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Volume 25, No. 14

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The Salvation Army USA Southern Territory

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Sept. 16, 2008



In Jesus’
presence

General Clifton, Southern
Salvationists gather at Southern Bible Conference

By Major Frank Duracher
Southern Spirit Staff



Determined to “Lift Jesus Higher” by learning to “Practice His Presence” on a daily basis, Salvationists of the USA Southern Territory sat under the ministries of General Shaw Clifton
and Commissioner Helen Clifton at

the 57th Southern Bible Conference – held in the pristine mountain setting of Lake Junaluska, N.C. The General’s appearance this year marks the eighth time a Salvation Army international leader has taught at a SBC. In addition, General Clifton is only the third to do so while in office.

Commissioners Max and Lennie Feener provided leadership for the annual event that spanned eight
days. The territorial leaders were supported by Lt. Colonels Terry and Linda Griffin, Lt. Colonels Charles and Shirley White, and Captain Ray Cooper. Commissioners Israel L. and Eva D. Gaither, Lt.
Colonels Clive and Marianne Adams, and Majors Mark and Sharon Tillsley rounded out the slate of
special guests. Major Richard Gaudion (the General’s private secretary), Captains Alexander and Svetlana Sharova, and Captains Valery and Victoria Lalac
were also featured throughout the week providing special music and testimonies of the evidence of God’s presence in their lives.

“We lift Jesus higher as we practice his presence,” Commissioner Max Feener told the SBC
assembly at the outset. The theme was emphasized throughout the week through music, testimony, Scripture and rich Bible study
sessions (see related report).

Evening service highlights during the week included ARC Night and Youth Night on Thursday and Friday, respectively.

A parade of “Alumni-ation” vignettes and the testimonies of three ARC graduates attested to God’s redeeming and transforming power in the lives of men willing to surrender all to Christ.


Youth Night featured a new musical, “King of the Jungle – The God of Creation is Lord of My Heart.”

In what could become an SBC Saturday evening tradition, the Southern Territorial Band (Dr. Richard E. Holz) conducted the first Concert By The Lake. Folding chairs set up on the lawn next to Stuart Auditorium were quickly filled, but some wellprepared SBC delegates brought lawn chairs and blankets to spread on the ground. Christian recording star Steve Green provided a concert to a packed house later that night.

The Sunday morning holiness meeting served as the territorial welcome for the Prayer Warriors session of cadets (see report). The General’s final sermon of the week was also the climax of this year’s SBC.

In true Salvation Army tradition, the final congregational song was accompanied by the waving
of an Army flag as a signal of victory, both now and in the world to come.

What is not commonplace is the sight of the General of The Salvation Army as the one on the
platform triumphantly waving the Army banner – causing one SBC delegate to be overheard as the
sight unfolded before the vast crowd: “Now that’s something you don’t see every day!”

     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Southern Bible Conference ‘08
Continued from above.

  What blessing will you take away from this year’s Southern Bible Conference that will help you “Practice His Presence” in your Christian walk?
 

I need spiritual refreshing and
inspiration, so that when I go back to my corps I can be “on fire” and an inspiration to people inmycommunity.
– Major David Varney
Sherman, Texas (retired),

 

I will leave here with a deeper knowledge of what my Lord wants me to do at our center. I’ve been blessed by our morning devotions with all of the ARC men, and I have realized that God is calling me to meet the need where they’re at.
– Major Linda Reckline, Nashville, Tenn., ARC

The coming storm

Having grown up in Florida, the threat of
hurricanes and tropical storms is hardly new to me.But it has taken a fresh turn as we live in a new land.

In Florida we could track a storm on TV as it moved toward us. If we wanted, we could get in our car and evacuate all the way to Alaska. But on an island the options are decidedly more limited. While watching
Tropical Storm Gustav approach Jamaica, I could see that the radar image of the storm was larger than the whole island. When finally the storm was fully ashore, the radar image bore no evidence that Jamaica even existed. It was swallowed by the storm. Meanwhile, on the ground the winds growled around our house and the rains came so that it might have appeared
we had stepped into a waterfall. All we could do was batten down the hatches and ride through it. When you live on an island, you have no choice but to face a hurricane when it comes.

The ordeals of life have often been compared to storms. Our Salvation Army Song Book has numerous references to these storms. Christian poetry has often used the image. It is a helpful metaphor. Strangely, a
meteorological event parallels so closely what we feel within ourselves. When the hurricane comes down upon the little island of Jamaica like a lion springing on its helpless prey, a person can feel too helpless to even move out of the way or find a safer place.

You can be certain that you will face yet another hurricane event in your life. It is not a question of if but when. Maybe you will be caught without warning like the poor victims of earthquakes or summer tornadoes. Maybe you will see it coming, creeping
steadily forward, knowing you cannot run. There is no evacuation route. There is no shelter nearby. You are out in the open and the rage of the storm is upon you.

