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EDITORIAL

Those Who Tell the Stories... By Simeon Young Sr.

Advance the Kingdom By David K. Bernard

God Healed Me of a Tumor

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The Lord Was Ready to Save Me

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EDITORIAL BY SIMEON YOUNG SR.

Those Who Tell the Stories … n an article in U.S. News & World Report (July 3, 2006) titled “What Sets Us Apart,” Mortimer B. Zuckerman refers to an observation made almost seven decades ago by Henry Luce (founder and publisher of Life magazine). Luce said the only things “every community in the world from Zanzibar to Hamburg recognizes in common are American cultural artifacts—jeans, colas, movies, TV sitcoms, music, and the rhetoric of freedom.” Currently, Hollywood is the major storyteller of the American story, according to Zuckerman. He says, “Most of the time, since World War II, we Americans have reflected the rule of law, individual freedom, defense of human rights, and the just use of American power against fascism and communism. … The message from American pop culture has long been antiauthoritarian, challenging power in ways unthinkable in many countries. The hero, going up against the odds, projected a populist narrative that celebrated the common decencies against the wicked authorities or the excesses of capitalism. Millions who saw such films around the globe derived a sense of phantom citizenship in America, an appetite for the life that only liberty can bring.” Zuckerman claims that in an attempt “to reach the younger populations under the age of 25 … Hollywood has been offering more dumbed-down blockbusters based on action, violence, sex, and special effects.” The result of this approach is that America is associated with “crime, vacuity, moral decay, promiscuity, and pornography.” Zuckerman believes the “media project defiance and ridicule not just of illegitimate authority but of any authority at all—parents, teachers, and political leaders” and that the media have “contributed to make Americanization a dirty word, with the American lifestyle and American capitalism widely viewed as an anarchic revolutionary force.” He says that because of the media, American capitalism “is perceived as trampling social order in the ruthless pursuit of

”What sets us apart?” is a question we as Pentecostals need to answer honestly. We need to make sure that our answer does not belie our God-ordained identity. profits, creating a new class system, based on money, combined with an uninhibited pursuit of pleasure and a disordered sense of priorities.” Because of these factors, “America’s narrative, which has waxed for so long, is now waning in its universal appeal” and that “anti-Americanism [is] respectable again.” Zuckerman concludes his essay by saying, “These perceptions are badly skewed. They fail to do justice to what is so wonderful about the United States: its individualism, its embrace of diversity, its opportunities for freedom, the welcome it extends to newcomers, and the uniqueness of an entrepreneurial, pragmatic society that is dramatically open to energy and talent. No other country provides the environment for self-help, self-improvement, and selfrenovation. No other country possesses our unique mood of buoyancy, optimism, and confidence for the future.” He says Americans should “portray ourselves positively (while not ignoring the warts).” The article challenges me to think deeply about how we Pentecostals see ourselves, how we portray what we are and whose we are, how others see us, and how they portray us. Perhaps the most gripping line in the article was quoted from Plato who said, “Those who tell the stories rule society.” “What sets us apart?” is a question that we as Americans need to answer honestly. It is even more important for us Pentecostals to answer the question honestly and to make sure that our answer does not belie our Godordained identity. This article is not a call for an overweening self-consciousness, but rather a challenge for us to live in such a way that God is glorified. Jesus said: “Ye are the light

of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:14-16). Peter identified the people of God as “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people” (I Peter 2:9). These four distinctive characteristics are for one purpose: “That [we] should shew forth the praises of him who hath called [us] out of darkness into his marvellous light.” We have been called out of the darkness of a benighted world system and set apart by God for the purpose of being storytellers of God’s grace to the world. Those who tell the stories rule society. In verse 10 Peter said that we “in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.” The world must see the difference in our “before” and “after” lives. We were without God and had not obtained mercy. But now we are the people of God who have obtained mercy. That is the story. That is the narrative. That is the plot line. Those who tell the stories rule society. In verse 11 Peter said, “I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshy lusts, which war against the soul.” As long as we see ourselves as strangers and pilgrims who have been placed in a foreign country to tell the story of God’s grace, we will resist the constant pull to become like those we should be trying to reach. As the storytellers of God’s grace, we have the poContinued on page 36 JANUARY 2014

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PENTECOSTAL HERALD | JANUARY 2014 Fundamental Doctrine

EDITOR

Simeon Young Sr.

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

PRODUCTION MANAGER Larry Craig PRODUCTION COORDINATOR Jina Crain CREATIVE DIRECTOR Abraham LaVoi DESIGN SUPERVISOR Tim Cummings GRAPHIC DESIGNER Laura Merchant EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Brooke Rosser COPY EDITOR 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. ©2014 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) $2.00 each for 2-5 copies; $1.75 each for 6 or more copies Bundle Subscriptions (Canada) $3.00 each for 2-5 copies; $2.50 each for 6 or more copies Bundle Subscriptions (Foreign) $4.00 each for 2-5 copies; $3.50 each for 6 or more copies

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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USPS 427-240 United Pentecostal Church International 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 Michael Ensey SUPERINTENDENT OF EDUCATION Dan Batchelor

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., Kevin Cox, Jack Cunningham, Steven D. D’Amico, J. Stanley Davidson, Devon Dawson, Dean M. Dickinson, Andrew Dillon, Daniel Fleming, Edward Goddard, Scott Graham, Percel T. Graves, Ken Gurley, Billy Hale, John W. Hanson, Arthur E. Hodges III, Gary Hogan, Jerry T. Holt, David Hudson, Wayne Huntley, Darrell Johns, J. Mark Jordan, Ron Lichtle, Arnold MacLauchlan, Daniel McCallister, Richard McGriffin, Scott D. Marshall, Matthew Martin, Mark Morgan, Arthur Naylor, Trevor Neil, Gordon Parrish, Kevin Prince, John E. Putnam, Stephen P. Spite, Jesse Starr, Jay Stirneman, Rick Stoops, Robert Stroup, David Tipton Jr., Jerry Tipton, David Trammell, C. Patton Williams, Richard A. Wittmeier, Raymond Woodson Sr., Chester Wright

GENERAL EXECUTIVE PRESBYTERS Gary Gleason* Aaron Soto* Kevin Borders* Kevin Cox* Daniel Garlitz* Marty Johnson* Bernard Elms* Brent Coltharp* Raymond Woodward*

HONORARY PRESBYTERS

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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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ASSOCIATE EDITOR

P. Daniel Buford

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14

[THIS IS MY STORY] Columns

This Is My Story, Reframed

8

P. Daniel Buford

3 | Editorial

Simeon Young Sr.

14

7 | The General Superintendent Speaks

God Healed Me of a Tumor Elijah Overman

18

Anonymous

11 | Apostolic Man

22

Michael Williams

26

Tiffini Countaway

30

Chad Flowers

My Story

44 | “Better Than” in the Book of Proverbs

Vicki Beck

Kept by God’s Grace

Steve Cannon

13 | My Hope Radio

24 | Cain’s Second Mistake

Deliverance Will Come

David K. Bernard

12 | Teacher of the Month

Pentecostal Life

Arlo Moehlenpah

L.J. Harry

46 | God and Water

The Lord Was Ready to Save Me

R.L. Gilstrap

Chantell Smith

17 | Faith & Culture

Eugene Wilson

29 | Worldline Bruce A. Howell

34

John Hatch

37 | Multicultural Ministries

Stan Gleason

Cherí Grissom

38

AYC Testimonies

42

God’s Placement

Chaela Jean and Charla Mallicoat

33 | New Start

18

The Waiting Room

Paul Dennis

34

38

49 | Launch Your Ministry

Sylvia Clemons

50 | Letters to the Editor

JANUARY 2014

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• Notes written exclusively by Oneness Pentecostal scholars • Special emphasis given to Scripture passages that are important to the Apostolic message • Feature articles on Pentecostal distinctives of holiness, the new birth, living in covenant, miracles, and more by scholars such as David K. Bernard, Daniel Segraves, and David Norris • Concordance created with emphasis on Scriptures significant to Oneness Pentecostals

