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APO S TO L IC PA R E NTING • D E A L ING W ITH TH E L O S S OF A C H IL D


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E D I T OR IAL

WHY GO TO CHURCH? BY SIMEON YOUNG SR.

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lmost everybody I know is in a hurry. We are in such a rush that there are not enough hours in the day to get it all done. As taxes escalate … as the economy trickles down … as good jobs get harder and harder to get … as quality medical care become less available … as prescription drugs consume more and more of our earnings … as crime soars out of sight … as national boundaries are redrawn in the blood of fanatical terrorists … as our national value system is plundered … as what is politically correct collides with what is righteous … as Apostolic marks of distinction become less and less acceptable … as iniquity abounds completely out of bounds … as the love of many waxes colder and colder, we need to go to the house of God more and more. (See Hebrews 10:25.) Paul said for us to “[Redeem] the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16). This means that we are to ransom or buy time. As the culture becomes more evil, we must be willing to pay any price

necessary to have time to come to the house of God. We must make every moment in the house of God count. We may sometimes be tempted to “coast,” but what a mistake! Coasting services don’t reach the lost. Coasting services don’t build and strengthen. Coasting services don’t convict, confront, and challenge. Coasting services are wasted services. After we wade through the clutter of our lives … after we crash through the obstacles that block our way to the house of God … after we finally come panting and exhausted into the house of God … we need to feel like David when he said, “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD” (Psalm 122:1). We need to feel like the psalmist who said, “A day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness” (Psalm 84:10). Church attendance involves much more than merely mouthing the words of the songs, bowing our head during prayer, bringing the

tithe, enjoying the choir, and listening to sermons. Three important things should happen in every service: We need to draw near with a true heart; we need to hold fast the profession of our faith; we need to exhort one another. If we don’t do these three things we are marking time and thus wasting time.

Go to Church to Draw Close to God “Let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith” (Hebrews 10:22). Jesus said, “This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me” (Matthew 15:8). If we are not drawing closer to God in a service, we are getting farther from Him. Someone famously said, “If you are not as close to God as you used to be who moved?” What a tragedy to drift away from God during a church service. Drawing closer to God requires us to focus on His presence.

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Three important things need to happen in every service: We need to draw near with a true heart; we need to hold fast the profession of our faith; we need to exhort one another. If we don’t do these three things we are marking time and wasting our time. APRIL 2012

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T HI S MON T H’ S T HE ME CONTENTS

Ju ne 2 0 1 1

CHILDREN APRIL 2012

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2012 iStockphoto: © Nina Shannon

Apostolic Parenting RACHEL COLTHARP

12 Junior and Beginner Bible Quizzing: A Family Thing VANCE BOWMAN

18 “Tell Me a God Story” BRANDON BUFORD

22 Thank God for Children STEVE L. CANNON

26 Dealing with the Loss of a Child THOMAS COPPLE

30 To Teach Is to Bless SYDELL GANT

34 What about Our Special Needs Children? KERRI WILSON

36 Remembering Nathaniel NANCY NORRIS

Pentecostal Life 38 No Time for Burros LEE ANN ALEXANDER

42 Passionate but Professional MITCHELL BLAND

46 Answering a Newspaper Ad KRISTI GARCIA

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COLUMNS 3

Editorial SIMEON YOUNG SR.

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The General Superintendent Speaks DAVID K. BERNARD

15 My Hope Radio TIFFINI COUNTAWAY

17 New Start CHUCK WELCH

21 Worldline SUBMITTED BY BRYAN ABERNATHY

29 Faith & Culture EUGENE WILSON

41 Teacher of the Month 45 Multicultural MInistries BRUCE A. HOWELL

50 Health DR. CLAY JACKSON

FUNDAMENTAL DOCTRINE The basic and fundamental doctrine of this organization shall be the Bible standard of full salvation, which is repentance, baptism in water by immersion in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and the baptism of the Holy Ghost with the initial sign of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit gives utterance. We shall endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit until we all come into the unity of the faith, at the same time admonishing all brethren that they shall not contend for their different views to the disunity of the body.

THE ONE TRUE GOD We believe in the one ever-living, eternal God: infinite in power, holy in nature, attributes and purpose; and possessing absolute, indivisible deity. This one true God has revealed Himself as Father; through His Son, in redemption; and as the Holy Spirit, by emanation (I Corinthians 8:6; Ephesians 4:6; II Corinthians 5:19; Joel 2:28).

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APOSTOLIC PARENTING • DEALING WITH TH LOSS OF A CHILD

PENTECOSTAL HERALD / APRIL 2012 EDITOR Simeon Young Sr. PRODUCTION MANAGER Larry Craig PRODUCTION COORDINATOR Jina Crain DESIGN SUPERVISOR Tim Cummings EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Rebecca Miller PROOFREADER Patrica Bollmann The Pentecostal Herald (USPS-427-240) is published monthly by the United Pentecostal Church International, 8855 Dunn Road., Hazelwood, Missouri 63042-2299. It is the official publication of the United Pentecostal Church International. Periodicals postage paid at Hazelwood, Missouri, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Pentecostal Herald, 8855 Dunn Road, Hazelwood, Missouri 63042-2299. ©2012 by United Pentecostal Church International. Web address: www.pentecostalherald.com Single Subscriptions (USA) $25.00 Single Subscriptions (Canada) $35.00 Single Subscriptions (Foreign) $44.00 Bundle Subscriptions (USA) $ 1.75 for 6 or more copies; $2.25 each for 2-5 copies Bundle Subscriptions (Canada) $ 2.50 for 6 or more copies; $3.00 each for 2-5 copies Bundle Subscriptions (Foreign) $ 3.50 for 6 or more copies; $4.00 each for 2-5 copies An international publication published monthly. VOL. 88, NO. 4. Periodicals postage paid at Hazelwood, Missouri, and additional offices. Official publication of the UNITED PENTECOSTAL CHURCH INTERNATIONAL Our Vision: The Pentecostal Herald in every Pentecostal home Our Mission: To publish an Apostolic magazine that strengthens the hands of Apostolic pastors, encourages and challenges Apostolic believers, and reaches beyond the doors of Apostolic churches Disclaimer: The Pentecostal Herald (or UPCI) assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of claims of advertisers or for the quality of their service or products. HOW TO REACH US: Pentecostal Herald, 8855 Dunn Road, Hazelwood, Missouri 63042-2299, Telephone: 1.314.837.7300 Extension 411 Email: bmiller@upci.org, main@upci.org. Web address: www.pentecostalherald.com

We Want to Hear from You

USPS 427-240 United Pentecostal Church International

Letters to the Editor

GENERAL OFFICIALS GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT David K. Bernard* ASSISTANT GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT Stan O. Gleason* ASSISTANT GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT Paul D. Mooney* GENERAL SECRETARY-TREASURER Jerry Jones* DIRECTOR OF GLOBAL MISSIONS Bruce A. Howell* DIRECTOR OF NORTH AMERICAN MISSIONS Carlton L. Coon Sr.* EDITOR IN CHIEF Robin Johnston GENERAL SUNDAY SCHOOL DIRECTOR Steve L. Cannon GENERAL YOUTH DIRECTOR Shay Mann SUPERINTENDENT OF EDUCATION Dan Batchelor

Send letters for possible publication to: syoung@upci.org, bmiller@upci.org, or to the Pentecostal Herald, 8855 Dunn Road, Hazelwood, MO 63042-2299.

Customer Care Send subscription and renewal requests and inquiries to pentecostalherald.com or email Becky Miller at bmiller@upci.org.

Advertising Go to pentecostalherald.com and follow the prompts.

GENERAL EXECUTIVE PRESBYTERS Clifford Barnett* David T. Elms* Rick Keyes* David MacDonald* Anthony Mangun* Bryan Parkey* Stephen Willeford* C. Patton Williams* Raymond Woodward* GENERAL PRESBYTERS Dennis L. Anderson, Elvin Anthony,, G. Terry Brewer, Ronald L. Brown, Steven Carnahan, Steve D. Carrington, Brent Coltharp, Mike Conn, Carlton L. Coon Sr., Floyd E. Covill, Kevin Cox, Jack Cunningham, Steven D. D’Amico, J. Stanley Davidson, Devon Dawson, Dean M. Dickinson, Andrew Dillon, Alonzo Dummitt, David Elms, Daniel Fleming, Percel T. Graves, Ken Gurley, Billy Hale, John W. Hanson, Arthur E. Hodges III, Gary Hogan, Jerry T. Holt, David Hudson, J. Mark Jordan, Daniel McCallister, Richard McGriffin, Scott D. Marshall, Matthew Martin, Ronnie Mullings, Arthur Naylor, Gordon Parrish, John E. Putnam, David A. Robinson, D.R. Russo, William J. Singleton, Jesse Starr, Jay Stirneman, Rick Stoops, Robert Stroup, Melvin Thacker, David Tipton Jr., Jerry Tipton, David Trammell, H.E. Wheatly, Steve Willeford, C. Patton Williams, Richard A. Wittmeier, Raymond Woodson Sr., Chester Wright HONORARY PRESBYTERS J.R. Blackshear, Ernest Breithaupt, W.L. Clayton, B.S. Cole, Daniel Garlitz, Arless Glass, John Grant, Tommy Hudson, James Kelley, Carrol D. Kennedy, Carl Lagow, Roger Lewis, R.J. McIntyre, John D. Mean, James Merrick, Paul Price, Paul Reynolds, J.M. Russell, Harry Scism, Scotty Teets, T.F. Tenney, B.J. Thomas, Wayne Trout, G.L. Vittitow, Ted Wagner, David O. Walters, R.D. Whalen, Jesse Williams, Jack Yonts * Member of the Executive Board EDITOR IN CHIEF Robin Johnston

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ASSISTANT EDITOR Lee Ann Alexander


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T HE GE NERAL SUPERINTENDENT SPEAKS

