The month of May is nearly gone! April was cold and dry but May has been cold and very wet! Walking the dog has been challenging as we have slipped and nearly fallen in many muddy holes. Come on England, it is time to find the sun!! This month of May has also been a “shift month” for us here in the Heartcry office as we transitioned from the daily/weekly Messages of Hope into a different pattern of zoom calls, meeting with leaders one on one after months of no personal contact, and clearing the decks of the countless administrative tasks like accounts and planning. All this has been in order to clear our headspace to begin to write another book! We have been trying to find inspiration but, I have to say, we have all felt a little exhausted and lacking in creative energy and so, as of yet, the detailed book writing is still on hold. We have written an outline synopsis but then stopped! Please pray that God will refresh us and help us to know and grasp the right sound and information that will be helpful in a new book in these days.
May has been busy, full of fun and family, and challenging health-wise too. We started the month concluding a time away in the New Forest resting. This was a time of solace and relaxation. It was good to be with Gordon and Bella and just walk and talk. We then returned to collect Nicola, Tim and children from the airport after a long flight from Sydney, Australia. Yes – another tribe of the family has returned and they came and quarantined with us for 10 days. It was a wonderful time to catch up, chat, do some home-schooling (!!) and play with Bella. Unfortunately, the day after they left, I contracted shingles and for a few days felt exhausted and under the weather. However, the medication that the doctor gave me quickly stopped the rash from spreading and I feel pretty well recovered now and the rash has faded. To add to the excitement both our kids, David and Nicola, have just got 8-week-old chocolate Labrador puppies for their families. So, David and Jenny and Tim and Nicola now have dogs – Milo and Rolo, just to add to the fun! We will be 14 people and 3 Labradors at family events from now on!! Now we are awaiting the arrival of Duncan, my brother, who will be with us from the 27th May from the USA. Then the returning of the tribes will be complete! My mum, my daughter and her family and finally my brother have all returned to the UK this year. Duncan will quarantine with us and then be in the UK for several months reconnecting with old relationships and looking for God to open doors into the new.
As I have considered our nation at this time, and the many shifts and changes in families and businesses all over the nation, I have had such a sense of a brooding excitement. I really do feel God has a surprise for us. I remember just before the pandemic hit several prophetic people in my world said to me – “Rachel – get ready, God has a surprise for you and it has to do with family!” Well, I would have never guessed that everyone would be coming home and suddenly all my family is UK-based once again. What a surprise! But I have this same sense for the nation. I believe that God has a surprise for us in the UK. We will never be able to fully pre-empt or predict it but I just have this sense of excitement that Daddy is about to bring home an unexpected surprise for His kids! Like children standing on the sofa watching out the window of our living space with great expectation – so I feel the church should position herself to watch and see what God will do for us. This last Sunday, 23rd May, was Pentecost Sunday and I had such a sense as we worshipped that the mercy of God was ready to be outpoured and we would see the goodness and mercy of God touching our cities and streets with His presence. I am expectant for our future. Psalm 27:13-14 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.
As we look ahead into these summer months, I feel that it is so important that we give priority to reconnecting into our relational worlds. We need to pray together, see each other, worship together, touch hearts and minds and experience the bond of connection that comes from being part of this family of Jesus. It is time to let our lives sharpen each other to new thinking and greater passion. It is time to “forge” ahead. Many of us have been through a time of fire and difficulty but this has prepared us to get ready to FORGE ahead with greater resilience into these new days. Get ready for God’s surprises!!
Finally, one last word from me – I took up the challenge of WALKING MY SOCKS OFF in aid of the Guide Dog Association. For my 60th birthday I was given a beautiful black Labrador, Bella, and as part of my gift I decided to sponsor a puppy, Coco, in training to be a Guide Dog. I think one of the most devastating things must be to lose your sight so I wanted to help people by supporting the provision of a guide dog for them. So if you would like to support TEAM BELLA as we “walk our socks off”, we are finishing our challenge on the 28th MAY and the giving page is https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Rachel-Hickson. I am hoping to raise £1,000 to pay for the advanced training of Coco in her next stage of becoming a Guide Dog. I am also hoping we can smash our target of 100,000 steps in 7 days if we do not drown in the process of walking in so much rain and mud!! Please follow the story and progress on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/rachel.hickson.33
In June we have many meetings with leaders around the UK now that we can meet in person again so we will be back on the road a bit this next month. We will also be speaking in various locations, mainly by zoom but with a few in-person meetings as well. Here is an overview of our main public ministry appointments:
6 June Trumpet Call Sunday message, Heartcry FB and YouTube channels (Helen)
10 June Recording God TV programmes, Wembley, UK (Rachel)
10 June M4 Europe Network meeting online (Rachel)
14 June Kingdom Advance Network Daily Divine Broadcast online (Rachel)
22 June Equipping Night zoom meeting, Unleashed Kingdom Network (Rachel & Helen)
27 June St Andrews, Dean Court, Oxford, UK (Helen)
Thank you so much for your ongoing support and prayer.
Our love and appreciation,
Rachel & Gordon and Helen.