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0:47 AM

THE GENERAL SUPERINTENDENT SPEAKS BY DAVID K. BERNARD

Advance the Kingdom ow after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel“ (Mark 1:14-15). The central message of Jesus Christ in His earthly ministry was the coming kingdom of God. The church’s mission today is the same: to advance God’s kingdom in this world. John the Baptist prepared the way for Jesus; he prepared people’s hearts to receive the message of the Kingdom. He preached that people should repent of their sins, be baptized unto repentance, and wait for the One who would baptize with the Holy Spirit; namely, Jesus Himself. Jesus preached “the gospel,” literally, “the good news,” concerning the kingdom of God. Like John, He proclaimed that God was ready to establish His kingdom on earth, and people needed to prepare for it. The Jews of Jesus’ day expected a physical kingdom in which God’s anointed king, the Messiah, would reign on earth. They hoped the Messiah would drive away the Roman overlords and establish an independent Jewish nation. But Jesus explained that God’s kingdom is first and foremost spiritual. It is primarily God’s reign in the hearts and lives of people. Jesus taught, “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20-21). He stated that the only way to enter this new kingdom is to be born again; that is, to be born of water and of the Spirit (John 3:3-5). The new birth involves being baptized with the Holy Spirit as John had preached, and this experience became avail-

able only after Christ’s glorification. (See John 7:39.) The way to prepare for this spiritual kingdom is to repent and believe the message. As Jesus taught, if we believe we will not only repent but also be baptized, and we will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. (See Mark 16:16; John 7:37-39.) At the founding of the New Testament church on the Day of Pentecost, the twelve apostles preached the fulfillment of Jesus’ message. When people believed their preaching of Jesus as Lord and Messiah, the apostles instructed them to repent, to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, and to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:36-38). The apostle Paul explained the spiritual nature of God’s kingdom: “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost” (Romans 14:17). We should not look for God’s kingdom in physical pleasures or rewards such as food and drink. Instead, it consists of three elements: (1) righteousness: right standing with God, a right relationship with God, rightness in the moral and spiritual dimensions; (2) peace: friendship and alliance with God, emotional and spiritual rest, contentment; (3) joy: spiritual pleasure and satisfaction; intense, exultant, or triumphant happiness. Since Jesus Christ is God manifested in flesh, we enter God’s invisible, spiritual kingdom today through faith in Jesus, which results in the new birth. One day the Lord Jesus will come back for His people and establish a kingdom on earth for a thousand years. Thus the kingdom of God will become visible and will cover the whole earth. God will fulfill His promises to His people of all ages, including the nation of Israel, and will fulfill His original purposes in creating the world.

“Jesus traveled to villages and cities teaching and preaching the kingdom of God, and He ministered healing and deliverance everywhere He went.”

Ultimately, God will judge all sin and will forever separate all unrepentant sinners from His presence. He will establish a new heaven and a new earth without sin. All creation will confess Jesus Christ as Lord to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:9-11). Everyone will acknowledge Jesus as the visible image of the invisible God, the manifestation of the Father in human identity. (See John 14:9-11; Colossians 1:15.) As both God and the Lamb, Jesus Christ will sit on the one divine throne (Revelation 22:34). In this way God will rule all creation forever. The kingdom of God will be universal and eternal. It is God’s plan for every nation to hear the gospel of the Kingdom before the end comes (Matthew 24:14). The church’s mission is to teach all nations, baptize converts, and teach them all the commandments of Jesus (Matthew 28:19-20). In Matthew 28:19 the word “teach” is from the Greek mathēteuō, which literally means to make disciples; the word “nations” is from the Greek ethnos, which refers to national, ethnic, or people groups. We are to proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God everywhere and make disciples among all nations, ethnicities, and language groups. We are to teach everyone how to enter the kingdom of God and how to remain in the kingdom of God. Jesus traveled to villages and cities teaching and preaching the kingdom of God, and He ministered healing and deliverance everywhere He went (Matthew 4:23-25; 9:35). He thereby demonstrated the reality, power, and benefits of God’s rule. He has commissioned us to fulfill the same type of ministry in the power of the Spirit so that people can enter God’s present, spiritual kingdom and prepare for God’s eternal, universal kingdom. As we preach His Word, the Lord will confirm the message with signs following (Mark 16:20). Let’s advance His kingdom! David K. Bernard is the general superintendent of the United Pentecostal Church International. JANUARY 2014

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

This Is My Story, Reframed P. D A N I E L B U F O R D

obert J. Morgan, in “Then Sings My Soul,” tells a wonderful story. Back in 1873 Fanny Crosby, the blind hymnist, walked on one side of society, while Phoebe Knapp walked on the other. Fanny ministered in the Manhattan slums and worked in the rescue missions. Phoebe, on the other hand, lived in the palatial Knapp Mansion in Brooklyn. She entertained lavishly and dressed elaborately. Her music room was filled with wonderful instruments. And the blind hymnist was her dear friend. One day while Fanny was a houseguest at the Knapp Mansion, Phoebe said, “I have a tune I want to play for you.” It was a tune Phoebe had composed. They went to the music room and Phoebe sat down at the piano and played her tune while Fanny listened. At the end of the tune, Fanny immediately clapped her hands and exclaimed, “Why, that says, ‘Blessed Assurance!’” Quickly, Fanny penned the words, and the great hymn was born— “Blessed Assurance.” With Fanny’s gift of poetry and talent as a lyricist, she drew upon the worship in her heart to pen the assurance of her faith, “Jesus is mine!” Combining her worship of God with her understanding of Him, she declared that she was born of His Spirit and washed in His blood. As Fanny reflected upon her relationship with her Savior, she understood that perfect submission brought perfect delight. And even though she was blind, in her mind’s eye visions of rapture and pleasure exploded 8

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with wonder. In her poet’s imagination she saw angels descending from Heaven, bringing to her finely attuned ears echoes of mercy and whispers of love. As Fanny continued to write, she understood that perfect submission brings perfect peace; all was at rest. And in her Savior, Fanny was happy and blessed. In her contented state, as she was watching and waiting, looking for God’s glorious appearing, she was filled with His goodness and lost in His love. With the soaring notes of Phoebe’s music ringing in the music room, Fanny matched them with glorious, inspiring, and challenging words. With the phrasing repeated twice in the refrain, the message of the song proclaims to the world, “This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long.” What a triumphant song! What uplifting words! What a wonderful reality—This is my story! This is my song! I am praising my Savior all the day long. But what happens when this reality is not reality? When it is not even virtual reality? It is only a dream, a wish, an unreachable goal. When we consider our stories or our songs, too often we see the chapters of our books or the verses of our songs made up of tragic mistakes, foolish choices, and missed opportunities. The hurts we have given and the hurts we have received scream loudly and incessantly, bringing discordant notes to our songs and haunting paragraphs to our books. We look at our song through the eyes of the newspaper’s music critic and see his critique of every flaw, every wrong note, and every missed beat. We look at our manuscript through the eyes of the critical editor and reading over his shoulder we see the red lines and marks highlighting our mistakes, not just in our adjectives but in our verbs, our very actions. We ask the question in