ADOPTED INTO THE FAMILY DAVID K. BERNARD

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doption is at the very heart of the gospel message. Our heavenly Father adopts us into His family so that we become heirs of everything He has promised. (See Romans 8:15-17; Galatians 4:4-7.) As the only begotten Son of God, born by a miracle of the Spirit in the womb of a virgin, and as the only sinless human who ever lived, Jesus Christ was entitled to all the plans that God originally intended for the human race. Even though we were not begotten as Jesus was, when we were adopted into God’s spiritual family by the new birth we became heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. Since God used the analogy of adoption to describe our status as believers, adoption must be important to Him. Earthly adoption offers hope to many children, to birth mothers who are facing difficult choices, and to adoptive parents who feel called to build or grow their family through adoption. As missionaries in Korea, my parents adopted my sister Julie when I was fifteen years old and my sister Karen was twelve. From the beginning we understood that Julie was just as much a member of our family as anyone else. She is entitled to the same participation and inheritance as the other children, although we

sometimes still treat her as the baby. I have been blessed to rejoice with families who have adopted through the New Beginnings adoption agency. Founded by Stephen and Evelyn Drury and now led by Tom and Debbie Velie, it is an endorsed ministry of the United Pentecostal Church International that faithfully serves Apostolic families. Because New Beginnings has been serving our young people, pastors, and churches for over twenty-five years, some adopted children now serve in pastoral ministry, music ministry, and other leadership roles. Precious young ladies, whose own souls were in the balance as they contemplated aborting their unborn child, found hope and a choice for life. Adoption works, and it is an important part of the church’s unwavering stand for the sanctity of human life. I grieve when I hear about Pentecostal girls who choose to abort because they don't know New Beginnings is available to help. My heart was saddened when I heard about a young lady who chose a secular adoption agency because no one ever told her about New Beginnings. I encourage all of us to stand up for life and for the hope offered through adoption by supporting New Beginnings. We can do so in several ways: • Make New Beginnings a visible part of the services our churches offer. Resources including posters,

video presentations, and other informational materials are available by emailing development@newbeginningsadoptions.org. • When a young lady comes for help, contact Debbie Velie (800-264-2229 or debbievelie@nbicfs.org) for experienced and professional help. • When couples in our churches are considering adoption, either within the US or from another country, contact Tom Velie (662-213-0361 or tomvelie@nbicfs.org) for help in navigating the sometimes confusing world of adoption. • Because we believe that unborn life is sacred, open our churches, our district meetings, and our funding to support adoption and life. Contact Tom Velie for more information. My wife, Connie, serves on the Advisory Board of New Beginnings, and we trust New Beginnings to offer godly, experienced and wise counsel. New Beginnings operates under the oversight of an Apostolic board of directors as well as national and state regulatory bodies. Adoption offers hope to many who are desperately searching for one glimmer of hope. New Beginnings is the church’s own pathway to that hope. PH David K. Bernard is the general superintendent of the United Pentecostal Church International.

I grieve when I hear about Pentecostal girls who choose to abort because they don’t know New Beginnings is available to help. APRIL 2012

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Go to Church to Get a Grip on Your Faith “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised)” (Hebrews 10:23). The word faith in this text refers to what we believe—our core beliefs. Jesus said, “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren” (Luke 22:31-32). Jesus asked, “When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8). This world system will try to siphon off our faith and leave us empty. The devil desires to lull us to sleep, get us drunk with the cares of this life, and then steal our faith. The Bible says, “Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). Three verses earlier Paul asked, “How shall they hear without a preacher?” (Romans 10:14). Your faith builds my faith, and my faith builds your faith. Separated coals soon die out, but coals heaped together burn hotter and longer. Isolation is the enemy of faith. Jude wrote of “mockers in the last time, who … walk after their own

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ungodly lusts. These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit” (Jude 18-19). We attend church to avoid isolation and to get a stronger grip on our faith.

EIGHT THINGS TO DO WHEN WE ENTER THE HOUSE OF GOD • Look for someone to encourage. • Draw someone new into your circle of friends. • Express appreciation for something specific. • Compliment someone on a job well done. • Actively listen when others talk. • Make eye contact with people. • Be the first to speak. • Be quick to say, “I love you.”

Go to Church to Encourage One Another “Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:24-25). Another translation says, “Let us consider how we may spur one

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another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” One of the most important things we can do is to be creative in finding ways to affirm and lift up and encourage one another. It is easy to dampen others’ enthusiasm, to chip away at their self-esteem, to shatter their dreams, and to dash their hopes. Isaiah said of God’s people: “They helped every one his neighbour; and every one said to his brother, Be of good courage. So the carpenter encouraged the goldsmith, and he that smootheth with the hammer him that smote the anvil, saying, It is ready for the sodering: and he fastened it with nails, that it should not be moved” (Isaiah 41:6-7). Why go to church? With all these benefits (and many more), why not go? Often? Regulary? PH Simeon Young Sr. is the editor of the Pentecostal Herald.


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APOSTOLIC

PARENTING RACHEL COLTHARP

We would do well to reflect on the relationship of parent and child through the lens of eternity. By laying down the culturally accepted view, we can escape the consequences we see in the world around us. Our culture has abandoned, for the most part, that ownership model of parenting. We have also abandoned the view of children as workers.

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hrough the centuries of human existence, the role between parent and child has fluctuated greatly. Cultural differences and traditional roles are widely varied

when it comes to the rules and expectations of the parental role. In some cultures children are mere property— bought, sold, and traded for goods or money. In ancient times children were offered as human sacrifices. In the early years of the industrial revolution children were indentured into

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service in factories, often unsafe and uncared for. The role of parent/child has been seen as one of ownership by many cultures. We would do well to reflect on the relationship of parent and child through the lens of eternity. By laying down the culturally accepted

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view, we can escape the consequences we see in the world around us. Our culture has abandoned, for the most part, that ownership model of parenting. We have also abandoned the view of children as workers. For many, they are seen as playmates, toys, living dolls to accessorize and show off. For some, children are a way to relive their own childhood. A way to experience a life they were not able to live. Terms like “spoiled rotten” are spoken of affectionately. Often pampered and overindulged, the children of our society often run the household. Unfortunately, the untrained child often becomes an untrainable adult. In the misguided attempt to let them “have it better than I did” too many children are given more things, more experiences, but less time and training. The results are catastrophic. As Christians, we are called to a higher standard of child rearing. We must not see them as our property. Our responsibility, yes, our property, no. We must see them as more than “little me.” They are unique individuals with unique gifts and talents the Father wants to develop and use to further His Kingdom. We must keep in mind that getting our children into Heaven outweighs getting them into Harvard. Having a child become an adult of integrity and character is more important than that they become merely financially successful. Do we want them to be their best? Absolutely. But we must not make their earthly successes our highest priority. In the training of these, our future pastors, teachers, bankers, builders, salesmen, missionaries, dentists, doctors, lawyers, let us first build Christians. Children need three things: careful nurturing, consecration, and consistency. Careful nurturing involves the intentional placement of rules and guidelines. Physical, emotional, and spiritual nurturing will not just happen—they must be planned. We teach children to brush their teeth; we also should teach them to forgive, to share, and to pray.

the One God. We teach them to seek His will for their lives. They will hold a job to make a living, but they will make a life from working for God’s purpose on earth. We teach them that everything belongs to God. Every dollar. Every moment. Everybody. The consecration of our money, our time, our talents, and our bodies is counter-cultural. These we must defend. In a world that tells us to live for self, we must heed the call to live for the glory of Christ. Consistency is reliability of successive results. Children need to know that wrong is wrong. Always. They need to know that doing wrong can cause pain. When God says no, He is saying, “Don’t hurt yourself.” Our lives, consistently lived for the Master’s purpose, show our children that regardless of what we are experiencing, God can be trusted. We must not be too proud to apologize to our children when we make mistakes. When we humbly admit our weakness to our Heavenly Father who has no weaknesses, we show them a consistently loving, forgiving God. Children come to us so small, so tiny, so helpless. And in that first instant that they reach out and wrap their tiny hand around our finger, they also wrap it around our hearts. These eternal souls come to us wrapped in coos, cries, and soft sweet skin. Though we call them ours, they are not really ours. Ours to hold for a while, but they are not really ours. One day they will return to God who gave them. We hold them a short time and share life with them a few years, but it is He who will call them “mine” for eternity. PH Rachel Coltharp is a wife, mother, blogger, writer, and public speaker. She lives in Aurora, Illinois. Her husband, Brent Coltharp, is the pastor of First Apostolic Church in Aurora and the superintendent of the Illinois District.

Consecration includes the solemn dedication to a sacred purpose and to service. We teach children about

Children come to us so small, so tiny, so helpless. And in that first instant that they reach out and wrap their tiny hand around our finger, they also wrap it around our hearts. They come to us, these eternal souls, wrapped in coos, cries, and soft sweet skin. 10

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2012 iStockphoto: © Nina Shannon

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JUNIOR and BEGINNER BIBLE QUIZZING:

A FAMILY

THING VANCE BOWMAN Bible quizzing has been a rewarding ministry in the UPCI for several decades. It has impacted the lives of thousands of young people, as well as their families, coaches, and local churches. Quizmaster: “Question 15 is a quotation question worth 30 points. Question: Mystery, Quo … Beeeep … . Computer Voice: “Red One, Interruption.” Quizzer Red One: “Mystery, quote the only verse of study that contains this word ... “And without controversy, great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.” Quizmaster: “That is correct, we have a numerical winner. This quiz is closed; you may relax.”

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elcome to the world of Junior and Beginner Bible quizzing. The example above is an extremely brief introduction to one of the great ministries of the United Pentecostal Church International. Bible quizzing has been a rewarding ministry in the UPCI for several decades. It has impacted the lives of thousands

of young people, as well as their families, coaches, and local churches. In the late fall of 2003, my busy wife and the mother of our three young children aged six, three, and one expressed to me her desire to begin a Junior Bible quiz team in our church. I gave the approval and really didn’t think much more about it. The weeks passed by and occasionally I would help our older son learn one of his Bible verses. The material they were learning covered Bible doctrine. The verses were from Genesis to Revelation. It was pleasing to hear my child quoting the Word of God, but I wasn’t really excited about the quizzing part. As the calendar rolled over to January my wife gave me the information on the first quiz tournament of the year, which was to take place late that same month. Then she broke the news to me that I would have to be there and keep score for her while she did the coaching. I hesitantly

