Salt & Shake
As I was praying recently, I sensed the Lord show me a picture of a Walkers Crisp Packet – the brand was “Salt & Shake”. As I asked Him more about this, I felt the Holy Spirit begin to speak. I believe He took me through various stages associated with eating the crisps and began to speak a word over us as one church – particularly, The Belfrey in York and St Thomas’s in Newcastle. The stages were as follows:
Stage 1 – Opening the Crisp Packet
When you open a packet of crisps, light invades. I sense the Lord desiring to flood His church with light. I believe part of this will involve re-visioning. For some, this will be a reawakening of nearly forgotten dreams – the Lord has not forgotten and passion for things you believed would not come to pass will begin to happen. For others, confusion will turn to clarity as you have sought the Lord’s will for the next season. For His church, I sense clarity of sight will come – seeing through the very lens of Jesus. Fresh and new vision will be released and past visions fulfilled – part of this will involve future church plants from both York and Newcastle. Prepare for change to the status quo.
I sense light will also bring fresh revelation of Jesus. His beautiful face. He longs for us to know Him more. Intimately. As the psalmist writes, we must learn to “kiss the Son”. This is the one thing we need. Few things matter, indeed only this one thing. I sense the Holy Spirit longing to teach us how to long for His Presence – the beautiful courts of the King.
Finally, light will expose that which is hidden. “For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light.” – Luke 8:17
Stage 2 – Pouring on the Salt
Once the crisp packet is opened, inside of it is a packet of salt. You pour this over the crisps to bring flavour. If you have ever tried the crisps without the salt flavouring, they’re not very appealing – they are bland and boring. This is not how Christianity or Church should be, but sometimes, if we’re not careful, we can sink into powerless religion.
I sense the Lord desiring to pour salt into His church. He desires for us to be attractive, appealing and full of flavour. Expectant and excited about all God has for us. Full of faith that God can (and indeed) will do more than we could ever ask or imagine. Zealous for the things of God. Believing anything can happen in a meeting. A house so full of Glory that the unbeliever will confess; “what must I do to be saved?” He can still walk into the room and overwhelm us with His manifest Glory.
Stage 3 – Shaking the Crisp Packet
Once salt is poured into the crisp packet, you shake it to distribute the salt evenly. I feel the Lord is shaking things up – in the heavens and on the earth. I sense we are feeling part of His shaking in The Belfrey and the North of England.
I was reminded of Chapter 12 in the Book of Hebrews where the author quotes the prophet Haggai – “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” (vs. 26). While the writer is referring to the second coming of Christ, I sense the Lord may be speaking through this passage for now.
I believe part of His shaking is the redistribution and provision of Kingdom Resources (of which there is an abundance). I sense the Holy Spirit reminding us all that every good thing we have is from Him and belongs to Him – He chooses where resources are positioned, and we must guard against any feeling of entitlement or need for self-preservation during these times of change.
Part of this shaking (redistribution) is church planting! And we must believe and pray for more church plants – they are coming! I believe Jesus would ask us to embrace this wonderful and exciting change and opportunity we have before us in Newcastle – He is fulfilling His promise “I will build my church”. I believe this shaking is part of God fulfilling His promise that “the Glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house” (Haggai 2:9).
Hebrews 12 also tell us that shaking involves the “removing of what can be shaken…so that what cannot be shaken may remain…for God is a consuming fire”. (vs 26-29). Shaking involves fire. And “fire will test the quality of each person’s work” (1 Corinthians 3:13). Wherever we build, with whatever resources we have, no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. Fire is coming to purify His bride. He will remove anything built on sand, so we build only on rock. He is Fathering us to be ready for His Glory.
Stage 4 – All of the Crisps are in the Same Packet
Finally, I sensed Jesus say that “all of the crisps are in the same packet”. Whether we are in York or Newcastle, we are reminded how we are all part of One Church, serving a vision greater far greater than ourselves.
I sense the Lord desiring to warn us that we must not allow our insecurities and worries to become a gateway for the enemy to bring division. Can we not see the enemy is overplaying his hand?
It is a privilege to give away and celebrate with those who have heard the call to go. It is a blessing to rejoice with those who have heard the call to stay. It is an amazing time to be alive to see the Lord moving and His powerful hand over His church. And He knows what He is doing! May we be full of heavenly wisdom - pure and peace loving.
So, Let Us Pray
· For re-visioning and fresh revelation of Jesus – “I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope He has given to those He called—His holy people who are His rich and glorious inheritance” (Ephesians 1:18).
· For re-salting, fresh expectancy and excitement. “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord.” (Romans 12:11)
· For shaking, for redistribution and provision of resources, for building on Him only and for the embracement of His purifying fire.
· For unity – “I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are One—as you are in Me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in Us so that the world will believe You sent Me. (John 17:21)
Richard Dearden is a Head of Prophetic Ministry at The Belfrey, and also works as a clinical psychologist.