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If our story or our song were written before Jesus found us, it would not be a song of praising our Savior all the day long. But He did find us. He gave us blessed relief. Thanks to Jesus, this is my story reframed. I am praising my Savior all the day long. tones of defeat, discouragement, and despondency: “This is my story? This is my song?” The words of a song, written as only Joan Ewing could write and sung as only Murrell Ewing could sing, resound in my mind. The Ewings described a person as an old rejected relic on an auction block. Someone had decided to throw the relic away. When the auctioneer asked who would take her, the people in the room were quiet and still until Jesus stepped forward and said, “I will.” Then with his resonant baritone voice, Murrell sang, “If you had known me before I knew Him, you would understand why I love Him. If you had known me before I knew Him, you would understand my love.” And then, as if an angel had whispered the words to Joan as she penned them, Murrell made the story personal. “I had not much to offer, just heartache and pain, and a life that was filled with despair. For my rags, He gave me riches; for my fears, He traded peace; for my whole life, He gave me a blessed release.” If our story or our song were written before Jesus found us, it would not be a song of praising our Savior all the day long. But He did find us. He did give us a blessed release. In narrative therapy and cognitive therapy a word comes up occasionally—reframe. When someone tells his life story with all of its troubles and losses, the counselor will sometimes bring up the subject of reframing the life story. This can help the individual recognize the impact of his negative thoughts and aid him in shifting his mindset to think more positively—eventually lessening or even getting rid of his depression. This can help the individual see life through a different lens. The counselor attempts to cognitively restructure the person’s thinking about his life, to help the person deconstruct his wreck of a life and then reconstruct it by having a better understanding of life’s events and circumstances. The work is to re-author, re-story, or reframe the life story. While this cognitive restructuring may have some validity in therapeutic settings of the field of counseling, it takes on a whole

new aura when coupled with our privilege of being born again. Paul said it so well in II Corinthians 5:17: becoming a new creature in Christ Jesus; old things passing away; all things becoming new. Our life story can be rewritten, reframed into a glorious manuscript for His glory. Repentance and baptism in the cleansing name of Jesus Christ erases our sinful story, brings up a brand new Word document, and the infilling with God’s wonderful Spirit begins writing our life’s brand new story. Paul wrote to Titus that the believer is saved, not by his own works of righteousness but by the mercy of God, by the washing of regeneration, and the renewing of the Holy Ghost (Titus 3:4-7). Thanks to God’s mercy, we can be regenerated and renewed. Our story can be reframed. John the Beloved wrote, “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12-13). We do not have to stay prisoners to our old self, our old ways, our old addictions, our old habits, or our old enemies—we have a Savior, Jesus Christ, who gives us power to become a new creature, a son of God. Peter encouraged his readers by reminding them that they were born again by the incorruptible seed of the Word of God (I Peter 1:23). Born again—those words just sound rejuvenating, restorative, and refreshing. This is my story, reframed. I have a new author and by His grace, a brand new ending. Thanks be to Jesus Christ, this is my story, reframed. I am praising my Savior all the day long. P. Daniel Buford is the associate editor for the United Pentecostal Church International. And this is his reframed story; this is his reframed song: he is praising his Savior all the day long.

Scan to view Murrell Ewing: The Complete Collection at Pentecostal Publishing House. 10

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APOSTOLIC MAN BY MICHAEL WILLIAMS

Marriage of Men and Missions n army of competent, committed men throughout our fellowship has embraced the mission of the United Pentecostal Church International, which is missions. Giving of themselves and their resources, they have put their hands to the task, quite literally, of building the Kingdom at home and abroad, on at least four continents already. Recently, these men took their missions-building endeavors to a new level when they decided to invest and involve themselves in helping our missionaries do something about the 386,000 plus orphans in Guatemala. Having remodeled, repaired, and constructed Bible schools and churches across North America and around the world, scores of Apostolic men—with calloused hands, but soft hearts— have teamed with missionaries Brad Thompson and Lynn Jewett to build an orphanage in Guatemala City. Land was found and purchased, and a comprehensive plan put in place. Within months, an imposing four-acre orphanage campus that will soon boast of fourteen separate, special-use buildings began to rise out of the earth in a beautiful, verdant valley surrounded by farms and mountains. Because of the vision, ingenuity, and sacrifice of bold, undaunted men, nine of those fourteen buildings were built and dried in during the first nine months of 2013. Surrounded (for security) by an imposing ten-foot wall topped with razor wire, the compound includes an administrative building containing a clinic, administrative offices, and a conference room. A multi-use

facility houses a kitchen, dining hall, library, chapel, and plenty of room for indoor recreation. A nearby vocational building will serve to help equip young men and women with job skills through vocational training. Ten of the buildings will become home to orphaned children, each one including a small apartment area for house parents as well. Six of these have been constructed already, including one dedicated specifically to housing deaf children. To date, teams from approximately one of every five UPCI districts have been involved, hands-on, in this cooperative effort. Men from Connecticut to California, from Canada to Florida have been in the country working, with more on the way. A North American men’s team is scheduled to be building on site every two weeks between September 2013 and February 2014. When our men are done, this volunteer effort of hundreds of men will include a soccer field, roller blade path, and playground as well as shelter. To contemplate the worldwide crisis of orphans is to be confronted by some frightening facts. More than 163 million of the world’s children are orphans. If they were a nation, that nation would be the eighth largest, just ahead of Russia, in population. In the country of Guatemala, the gov-

ernment picks these children up off the streets—most of them pre-school age—and assigns them to a state-registered home for safety and care. Thankfully, legal guardianship is granted for the youngsters until the age of eighteen. On this extraordinary orphanage campus our men’s ministry is building, these precious children will receive medical care, get an education, and hear the gospel as well. One need not have too great an imagination to know that not a few of those who enter orphans will walk out of the safety of those walls transformed, perhaps some as soulwinners, ministers, and missionaries. We believe that is worth our money and our men. Michael Williams has been the senior pastor of the Pentecostals of Apopka in Apopka, Florida, for the past thirty-five years. In addition to his duties as pastor, he serves as national president of Apostolic Man, the men’s ministry of the United Pentecostal Church International. He is also a member of the Florida District board.

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SUNDAY SCHOOL BY STEVE CANNON

revival & growth conference MaY 14 - 16, 2014 abbotsford, bc Specific direction, anointed ministry, practical solutions and new inspiration to rise to the challenge of planting, growing and developing churches in the great Northwest. conference & lodging

schedule tiMes

Ramada Plaza Abbotsford Hotel   and Convention Center  36035 North Parallel Road, Abbotsford, BC V3G 2C6

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Room block: United Pentecostal Church International - $109 includes continental breakfast (cut-off date April 14, 2014) Call: 1.888.411.1070

Day Sessions   Young Ministers and   Leaders in Training  Evening Service  

Parking: Free

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Airport Shuttle: Must be prearranged with hotel. Fee $10. Call hotel for shuttle service following arrival.

Day Sessions   Ladies Tea  Mentoring Lunches  Evening Service 

Directions: tinyurl.com/hnwdirections

Evening Service 

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Sam & Kristen Zenobia

Jesse Fortaleza

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iffany is a champion of improvisation and flexibility. Every Sunday morning her class will be brightly decorated and full of children within a wide age range. Those children are being loved and taught the Word of God. Not only does Tiffany have the educational background with a BA in Liberal Studies – Elementary Education, but also her spirit and personality are ideally suited for her calling. Tiffany attends New Life Church of Auburn, California. Her pastor is Jerry McCool. She has been chosen as Teacher of the Year for her church.