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agreed. I did not know it at the time, but this decision would change my life forever. We traveled to a suburb of Oklahoma City for the first tournament. As we arrived, I had no idea what to expect from this “rookie tournament.” Our team consisted of five quizzers: Vicki, Mika, Rosie, Timothy, and our older son, Zachary. There were things I didn’t understand, quizmaster decisions that I didn’t agree with, and lessons I learned, but in the midst of it all I was deeply moved by the Spirit of God as these children quoted and answered questions from God’s Word. Tears filled my eyes as my son and other children quoted verses written thousands of years before their birth. They weren’t just memorizing and reciting random words, but absolute truths from God’s Word. The impact on me was immediate. Our team placed second in that tournament, but far more important than ribbons and trophies, lives and destinies were changed that day. Throughout the next few months the quizzers memorized more verses and traveled to more tournaments. We finished the first year by placing second at the Oklahoma District finals, qualifying for the North American finals that were to be held in Branson, Missouri, in late July. When we arrived at the national tournament, I was excited to see that on Tuesday evening there would be a church service for the “quizzing family.” During that service the Holy Ghost swept through the auditorium and approximately twenty children were filled with God’s Spirit, evidenced by speaking in other tongues. The atmosphere was amazing. Our team won one quiz and lost two and went home with a participatory trophy. Our lives had been altered by this program. In the spring of 2005, our District quiz coordinator suggested we participate in a regional tournament called a Bible Quiz Extravaganza (BQE) in Dallas, Texas. The tournament, consisting of about seventy teams, opened at noon on Friday and was finished by mid-afternoon on Saturday. On Friday night there was a church service and another powerful move of God. My heart was overwhelmed when many children, including our son, received the Holy Ghost for the first time. We cried and rejoiced at the same moment. Our team did not place, nor did we bring home a trophy from the BQE, but our son went home with the greatest treasure of all. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 says: “These words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou

walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” What better way to teach the Word of God to your children than involving them in Bible quizzing? I can tell you from personal experience that Deuteronomy 6:7 is fulfilled in our home—we quote the Word in our house, while driving in the car, when preparing to sleep, and when we wake. It has become a family thing with us and we are blessed by it. Bible quizzing is not easy. It requires dedication, consistency, and persistence. These traits also prepare the quizzer for a lifetime of serving God. Beginner quizzers learn approximately one 180 verses every year. They learn the verses so well they can give you the reference and quote them word for word. Junior quizzers learn approximately two hundred eighty verses yearly. Bible quizzing teaches the quizzer diligence, faithfulness, and discipline. The Word of God “will not return void.” The Junior and Beginner quizzing programs have blessed our family. In the years that followed 2004 and 2005, we continued to be involved in quizzing. We won trophies, medals, and ribbons, placing first at the SC BQE in Dallas in 2006 and first at the North American finals in 2009. However, that is not the real story here. The true treasures were acquired in the services in the presence of the Lord and in the consistent study of God’s Word. In 2008, at the North American finals tournament, our younger son, Zathan, received the Holy Ghost in the rally service. In 2010, also at the North American Finals, our daughter, Brooke, received the Holy Ghost. Everyone is a winner in Bible quizzing. Through this ministry we have been blessed to meet other families of “like precious faith,” many of whom have become dear friends. I’ve witnessed kids competing with one another in the afternoon and praying for one another at the altar in the evening service. Friendships have been forged. I often refer to the quizzing community as a family, a family that welcomes new members. From our national coordinator, Bobby Long, to pastors and coaches to four- and five-yearold quizzers, Bible quizzing really is a family thing. PH Vance Bowman is the Junior/Beginner Bible quiz coordinator for the Oklahoma District, UPCI. He pastors in Shawnee, Oklahoma, where he resides with his wife, Dana, and his three Holy Ghost-filled Bible quizzing children, Zachary, Zathan, and Brooke.

I’ve witnessed kids competing with one another in the afternoon and praying for one another at the altar in the evening service.

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MY HOPE RADIO

INTERVIEW WITH KIM BALLESTERO TIFFINI COUNTAWAY

What is your journey of faith? My parents started a church when I was eight years old, so I was involved in church my entire life. I loved the Lord and wanted to work for Him, so I went to Bible college to better equip myself. I didn’t realize until I was grown that I knew a lot about God, but I didn’t really know Him. My journey of faith has been a process. Every experience in my life has taught me how to trust God more, to depend on Him, and that He is my source. I’m still learning. What is your music background? I started playing the piano when I was four and began lessons when I was five. I became the church organist at an early age and then became the music director at about age twelve. Singing and playing came naturally to me. If you weren’t singing what would you be doing and why? I would be reading, writing, and teaching. I love to learn, and I love to teach others about what I’ve learned. To some degree I’ve begun doing this in my home church and at a few ladies conferences. Music is my passion, and the Lord willing, I will always be singing, but I’ve also found great fulfillment in studying God’s Word and sharing it with others. How would you encourage someone

desiring to pursue music ministry? Practice! Take time to hone your skills. Don’t wait for the door to open before you prepare yourself for music ministry. Take lessons, learn theory, learn how to work with people, and learn how to organize. Have a servant’s heart and be willing to do menial tasks. My husband often tells our church, “Before I preached in this pulpit, I cleaned it!” Before you have a visible ministry prove yourself by being willing to do the jobs that no one else wants to do. Many people desire to see their name in lights, but few are willing to pick up trash. Doing that kind of stuff builds character. It’s not enough to have talent, but character that matches talent is important. Hold up the hands of those who lead your church. Treat people with kindness. Finally, be a worshiper. Merely being a “song leader” is not good enough. The Father is seeking worshipers, so become one. Be a worshiper when no one is looking.

don’t want to. So, let’s see, besides the essentials of life and my wonderful husband and kids, I can’t live without books, my computer, my iPhone, my piano, and, of course, dark chocolate. What is the best advice you were ever given? To think like God. That I should not trust my own thoughts, but instead filter them through what God’s Word says. Our thoughts become our beliefs, and we will eventually talk about what we believe. Whatever we talk about we will act upon. We will reap the results of our actions. If we want godly results we need to think like God. It’s a daily battle to put that advice into practice because it takes discipline to train our brain to think like God. PH Connect with Kim at www.kimballestero.com. Tiffini Countaway is the producer of MyHopeRadio.com

What are five things you can’t live without? I surely can’t live without God, food, and water. However, there is a slew of things that I don’t want to live without. I recently discovered on our church’s Daniel’s fast that I can live without dark chocolate, but I really

The Father is seeking worshipers, so become one. Be a worshiper when no one is looking.

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N E W START

SOUL FISHING IN COLD PLACES CHUCK WELCH

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n early album promoting Christmas for Christ challenged us with these words: “The light that shines the farthest shines the brightest nearest home.” While North America becomes morally, philosophically, and religiously darker, the benefit of planting churches shines brighter. This is the case in the North Central Region, where great churches are being planted and where opportunities abound. David Kent, Minnesota’s director of North American Missions, said, “Planting churches in cold weather states like Minnesota frightens the misinformed, intimidates the cautious, and blinds those with microscopic vision. Yet those who dare to look further than the elements will find a harvest field of immense proportion!” David Kent and his wife, Susan, have planted two churches in Minnesota. The last church (in the Minneapolis area) has become the launching pad for several other preaching points and daughter churches. Minnesota is a place of opportunity for those who are developing a ministry. The twin cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis are among the most progressive cities in the United States. These cities are surrounded by suburbs that also provide opportunity for church plants. Minnesota’s population is quickly

approaching 5.5 million people! There are souls to be reached with the gospel in this progressive, liberal-minded northern state. The Kents’ experience indicates a ready field. In 2001, the Kents went to Minneapolis to plant a church under the oversight of Metro Missions. (For information on becoming a Metro Missionary, financially supporting a Metro Missionary, or for a list of approved Metro cities, go to www.NAMUPCI.org or contact Metro Coordinator Allan Abbey at amabbey@softcom.net). After ten years of working in Minneapolis, the Kents have raised up a solid Apostolic church that reaches a wide demographic of people—both culturally and generationally. Church planter Kent said, “In Minnesota, I have witnessed God do the miraculous in the lives of hundreds of people and have been amazed at how He has provided for us in acquiring church property.” As others have witnessed this success, they have chosen to fish in what some would have said are the icy waters of Minnesota. These church planters—fishers of men—have begun to catch fish! Opportunity abounds. Minnesota needs many more men and women who will plant churches. Here are some of the places to pray about: Plymouth has almost 70,000 souls. Money magazine says it is the number one place to live with populations

of 50,000 to 300,000, yet no one has yet tried these waters to see what “fish” can be caught. Are you the one who does? Brooklyn Park is Minnesota’s sixth-largest city with 75,000 people. As of this writing you can’t find an Apostolic fisherman with a hook in the water. Come on, fishers of men, Brooklyn Park is a place ready for your work. Minneapolis, the city known as the city of lakes, with over 385,000 people in the city limits still does not have a United Pentecostal Church within its borders. Maybe you’re up to the challenge! With district approval of the missionary, any of the cities in the Minneapolis Metropolitan Statistical Area would be eligible for another Metro Missionary. An existing church in this area or beyond could also consider starting a Metro-Daughter church. For more information about Minnesota, contact veteran church planter, Minnesota’s North American Missions director, David Kent at clcmetro@gmail.com or 612-2699902. A final enticement: David Kent offers to “lead you to some of the best fishing in North America.” PH Chuck Welch serves as the North Central regional director for North American Missions.

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GOD STORY” BRANDON BUFORD The value of children’s ministry is seen in every aspect of healthy churches. Growing and vibrant churches have a children’s ministry.

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here are those moments that parents experience with their child that causes them to stop and evaluate their parenting skills. This was one such moment. Our boy, Zane, was about five years old and wanted each night to be told a story. I would lie in bed and concoct a grand story with lots of excitement, adventure, and humor. The epiphany came one night as Zane looked at me and said, “Daddy, tell me a God story!” At that moment, it was if Heaven opened and God stepped right in front of me. Instantly, I was aware that I had been missing the point with my son. Stories are okay, but God stories are vital. They cannot be just legends or fictitious retellings, but need to be God-ordained teachings from His anointed Word! The sad part was that my wife and I have been children’s evangelists for years. I should have known better. It took the words from the mouth of a child to remind me of the importance of teaching our children about Jesus every chance we get! The value of children’s ministry is seen in every aspect of a healthy church. Show me a growing and vi-

brant church, and I will show you a children’s ministry that is actively teaching God stories. In a perfect world, all parents would do their part and every child would be taught the Word of God. Alas, even in some of our Pentecostal families, our children sometimes learn more about Harry Potter, the Wiggles, Sesame Street, and many other forms of entertainment and learning. Because of this, the role of a children’s ministry becomes extremely important. Two God stories illustrate this. When we examine the children of Achan and the children of Korah, there is a vast difference in the outcome of the children. According to Joshua 7, a father by the name of Achan sinned. After the fall of Jericho, he had taken goods from the fallen city contrary to the commandment of God and Joshua. Because of this gross error of judgment, the children of Israel experienced defeat at the hands of the tiny city of Ai. When Joshua inquired of God for the reason behind the defeat, He revealed that Achan had been responsible because of his disobedience. The punishment was that Achan, his wife, all of his children, his cattle, livestock, and property were stoned in the Valley of Achor.

