where you are or what you are engaged in. Christmas is a time of wide-spread quickening, opportunities to testify about Jesus and the salvation that is available only through Him abound. My prayer for you and for me is that like a sentry standing watch we will be alert to the opportunities that He leads us into and that we will respond without hesitation. Merry Christmas, Serve Well!

Gerry Potter
Colonel (Retired)
President

10 Daily Living Tips

1. READ your Bible every day – Psalm. 1:2-3 

2. TELL God you love Him every day – Mat. 22:35-38  

3. SET your mind on Heaven every day – Phil. 3:20-21 

4. PICK UP your cross every day – Luke 9:23 

5. EXAMINE your life for sin and confess it to God every day – 1 John 1:9 

6. PRAY for lost people every day – Romans 10:1 

7. ASK God to meet your needs every day – Matthew 6:11-12 

8. ASK God to protect you from the evil one every day – 1 Pet 5:8 

9. ASK God for strength every day – Gal 5:16,18 

10. ASK God for wisdom every day – Proverbs 2:3-6 

Thank you for your partnership and support

Today I reflected on what the Lord has been doing within the military community and the portion of work that He has assigned to the MCF. Even though it appears that Canadian society is becoming increasingly secularized, He is even more active stirring the hearts and minds of people to turn towards Jesus.  There is no fanfare, no great media announcements, rather like the wind of His Spirit the effects of His presence are observable, and it is exciting to see and to feel.  It is like the breeze off the ocean in the middle of a hot summer day – cool, refreshing, invigorating.  He is moving, and we are permitted to move with Him.

This past year the MCF has experienced His favour, and the forecast is that this favour will increase. I can say this because we are receiving increased funding, some of which is from sources unknown. I am grateful for what the Lord is doing in the hearts of people, drawing them to Himself and motivating them to contribute to the mission of bringing the good news of Jesus to the military community.  If you are one of these people, then thank you.  Thank you for your willingness to invest in what He is doing and is about to do. Please consider accompanying your financial contribution with prayer.  Prayer for the military community and prayer for the members of the MCF as they serve Jesus by serving this unique community and bring the gospel along with them.

If you are reading this and have not yet contributed financially to the MCF, please take a moment and pray asking the Lord what He would have you do.  Please also consider if you would join us on our mission.

David wrote many beautiful Psalms as he was carried along by the Spirit. I draw your attention to Psalm 37 and in particular verse 4 – “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.”  If you are still looking for a New Years resolution, consider this one: seek to delight yourself in the Lord no matter what your circumstances.  I am confident that He will fulfill your desires.

Thank you for your partnership and support in 2018.  Now let’s see what the Lord will do in 2019!

Gerry Potter
Colonel (Retired)
President

Follower-ship

I am grateful for what the Lord has done in our midst this year and I am grateful for all of those who have responded to His call to make possible the advancements that have taken place.  It is a profound joy to be with the people of God on mission.

In all three synoptic gospels Jesus’ calling of the tax collector to follow Him is recorded. There are no pre-requisites, there are no pre-conditions, there are no hidden agendas or expectations; rather there is a simple call to follow Jesus. The apostle Paul echos Jesus’ call in his letter to the Corinthian church when he says “follow my example as I follow Christ” (1 Cor 11:1). Yet, follower-ship is under valued, misunderstood, even destained.

Much is made of the concept and the role of leadership. The word itself is held up within our community as a preeminent characteristic that all are to aspire to exhibit.  Many books have been written on the subject and training courses that are centred on developing it within people abound. Yet, our Lord did not call us to “lead”, no He called us to follow. I confess that after a career in the military during which I served in many different leadership capacities that follower-ship has become quite difficult. Fortunately, the Lord is patient and He is persistent in the application of His teaching-training; I believe that I am learning to be a better follower. My apprenticeship in follower-ship has been advanced this past year principally by those with whom I have served in the varied MCF ministry activities and for whom I am grateful.

Next week we celebrate the anniversary of Jesus’s birth with fellow followers. I recommend to us all that as we come together that we seek to learn from each others stories of follower-ship.  That we reflect upon those experiences  so as to be inspired into deeper levels of following for the coming year and wonder at what Jesus is doing in our midst.

Hope, peace, joy, love.

Gerry Potter
President-follower

Gagetown prayer/study group

Today’s message in the letter from God we read: “Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. (Matthew 10:29-31).  Does that not show God in His mighty, intimate knowledge of us? He loves you so much that He would have taken the time to number the very hairs on your head. When we speak about God and Christ, nothing can happen to us without God knowing.  He loves you and cares for you!  Let’s go a bit further and read from Matthew 10:27-33 and again, I urge you to read all of chapter 10.

In Matthew 10:32-33 I think this is very important for us, as His children, to do. As you have read in the letter, God loves us so much He sent his only Son to die for us. So as His children, we must speak to others about Jesus the Son of God and what He has done for us.

NOTE regarding Matthew 10:29 – Sparrows were customarily thought of as the smallest of creatures and the penny (copper coin) was one of the least valuable Roman coins. But not our Father. God rules over even the most insignificant events and creatures.