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MY HOPE RADIO BY TIFFINI COUNTAWAY

Three Minutes with Ronita Reece

ell us a little about your family. My husband and I have five children, most of whom are grown and on their own or in college. We are beekeepers who travel to different states for the different aspects of the business such as pollination, harvesting of the honey, and the making up of new hives. We have homeschooled all of our children, at first because of the business of moving, and then because we felt it was a very good thing to do and are happy that we have had that experience and input into our children’s lives. What is your music background? Growing up with five other sisters in a pastor’s home, music was an integral part of our lives. My sisters and I were called the “Humphrey Sisters” and sang at the home church as well as at rallies and special meetings. My mother played the piano and we just naturally learned to harmonize, I am sure from the influence of the Pentecostal worship that we grew up in. Some of the people who have influenced my life are people like the Hardins (from Indiana) who became a home missions pastor in South Dakota and encouraged my father to move there. We lived in South Dakota for several years and saw souls come to the Lord who are still serving God today. Dwight and Martha Hardin sang beautifully and wrote many songs. The Jellisons were also an influence, along with many others like Keith Hunt from Bloomington, Indiana. He has written many inspired songs, one of which is “Let Me Tell You Who Jesus Is” and is sung all over our fellowship.

spent most of my young life. My music is a combination of contemporary country and southern gospel. I love to write heartfelt ballads of thought-provoking lyrics that come from life experience, inspiration of the Holy Ghost, and from hearing anointed teaching and preaching. The Book of Psalms has always inspired, motivated, and influenced my life and songwriting.

in those early, formative years, but my worship has deepened as my relationship with Jesus Christ has become more intense. My father was pastoring in Fargo, North Dakota, when I fully surrendered to the Lord. I have not turned back since that time at the age of seventeen. After one year of school at Apostolic Bible Institute, I married Paul Reece and settled into my life as a beekeeper’s wife, which was at times lonely and full of transition as we moved to Texas and California for part of the year. Our children started coming after four years of marriage. I was busy as a wife and mother but still had time to commune with God and as a result, songs of worship and thankfulness flowed into my heart and mind and became an expression of my love, devotion, and thanksgiving to the One who saved me and who gave me purpose and fulfillment in my life.

Any loves other than music? I love adventure and this has served me well in all of our travels and living in the various states. I love to visit new places and experience different cultures and ethnic foods. We have made many friends in the different states where we live and this has been very rewarding and enjoyable. We have enjoyed Assyrian, Cajun, Italian, and Mexican food and hospitality. I love meeting new people, getting to know them, and hearing their stories. Who do you want to send a shout out to? To my godly parents who have been great examples to me, and to my husband who has supported and encouraged me. Where can we listen, purchase, and connect with you? You can listen to my CD Lead Me on MyHopeRadio.com and you can purchase the CD through PentecostalPublishingHouse.com or by email at ronitareece@ hotmail.com.

You wrote all the songs on your CD— what inspires you to write? I started writing simple poems during Tiffini Countaway is the producer of Mymy year at Bible school, but one day as I was HopeRadio.com. driving into town (we lived in the country about twenty minutes from town) I was medDescribe your spiritual journey. I remember praying earnestly at a very itating on the goodness of the Lord when a young age. The Word has planted seeds of faith song of praise filled my heart and poured out that has kept me all these fifty-two years. I was of me all at once. The song “He’s My Hope” baptized at seven years of age in Bloomington, has been a blessing in the churches where we Indiana, by Pastor Joe Shields. I distinctly re- have worshiped. After that song, many others member the experience, and as I matured in came. My style of music has been influenced the Word that experience has been even more myhoperadio myhoperadio greatly appreciated. I learned to worship God by the Bible-belt area of Indiana where I JANUARY 2014

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

God Healed Me of a Tumor ELIJAH OVERMAN

rowing up in the Apostolic faith, I heard many testimonies about how God can heal and deliver. I didn’t doubt it, but I never really experienced what some might call a “big” miracle. We all learn to trust God for the everyday needs in life, and we who call ourselves Apostolic believe in spiritual miracles such as the infilling of the Holy Ghost. However, we are often shy about believing God for things we consider “big” in our lives, such as a miraculous healing. My thinking has changed dramatically on this because I have witnessed God perform miracle after miracle at my local assembly, as well as in my own life and family. Currently my family and I are members of Crossroads Church in Mooresville, Indiana. In the fall of 2012, Crossroads began the process of planning and preparing for a “Capital Stewardship and Ministry Development Campaign,” which we call “Touching Lives ...Together.” Pastor Curt White and Associate Pastor Justin Overman asked me to be a member of the communications team for the campaign. My task was and continues to be the design and development of communications material related to the campaign. “Touching Lives ...Together” revolves around financial stewardship, financial faith, as well as general faith-building within the church family. The goal of the campaign is to prepare the church family for growth both spiritually and numerically. Even before the campaign began, our ministry team at Crossroads Church was emphasizing miracles, signs, and wonders. This emphasis has not ceased, but has grown 14

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with many confirmed miracles that have taken place before and during our capital stewardship campaign. God has performed many financial miracles and healings in the lives of the church family at Crossroads Church as we continue to push forward and trust Him for every promise that He has set in His Word. One such promise that has become the cornerstone for our campaign is found in Jeremiah 33:3: “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” Toward the end of 2012 during the “Touching Lives ...Together” pre-launch process, I began to feel mild concern about a tiny lump in my lower left eyelid that I had been aware of for some time. I thought it was just a sty and tried to convince myself that it would go away. I had prayer a couple of times for this to happen. I continued life as usual and didn’t give my eyelid much thought. I began to work with the communications team as the graphic designer to develop the materials we were to use for the campaign. In January 2013 I noticed that the lump under my eyelid was becoming very visible and growing noticeably larger to the point that I began to feel self-conscious about it. I was really trying to believe that no matter what it was God was going to take care of it eventually. However, I did have an ever-present doubt in my mind. I was willing to accept it if God did not heal me, but what I did not know was that God was waiting for the right time—His timing is impeccable. In the meantime, my growing doubt and anxiety about this thing in my eyelid nagged at me to call the eye doctor, but I second-guessed myself and didn’t call. I said, “I’ll give it another week. If it’s not better by then, I’ll call.” By Friday of that week I glanced at my face in the bathroom mirror at work and thought, That looks much worse than before. I pulled down my lower left eyelid and saw a jellybean shaped growth tucked between the eyeball

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A photo caption could go here, if needed. Can be changed to white and placed over a dark image. Just depesnds on the design.

A photo caption could go here, if needed. Can be changed to white and placed over a dark image. Just depesnds on the design. JANUARY 2014

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and lid. This gave me a scare, so when I got home from work I called the doctor’s office. They said they wanted to see me right away, but they couldn’t get me in until the next day, which was Saturday, February 2. Saturday, February 2, was the second meeting of our “Touching Lives ...Together” capital stewardship campaign. The campaign teams at Crossroads Church were to meet with the campaign consultant. As a member of the communications team I was slated to attend this meeting, but instead I phoned the pastors and explained the situation with my eye. They were very concerned and for good reason since I was to be the graphic designer for the campaign launch material, and as a graphic designer, I would need my visual faculties to perform the tasks. The month of February 2013 was slated to be the busiest time of the pre-campaign preparation, and my job was to get most of the campaign communications material completed within that month. When I went to see the eye doctor on February 2, 2013, she examined my eye and determined that it was a tumor growing in my eyelid. She said I needed to get it removed as soon as possible. She recommended me to a specialist, but when I called for an appointment they couldn’t take me until nearly four weeks later. On February 27, I went to see the specialist, the surgeon who would remove the tumor. He examined my eye and said it definitely had to come out. The specialist told me to meet with his secretary to schedule a time and date for the surgery. This was to take place on March 20, three more weeks of waiting! Justin, my brother, told me this would give God plenty of time to heal me.

At the campaign meeting that I missed on February 2, 2013, the ministry teams had prayer for the healing of my eye. For the weeks after that my church family as well as other friends and family prayed for the healing of my eye. Three days following my visit with the surgeon and his secretary on February 27 I began to experience something miraculous. On Saturday, March 2, while I was at work I felt something begin to take place in my lower left eyelid. All day I noticed an unusual amount of moisture in my left eye. This sensation was accompanied later by the scratchy feeling that occurs when one has a foreign object in his eye. I went into the restroom and looked at my eyelid in the mirror. When I pulled my eyelid down out of the way, I gasped and began to laugh to myself. God was working a miracle in my eyelid; the tumor was disconnecting itself! I was concerned about this, though. I work in a public place and did not want this thing falling out of my eyelid in front of someone. I had an hour left to work so I prayed and asked God not to let it fall out until I got home. That hour felt like forever as I tried to hide my eyelid from everyone I came in contact with. When I saw someone coming I would dodge around a corner out of sight. When I got home the tumor did fall out. I promptly began calling friends and family to share the awesome work that God did right before my eyes!