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Another family also had a father who disobeyed the commandments of God. His name was Korah, a priest in the Temple. His downfall was jealousy. He longed to be the high priest and usurp Aaron’s authority. In his jealousy and pride, he conspired with two hundred and fifty princes to overthrow Moses and Aaron. Moses prayed for discernment and God showed that Korah and his cohorts were responsible for the rebellion. Numbers 16:31-33, records the end of Korah. It came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them: and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods. They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation. Numbers 26:11 completes the story. “Notwithstanding the children of Korah died not.” Achan and Korah both rebelled against God and sinned. However, Achan’s children died with him while Korah’s children died not. What is the difference? Look at the portion of the first recorded words from the descendants of Korah. They are found in the Book of Psalms. Psalm 42:1-2 (NKJV) To the Chief Musician. A Contemplation of the sons of Korah. As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?

Psalm 84:1-4 (NKJV) To the Chief Musician. On an instrument of Gath. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. How lovely is Your tabernacle, O LORD of hosts! My soul longs, yes, even faints For the courts of the LORD; My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. Even the sparrow has found a home, And the swallow a nest for herself, Where she may lay her young — Even Your altars, O LORD of hosts, My King and my God.

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Blessed are those who dwell in Your house; They will still be praising You. A careful study of Psalm 42 in The Pulpit Commentary reveals this insight: “This psalm, committed to the precentor, or chief musician, for its musical setting, is entitled ‘Maschil of the sons of Korah.’ It is an ‘instruction,’ or didactic psalm, composed by the Korahite Levites - a Levitical family of singers (I Chronicles 26:1-2; II Chronicles 20:19). To the same family are assigned Psalms 45-49, and Psalms 84; 85; 87; and 88.” As Israel would read or quote these psalms throughout the ages, they would always attribute them to the “sons” or descendants of Korah. They would recall those descendants who watched as their father and household were swallowed up by the earth, and they would gladly proclaim, “If those children can make it, so can I!” While we may never know the full reasoning behind the outcome of these two stories, could the difference lie in the desires of the children? Did Achan’s children follow their father in sin while Korah’s children hungered after God and His presence? Had someone instilled deep longing and hunger for God in the lives of the children of Korah? It is for this cause we need children’s ministries. Each week our church, The Lighthouse, buses in children whose fathers and mothers are engaged in great sin, but during the children’s weekly time of JAM (Jesus and Me Ministries) they are being taught “God stories.” These children are developing a hunger for God and are learning to pray and seek His face. The hours are long and stressful as your children’s ministry staff teaches these precious little ones. They break up fights, clean up spilled orange soda and crushed cookies, chase down runaways, and wipe runny noses. They arrive early and stay late. But they are teaching God stories. Truth is being implanted in the hearts of children. These children are growing, and one day they will echo the words of Korah’s children and say, “For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness” (Psalm 84:10). PH Brandon Buford pastors the Lighthouse UPC in O’Fallon, Missouri. He graduated from Gateway College of Evangelism and together he and his wife, Brianne, have ministered extensively throughout North America to children of all ages. They are blessed with two children, Zane and Zoe.

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WOR LDLINE

WORLD MISSIONS SUBMITTED BY BRYAN ABERNATHY

GHANA: At a regional camp meeting, eighty were baptized in Jesus’ name and thirty received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. In another region, evangelistic youth passed out tracts. During this past quarter, 105 were baptized in Jesus’ name, 214 received the baptism of the Holy Spirit, thirtyeight claimed healing, and two were delivered from demons throughout the country. Ten new preaching points have also been established. —Colleen Carter AMERICAN SAMOA: We are excited to share that we have a new church started in the area of Fagagogo.This is a new area of homes where there needs to be an Apostolic, one God church! The pastor reports that new people are coming to check out their services. May great revival sweep this area. —Bennie and Pat Blunt SOUTH AMERICA: From October 19th through November 30, 2011, we were visiting the countries of Colombia and Ecuador teaching seminars and preaching in various churches. We have had services every day since we arrived! A total of thirty services or teaching opportunities in seventeen days so far! We love to be busy for the Lord by teaching and preaching! The altars arefull during altar call and several havereceived the Holy Ghost in almostevery service! —John and Vonda Guidry

GEORGIA: In July 2011, Pastor Kote, Reverend Irakle Toria, and I were blessed to attend the area ministers’ conference in Kiev, Ukraine. It was such a blessing to see all of our brothers representing the former Soviet Union gathered together in worship of the one true living God. Pastor Raymond Woodward, of Canada, ministered to our hearts and God renewed our strength. We were deeply touched by the worship and ministry this year, and look forward to seeing everyone again next year. —Jared and Kim Staten MADAGASCAR: What a time we had at National Conference 2011. The Spirit of the Lord moved in a mighty way. We rejoice with 1,693 people being filled with the Holy Ghost. His truth marches on! We were blessed by the ministry of Pastor and Mrs. Terry Shock, Pastor and Mrs. Gary Keller, and Regional Director Jerry and Vickie Richardson. One of the highlights of National Conference is the Bible school graduation. This year there were thirty-four graduates. They are now pastoring churches and we believe God has great things in store for their ministry. Thank you for your faithful support! —Chris and Paula Richardson

istry each time they have come. It was a great honor to have Sis. Calhoun minister in our district ladies retreat. — John and Susan Beek PAPUA NEW GUINEA: Crowds of approximately six thousand gathered in the remote region of Mendi, Southern Highlands, for our national conference in July 2011. This region is one of our fastest growing areas with churches in villages and mountaintops. People travelled from as far away as the Gulf, New Ireland, New Britain, and Sepik provinces. Guest speaker Reverend Oyang Sesaray, from West Papua, preached fine messages. A wonderful welcome ceremony, including a drum and tambourine band, introduced a great three-day conference. The meetings were held outdoors in a sports field in the town center where non-church members gathered in vehicles and on rooftops to hear the preaching. By the final day, over one hundred had been baptized and seventy-two received His Spirit for the first time. —Richard and Margaret Carver

Bryan Abernathy is the director of promotion for Global Missions

SCOTLAND: It was a great privilege to have Reverend and Mrs. Allan Calhoun join us for service in Edinburgh. We have been blessed by their min-

Crowds of approximately six thousand gathered in the remote region of Mendi, Southern Highlands, for our national conference in July 2011.

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THANK GOD FOR

CHILDREN! STEVE L. CANNON

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hildren are like wet cement; they are easily formed and molded. The greatest challenge of this generation should be reaching our children. It would take the lack of training of only one generation to affect the entire church body! We cannot overlook our greatest resources— those little ones who attend our churches every week. An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory. Children seem to imitate both action and the lack of action. It is our duty to be examples for all our children, both to see and to do. God is calling children into His harvest field, and we can mold and fashion these children for the future. I am privileged to have three children, born and reared in Sunday school. My five grandchildren also have incorporated Sunday school into their lives. Children need to carry home two things every Sunday: things they can see and things they cannot see. We need to deposit invisible, spiritual truths in them. My refrigerator is covered with all kinds of materials that preach to me about what the church has done to them, through them, and for them. Tomorrow’s leaders watch us Sunday after Sunday to see how we respond to life and its problems. It is important to invest in a worthwhile cause that will achieve at least three things: (1) it will have eternal value; (2) it will benefit others; (3) it will give you a deep sense of satisfaction in that you will not have lived in vain but will have achieved something worthwhile with your life. It does not have to be profound or earth-shattering—just significant. And you can start today—one bulb, one page, one kind word of encouragement, one act of kindness, or one child or grandchild at a time—every day for the rest of your life.

The Sunday School Division has designated June 3, 2012 as Children’s Sunday. We hope that all will see how important children are to our culture. With every child born, God is sending the message that He still has faith in this hour. Albert Einstein once said, “Strange is our situation here upon earth. Each of us comes for a short visit, not knowing why, yet sometimes seeming to divine a purpose. From the standpoint of daily life, however, there is one thing we do know: that man is here for the sake of other men.” The great thinker knew that we were here for others, including children. The younger we are, the more we want to change the world. The older we are, the more we want to change the young. Fred Astaire once said, “Old age is like everything else. To make a success of it, you’ve got to start young.” Our job is to start early. The national goal of Sunday school is to leave no child behind. Every child has an incredible future, and God has a plan for every life. Save Our Children is the fund-raising effort to reach as many as we can. If you plant for a year, plant grain. If you plant for ten years, plant trees. If you plant for one hundred years, plant men. If you plant for eternity, plant the Word. Our job is to complete our duties by training up a child in the way that he should go. John Billings said, “Consider the postage stamp, my son. It secures success through its ability to stick to one thing till it gets there.” The theme of the US Postal Service is “We deliver!” As parents and grandparents, we must deliver to this generation. They need our experience and doctrine. The future is bright in the United Pentecostal Church International, if we can make children a priority in our ministry. The greatest abilities are availability, dependability, and responsibility. Let us use all of our abilities to reach this generation. Thomas Dewar

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said, “Minds are like parachutes; they only function when open.” Persistence overcomes resistance. Frederick W. Faber said, “Kindness has converted more sinners than zeal, eloquence, or learning.” Robert Louis Stevenson said, “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.” Invest your life in a worthwhile cause by having a noble purpose for which to live—one that is bigger than yourself—one that will help make your world a better place in which to live. Be a positive realist. You will always see what you are looking for: “Two men look out the same prison bars. One sees mud, the other stars.” Here are some neat sayings to remember and apply: • There is no pillow as soft as a clear conscience. • Smooth seas never make skillful sailors. • I believe in the sun even when it isn’t shining. I believe in love even when I am alone. I believe in God even when He is silent. • Cry when needed. Every unshed tear is a prism through which all of life’s hurts are distorted. • Laugh a lot. It’s still the best medicine. • Remember, the bumps are what we climb on. • Fear not. At least 95 percent of the things we fear never happen. Trust God for the other 5 percent.

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• Have faith and put God first with your time, talents, and tithe (money). Our future sits with us at our tables. We fall in the floor and wrestle with children, who in turn will wrestle with the future of the world. We should recognize that God has placed children in our lives so we can train them. Thank God for children, for of such is the kingdom of God. Jesus said, “Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not” (Mark 10:14). The Bible requires us to focus on children. We must be concerned about their future. The hands that rock the cradle rule the world. Our future is like wet cement. Let’s mold children and thank God for them. PH Steve L. Cannon is the newly elected director of the General Sunday School Division. Before coming to WEC, he pastored First United Pentecostal Church of Batesville, Mississippi, for twenty-one years. He has held various positions in the Mississippi District and was editor of the Mississippi TORCH for ten years. He and his wife, Rita, have three married daughters and five grandchildren.