What did Jesus say regarding whom to fear?
Here’s a little interesting fact from Malachi to Matthew. Malachi, the last book of the OT, was a message of encouragement for the Jews who had returned from exile in Babylon. Matthew wrote his Gospel more than 400 years later. The Jews still lived in their homeland, but under the oppressive rule of Rome. Matthew tells the good news about how Jesus, the Messiah, fulfills the promises of God in the OT.

He is the Redeemer of the world, who died for sinners, the One who is the Soon-coming King!

Blessing All!
Have a Great Day!
Keep your head up! GOD gives his hardest battles to his strongest SOLDIERS… 
So as we go through our day let us go out to help and to care for all that need it, in Jesus’ name…Amen!

Jimmy ;o)

Gagetown prayer/study group

I hope you all had time to read the letter from God sent last week. Is it not wonderful how much God loves us? He knows everything that happens in our life and in our heart. That means He sees our pain and our joy and He cares. He notices details about our life we miss. We might think He is too big to pay attention but what more mundane than: “sit down and rise up?” Yet God wants us to know He is familiar with our intimate personality. Sometimes in this world of so many distractions, we tend to forget His love.

So let’s look at the first part of this letter. Seeing that the first 3 passages of the letter come from Psalm 139: 1-3 we will look at the whole Psalm. This is one of the most notable of the sacred hymns. It sings the omniscience and omnipresence of God. One of the greatest truths in life which we might know, but which we all must come to learn, is that there is no escape from God. We may run, but we cannot hide from the God who penetrates even the darkness with the gaze of His light. If we manage to dodge Him in this life, we must still stand exposed before Him on that fearful Day of Judgment. There is no place to hide from God.

After you finish reading Psalm 139 think of these few questions…
1. What does the Lord know?
2. For what should we praise the Lord?
3. What is the great prayer at the end of the Psalm?

He is the Redeemer of the world, who died for sinners, the One who is the Soon-coming King!
Blessing All!
Have a Great Day!
Keep your head up! GOD gives his hardest battles to his strongest SOLDIERS… 
So as we go through our day let us go out to help and to care for all that need it, in Jesus’ name…Amen!

Jimmy ;o)

Gagetown prayer & study group

Having God in our life every day is Great!

So let’s get started. I have a letter from our God, our Father. This letter is comprised of all the words that God has said to us throughout the whole Bible. This letter is what we will be looking at and I will be breaking it down verse by verse for study. I think sometimes we tend to forget how important we are as children to our Father, and how much He loves us. All the verses in the letter are to help us in our studies. I urge you to please read it closely and often as we look at each verse, and hopefully try to understand the power of the love that God has for us and what it means for us today. I hope you are encouraged by this and enjoy it as well!


My Child,

You may not know me, but I know everything about you. (Psalm 139:1) I know when you sit down and when you rise up. (Psalm 139:2) I am familiar with all your ways. (Psalm 139:3) Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. (Matthew 10:29-31) For you were made in my image. (Genesis 1:27) In me you live and move and have your being. (Acts 17:28) For you are my offspring. (Acts 17:28) I knew you even before you were conceived. (Jeremiah 1:4-5) I chose you when I planned creation. (Ephesians 1:11-12) You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book. (Psalm 139:15-16) I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live. (Acts 17:26) You are fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14) I knit you together in your mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13) And brought you forth on the day you were born. (Psalm 71:6) I have been misrepresented by those who don’t know me. (John 8:41-44) I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love. (1 John 4:16) And it is my desire to lavish my love on you. (1 John 3:1) Simply because you are my child and I am your Father. (1 John 3:1) I offer you more than your earthly father ever could. (Matthew 7:11) For I am the perfect father. (Matthew 5:48) Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand. (James 1:17) For I am your provider and I meet all your needs. (Matthew 6:31-33) My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) Because I love you with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3) My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. (Psalm 139:17-18) And I rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17) I will never stop doing good to you. (Jeremiah 32:40) For you are my treasured possession. (Exodus 19:5) I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul. (Jeremiah 32:41) And I want to show you great and marvelous things. (Jeremiah 33:3) If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me. (Deuteronomy 4:29) Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4) For it is I who gave you those desires. (Philippians 2:13) I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) For I am your greatest encourager. (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17) I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) When you are broken-hearted, I am close to you. (Psalm 34:18) As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart. (Isaiah 40:11) One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes. (Revelation 21:3-4) And I’ll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth. (Revelation 21:3-4) I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus. (John 17:23) For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed. (John 17:26) He is the exact representation of my being. (Hebrews 1:3) He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you. (Romans 8:31) And to tell you that I am not counting your sins. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you. (1 John 4:10) I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love. (Romans 8:31-32) If you receive the gift of my son Jesus, you receive me. (1 John 2:23) And nothing will ever separate you from my love again. (Romans 8:38-39) Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen. (Luke 15:7)

I have always been Father, and will always be Father. (Ephesians 3:14-15)

My question is…Will you be my child? (John 1:12-13)

 

I am waiting for you. (Luke 15:11-32)

 

Love, Your Dad.

Almighty God

 

He is the Redeemer of the world, who died for sinners, the One who is the Soon-coming King!

Blessing All!

Have a Great Day!

Keep your head up! GOD gives his hardest battles to his strongest SOLDIERS…

So as we go through our day let us go out to help and to care for all that need it, in Jesus’ name…Amen!

Jimmy ;o)