When I went to see the eye doctor on February 2, 2013, she examined my eye and determined that it was a turmor growing in my eyelid. She said I needed to get it removed it as soon as possible.

Elijah Overman attends Crossroads Church in Mooresville, Indiana, where he works in children’s ministry and music ministry. He is also the coordinator of the communications team.

COMMEMORATIVE ISSUE Due to overwhelming response to the January 2013 Pentecostal Herald celebrating the 100 year anniversary of the Jesus Name message, the Pentecostal Herald has released a special commemorative issue. This keepsake issue contains all the content from the original January issue plus additional content relating to the centennial celebration published in Pentecostal Heralds throughout 2013.

To purchase copies of the Commemorative Issue, visit

WWW.PENTECOSTALHERALD.COM

or call PPH customer service at World Evangelism Center at 314.837.7304 ext. 390. Herald_Commemorative.indd 1

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FAITH & CULTURE BY EUGENE WILSON

The Value of Community illiam Barclay maintains that I Peter was written around the year ad 67, shortly after the first persecution of Christians by Nero. Peter wrote his letter to the Christians in parts of Asia Minor— Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia—and expressed concern for them. He acknowledged his readers were suffering “various trials” (1:6), were experiencing slander (2:12), and were enduring pain while suffering unjustly (2:19). In I Peter 3:14, Peter made reference to his readers’ suffering for doing right. In I Peter 4:12-13, he spoke of a fiery ordeal that would try his readers. In addition, Peter drew attention to the fact Christians were suffering all over the world (5:9). Stephen Fagbemi, in an article, “Living for Christ in a Hostile World,” says that Peter’s readers “were already on the fringe of society, alienated or displaced, even before they were converted to the Christian faith.” After conversion, things had gotten no better, nor would they. Peter foresaw a day in which suffering would increase rather than decrease. The persecution that had begun in Rome would soon spread to include those in Asia Minor. The situation was not going to get better; it was going to get worse. Peter sought to encourage his readers by reminding them they were the Lord’s “elect” (I Peter 1:2). The significance of the term elect can be seen in the fact it is used in Peter’s letters more than any other New Testament book. Its importance can also be seen in that I Peter is the only New Testament book in which the concept of election is part of the salutation, and thus, a major theological theme in the book. Peter also used the word elect at the end of his letter (I Peter 5:13), suggesting once again the concept of election is of substantial significance in his letter to the exiles. Peter encouraged his readers by reminding them they were safe because God’s hand was upon them. He also encouraged his readers by pointing out God had provided for them a community in which they could feel safe.

The importance of community can be seen throughout I Peter. Peter wrote to a community of believers who were suffering collectively. The “pilgrims of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia” (I Peter 1:1) were the Lord’s elect; they were also a community of believers. The community was a safe haven. It was a place wherein people could share and care for one another. The saints in Asia Minor were experiencing suffering, and the suffering was going to get worse. But God had provided the suffering people with a community. Much of the religious talk these days evolves around an individual’s personal relationship with God. While God wants to have a personal relationship with us, I Peter reveals a person’s relationship with God is not entirely a private matter. A person’s commitment to God involves community. People need God; people also need community. Peter understood the value of community and sought to convey it to his readers. He also understood its fragility. David A. DeSilva, in An Introduction to the New Testament, says Peter presented his readers with a “code of conduct” to help guide their relationships with others. In I Peter 2:17 (NKJV), Peter said, “Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.” In I Peter 3:8-9 (NKJV), Peter stated, “Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous, not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.” Peter was intent on creating and maintaining a safe place. He sought to establish a safe environment in which proper care and sharing could occur. The apostle Paul was also intent in maintaining a safe place—a place in which care and sharing could occur. Paul’s remarks in Ephesians 4:1-6 were community focused. He exhorted his readers to “keep the unity of the Spirit” (Ephesians 4:3). Unity is commonly referred to as the spirit of unity,

but there is no reference in Scripture to the spirit of unity. Instead, Paul referred to unity as the “unity of the Spirit.” There is a difference. The Spirit makes unity possible. “For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body” (I Corinthians 12:13, NKJV.) Keeping the unity of the Spirit is a challenge. But for community to be protected, the keeping of the unity of the Spirit is essential. The bigger picture must be sought after. Pettiness must be done away with. In I Corinthians 3:3-4, Paul said, “For you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men? For when one says, ‘I am of Paul,’ and another, ‘I am of Apollos,’ are you not carnal?” Paul continued by saying both he and Apollos were laborers together. They were on the same team. The Corinthians were dividing when no division was necessary. Could it be we, the twenty-first century church, are prone to divide when no division is necessary? It certainly seems so. Paul’s exhortation to endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit is still pertinent today. Eugene Wilson lives with his wife, Kerri, and two children, Kade and Jaelyn, in Olive Branch, Mississippi. This article was adapted from Eugene Wilson’s book Realign. The book is a Word Aflame Press book, and is available from the Pentecostal Publishing House.

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

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Deliverance Will Come ANONYMOUS

he Spirit of God has prompted me to write this article, even though I am aware of the criticism, doubt, and questions it may generate. Howbeit, I am willing to take that risk if I can help a pastor or family learn to bring deliverance to individuals dealing with these issues I have dealt with in the past. It started at a very young age. Sometimes I had encounters with evil spirits that would have scared a lot of people. For a long time I kept these encounters to myself for fear that people would think I was crazy. I knew these spirits were real, but I did not know what it meant until a few years ago while living in southeast Missouri, when I came to understand what it was all about. Little did I realize God was preparing me to reach out to others who live in fear

of “being found out.� I want to let them know there is hope even if they feel hopeless. I was born out of wedlock to a sixteen-year-old girl. When I was two, her life tragically ended in a car accident. A year before the accident my mother had asked my grandfather to make sure I was taken care of if anything should happen to her. But at the time he had ten children of his own and in those days, times were very difficult. So after the accident I was passed from relative to relative until my grandfather decided to take me in. I was too young to remember much of that time, but looking back I realize the only positive thing was being raised in an Apostolic church. In the late 1950s my family moved to Medford, Oregon, where we found an Apostolic church. I received the Holy Ghost in 1962 at twelve years of age. At the time, I had told no one that a man close to my family had started abusing me sexually when I was about ten years old. The abuse continued until I left home at about eighteen when my grandparents decided to send me to Bible College. JANUARY 2014