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DEALING WITH THE LOSS OF A CHILD T H O M A S

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After Nathan’s death, healthy recovery would require my wife and me to confront and embrace a dreadful stranger called grief. Grief, of course, is the natural response to loss. And the value of the loss determines the depth of the grief. I recall talking with a highly respected Christian counselor soon after Nathan died. He gently and caringly told us that even though the Scriptures promise God could help us in our pain, statistically most marriages, even Christian marriages, do not survive the devastating loss of a child.

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t is still difficult for me to write or speak in detail about the tragic drowning of our one-yearold son Nathan. Even though it happened fifteen years ago, the memories surrounding his untimely death remain embedded in my mind. Not all of those memories conjure up sorrow or angst. Some of them bring joy and healing. Joy reflected in Nathan’s ready smile, curious eyes, and affectionate manner. My wife called him our “little lover.” Nathan liked to climb up onto my lap to greet me

with a slobbery kiss. Some of my fondest memories of him were when he would fall asleep on my chest, unknowingly reminding me to slow down my busy day and enjoy him as a gift from God. After Nathan’s death, healthy recovery would require my wife and me to confront and embrace a dreadful stranger called grief. Grief, of course, is the natural response to loss. And the value of the loss determines the depth of the grief. I recall talking with a highly respected Christian counselor soon after Nathan died. He gently

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and caringly told us that even though the Scriptures promise God could help us in our pain, statistically most marriages, even Christian marriages, do not survive the devastating loss of a child. We understood the odds were against us. So we trusted God. We expressed our pain to God and to one another. We learned that healing could not begin until we allowed ourselves to talk about our loss. We valued our friends and family more as they listened to our pain and we eventually began to retell incidents of their time spent with our son. We wanted so desperately for our lives to return to normal. Little did we know that loss forever alters us and prevents us from returning to what once was normal for us. However, we did learn that we could recover from loss to live in a “new normal.” I learned that Nathan was not lost, because I knew where he was—he was safe. God’s Word assured me that I would see him again. The fact of the resurrection of Christ brings with it a multitude of blessings. How does one deal with inestimable loss? How does one synthesize the emotions of passion to please God with the utter confusion of what God allows? Experiencing my son’s catastrophic death presented a new definition of my concept of suffering. And I gradually learned that nothing teaches with more authority than does suffering. As a teenager I had prayed for my life to be greatly used of God. I confess I was ignorant as to how God prepares a person to be used and to be trusted to reflect His glory back to others, even during times of dreadful reality. During my grief I felt compelled to read and devour any book or article I could find on the subject of suffering. I was drawn to a provocative statement written in the seventeenth century by a simple believer called “Brother Lawrence.” He said, “Our only happiness should come from doing God’s will, whether it brings us some pain or great pleasure.” This statement forced me to have many heart-to-heart conversations with God. Was I presently in God’s will as a father, as a husband, as a pastor? What were my true motives in serving Jesus Christ? Was there any provision in my theology that would allow heart-breaking grief and faithful service to coexist? One of the hardest realities for me to accept was the disappointment that a significant part of my future had been cut off—obliterated—in one day. It all happened fast and was so final. Our children represent a part of our lives that will live on in the next generation’s values, habits,

and virtues. As Christian parents we endeavor to train our children in godliness. We want them to carry into their generation the precious biblical truths and principles that we hold dear. This loss forced me to trust that God had a plan beyond my plan. Fortunately, my wife and I were blessed to have been given a biblical heritage of trusting in the sovereignty of God. We fell hard on the scriptural bedrock of, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NKJV). In an extraordinary gesture of courage and worship, my wife chose to sing at Nathan’s funeral service. She had sung it to our baby while he lay in a coma at the children’s hospital in Long Beach. The words to the chorus (attributed to Charles Spurgeon) continue to remind us of God’s unfailing love and tender care for grieving people in the shadow of death. God is too wise to be mistaken God is too good to be unkind So when you don’t understand When you don’t see His plan When you can’t trace His hand Trust His heart In our sorrow and tears, our eyes were blinded to His hand. I remember someone telling me, “When you hit rock bottom, rejoice because Jesus is the rock!” By God’s grace, as we fell hard on God’s Word we did trust His heart. I remember sitting in the congregation of the church I pastored the Sunday after the funeral. I remember lifting my hands, lost in worship and sensing God’s hand on my life. Yes, there were tears, sorrow, depression, confusion, and questions. But God continues to be our strength and reason to live. I’m thankful that there are exceptions to the statistics of human behavior. My wife and I are celebrating our twenty-sixth wedding anniversary this year! So when you can’t trace God’s hand, trust His heart. PH Thomas Copple serves as senior pastor at Spirit & Truth Worship Center in Orange, California. He is happily married to Sara who is a certified grief recovery specialist. They have four children, one residing in Heaven.

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F AI T H & CULTURE

THE PATH TO GREATNESS EUGENE WILSON

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n his 1963 doctoral thesis, Edward Lorenz theorized that a butterfly might flap its wings, moving molecules of air into motion that in turn move other molecules of air, ultimately resulting in a shift of weather patterns on the other side of the world. Called the “butterfly effect,” Lorenz’s theory was authenticated in the 1990s. Although Lorenz focused on changes in weather patterns, the butterfly effect is applicable in human relations. Consider Norman Borlaug, an American agronomist and humanitarian who has been credited with saving millions of lives. Borlaug was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize for his work, but the credit is not entirely his. In 1943, Henry Wallace, who had previously served as secretary of agriculture, used his powers as vice president to help create a research project in Mexico, a research project Norman Borlaug joined after completing his doctoral studies. While working on this research project, Borlaug developed high-yield, disease-resistant wheat varieties that would save millions from starvation. But there is more to the story. While teaching at Iowa State, George Washington Carver, an American scientist, botanist, educator, inventor, and developer of one

hundred products made from peanuts, used to take long walks while studying plants for research. On many of these long walks he would take Henry Wallace, the son of a dairy science professor, with him. George Washington Carver helped create an interest in agriculture in Henry Wallace. The story does not end there. If it had not been for a man named Moses, the world might not have heard of George Washington Carver. George was one week old when night raiders—men who sold stolen slaves—kidnapped him and his mother. Although what became of George’s mother, Mary Washington, remains a mystery, Moses Carver rescued George and raised him as his own son. Thus, the world may have never benefited from the research efforts of Norman Borlaug if it had not been for Moses Carver. We live in a culture that is driven by the here and now. Few consider the future, especially when it comes to their relationships with others. However, according to Scripture, how we treat others could have lasting implications. (See Matthew 25:35-46.) Instead of adhering to society’s “what’s in it for me” attitude, we should live counter to the culture by serving one another. The mother of John and James Zebedee approached Jesus one day

with a question. She wanted to know if one of her sons could sit on the right hand of Jesus and the other on the left. She was seeking to gain positions of power for her sons. When the other disciples found out about it they were greatly displeased. Jesus utilized the moment to teach an important lesson. He said that whoever would be great must be a servant. And whoever would be first must be a slave. (See Matthew 20:26-27.) Many people are enamored of celebrities. In recent years people have become celebrities due to media attention of their extravagant lifestyle or wealth. Such people often portray an attitude of entitlement. But I’ve heard it said that great people don’t know they are great. I tend to agree. Great people are great because they serve. God keeps the record. He knows when you have “done it unto the least … .” There is no need to broadcast your good deeds. Just serve. You may never know the lives you are impacting when you do so. PH Eugene Wilson serves on the pastoral staff at The Pentecostal Church in Memphis, Tennessee. Terry Black is the pastor.

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TO TEACH IS TO

BLESS SYDELL GANT

Teachers are responsible for imparting knowledge in a variety of ways so all children can learn. We must not only teach the basics, but we must model the morals and values of respect, kindness, responsibility, and integrity, as we may be the only source for these lessons.

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y five-year-old daughter, Carter, gasps, holding in a deep breath as she opens the box of the newest puzzle recently added to her collection. The final barrier to her pleasure, the clear, plastic bag that reveals the jumbled, colorful pieces, gets ripped open as she giggles with anticipation. Her first task is to get all the pieces turned over and sorted. Methodically, she assembles the outside edge before proceeding to the various colors of the masterpiece she is so intent on creating.

As a teacher and administrator in our local public school system, I am startled by how much this scene parallels the work I do in the classrooms and the school I lead. Children enter schools much like these jumbled and colorful puzzle pieces, thrown this way and that, some broken, or worse yet, missing. Teachers are responsible for imparting knowledge in a variety of ways so all children can learn. We must not only teach the basics, but we must model the morals and values of respect, kindness, responsibility, and integrity, as we may be the only source for these lessons. Public educators must meet the demands of state and federal

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governments, which expect all students to achieve at the same level despite a multitude of differences, all the while competing with ever-increasing technology, social media, and peer pressure. Despite this bleak state of public education, I am given hope by Proverbs 22:6 that says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” My first level of hope is for my students whose lives I am able to touch by planting the seed of truth. The seed may not spring to life for me to see, but I pray continuously that the roots will grow deep within their souls. Even before they find the truth of salvation, I can impact their future by leading them down the path of success. Like all teachers, I pray this success will include academic growth in high school and beyond, enabling my students to find stable employment in a career they find both interesting and desirable. My prayers also involve them having a sense of security and safety so that even in times of unhappiness or despair, they can feel the roots of God’s love growing within and find the strength to carry on. No matter the circumstances, I am filled with hope for my students’ futures because of the anointing I have as a teacher. I may be hindered from conversations and expressions about God and church, but the Holy Ghost knows no bounds. I pray daily for His love and truth to flow freely from me, transcending every exchange I have with my students and their families. The passage in Proverbs also speaks peace and hope to my soul for my own three children and all of those within my World of Pentecost (WOP) family. According to the words of Solomon, we can have faith that our children will follow in truth when they are old if we teach them the ways of the Lord. We must make God real to our children, and we cannot assume one lesson or one conversation has done the job. Instead, we must recognize it is a work always in progress, one we have to constantly rededicate to the Lord. As parents, we teach our children how to bring Christ into our homes, from daily prayers before meals and bedtime to family devotions and Bible readings. We teach our children to love the Word of God by reading it in front of them and to them. We teach His grace and mercy with our hugs and kisses after the necessary discipline for poor behavior or bad grades. We teach them about God’s blessings by providing for their needs, as well as their wants, even when it isn’t their birthday or Christmas. We teach our children how to be Christ-like by encouraging them to do their best in school as well as in other activities. As saints of God, we teach our children about His faithfulness by our responses to the cares of life He al-

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lows us to face. Through our worship, we offer them a repertoire for how they will handle their own trials. Our actions and our words speak volumes to our children about our faith and trust in God. By yielding ourselves to Him through prayer and fasting, we teach our children it is possible to withstand the enemy, while still providing light to this dark world. I began teaching Kids’ World (WOP’s Sunday school) as soon as I was able to do so because of the teachers I had been privileged to have as a young child. These children of God, including both of my parents, taught me to hide the Word of God deep within my heart for those days in college when I felt so alone. They taught me applications of the Word so that I could share my God with my unsaved friends and family. They modeled for me how to live a holy life, both on the mountaintop and in the valley. All of these teachers are still faithful saints today. I am overwhelmed by the examples they continue to be for me. I have been given a rich heritage, both from my biological family and from my church family, and I am deeply humbled by the responsibility given to me. I count it a tremendous honor to follow in their footsteps. My fervent prayer is that I will give all of my children the same heritage. We are admonished by Jesus to be like children in order to enter the kingdom of God. Although His words can be found in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, only Mark’s account shares what Christ did after speaking to the multitude about children: “He took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them” (Mark 10:16). By teaching our children the ways of the Lord, we bless them and give them the greatest gift possible, a future in Heaven. PH Sydell Gant is the director of Children’s Ministry at The World of Pentecost in Columbus, Indiana. She and her husband, Todd, have three daughters: Harley, Carter, and Cooper. She also serves as an elementary school administrator in the local public school system.

