Fresh Ideas In The Salvation Army

israel gaither

Recently I heard retired Salvation Army leader, Commissioner Israel Gaither, speak. (He is the former International Chief of Staff & the former National Commander in the USA.) Commissioner Gaither confirmed several things that God has been speaking to me the past few years:

1) He confirmed participatory church. In some sessions, rather than just speaking to us, he asked us to listen to the God and allowed us to share what the Spirit is saying to us.  Those sessions were very powerful!  The Spirit moved so strongly that one meeting went overtime and we had to cancel the closing song.  (You can experience participatory church with us at The Salvation Army Berry Street in Nashville, Tennessee, where everyday people show and tell what God has done — Sunday mornings @ 10:45, 225 Berry St., 37207.)

2) Commissioner Gaither confirmed prayer walking and claiming a neighborhood for Christ!  He said:  “”Take a walk in the neighborhood around your corps and claim it for God. I dare you! In fact, I double dare you!  Let Jesus reign where you are!”  (Check out this Facebook page:  Prayer Walking With The Salvation Army Flag . . . )

3) He confirmed that we all need to think big, to expect big things from God, to have a big vision for our lives.  He said: “When you begin to believe the lie of ‘I can’t,’ then you won’t.”

4) He confirmed that everyday people are eloquent and can speak for God.  Commissioner Gaither exhorted us:  “You can all speak prophetically!”

Several years ago I met Commissioner Gaither and told him the story of how John Berry McFerrin (who died in 1887) seemed to prophesy about our nontraditional corps in Nashville. Then I said to him: “That could have been a coincidence or it could have been God.”

Commissioner Gaither pointed his finger at me and prophetically said:  “That was no coincidence.  That was God!”  Since then, anytime I’ve started to doubt the vision that God has given me, I’ve remembered those words and been greatly encouraged!  This week when I reminded Commissioner Gaither about that, he said.  “I remember that conversation.  I still believe that!”

About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I co-lead a non-traditional expression of the body of Christ in Nashville based on open participation and Spirit-led sharing. We long to see the power and passion of the first Christ-followers come to life in our time. I have written a book about our experiences called, "Beyond Church: An Invitation To Experience The Lost Word Of The Bible--Ekklesia" that is available in Kindle & paperback @
This entry was posted in Chief of Staff, Commissioner, Henry Gariepy, John Berry McFerrin, man with a mission, National Commander USA, open church, open forum, open mic, organic church, prayer walking, prayer walking with The Salvation Army Flag, Salvation Army Flag, Salvation Army officer, Salvationism, Salvationists, you can all prophesy and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Fresh Ideas In The Salvation Army

  1. kenneth T Chikore says:

    All what you was saying is good for a health church.This goes with our mission as The Salvation Army ie we have to make disciples.but the question still comes on the table how? now,by the use of open air

  2. Pingback: Live Like Hell? Or March Into Hell For A Heavenly Cause | Free Gas For Your Think Tank (Steve Simms Blogs From Nashville)

  3. Pingback: The Miracle Of Two Delayed Dreams Finally Fulfilled In Nashville | Free Gas For Your Think Tank (A blog to jog your mind and unclog your heart . . .)

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