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I make no apology that God accepted somebody like me, the worst of sinners, and made me a new creature. My mind has been renewed and I am no longer plagued by the spirit of SSA. I’m honored and thankful for God’s calling on my life to minister to people with the deceptive spirits of SSA and pornography. This move is where God started dealing with me about the ministry. I became enthralled with the move of God in my life, but due to the former abuse I had developed low self-esteem and, to my horror, “same sex attraction” (SSA). The guilt piled up and I would pray for hours and fast days on end for God to help me. I felt I couldn’t discuss this problem with anyone, even some apostolic ministers. I hid the feelings behind complete denial. After graduating from Bible college I received a call from a pastor to serve as his youth leader. At this point things intensified. I tried to live for God while fighting off the SSA issues, and I wasn’t getting anywhere. In desperation I went to my pastor and confided in him. Unfortunately he called my family to confirm the story, but they denied everything. They didn’t know, because up to that point I hadn’t told anyone. I felt as if my whole family had turned against me. My pastor, as presbyter, told the district board about our discussions, saying I had made it all up. This issue caused them to deny me a license. I felt betrayed and vowed not to confide in any other minister. Therefore I struggled alone, my insecurities mounting along with my desire for deliverance. Then my marriage fell apart—for which I accept full responsibility. The divorce left me overcome with hurt and self-hatred. I pulled everything inward and went on with my miserable existence. The next year I attended a singles conference where Lee Stoneking was preaching. One day while I was praying at the altar, desperately seeking God for a way out of my nightmare, Brother Stoneking came to me and said, “God has just told me to speak faith to you. You are going to receive what you are seeking and you will minister to people with your testimony. The next year I attended a “Passing the Mantle” conference, and again Lee Stoneking came to me and repeated the same words. About a month or so later a new job relocated me to Kansas City. Two years later at another singles conference one of the ministers prayed with me and repeated the same message I had already received from Lee Stoneking. This confirmed to me that God was preparing me for something special, but I still fought against Satan’s darts of doubt and fear of failure and being rejected by the ministry. In 2006 I was diagnosed with a malignant tumor on my thyroid and was not given much hope of recovery. But again God had other plans and healed me completely. Yet the death of my pastor’s wife plunged me into a pit of depression. On Christmas Day in 2009, I decided I was not worth much to anyone and would end my life. I had lined up all my meds and was going to the kitchen to get a glass of water when my phone rang. I didn’t recognize the number and decided not to answer, but after it continued to ring I finally picked 20

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up. A man’s voice said, “Jerry, stop what you’re doing in Jesus’ name and let me pray for you.” The caller was a man I barely knew from work, but his prayer stopped me in my tracks: “God, don’t let this man put the light out in his life, because you told me he was called to minister to people with his testimony.” I felt a strong stirring inside; I hit the floor and began to beg God for forgiveness. This was God’s intervention in my life once again. About six months later I received a call from a large department store for an appointment to interview for a store manager position. It would be the biggest and best job I had ever had, and I was interested—until they told me it was in southeast Missouri. I turned it down flat, but the company hounded me for weeks until I finally told them I would go only if they paid me an amount above the norm for that type of job. To my surprise, they accepted. I worked at this job for only seven months and then was fired. Talk about getting the wind knocked out of me! I started seeking God in earnest, praying and fasting. I didn’t understand until later that my move to southeast Missouri was God putting me in the right place— the place of deliverance. One day I was at the church praying when the pastor of the church I was attending asked me to come into his office and have a talk. He said, “Tell me about your life.” Something in the way he asked that question caused a deep stirring in the depths of my soul. My first impulse was to give a vague summary, but something prompted me to be honest with him. So I told him everything while anxiously watching his expression. The whole time he had the look of a caring shepherd wanting to get his lamb out of the thicket so the wolf wouldn’t kill him. When I finished he stood up, came over to me, and said, “Because of your honesty and being open with me and putting your trust in me, God is going to do something spectacular in your life. God has a calling for you to minister to people with your testimony.” He went and got his dad and they anointed me with oil and prayed. I felt something I had never felt before. God literally delved into the deep recesses of my being and delivered me. After we prayed the pastor told me God had already shown him what I was seeking while I was praying at the altar. He said God had reached down and healed my deep wounds of fear of rejection, abandonment, and being alone. Soon after God’s miraculous touch I was at the church praying and seeking for direction. After about three hours I finally prayed, “God, I’m very angry with the devil and want to let him know he has lost his hold on me.” I reminded God of the time T.W. Barnes commanded Satan to appear so he could tell him he had no power over

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I turned my head and saw four streets with barricades and a large sign, THESE STREETS ARE CLOSED. The names on the street signs were Fear, Rejection, Abandonment, and Fear of Being Alone. him or his church. I had no sooner got the words out of my mouth when there appeared to me a very large angel who said, “Let’s go.” It seemed as though the earth opened up and I stood at the gates of Hell watching thousands of demons running around in torment and screaming, “Don’t come here! Leave us alone!” I knew the angel would keep me safe as he led me through the gate. He said, “Look to the right.” I turned my head and saw four streets with barricades and a large sign, THESE STREETS ARE CLOSED. The names on the street signs were Fear, Rejection, Abandonment, and Fear of Being Alone. The angel said, “God told Satan these things were no longer in your life.” I knew without a doubt that God had healed me and taken away the SSA that had haunted me for forty years. We entered the throne room of Satan and there he was, looking like an angel of light. I said boldly, “Satan, I know who you really are, and by the blood of the Lamb and the word of my testimony you have no hold on me anymore!” He instantly lost his angelic disguise and ran screaming from the room. I make no apology that God actually accepted somebody like

me, the worst of sinners, and made me a new creature. My mind has been renewed and I am no longer plagued by the spirit of SSA. I’m honored and thankful for God’s calling on my life to minister to people with the deceptive spirits of SSA and pornography. God has given me a gift of discernment in this area and I know that through the power of His name and the power of the blood I can be a “go to” person for people trapped in these situations. I know how this spirit works and am willing to confront it. I know through personal experience that if a person is willing to come to grips with these struggles and open up to someone they trust, they can be delivered by the power of God. The author lives in the Little Rock area and is involved in a courtordered community service program for drug and alcohol abusers. He is thankful for the grace that has been allotted him. His favorite reply to Satan is, “By the word of my testimony and the blood of the Lamb I am an overcomer.”

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

My Story VICKI BECK

s I reflect on my story I feel only gratitude to God for His grace and mercy. After seven years of marriage, the man I made a lifetime commitment to and started a family with decided he did not want our life anymore. There were signs of discontentment, resentment, and criticism toward the church that went unchecked. The joy of the Lord was replaced with coldness and distance toward us and God. One terrible day he did not come home. We had had no conversation about where he was going, and he had left no message or note of any kind. I spent the night calling the hospital praying and wondering where he might be. A few days later I found out that he had found someone else. I muddled through those first few days agonizing over thoughts of self-pity, rejection, and worthlessness. My daughter was about a year old at the time and I was saddened by the possibility that she might grow up without a father. I worried about how she would be affected. I wanted to shield her from any drama or upset and was comforted by the fact that she loved and needed me. I considered moving back home for support but I did not have a close relationship with my parents and did not feel I could ask them for help. I remember going for a drive one night with no particular destination in mind as troubling thoughts pressed in on me. In the end I found myself in the comfort of my church sleeping on the pew with my daughter. Proverbs 18:10 says, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.” God was my refuge that night, and I was safe. I tried to remember that God would not leave me or forsake me. Deuteronomy 31:8 says, “The Lord, He 22

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it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.” There is no guarantee that people will always love each other as they should, but we have a promise that God will not leave us, and He does not break His promises. He is the “I AM” of your life. He will be what you need Him to be. After the numbness of the first few weeks wore off, I was reminded of the blessings that had come my way. First, I was offered a promotion that almost doubled my salary. This was a great comfort as I realized that God knew exactly where I was and was providing for me. I tried to make conscientious decisions about my actions and not be a captive to negative emotions and speech. Paul said, “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you” (Ephesians 4:31-32). This is important so you don’t poison your mind and heart with bitterness. Another blessing was finding a routine that included exercise, which provided needed structure and lifted my mood. I also found fulfillment in helping with church ministries such as teaching Sunday school and choir. At night when I was lonely, I would turn on a Christian radio station and fall asleep to words of faith and comfort. Best of all, one day when I was particularly low, God reached out and touched me with very little effort on my part. All I did was raise my hands during a church service and instantly His Spirit poured over me and refreshed my soul. People I did not know surrounded me and prayed for me and I felt great love. It was one of the greatest experiences with God I have ever had. I did not find comfort in these things in the first week or even the first month or two. It took time to develop a strategy but gradually I began to feel better. I discovered new strengths as well as new

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Vicki Beck (left) and her daughter (right).