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R E ACHING FUTURE GENERATIONS

“These two little girls climbed up in this chair in our foyer and enjoyed the Pentecostal Herald together. The photo wasn't posed. The girl on the left is Aubry Thompson. The one on the right is Chloe Bruce. Chloe is the niece of missionary Steve Willoughby.” Doug Ellingsworth Finley Pentecostal Church Finley, Tennessee To subscribe go to pentecostalherald.com.


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WHAT ABOUT OUR SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN? KERRI WILSON

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“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15 “Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” Mark 10:14

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hildren are important to God and are considered as part of the world to whom we are to preach the gospel. Furthermore, in our endeavors to reach the lost, we must apply Peter’s insight into how God views humanity: “God is no respecter of persons” (Acts 10:34). It is imperative for the church to intentionally reach for children, including those with special needs. Reaching the lost involves teaching and growing disciples. (See Matthew 28:19.) This requires us to know the Word, to be able to lead others toward spiritual commitment, to know how to use spiritual tools effectively, and to know those we are discipling. Reaching the world and making disciples is formidable. Yet, a proactive approach of awareness will help facilitate a consistent, safe, and supportive environment that will influence people to have a relationship with God. This endeavor to heed our calling must also include the weakest among us. Special needs children have needs that range across multiple diagnoses that may be identified as severe, moderate, or mild. A child may have a special need due to medical issues, behavioral problems, mental health deficits, developmental delays, or learning disabilities. Any of these areas of need can dramatically impede even the most routine aspects of a child’s daily life, and the impact of these struggles is often magnified whenever the child is placed in unfamiliar environments. Thus, as the church fulfills the admonition to reach the world, we must ask ourselves, “How do we reach the special needs child?” I am a special education teacher. I teach and grow children academically. Teaching requires me to have content knowledge, the ability to lead students toward a commitment to learning, and know how to use educational tools effectively. Furthermore, growing students academically requires me to understand how my students learn. As a special education teacher, I have often found fulfilling this mandate to be a formidable task. To set a course toward a successful year, I try to begin proactively. My first priorities are to get to know my students, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and then establish a classroom environment that will have a positive impact on them. Because an autistic student may be challenged by inconsistency, I provide a consistent schedule to help that student

learn lesson content. Because an emotionally disturbed student may be vulnerable to imagined threats, I nurture a safe environment to help him or her engage in lesson discussion. Because a student with a severe reading deficit may not be able to read, I construct a supportive team environment to assist him or her with textbook reading. However, because I cannot predict every challenge, I must remain flexible and willing to adjust whatever needs to be adjusted. Above all, I attempt to assure my students of my genuine concern for their well-being. This approach has helped me overcome most barriers that have threatened to further impede the learning process of my students. Though our approach to spiritual growth is different than an approach to academic growth, we can benefit from methods used to address difficulties a special needs child may face when they attend church. Awareness of their barriers is key to the effectiveness of any assistance provided. While we cannot rearrange an auditorium, change our worship style, or change the class schedule to accommodate, there are ways we can help diminish some of the distresses that may be experienced. To overcome defensiveness, fear, and isolation, special needs children—just like anyone else—need to feel consistent love, have trusting relationships, and have supportive friendships. If the child is capable of attending Sunday school, youth classes, or any other type of instructional class, professionals who are a part of the body of Christ may be able to offer resources or assist with biblical instruction and set-up of classroom environments. In addition, church members should seek to reach out to the parents of special needs children, including them in relationships and helping them feel a part of the group. They should offer assistance as it is deemed appropriate to the parent and the child. Whatever the situation, the most important thing that can be imparted is the love of Christ. This is shown through our love toward one another. The psalmist said, “Children are a heritage from the LORD” (Psalm 127:3, NKJV). This means children are the property of God and have been given to us as gifts. Not only do we parents have the responsibility to be good stewards of the children God has given us, the church has this same responsibility. God is not selective about who should be introduced to Him. Therefore, we should not neglect children with special needs. PH Kerri Wilson teaches special education for DeSoto County Schools in Olive Branch, Mississippi. She has a BA in psychology and a MA in teaching. She and her husband, Eugene, serve on the pastoral staff at The Pentecostal Church in Memphis, Tennessee. Terry Black is the pastor.

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REMEMBERING

NATHANIEL NANCY NORRIS

Sometimes we don't always know all the components of a miracle, but Nathaniel survived. Like a small boy who would not let go of the kite string even though the winds thrashed and battered at his kite, or like a child clinging tightly to a balloon on a windy day, Nathaniel grasped life.

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he Wisconsin blizzard of 1983 closed the highway to all traffic but a screaming ambulance trying to get a mother in labor and a baby in distress to the Milwaukee hospital. She was just too long in labor, and the boy had just too many problems, and it was soon apparent that this unfortunate infant would soon be with Jesus. But the bright lights in his eyes were not the celestial city; they were the Intensive Care Unit. And the whiterobed voices were not angelic, but medical ones that poked and prodded and placed the octopus arms of

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wires about him, strapping on the oxygen mask that whooshed painfully into his lungs. The machines mocked his attempts to breathe and it was apparent he would die. Nathaniel had friends. Heaven’s switchboard crackled with a popcorn of petitions, as this small life hung in the balance. Sometimes we don't always know all the components of a miracle, but Nathaniel survived. Like a small boy who would not let go of the kite string even though the winds thrashed and battered at his kite, or like a child clinging tightly to a balloon on a windy day, Nathaniel grasped life.

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“There’s something wrong with the baby, isn't there?” were the first words that came out of the mother’s mouth as her mind began to unclutter the whirling anesthesia filled thoughts. Her husband leaned over her, nodding sympathetically. She breathed in resolutely and pronounced, “Then his name will be Nathaniel—it means ‘gift of God,’ for that’s what he is. And Abshire for a middle name.” Nathaniel’s grandfather, James F. Abshire was a preacher who had founded several churches. “Well, I don't know Nancy. Nathaniel Abshire Norris sounds awfully regal for such a little guy.” But Nathaniel Abshire Norris it was. “Your baby has Cri-du-Chat Syndrome,” said geneticist Jürgen Hermann, handing the confused parents a booklet that spelled out a bleak prognosis. After paging through the booklet, Dave responded, “I don't know how we’re going to handle this.” His wife placed a comforting hand over her husband’s, offering that it would be all right. Dr. Herman consoled, “Don’t put limits on how long he can live or what he can learn. You just never know.” While most babies counted their mile markers, Nathaniel struggled to go inches. Sometimes, when he gained a hard-won inch, he would lose a half a foot. Yet, even in pain Nathaniel had a winsome laugh. He smiled as the man cranked his wheelchair another notch lower for his growing legs. He cooed as his mother mixed the medicines that made his dresser look like a small pharmacy. Simple pleasures were a circus for Nathaniel. He loved to pull at, wrestle with, and chew on a Mylar balloon until color from it streaked across his face. “Now Nathaniel ...” came the rebuke, and he would chuckle at his own ingenuity. Nathaniel loved to wait for his school bus at the edge of the driveway on cool September mornings. He loved to go—it didn’t matter where: to church, to school, to the mall. It made no difference. Nathaniel was a people person, fond of both children and adults. “Notice me,” offered his eyes. “Now I’m happy,” pronounced his waving arms and bouncing legs. “Talk to me,” challenged his coos and teasing glances, now looking, now turning away. Sometimes shy, often serving up smiles, he made happy sounds for those who talked to him. He never met a stranger in school, at church, or in the hospital. For thirteen years, Nathaniel loved and was loved. But the last paragraphs in Nathaniel’s life story were played out in a children’s hospital in Philadelphia. His mother cradled him in a rocking chair while his dad stroked his hair. Nancy rocked him in the chair as she celebrated

Nathaniel’s life story, reminding him of people and events that were so important. “And soon, Nathaniel,” she said softly, “you are going to leave my arms and go into the arms of Jesus.” Several minutes later, so peacefully that it was unnoticed at first, he slipped from his mother’s arms and made his way heavenward. Nathaniel’s mother left her lifeless son at the hospital and now rode in the passenger side of the car as they drove toward home on the Interstate highway. “Dave,” she said thoughtfully, “some Scriptures say the dead know nothing, but some people believe they can see us." He took a breath and began explaining the Ecclesiastes text in terms of the Corinthian text. “He’s with the Lord, Nancy. The Scripture is clear. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.” Dave enjoyed the opportunity to talk theology and continued on some technical point, but she was thinking of other things. She pointed at the clouds. “Look, I bet he went up through that blue patch in the clouds— right there,” she said pointing. Dave continued, “We’ll know each other in Heaven, but probably we won’t know anything about what is going on here on earth.” “So he can’t see us then?” she interrupted. Dave split the difference between his heart and head. “Well, there is no scriptural support ... some things the Bible doesn’t really spell out.” He continued on, but she was absorbed in thought again. “Well, just in case,” she said, as she waved a tender good-bye heavenward, looking up at the blue hole in the clouds. A tear rolled down her cheek. “You made it up there before us, Nathaniel, but we are going to see you again.” She turned to her husband. “Nathaniel’s done suffering now, Dave. I think he just wanted to go home.” She waved again. “I think he just wanted to go home.” It’s been over a decade since Nathaniel has been gone. People say you should move on. Certainly this is true. But some things are so important that they should never be forgotten. To this day, when Nancy sees a blue hole in the cloud she smiles and waves … and remembers. PH Nancy Norris teaches at Urshan College. She attends The Sanctuary in Hazelwood, Missouri, where she is part of the Grief Share team. For more of Nathaniel's story read Sweet Pain available at Pentecostal Publising House. nathanielnorris.com, or carascall.com.

