Since my last blog post we have been thrilled to be sharing with a thousand other people in our International Conference, God of the Breakthrough, at Blackpool in the UK. It was a wonderful time of fellowship and teaching from a fantastic team of guest speakers! It was amazing to see how so many different speakers were all sharing a similar message from the heart of God – this is a time for BREAKTHROUGH in the lives of God’s people and His Church.
In the opening session of the conference I referred to what happened when, in 2 Samuel 5:17-25, the Philistines twice came against David after he had been established by the Lord as King over Israel. The enemies of Israel were not pleased!
It certainly seems as though today, that the enemies of God are ranged against the Body of Christ in a similar way. In those days, David immediately took the problem to the Lord in prayer and God showed him what to do on both occasions. Scripture records that the effect of what God did on the first occasion was like waters breaking out with an unstoppable force – and the Philistine attackers were defeated.
This reminded me of what happened during the last war when the RAF targeted the hydro-electric dams of the industrial heartland of Germany. They had an amazing and unprecedented new weapon – a bouncing bomb! This bouncing bomb, devised by an extraordinary British engineer, Barnes Wallis, was designed to bounce across the surface of the reservoirs before sinking right at the wall of the dam and then exploding with devastating effect deep beneath the water.
As a student at University I was privileged to meet Barnes Wallis and share a meal with him. I didn’t know then that he was a devout Christian, but that meeting was one of those moments when I knew I had met and shared hearts with an extraordinary genius. His biographer described him as “a man of deep faith who was happy to produce experimental proof for unbelievers”.
The film, “The Dam Busters”, which many of you will have seen, made Barnes Wallis a household name in the UK, and has recently been re-released in a digitally re-mastered version. It’s a remarkable film which I first saw when I was at school.
I recently watched the film again and as I did so God began to speak to me about some very important spiritual principles:
1. The Bouncing Bomb principle. The 5 tons of bouncing bomb explosive were powerless to do any serious damage to the industrial targets of the Ruhr. But what the bouncing bomb could do, if exploded deep under the water by the edge of the dam wall, is destroy the dam. And then the waters would break out and do the damage to the industries below which no bomb at that time could have done. David said, “As waters break out, the Lord has broken out against my enemies before me.” (2 Sam 5:20). The waters of the dam broke out with extraordinary force and effectiveness. This reminded me that the things we do in obedience to God are a bit like the bouncing bomb. What we do when we are on target with our obedience to Him may seem small to us, but in the hands of God the result of our obedience is like the waters of a massive dam breaking out. The consequences of what wedo are far greater than we could ever imagine!
2. The Converging Lights: For the bouncing bomb to work it had to be released from the plane at exactly the right height (60ft). To achieve this accuracy, two angled spotlights were mounted on the front and the rear of the plane. When the two spotlights converged, the pilot knew that the plane was at exactly the right height. The spirit of man and the Spirit of God are like the two converging spot lights. When the spirit of man is in harmony with the Spirit of God, then we know that we will be on target to fulfil our destiny in God.
3. The Bomb Sights: Not only had the bomb to be dropped from the plane at the right height – it also had to be at the right distance from the dam wall. To get this part of the operation right, two nails were mounted on a sight guide – the bomb had to be released at the precise moment when the two nails were seen to be exactly in line with the twin turrets of the dam. In David’s second encounter with the Philistines, God told him to wait for a precise moment before attacking – when he heard “the sound of marching in the tops of the mulberry trees”. David waited and listened and because he got the timing right, the Philistines were once again defeated. When the Lord shows us something He wants us to do, there is often a timing in God for the moment of action. We need to listen to His voice and only act when He gives us the go ahead.
4. Perseverance: One of the things that most impacted me personally about Barnes Wallis was his quiet determination to press through with the vision until completion - no matter who stood in the way or what problems he encountered. In the film he is quoted as saying “If you believe in a thing as much as I believe in this, there isn’t really any other work worth doing until you’ve seen it through.” The fact is the enemy will always try and make us give up on what the Lord asks us to do. But be sure of this, if we know that we are doing the work of God, then there is no other work worth doing until we’ve seen it through!
My encounter with Barnes Wallis was a significant and God-ordained moment in my life. One of the messages from Blackpool was that now is the time for the people of God to begin releasing many spiritual bouncing bombs into His world. We desperately need the waters of God to break out against the powers of darkness and for the Body of Christ, the Church, to rise up and re-take the ground that has been lost in our nations.
Note: To obtain copies of the audio or DVD versions of all the teaching from the God of the Breakthrough Conference, please go to: www.ellelministries.org/shop.