weaknesses. I made plenty of mistakes along the way, but God was ready with His forgiveness and mercy. During the next year as I prayed, worked, and waited for a resolution, I received several more blessings such as a discount on daycare, an occasional bonus, and a paid trip to Hawaii. God was still there by my side providing and strengthening me. I had a couple of awkward visits from my husband during that time but he didn’t stay more than a few minutes each time. Finally, one day he called from another state and said he had repented and was ready to come home and reconcile. He had hit rock bottom and turned to the Lord. I was glad but apprehensive of his newfound repentance, so I requested counseling for us before he moved back in. He agreed and I picked him up at the airport the next day and took him to a relative’s home. The ride from the airport was painfully silent; he was back to his cold and disconnected state, the conversation of the previous day forgotten. He had had momentary sorrow when he reached the bottom but it faded away with the new day. I did not hear from him again for many months and eventually I discovered that he had again moved out of state. I was disregarded once again but knew it was time to protect myself and obtain my freedom. A couple of years later I married again using that paid Hawaii trip for our honeymoon. Today I am blessed with a faithful and loving husband and a beautiful daughter who are living for God. I write of my experiences hoping that the things I learned might minister to someone else. Paul said, “Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may

be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God” (II Corinthians 1:34). God can take any situation, turn it around for His glory, and bring blessings to others. One key thing I learned during this time was the importance of managing my raw emotions so that I could walk in peace. Emotions are inconsistent and we should not take counsel with them but subject them to wisdom as we take counsel from the Word of God. Proverbs 4 tells us to get wisdom and understanding that will preserve us. Emotions press us toward haste but godly wisdom advises patience until we have a clear picture of what to do and when to do it. Also, I could not let my pain become my identity with every conversation revolving around my situation in order to gain sympathy or attention. Let your victories define you, not your problems. The healing of your heart will take time as you learn to trust again, but God will bring restoration to your life if you depend on Him and thank Him for the progress you have made. We can cleanse and bandage an emotional wound with forgiveness and mercy but only God can heal it. Prayerfully seek guidance and you will walk with boldness into your future with the confidence and hope of a new day. Vicki Beck is IT contractor for the Department of Defense. She came to church with a friend at the age of thirteen and has been living for God ever since. She has been a Sunday school teacher for over twenty years. She is married and has one child.

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[ P E N T E CO S TA L L I F E ]

Cain’s Second Mistake CHAD FLOWERS

e could feel his heart pulsating as he fled, quickly maneuvering through the forests and fields in which he had grown up. He tried with some difficulty to wipe the sweat pouring from his brow, his hands still covered in his brother’s blood. The first murder trial had just been conducted directly between God and man. The words of judgment continued to roar in Cain’s mind: “Thou art cursed from the earth … a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be …” In a panic, he had argued back that the sentence was unbearable. Moving in haste, he stumbled upon a stream from which he eagerly took a drink. As he knelt, he glared at his own reflection in the gently flowing water. The mark God had placed on him was unmistakable. The Lord’s warning was clear, “Whoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” After quenching his thirst, Cain sat quietly allowing the full weight of everything that had happened that day to slowly sink in. He felt alone. As a recently convicted murderer facing a life sentence, Cain began to ponder the new life he would live: Do I trust the Judge’s word, or do I handle it my way? Life as Cain had known it was forever changed. Full of jealousy, selfishness, and wounded pride, he had killed his brother, Abel, and God had judged him for it. The words in Genesis 4:12 describe Cain’s newly appointed identity: “A fugitive and a vagabond.” He would no longer have a permanent home—a fugitive has no safe permanent place of rest, only temporary stops. With God’s commandment came the danger that Cain could not survive. To be hated of all men is an awful fate. Yet in God’s incredible mercy and grace, He put a mark on Cain that all men would recognize. This mark would serve as a reminder of God’s protection. However, we do not read that Cain followed God’s commandment. The last recorded words regarding Cain’s life are found in Genesis 4:17: “He built a city.” He settled, deciding to create his own protection. He built a barricade because of fear and for his own self-defense because he was determined to survive by his 24

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own means. Cain trusted his own defenses rather than God’s provision. There is a little of Cain’s tendencies in all of us. During their forty years in the wilderness, the children of Israel experienced setbacks with every attempt to settle down before crossing the Jordan River. As long as they were on the move, God guided them and supplied their every need. When they settled down sin, discord, and falling short of God’s intended outcomes were the results. Like the children of Israel in the wilderness, we face numerous uncertainties. We erect our personal barricades, neglecting God’s promises to us. We prefer that life be predictable, within our control. After cruel experiences and bitter disappointments, we feel the urge to settle down from the journey and thus we lose the testimony we might have had if God were still in charge. We forget God’s Word: “Trust in the Lord with all of thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5). It is human nature to use God to solve problems instead of using problems to help us find God. There is a little of Cain’s tendencies in all of us. God has offered the mark of His Spirit for our guidance and preservation—it is not His desire that we provide our own protection. But how many of God’s people have made the mistake Cain made and settled for something less than what God intended? Understanding Cain’s ultimate failure makes the psalmist’s words—“God is our refuge” (91:2)—take on stronger meaning and should give us a fresh vision of Heaven so we don’t make Cain’s second mistake. Chad Flowers serves as assistant pastor to his father at Emmanuel Pentecostal Church in Mesquite, Texas. He and his wife, Mendy, have two daughters, Jadyn and Keira. 

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g the n i r u o p a ‘new t u d o e e s i n h e t ely w ys of r a u d S y l r … a y e l eager ens.” in the p d l l r a a e u c r o e e r d r I n e “ ary 1946 a w u , n s s a r J e , e u ld p g a Her r ton tal pa s u o o ntecostal c , e e s P l t e h u n T o e , s P n our n itherspoo o ’ W e . r T . fi W f – touch o

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

L.J. HARRY

Kept by God’s Grace here I was, just standing around after service was over, waiting for Mom and Dad to whisk me away to the car and to Burger King, when one of the sweet ladies of the church brought me the largest stuffed animal I had ever laid my five-year-old eyes on. It was a lion. I hoisted it up on my shoulders and carried it proudly from person to person, showing off my new plush gift. People asked me what it was, and I told them. “It’s a tiger.” “It’s a lion.” “It’s a tiger.” I didn’t know what it was, but I knew it was a gift someone from the church had given me. That’s one of my earliest memories of being in church. Then sometime later that church closed down and we moved to another Apostolic church. There, I started to find my place in the Kingdom and in God. That church was a small country church, but those people knew how to worship. Pastor Harry Miller was, and still is, the shepherd of that flock. And just like clockwork, every weekend and midweek, Dad pulled our orange Pontiac out of the driveway, turned left onto the state route, and we motored toward church. They brought me in, sat me down on the front row, and around the second verse of the first hymn, I fell asleep. I usually woke up just 26

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before “shake hands and be friendly. You’re dismissed.” But whether I was awake or asleep, one thing was sure: I was there. Every Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night, my family and I were there. And when it came time to clean the church, we were there to Windex the windows and Pledge the pews. My testimony is similar to many but different from most. God didn’t deliver me from drinking every day because He kept me from taking the first drink. God kept me from obtaining scars He did not have to heal. And if you and I share that testimony, we ought to thank God often because we are very blessed. I’ve learned God doesn’t have to deliver me from sin to be thankful He kept me from it. Over the years I have seen some interesting things take place in a Pentecostal church. And many of them could take place only in a Pentecostal church. One of the ladies was playing the tambourine and dancing. I guess she didn’t read the part of the manual that says, “It’s extremely hazardous to your health and to others to dance and play the tambourine simultaneously.” It wasn’t long before she launched that tambourine like a grenade from one side of the church to the other. Another time, one of the men started dancing around the church. My only hope that night was to stay in my seat and get out of there alive, but I was sitting on the front row. And sure enough,