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NO TIME FOR

BURROS LEE ANN ALEXANDER

In a world where the definition of family is shifting, our relationship dynamics as a family of believers are more crucial than ever. There’s a spiritual camaraderie we share from our biblical identity and our shared history. I can see it in the way we greet one another at church and in town. I feel it in the way we defend our beliefs and our brothers and sisters when we perceive an attack from without. We are a family, and we are blessed with not just our own cultural identity but our own family traditions and values that make us unique.

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he only time I remember the school principal having to talk to my dad about my behavior at school was over my little brother. It was recess, and several of us elementary students were playing together. A fellow fifth grader gave my third-grade brother a shove I felt was over the line, and things went downhill from there.

It was not an all-out fight but it was an unpleasant situation, and I’d do things differently if I could. Still, the scenario gave me a vivid glimpse at just how tightly family ties are woven. I could fight with my little brother all the time, but the minute I perceived someone else doing the same, I was instantly to his defense. The anecdote is not to urge a defensive approach to those outside the church, but to suggest that a familial

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2012 IiStockphoto bond prevails in the church. We are, in fact, a family: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;” (Ephesians 2:19), a “whole body fitly joined together” (Ephesians 4:16). In a world where the definition of family is shifting, our relationship dynamics as a family of believers are more crucial than ever. There’s a spiritual camaraderie we share from our biblical identity and our shared history. I can see it in the way we greet one another at church and in town. I feel it in the way we defend our beliefs and our brothers and sisters when we perceive an attack from without. We are a family, and we are blessed with not just our own cultural identity but our own family traditions and values that make us unique. Recently I made the statement, “I’m proud to be Pentecostal.” I realize that word “proud” has connotations and even literal meanings that are problematic. Perhaps there is a better way to express my sentiment. I do know the converse is true: I am not at all ashamed to be Pentecostal. God has blessed the United Pentecostal Church International in so many ways. Every day it seems I learn of even more areas to which the Oneness Pentecostal message is reaching. The Lord has appointed

godly, dedicated men and women to lead His church, and I am more excited about our future each day as I meet more of these leaders. New ministries are developing, programs of all kinds are being created, and the church is growing! In growing together, family members learn together. Among the other stories from my childhood comes the time my dad brought home a burro from the sale barn. My brother and I were in our late teen years and watched with more than a little interest as Dad unloaded the little donkey. The burro was as wild as anything we’d seen, and we were fascinated. “Leave him alone and feed the rest of the horses,” my dad instructed before leaving for his night shift. The minute his blue Buick bounded out of sight, my brother spun to me and announced, “Let’s ride that donkey!” I’d like to think I protested, but moments later the both of us crept into the burro’s stall, armed with lariat ropes. We roped the poor creature and led him (or perhaps the other way around) into the corral. The fact that he clearly had no intention to be ridden didn’t faze us. An hour or so later, we managed to get the donkey back into his stall, still not much intent on being ridden and my brother covered in mud. I cannot remember how the rest of the story turned

Among the other stories from my childhood comes the time my dad brought home a burro from the sale barn. My brother and I were in our late teen years and watched with more than a little interest as Dad unloaded the little donkey. 40

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out, but I imagine my father was somewhat frustrated that with all the work that needed to be done and all the other horses that needed attention, we fixated on the burro. The irony was that we had a barn full of well-trained horses that really needed to be ridden and furthered in their training, but we just couldn’t get past that burro. Discounting the obvious issue of our disobedience, I think of that story in terms of how the family centers its focus. If the United Pentecostal Church were a family at dinner, what would our conversation be like? What are we talking about, what are we concerned with, and where is our focus? As a member of the family, have I fixated on any burros when our responsibilities should call my attention elsewhere? There are still cities without churches and nations without missionaries, which tells me the family has a lot of work to do and a lot of opportunities for those who are willing to work. Instead of spending my energy on my own trivial interests outside of the Father’s instruction, I’m going to go to work for the family. It begins with a right focus—I can’t be distracted by the periphery. I’m saddened when people overlook all of the wonderful things going on in our family and focus on the imperfections. Families are made up of individuals, and individuals are not perfect. We may have our imperfections because we are an organization of people, and people are imperfect. But I choose not to worry with the burros. Perhaps there are challenges and areas that need to be addressed, but much bigger than any imperfections are the incredible things God is doing among the church and the boundless opportunities for more advancement of His kingdom. We are a family, and I pledge to do my part as a family member and follow the Father’s instructions. Let’s focus on all the good things God is doing and how we can do the work of the Father together. PH Lee Ann Alexander serves as the assistant editor for the United Pentecostal Church International. She attends The Sanctuary in Hazelwood, Missouri. The pastors are Tim Dugas and Scott Graham.

TEACHER OF THE MONTH

BILLIE PRICE Billie Price is a teacher in the Revival Tabernacle, Center, Texas, pastored by Dathan Triplett. She teaches the nine through eleven year olds. She has been teaching for thirty years and has an associate’s degree in education. Before she became a teacher, she was seeking God for His will to be done in her life. God gave her a dream of a room filled with little chairs where children were sitting. She knew God had called her to teach children. Not too long after that her pastor asked her to teach and she has been teaching ever since. Billie utilizes drama in her class, which allows the students to act out the lessons they are learning. She wants to make sure her students have an understanding of the biblical characters and stories they hear when the pastor preaches. She makes sure they have a good understanding of both the Old and New Testaments.

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PASSIONATE BUT

PROFESSIONAL MITCHELL BLAND

If Jesus were still on earth and walked beside you everywhere you went, how different would your day be? How different would your words be? Would your actions remain the same? If Jesus sat on the couch next to you, would anything be different? What if Jesus sat on the front row of your next church service? Would that church service be any different? It’s a very simple thought, but the fact remains the same: Jesus is always with us—even at church.

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t would be impossible to calculate how many church services you and I have attended. For some of us, the number would be in the thousands. From the time I was a few weeks old and throughout my life, I have had the privilege of attending a United Pentecostal Church. There have been all types of services and all manner of things that have transpired in those services. Our minds immediately begin to fill with special moments with God, the time the choir forgot the song or someone fell on the platform, that special message, and

other distinct memories when someone asks us about unique moments at church. Whether or not we think about this honestly, Jesus is at church. It does not matter what happened during the service, good or bad, sad or funny, who was there or who was not; the fact remains the same: Jesus is always there. Maybe it is a fact we have in the back of our minds but don’t really concentrate on too often. Maybe we are just so accustomed to church, we forget that Jesus is really there. But let that sink in for just a moment—Jesus is at your church every service.

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We have to be careful not to scrutinize everything and be so fixated on being professional and doing a good job that we forget to pray and ask God for His blessings and anointing. We must have the anointing, but we also need to do things to the best of our ability. If Jesus were still on earth and walked beside you everywhere you went, how different would your day be? How different would your words be? Would your actions remain the same? If Jesus sat on the couch next to you, would anything be different? What if Jesus sat on the front row of your next church service? Would that church service be any different? It’s a very simple thought, but the fact remains the same: Jesus is always with us—even at church. When we plan for special services and we know there will be special guests with us in that service, we want everything to go just right. The choir comes a couple extra times for practice, the sound crew makes certain the microphones are all ready to go, the media department verifies that the songs, pictures, and Scriptures are all correct and ready to show on the screens, the usher staff is suited up and in place, the musicians and praise team have practiced and do a final sound check. When we are going to have guests, we want to represent the church well, and that is the way it should be. However, what about that Sunday in the middle of summer where people are exhausted from the heat, a lot of people are out of town on vacation, and it is just another Sunday? These are the times when it is easy to let it slide and to convince ourselves that since this service is not even going to be well attended we don’t need to put in so much effort. This could be the time we are just so used to church that we forget—Jesus is at church. Throughout Scripture we are commanded to give God our first fruits, give Him our best, do what we do with all our might, and do it as unto the Lord. We are quick to apply this to our daily personal lives, but this directive is also talking about what we do in our church services. What is the Lord worthy of when we have church? Does He deserve our feeble attempt or does He deserve our very best?

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This is where people start to get nervous, because we have this fallacy in our thinking that being professional and passionate cannot coexist. It is incorrect to think we have to choose between being anointed and being skillful. None of this is true. Does not the Bible command us in Psalm 33:3, “Sing unto him a new song; play skillfully with a loud noise”? How can we sing a new song or play skillfully if we attempt to do things at the last minute, if we never practice, if the only time we think of a church service is when we are on our way to the building? God deserves better than this, better than our fragments and leftovers. We have to be careful not to scrutinize everything and be so fixated on being professional and doing a good job that we forget to ask God for His blessings and anointing. We must have the anointing, but we also need to do things to the best of our ability. It does not have to be a choice; we can and should have both. Will every singer be perfect? Will every musical piece be flawless? Will every microphone be on when needed? Will there never be a mistake? No, we are all humans and mistakes are a part of what we do. But we can never use this as an excuse to not do our best. There will be times in a service when there has to be a last-minute change; however, this should be far from the norm. Every service should be well put together—every participant well rehearsed and every musician and singer practiced and prayed up—because every service has a special guest. Jesus is at church. PH Mitchell Bland is the happy husband of Janelle Bland and proud dad of Skyler. He is a member of the pastoral staff at The Sanctuary in Hazelwood, Missouri. The pastors are Tim Dugas and Scott Graham.

