The very first Lift Conference, organised by the Alliance of Pentecostal and Charismatic Churches in Singapore (APCCS) brought together full-time pastors and staff from churches all over Singapore on 16 to 18 July 2022 at the Grace Assembly of God’s premises.
Intended to build up and refresh those who have been labouring hard for the Kingdom, speakers of the conference touched on a range of subjects relevant to ministry leadership, and challenged participants to make room for the Holy Spirit to move in their lives and churches. App(lication) sessions on practical topics like ministering to the grieving, building strong teams, and the rise of the digital church were also made available to equip the attendees. Here, we revisit some of the highlights from the main sessions.
Making Room for the Holy Spirit
“Only an upper room company can open the heavens,” Pastor Yang emphasised, as he spoke on the first day of the conference about pressing in for more of His manifest presence and power. Ephesians 3:20 says, “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” God is only limited by the corresponding power that works in us, and we want to ask for the full measure of power. This, he said, begins in disciplining oneself to pray and to remain in the presence of God. It is pertinent that the pastor of the church remains on fire, for his congregation will follow suit. Pastor Yang also called for the churches in the Alliance to pray for revival in Singapore, beginning with every pastor and frontline worker. If we want to see the fullness of God’s glory, revival needs to begin in our hearts.
The Demands of the Place of Leadership
At the conference, Pastor Dominic Yeo reiterated the importance of leaders leading the charge.
He brought a Word concerning the demands of leadership. Leaders bear the responsibility of building faith, bringing forth an alignment to God’s Word, and to engage the giants. And because a leader’s faith is often put on public display, it is important for the leader to deal with personal fears so that he or she can build faith and model being courageous in spirit. Every giant is an opportunity to declare the goodness of God, and it takes strength to do just that in challenging times.
Next, he shared that the place of leadership requires the right focus and posture - to fix one’s eyes on the Lord and what He has spoken. This will keep the leader on the right course, not being shaken by circumstances or from bending to what is popular.
Finally, the congregation was reminded that the place of leadership demands grace and not vindication. Albeit difficult, the leaders present were exhorted to protect those who have hurt them from the judgement of God. Letting God act for them without taking things into their own hands - this is a true test! The altar call that followed saw many receiving ministry for past disappointments and hurts that had crippled them as leaders.
Preparing the Next Generation
Speaking from the life of David, Reverend Dr. Naomi Dowdy concluded the conference by challenging the congregation to prepare the next generation for God’s mandate. With conviction, she warned the pastors against generational drift, and to keep that from happening by being on their knees, never losing the fire of the Holy Spirit.
Because God is a God of generations, it is necessary to build a legacy by passing on blessings, wisdom, faith, passion, honour and boldness to the younger generation. “It is vitally important that you take the best of everything God has given you, and impart it to somebody that is emerging and rising up under you,” she said, before inviting senior leaders to pray for the younger leaders.
As worship continued, it was heartening to see fathers and mothers from different churches laying hands to bless the next generation of “Generals” in the ministry. Just as the scripture speaks about the Lord turning the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers (Malachi 4:6), may this be a time of restoration for the Church in Singapore. May the Lord prepare Singapore for all He desires to do!