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PERSONAL REFLECTIONS

My Prayer for You

We’ve shared four wonderful years together. These are the words I need to leave with you BY COMMISSIONER WILLIAM W. FRANCIS For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in Heaven and on earth derives its name (Ephesians 3:14).

A

s many of you are aware, my wife and I will be “moving on” next month. Another page will turn in our lives. We, along with the Canada and Bermuda Territory, will commence a “new chapter” on July 1, 2011. Four years ago you received us as your territorial leaders warmly and with open hearts. As we have trekked the awe-inspiring lands from British Columbia to Newfoundland and Labrador to Bermuda, we were amazed at how God has blessed this territory and continues to open new doors of opportunity for ministry. We have come to know, love and value you. My wife and I want to thank you for accepting us with such graciousness. We will never forget the Canada and Bermuda Territory because you have become part of us—part of the very fabric of our being. We have been changed because of you. We have grown because of you. We have become more Christlike because we have seen him reflected in you. We can never thank you enough for all you have done for us. As we depart for new challenges and opportunities, we leave with an earnest prayer for you. We join the Apostle Paul as he wrote to his dear friends in Ephesus. We, too, “kneel before the Father” in humility, submission and gratitude to the One who called us, anointed us and saved us. This is our prayer for you: We pray that you will be strengthened by God’s Holy Spirit to do the work he has set out for you; that you will have courage and vision to move into new spheres of ministry, into unconquered terrain that will benefit those in your community and the wider world. You are presently doing great things for the Lord! Yet we believe, by God’s empowering Spirit, that you can do even more through innovative ministries. May the Holy Spirit be your guide, giving you wisdom and discernment as he provides direction and power in the

Commissioner Francis: “I pray that you will be strengthened by God’s Holy Spirit to do the work he has set out for you”

days ahead. We pray that you will continue to personify Christ in all you do and say. May others see Christ shining in and through you. May your attitude be that of Jesus Christ. May you continue to be humble in spirit as you minister to others with servant hearts. May God’s love permeate all your thoughts and actions. When you face discouragement or disappointment, may you be reminded of God’s infinite love, providing divine guidance and motivation as you continue the fight against evil in this corrupt and fallen world. We pray, above all things, that you will remain holy children of God. May you continue to live a life of holiness. May Satan be defeated in and through you. May you remain free from the stains of sin, impurity and unholy deeds and thoughts. Pray to the Father daily that you will be faithful to him. Ask the Spirit daily to give you victory over temptation. Talk with Jesus daily, telling him how much you love him. Keep your eyes fixed on him. Yes, our dear friends, our brothers and sisters

in Christ, live a life of holiness unto the Lord—blameless and unblemished. For if you do this, you will continue to shine for our Lord and Saviour. I close with a benediction for you and the Canada and Bermuda Territory. Inspired by the words of the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 3:20-21, we pray: Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the Canada and Bermuda Territory and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. God bless you. God bless the Canada and Bermuda Territory. God bless The Salvation Army and its mission around the world. Since 2007, Commissioner William W. Francis has served as the territorial commander of the Canada and Bermuda Territory. This column concludes his long-standing Personal Reflections series. The June issue of Salvationist will feature a farewell interview with Commissioners William and Marilyn D. Francis. Salvationist I May 2011 I 21

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