18th March 2021
Over Christmas, I was invited by my friend Scott Marques in Zimbabwe to join a group praying for a church-planting, kingdom-building project in Nampula, Mozambique. The group included people from UK, Holland, USA, Zimbabwe, as well as Mozambique itself. We committed to praying regularly for three months, asking God for breakthrough in areas where the work has been facing significant pressure. One of these was the need for rain. The rainy season in Mozambique had begun, but very little had fallen by the end of December and water levels were becoming worryingly low. We prayed that God would send the rain. By the end of February, the situation had become more severe – still no rain. With only four to five weeks’ supply left in reservoirs and the end of the rainy season approaching, the region was facing the prospect of a severe drought. Without the precious provision of rain, the local community and the kingdom-business would be in crisis.
One morning early in March, I read a chapter about rain in Andrew Wilson’s excellent new book, God of All Things. In it, Andrew likens rain to the grace of God: we do nothing to deserve it, nothing to earn it; it falls on both the just and unjust; God sends life-giving, thirst-quenching rain because HE is generous and kind, not because we are. (God of All Things is out now, and I highly recommend getting hold of a copy.) As I finished the chapter I was stirred to pray for Mozambique again. A couple of days later, I heard that it had rained more in Nampula in the previous two days than it had in all of January and February put together. It was a great encouragement to our friends on the front line of kingdom extension in Mozambique, and to me – God hears our prayers!
I am glad to report that rain has continued to fall over the last few weeks, and the reservoirs are now almost full, praise God. I thought you might like to see this video sent by Scott just this week, showing the full-flowing waters in one of the local reservoirs in Nampula. I encourage you to watch it right to the end for a glimpse of some of the local wildlife!
Please do pray for our brothers and sisters in Mozambique, who still face significant challenges. Let’s pray for the project to be firmly and securely established and for the Gospel to be fruitful in that region.
Posted by Steve Tibbert
25th February 2021
It’s hard to believe, but this time last year Deb and I were seven days into a three-week trip to southern Africa, visiting churches in Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa. We had left the UK aware that Covid was starting to spread around the world but not imagining how much it would shortly change life for us all. On arrival in Zambia and Zimbabwe we had our temperatures checked and were asked if we had any symptoms, but none of the measures which we have now become used to were yet in place. We therefore enjoyed visiting churches, meeting with groups of leaders and sharing meals together, with little idea that such freedom would be impossible very soon. Who knows when we will be able to visit again?
With Joseph and Lily Mwila and the church in Kitwe, Zambia.
Deb and I had entered 2020 with a number of overseas trips planned, starting with the trip to southern Africa. Sadly, the global pandemic meant we had to cancel visits to Newfrontiers churches in Armenia, India and Russia. We were also due to travel to Cyprus last October for the Newfrontiers Global leadership conference, when the transition of the leadership of Newfrontiers from David Devenish to me would be marked. Of course, an in-person conference gathering people from all around the world became impossible, and so we decided to host it online. I am very proud of our King’s Comms Team, who pulled off a remarkable three-day online event last October, with over 70 nations joining us for the transition moment.
Taking on the leadership of Newfrontiers has obviously been a significant increase in responsibility for me, and I had never imagined I’d be doing so in the middle of a global pandemic! However, I am grateful for the technology which has enabled us to stay connected with people around the world. Just recently, Deb and I, together with David and Scilla Devenish, were able to ‘Zoom in’ and bring greetings to a gathering of Russian church leaders. I was also able to record a message for them on ‘grace-filled families’, which they’d watched just before we appeared live on screen. Hopefully, we’ll be able to be there in person for their next conference.
Following the success of the online Global conference, things were relatively quiet on the Newfrontiers front for the rest of 2020, partly because I was recovering from an operation. However, they are now picking up pace, and I can see we will soon need to decide whether to host this year’s Global conference in Cyprus or online. Whatever happens, I remain certain that God’s church continues to be active around the globe. Please do pray for our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world, many of whom are facing significant challenges brought about by the pandemic and other factors. You can find all the latest news from the different spheres within our fellowship on the Newfrontiers website.
Posted by Steve Tibbert
22nd October 2020
It was a huge privilege for me and Deb to host the Global 2020 online conference last week. The original plan had been to host the conference in Cyprus and gather the apostolic leaders and their teams, some 400 to 500 people. The Coronavirus pandemic meant that Global 2020 became an online conference, meaning that many thousands of us were able to join in from all around the world. This was the first time we had been able to gather the Newfrontiers family on such a scale since the Brighton conference in 2011, and I am delighted that around 70 different nations joined us online last week! What a great example of God finding opportunity within the crisis.
Over the course of three afternoons, we heard some outstanding messages from our guest speaker, Mark Sayers, and from David Devenish. If you missed them, or you would like to listen again, you can catch up with them via the Newfrontiers website. I also highly recommend David Devenish’s new book, Succession or Multiplication, which was launched last week and tells the Newfrontiers story from 2011, when our founding father, Terry Virgo, stepped down and handed over leadership to his spiritual sons.
On Wednesday afternoon, Dave and Liz Holden hosted a Zoom webinar for the apostolic leaders and their teams, where we took the opportunity to honour and thank David and Scilla Devenish, as David retires from leading the Newfrontiers Together Team. This is a role he has fulfilled with great wisdom and insight, and it was good to be able to express our gratitude. We also took the chance to thank John and Linda Lanferman, as John also takes a well-earned retirement from serving on the Newfrontiers Together Team. It was a huge privilege to then be prayed for myself as I pick up the baton from David Devenish and start leading the Newfrontiers Together Team.
Other highlights of Global 2020 were the videos showing just some of the many mercy ministries and church planting initiatives that are happening in churches right around the globe. From North America to South America, from Africa, to Asia and right across Europe, our churches are working to express God’s heart for his people and see Kingdom impact. It was deeply moving to see how far and wide the reach of Newfrontiers has gone, and we pray that in the years to come God will take us even further.
I cannot finish this blog without taking the time to thank Brett Melville and the rest of the outstanding technical team behind Global 2020. We are extremely grateful to them for pulling off such a remarkable multi-platform, multi-lingual online event without a hitch. Well done guys - and thank you!
Posted by Steve Tibbert
8th October 2020
I’d like to invite you to join me at the Newfrontiers Global 2020 conference next week. This promises to be an excellent few days, and moving the conference online means that more friends from around the world will be able to participate than ever before. I will be hosting, together with my wife Deb, and our very own King’s band will be involved in the worship. We are thrilled to have Mark Sayers from Melbourne, Australia, as our guest speaker. Mark is a pastor and a well-known author and commentator on issues around culture and Christianity. We also have the joy of hearing David Devenish close the conference on the last day.
Global 2020 takes place next week over three afternoons – 13th, 14th and 15th October – starting next Tuesday at 2pm (UK time). It is free to attend and can be accessed via the Newfrontiers website. The daily sessions will be just an hour long, so why not take a late lunch hour next Tuesday and join us? I hope to see you there!
Posted by Steve Tibbert
Steve Tibbert leads King’s Church London, with sites in Catford, Downham, Lee and Beckenham. The church has seen continued growth since the mid-1990s, both in terms of size and diversity.
As well as leading King’s, Steve hosts and leads Newfrontiers, a fellowship of apostolic leaders with hundreds of churches around the world.
Steve is married to Deb. They have three grown up sons and one grandson.