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MULT I CULTURAL MINISTRIES

CULPRITS OF CROSS-CULTURAL RELATIONSHIPS BRUCE A. HOWELL

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eware of three enemies of cross-cultural relationships and communications. Guard against them. Refuse to fall prey to them. Remember, it is a daily battle. Ethnocentrism Ethnocentrism is the feeling or belief that one’s culture is superior to another. It is a sad situation in life when we think that everything we do is best, the way it must be done, and wonder why others do not have enough intelligence to do it our way. The New World Encyclopedia says, “Research has revealed ethnocentrism is in every culture around the world based on a number of reasons including religion, language, customs, culture, and shared history. It seems natural that people feel pride in the culture in which they have grown up and from which they have adopted their values and standards of behavior. However, the problem is that one may view other cultures not only as different, but also as inferior, with a great danger of behaving in ways that are damaging to those from other cultures.” Ethnocentrism ranks people according to what we feel they are worth. Ethnocentrism can proba-

bly be identified by analyzing statements that compare “us” with “them.” Here is an example: In some countries we refer to “them” as driving “on the wrong side of the road” instead of saying “the opposite side.” We must safeguard against always looking at the world through the eyes of our own culture. David Hesselgrave in Communicating Christ Cross-Culturally describes ethnocentrism as an attitude held by almost all of the world’s people that says, “The way we think, feel, and behave is the way to think, feel, and behave. It is the way, not a way.” Stereotyping Stereotyping comes from the printing plates of old. The same image was reproduced over and over. The word has evolved into a term that refers to a fixed impression of a certain group of people from which positive or negative judgments are made. Stereotyping misleads people into thinking that all people in a certain culture are the same: cookie-cutters or carbon copies of each other. This ignores the uniqueness of individuals.

udice is the feeling derived from making pre-judgments; judgments before knowing the facts. Prejudice is seldom based on fact. It has been destructive throughout history.

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ecognizing these culprits is the first step to eliminating them. In order to have healthy cross-cultural relationships and communications, these enemies must be identified, dealt with, and annihilated. Crossing cultures and all of its barriers is never easy. We do not need the added barriers of ethnocentrism, stereotyping, and prejudice to obstruct us in reaching the world or the corner of the world where we are called. PH Bruce A. Howell is the general director of Global Missions.

Prejudice The third culprit is prejudice. Prej-

It seems natural that people feel pride in the culture in which they have grown up and from which they have adopted their values and standards of behavior. APRIL 2012

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Michele Garcia’s mom being baptized at the Pentecostal Clinic

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[

P E N T E C O S T A L

L I F E

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ANSWERING A NEWSPAPER AD KRISTI GARCIA

S

everal years ago my husband and I were going through a difficult time in reaching people to come to our Home Missions church. We had started a new work in Kankakee, Illinois, where there had been many works started. Many had ended for various reasons. We knew the work would be extremely challenging and demanding. The area is highly religious with an overflow of many churches and a large denominational university. My husband’s parents and grandparents were Home Missionaries, so we knew we desperately needed workers in our church. The work would be hard. We started asking God to send us the right people—people who would feel the calling just like my husband and me. One Saturday morning we were trying to make some extra money by selling some of our furniture. I was busy cleaning and my husband was in his office preparing for Sunday’s sermon. The phone rang and a lady said she and her husband would like to come and see the hutch we were selling. As I hung up the phone, the Lord said, “Get ready because you are going to witness to these people.” I wondered how I would be able to do that. I ran downstairs and told my husband exactly what the Lord had said. I told him to get ready because we were going to witness to the people who answered our ad. My husband looked at me a little shocked because I normally don’t do things like that. I shook him and said, “NOW! They’re coming!” About an hour later we met Omar, Michele, and their daughter Angelica Garcia. We were immediately drawn to each other because we shared the same last name. It was miraculous how God took over after that. During this visit, we found out that Omar was from Cuba. He had been an orthopedic surgeon in a Communist country and really didn’t believe in God. After about three hours of drinking coffee and general talking

we started talking about church. Omar and Michele told us they were looking for a church, not exactly a Pentecostal church, but they agreed to visit ours. Many times throughout our married life, my husband had expressed his desire to open up a clinic to help people. Omar just happened to be trying to get into medical school, but for several years he had been unsuccessful. Once he started coming to church, with much prayer, God started working everything out for him. Omar was accepted into the University of Illinois Medical School in Chicago, Illinois. He still wasn’t sure of the “speaking in tongues thing,” but he continued coming to church regularly. My husband took Omar to a men’s conference where he heard Jerry Jones talk about real men. During the altar service my husband was sure he heard Omar speaking in tongues, but he wanted Omar to say something about it. On Sunday morning Omar came in with his family and instead of sitting on the back row like he usually did, he marched them all up to the front, he said, “like a real man should.” Michele looked a little confused but followed him to the front. That Sunday Omar received the Holy Ghost, speaking in other tongues. Later on, Michele received the Holy Ghost and so did Angelica. They were all baptized in Jesus’ name in the Kankakee River. Since that time, God has continued to lead the Garcias in paths that they weren’t quite planning on following. During Omar’s schooling, God opened the door for him to become a US citizen. After graduation, Omar started applying for many jobs, but he couldn’t get it off his mind to open a free clinic. As it turned out, my husband and Omar shared the same dream and desire. However, it was going to take a strong step of faith to see this dream come to fruition. Having absolutely no money they started calling hospitals in Chicago. They made numerous trips, collecting discarded hospital beds, chairs, and so forth. Our garage

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looked like a small hospital. The concept of the clinic was not only to follow what Jesus said in Luke 5:31 (“It is not the healthy that need a doctor, but the sick”) but also to help those who were in need of a spiritual healing. The first thing we had to do was to find a building for a good price. Presently, our church rents a place for services, so we started looking in the city of Kankakee for a building for a clinic. We finally found a building, which we are currently renting with an option to buy. However, we needed to get it ready to meet city codes and regulations for a clinic. My husband went around town informing people of the clinic and asking for donations. Nobody had ever heard of a Pentecostal clinic. The hardest part was making the bathroom handicap accessible. A plumbing company agreed to supply the clinic with new toilets, sinks, and handicap fixtures. One of the best plumbing companies in the area came and did all of the plumbing FREE! Then it all started— paint, brushes, rollers, and pans were donated. Students painted the whole clinic with white paint. Carpet and tile flooring were donated and installed, FREE. A beautiful exterior sign was donated and installed by a local sign company. New exit signs and emergency lights were given to us by a national hardware store. Two emergency doors with push bars were needed. My husband went to a door company but they told him the doors were too expensive to donate. They said if he found the doors, they would install them. He called me to see if our school had any emergency doors just lying around somewhere. I laughed because what were the odds? I called the superintendent and sure enough—never underestimate God—they had two doors with bars just lying around behind the school and we could have them. A local hospital opened their warehouse and allowed us

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to help ourselves. The hospital dropped off truckloads of medical supplies, equipment, and furniture. Even though our church doesn’t have our own building, we have a clinic that offers primary medical care to those who are uninsurable or have no insurance. The clinic has three exam rooms, one procedure room, a waiting room, a receptionist’s office, an intake office, a break room, doctors’ and nurses’ offices, future rooms for dental and optical services, and a beautiful chapel with a baptismal tank, podium, and fifty chairs. The clinic officially opened in February 2011. Approximately six hundred people have come through our doors. Many of those people have heard the Pentecostal message from Pastor Larry Garcia for the first time. Witnessing, praying for patients, and helping them with their spiritual needs in our chapel is a daily service. Dr. Garcia attends to their physical needs. Also, Governor State University Nurse Practioner’s Program signed a three-year affiliation with our clinic. The editor of the local newspaper came to the clinic and wrote a lengthy article entitled, “The little church that moved mountains.” This newspaper reaches several counties and many south suburbs of Chicago. Our local city alderman, our mayor, and the State senator were at the ribbon cutting. Dr. Garcia was awarded “Citizen of the Year” by the Kankakee County Hispanic Partnership. Pastor Garcia was awarded the President’s Award from the NAACP, and was selected by the Kankakee Daily Journal newspaper as “Citizen of the Year.” It’s truly amazing what God is doing! God never gives up on an area; He just needs people to obey the call. And He wants His servants to walk by faith and believe His Word: “For with God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37). It was all because of a newspaper ad and listening to God’s voice saying, “Get ready!” PH Kristi Garcia is a full-time teacher, president of the teacher's association at her school district, music director at New Life Church, Ladies Ministries president for Section 10 of the Illinois District, and a volunteer at the church medical clinic. She is the wife of Larry Garcia, pastor of New Life Church in Kankakee, Illinois.

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www.seniorbiblequizzing.com w .seniorbiblequizzing


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HE ALT H

THE WIRED DOCTOR DR. CLAY JACKSON

Q: We have all heard a good bit about last year’s health bill (so-called “Obamacare”). Now that we’re a ways into the process, what is your opinion on the changes the bill brought about? A: It’s a large bill with many provisions. To be honest, like many Americans, I don’t even know all of the ins and outs. I could comment on a few though. In general, I’m in favor of incentives to cover more Americans with health insurance, and with the emphasis the law places on promoting (and rewarding) primary care.

A: To some degree, yes. Computer searches of patient databases can remind clinicians when certain tests are due, for instance, or make recommendations for implementation of new research findings at the point of care. In addition, drug interactions and allergies are easily traceable with electronic records, and prescription errors are lessened greatly.

Q: Any other notable positives? A: I like the incentives that were put in place to encourage the transition to electronic health records. Our office (and most of the hospitals in which I work) used the law’s provisions as an opportunity to ditch the paper and convert to electronic records.

Q: Any downside to the electronic transition? A: Some senior physicians who look at the profession are concerned that with all the emphasis on electronics, the human experience of care may be downgraded. For instance, Abraham Verghese has decried what he describes as the degeneration of a genuine clinical encounter with the real patient into the treatment of the “ipatient.” For Verghese, the “i-patient” is the representation of the real patient in the digital world.

Q: What advantages do you see? A: There is much better documentation (for one thing, typed notes are legible!). In addition, reports and notes can be shared among clinicians, greatly increasing the interconnectedness of different systems, and driving care continuity.

Q: You mentioned you converted to electronic records. Have you incorporated technology in other ways? A: Certainly, at least for communication. We utilize texts and emails to rapidly connect with colleagues and consultants, which speeds clinical decision-making dramatically.

Q: Can the electronic record promote quality?

Q: Do you use this type of technology to connect with patients?

A: Yes. Some patients utilize email or texts to handle simple clinical or logistic issues with us. Q: Do you use Facebook or Twitter for communication? A: I don’t use Facebook, as it was a fairly wide-open medium in its infancy, and we weren’t necessarily looking to expand our patient base via social networking. We do use Twitter, however. Q: How does it help you? A: We use it for simple instructions (such as office closings for holidays or inclement weather). In addition, we put out simple health tips or short quotes that we feel may be edifying. Q: So—are you a techie, or an antitechie? A: Tech is a tool—nothing more, nothing less. It’s how you use it that defines its value. PH Dr. Clay Jackson practices in Memphis, Tennessee. He attends The Pentecostal Church in Memphis. Terry Black is the pastor. NOTE: The contents of this article are intended to convey information and should not be interpreted as medical advice.

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04Pentecostal Herald April 2012  

Pentecostal Herald April 2012

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