An exquisitely beautiful story in Matthew 14 tells of such a storm. While Jesus stayed on land to pray, the disciples went forth, confident they could cross the little Sea of Galilee without him. But even with
the hardy fishermen who comprised one third of the disciple band, they found themselves in an intense wrestling match with the winds. Where they were
when it broke meant the storm was unavoidable.

Just when it seemed that their strength would give out, when the stars failed to penetrate the layer of clouds overhead, when their pathetic sails had long been furled to the mast because they were so utterly useless, Jesus came. Surrendering to the superstitions that had marked their lives before Jesus, the disciples assumed they were seeing a ghost perhaps come
to escort them through the valley of the shadow of death. It was then that Jesus spoke words that both comforted and confounded them - Take courage! It is
I. Don’t be afraid (Matthew 14:27).

It was not just what Jesus said but the setting in which he said it. On the water. In the storm. This was not how or where God is supposed to speak. He’s supposed to use sermons or some snippet of a song, or even the Bible. But these disciples should have
known by now that the Lord is infinitely creative in the ways he will deal with us. And if a storm and an angry sea are what it takes, then God will bring all the elements to bear so we can hear those same words: Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid. Storms will bear down and frighten us with the driving rain, the howling wind and the creaking of our pitiful little shelters. But right in the midst of it, there walks Jesus, and he says to you as surely as ever he said it to the disciples: Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.

 

Practice his
presence

Some of my happiest summer days as a boy were spent on a tiny slip of sandy beach in Bay St. Louis, Miss. It wasn’t much of a beach, since it was actually on the bay and what waves may have been were buffeted from the Gulf by several islands.

But to a little kid, going there was a big deal. We
could play in the sand and frolic out in the water (but
not too far!).

A favorite game was to a “follow the leader”
exercise with my older cousin, whom I’ve always
looked up to. She would lead the way in the wet
sand, and my goal was to follow in her footsteps –
literally. I was to be successful only if I could precisely negotiate her footprints, leaving only one visible trailwhen we looked back to survey our trek.

I remember often thinking as we played “footsteps”
in the hot sunshine, “This is as close to being like
Paulette as I can hope to be. I’m actually occupying the same space as she; just a moment behind!”

On a larger scale, I think that’s what Jesus meant
when he plainly stated: “If anyone will come after me,
let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me”
(Matthew 16:24).

This is what it means to “practice his presence.” It’s
almost as if Jesus is urging, “Walk with me, beside me
– better yet, walk in my footsteps.”

There is no better way to become like our Lord.
We must use him as our life-pattern. If only we could
occupy the same space as he, instantaneously.

Once we learn to do that, we’ll be safe from any
storm that comes along.

 
 

Brigadier Carl Hansen

Brigadier Carl Hansen was promoted to Glory Aug. 20, 2008, from Atlanta
after a long illness. The funeral service was held at the Gainesville, Ga., Corps, where he had been
a soldier since he and wife,
Ruth, retired. Committal was at Westview Cemetery in Atlanta. Participating in
the services were Captain Chad Williams, Colonel Rodolph Lanier and Hansen’s son, David, and grandson, Philip.

Leroy Carl Hansen was born June 20, 1922, in
Fremont, Neb., to Roy and Vera Hansen. The family moved to Miami, and as a child Carl began to attend the Miami (Edison) Corps. Prior to entering training in Atlanta in 1942, Carl served for nine months as corps assistant in Valdosta and Savannah, Ga. He was
commissioned in May 1943 and served as assistant corps officer in Winchester, Va., and Baltimore (East). Divisional staff appointments followed in the finance departments in Maryland and Oklahoma. He became
re-acquainted with Lieutenant Ruth Langer and they were married Feb. 11, 1949. They served together in corps appointments prior to service in 1953 at territorial headquarters in the Editorial Department as art editor and assistant editor of the Southern edition
of The War Cry and as editor of Southern Territory publications. In 1970, with the rank of brigadier, Carl became the supplies and purchasing secretary.


In 1978 the Hansens were transferred to the Adult Rehabilitation Command, serving in Miami and Louisville, Ky. In 1981 Carl returned to editorial work, serving at National Headquarters as assistant editor of
The War Cry and as editor of The Musician.

Carl and Ruth retired from active service June 30,
1987, and lived in Oakwood, Ga. Their ministry
continued in their retirement years at the Gainesville
Corps – Ruth in the Home League, League of Mercy
and youth programs and Carl in the songsters, band
instruction and every area of corps activities. His
beloved wife, Ruth was promoted to Glory Feb. 10,
1995.

Carl is survived by sons David and Stephan
(Aimee); two grandchildren; sister Betty Dixson; nieceMary Beth; sisters-in-law – Major Lucy Langer and Virginia (Edward) Snell.

 

 

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