Wakey, wakey, Glasgow!
Southern hospitality has nothing on the way Glaswegians host their guests. We had an amazing and full week in Glasgow, but for all of us, the highlight was the people. We’ve been welcomed with such warmth and kindness by every person in our path. Our host families have adopted us into their families and treated us like their own. The staff at QP have taken incredible care of us, protecting our time, introducing us to all things Scottish, feeding us like queens, and providing an unending supply of coffee, tea, and sweets. Their volunteers have selflessly prepared and served our meals with contagious joy. Though we came to Scotland to love on and pour into them, their love and kindness has ministered to us. Glasgow may be known for dreary weather, but her people bring sunshine with them everywhere they go.
On Sunday, we were introduced to what David Wagner prophesied would be the “secret weapon” of our trip: the children. QP’s youth had been away for the weekend getting all sorts of prophetic words and pictures. They shared them with the congregation, and it was clear that these kids were not only amazing, but that they were inspiring the adults at QP with how clearly they hear and how well they listen to God’s voice! That night Julie taught the evening service on forgiveness, and in her sermon she highlighted the importance of inner vows. Pam, one of QP’s pastors, came up afterward and shared that she realized their church had a corporate inner vow about not coming up to the front for prayer. Something broke in the church that night, shifting the culture and freeing the congregation to come up for ministry. We were able to pray people through forgiveness, break off inner vows, and prophesy over so many. It was amazing to watch people be set free from unforgiveness, shame, and other things that have held them back!
The next day we did a walking tour of Govanhill, a Glasgow neighborhood often recognized for it’s high poverty, overcrowding, and crime. A local community development worker named David was our tour guide. As we walked, he highlighted the countless community development projects, local organizations, rich culture, and vibrant life of Govanhill that is often overlooked and misjudged. As he shared about the transformation taking place in this neighborhood, he said, “We have lots of poverty, but we also have lots of provision.” David is passionate about improving living conditions, empowering locals, restoring hope, and shifting the focus from the community’s problems to its progress. We were able to pray into all God is doing in Govanhill and also to pray for David, who is working tirelessly to change lives and bring hope to this neighborhood.
Later we met Margot, a world changer and champion of women. It’s hard to capture Margot’s spirit in words. She’s an absolute game changer and inspiration, who is working to empower Roma women in Govanhill through crisis intervention, advocacy, and mentoring at The Space. She works long hours and pours out all she has to empower female immigrants and their families to break the cycle of poverty. In addition to providing aid, education, and a safe place to connect, Margot desires is to see women who have been told they are nothing but cooks, cleaners, and babymakers come to see themselves as worthy and to begin to dream as they live from a place of value and love. Though many of the women who come are Muslim, they are encountering the love of Jesus at The Space, as they come to know they were created for more. As a team of women, we had the privilege to pray for, honor, and prophesy over Margot. This woman has dedicated her life to this work and is investing so much into women who have been silenced, oppressed, and often abused. It was an absolute honor to minister to Margot at The Space. Our time together was short, but it was also sacred. To stand beside such a remarkable woman of God and declare, as a team of women, that we are for her was powerful. To encourage and refresh someone who pours so much into others was so sweet.
That night QP hosted a worship night called Presence. Shelby, Grace, and Julie did prophetic painting during the service. It was Grace and Julie’s first time doing this, and they both did amazing! The fact that it was their first time, though, encouraged people to try creative worship themselves. The Holy Spirit showed up powerfully, and all three of them were able to prophesy over the church and the city as they described what they had painted. Everyone was excited about the prophetic art, and a few people even started sketching during the worship service!
The next day we had the honor of prophesying over all of QP’s staff at their weekly meeting. QP’s mission is calling a city to life, but it’s not just a mission statement. They have each made this a lifestyle. It was such a blessing to encourage their extraordinary team corporately and individually. Shelly taught on physical healing and boldness that morning, and lots of people got healed! Everyone was excited about using the four-line prayer in everyday life. We were able to continue praying for people at the church’s personal healing ministry, called Restore. After ministering to all who showed up, we prophesied over many of the volunteers who run Restore, encouraging those who bring healing and life to many.
Because QP believes in transforming the city outside the church walls, we spent a lot of time in the Glasgow community. Our friend Susan gave us a tour of the City Mission, where we spent an afternoon loving on and praying for their guests. Shelly later shared her powerful testimony at their afternoon church service. That night we attended two of QP’s life groups, which are hosted in individual’s homes each week. Sheila led one group in a teaching on inner vows and I led the other in an introduction to prophetic ministry. We played lots of activation games, and everyone had amazing prophetic words for each other. It was so fun to see them stretch themselves and grow more confident in their ability to hear God’s voice.
The next morning we had a special time of prayer and intercession. Lynne Paterson, Scotland’s director of Tear Fund, led us in praying for the city and nation that we had come to love and that God is moving mightily in. Then we attended Taste And See, QP’s weekly ministry for over sixties. Over lunch we got to know some of the incredible men and women who made Glasgow what it is today. Some of them were over 100, but all of them were so full of life! We honored each of them individually on our knees and with a flower for all they have done over the years. Many were undone by the love and recognition. That night Grace and Carlee made tons of kids’ dreams come true at QP’s Frozen party. It was a children’s ministry event, but it was the talk of the week with the adults, some of who were more excited than the children. Kids came dressed like Frozen characters and sang along with Elsa and Anna. The evening’s theme may have been frozen, but all the hearts in the room were melted by joy and childlike wonder.
Friday was a bittersweet day, as we said goodbye to Pam and Niall (QP’s leaders who hosted and loved us so very well), our host families, new friends, and the city of Glasgow. It was such an honor to come alongside Queen’s Park Baptist Church and support them in their mission of calling Glasgow to life. God is waking up this city, and it was a privilege to join in with the whisper of Heaven declaring: “wakey, wakey, Glasgow!”
Blog written by Jessie Risman