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here he came, dancing with his eyes closed and his cowboy boots aiming for my feet. I tried to get out of the way, but it was too late. He danced those pointy-toed, high-heeled cowboy boots all over my eleven-year-old feet. Tears flooded my face like water down the face of Niagara. One of the sweet ladies in the church thought I had been touched. And I had been, but not by God. She came up and started praying for me to respond to what I felt. I thought, Sister, you don’t want me to respond to what I feel right now. Another sweet sister would always sound a warning shot when you were about to be fired upon. She would let out a “Woooooo,” and just seconds later, she would throw the hymnal she was singing from. So when you heard the alarm, it was time to duck and look for cover because a hymnal was ready to fly. If you’ve never had to dodge tambourines or cowboy boots or hymnals in church, you just haven’t lived. Over my thirty plus years in a Pentecostal church, I’ve been in some interesting services and seen some interesting things happen. But thank God, His grace has allowed me to be in countless, amazing services in a Pentecostal church. There have been services where we sang “Can’t Stop Praising His Name,” and we meant it. It was more than lyrics on a transparency or on a screen. We couldn’t stop praising His name. In fact,

we didn’t want to stop. There were services where our youth group danced and danced and danced until we didn’t have any more energy, but somehow, infused with power from Heaven, we just kept on dancing. One night the youth choir was singing on the platform, and my friend and I both took off running. Before I took that first jump from the platform to the main floor, I looked up and saw the chandelier. It was within reach. The Spirit of God was moving. People say we swing from the chandeliers. This was my chance to prove them right. So for a split second, I wondered if it would it hold me. But thankfully, common sense trumped youthful zeal, and I just jumped off the platform and took off running. Then there were other times when the presence of God was so heavy, all you could do was bury your face in the carpet at the altar and weep. Like that Wednesday night at Ohio Youth Camp in 1996. Pastor Ken Gurley was preaching “Jesus Christ, the Dream Peddler.” That service, I had been asked to stay on the platform and work the monitor mixer (I was the monitor mixer monitor). But during his message I forgot about the knobs and levers, and God started dealing with me about His plan for my life. That night, with my face buried in campground carpet, God worked a miracle in my life. He called me into the ministry and assured me that He could use me even if my parents weren’t preachers. JANUARY 2014

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I can’t explain it, but just after I enrolled in Bible college, I felt miles away from God. On a Sunday afternoon Pastor Willeford finished preaching and the youth choir started singing. I walked to the altar and God touched me. One of my most memorable altars was one I built when I first went to college. I can’t explain it, but just after I enrolled in Bible college, I felt miles away from God; even miles away from people I sat next to in English Comp and Lit. But on a Sunday afternoon as Pastor Willeford finished preaching and the youth choir started singing, I walked up to the altar and God Himself reached out and touched me. This past summer at Ohio Senior High Camp, our outgoing youth president, Tom Ellis, preached a masterpiece message about prayer. The staff and students all found ourselves on our faces before God, seeking the very God he just preached about. And that God came to that service seeking us. If the sky were a scroll, I would quickly run out of room chronicling every message, every lesson, every memory verse, every sword drill, every song, every skit, every prayer meeting, every youth rally,

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every camp, every Youth Congress, every revival, every altar, every service God has graciously given me. I realize I don’t deserve one of those gifts, but I am exceedingly grateful for every gift God has given. For the grace of God that saved me as a pre-teen has kept me through my turbulent teen years, college years, early ministry years, and still keeps me every day as a husband, father, and pastor. God’s grace saved me. God’s grace kept me. God’s grace keeps me. This is my story. L.J. Harry serves alongside Duane Kramer as pastor of the Apostolic Church in Mount Vernon, Ohio. He and his wife, Andrea, have two wonderful girls, Makenna and Raylee.

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WORLDLINE

925-1000 word article INCLUDING THE BIO.

BY BRUCE A. HOWELL

A New Year, A New Harvest s I sit at my desk and read through new revival reports, I am encouraged and optimistic about the future of Global Missions. Let me share some of these with you today. Craig and Lyna Sully wrote from Senegal and French West Africa: “The vast part of August was spent in Dakar, Senegal. Thus, I wanted to share a few things relative to our time spent in the land of our calling. One of the important matters we felt we needed to accomplish while in Senegal was to investigate the status of the UPCI in this country. In the late seventies-early eighties, Ed Allard was there and registered the church with the government. We wanted to verify if this status was still valid, and if not, what we would need to do to be able to function as a church there. “I am pleased to report that our visit to the appropriate government ministry was very successful. Our church retains its legal status. Suffice it to say, this is excellent news! “We also spent time in various parts of the city, walking, praying, and getting our bearings. There was excitement in our spirits every day, as we could easily see a great number of churches raised up in that city alone. We returned from our time in Dakar refreshed, revived, and ready.” I believe God will grant the Sullys a new harvest this year! From Asia, Leonard and Ping Lan Richardson reported about Taiwan: “We had a great family camp with Brother Leow from Malaysia. Total attendance was over one hundred and fifty (several received the Holy Ghost). A young boy (six or seven years old) had leukemia. After much prayer and a trip to the west side of the island to pray for him in the hospital, he is home and going to school. A thirty-three-year- old man has received the Holy Ghost and has been baptized in Jesus’ name by one of our Chinese preachers that we have personally

pastored for many years. God is still on the throne here in Taiwan.” In the Central America/Caribbean Region, Gary and Kristi Landaw reported about Puerto Rico: “There is continued growth in the church in San Juan. The network of contacts continues to grow and we just baptized two more in the name of Jesus. God is giving us favor in the area of new works. After once again advertising the great need, we are happy to tell you we have a new work in Naguabo. Difred Pascual has taken the challenge and there were nine people in his first official service. He is working with around fifteen people already. Rejoice with

churches. It is wonderful to see that now on a weekly basis people are getting baptized and filled with the Holy Ghost.” In Europe, Jim and Latitia Robertson wrote from Poland: “We are rejoicing in victory. After facing a wall where it seemed no one was willing to talk to us about the Lord, God has broken through and the wall has come down. As of yesterday we now have ten new contacts—people who are willing to talk about the things of God. We are believing God for the next breakthrough in helping us secure Bible studies with each of them.” From Vanuatu in the Pacific Region, Peter and Robbie Gration reported: “It has been a wonderful month, with the highlight being our personal involvement with over forty baptisms. We had a weeklong revival at All Nations, our annual youth week, which resulted in eighteen baptisms and a number filled with the Holy Ghost. I also spent nearly a week on another island at a district conference, which was very beneficial. Bible school is back in session, and we are preparing for our national conference.” From South America, Philip and Linda Walmer wrote to me from Brazil: “Through our website, a pastor in São Paulo State found us again after many years. He had first contacted us back in the nineties and we furnished him with all types of literature from our publishing ministry. What a surprise to hear from him again after so many years and to learn that he received a revelation of the Oneness message through the literature. He has been baptized in Jesus’ name and now apparently has several churches in western São Paulo State. He has requested more literature, of which I still have a small stock in Brazil, and we will be furnishing him with that.”

There is continued growth in the church in San Juan. The network of contacts continues to grow and we just baptized two more in the name of Jesus Christ. us! Also we are very happy to say that Mission Vieques will take place next weekend. We have a family from the church in Ceiba that has a real burden for this small island off of Puerto Rico. A group of us are going over to have special services and after that Joaquin Morales said his church would make sure that services would be held there weekly. If only we had more days in the week we could get more accomplished. However, the great news is that there is a list of workers who want to help us, so I am really praying that this is the beginning of getting Puerto Rico into an evangelism mode.” They also wrote about Trinidad and Tobago: “The work continues to grow. Last month we were there for a special marriage seminar and preached in several of the

Bruce A. Howell is the general director of Global Missions for the United Pentecostal Church International JANUARY 2014

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

The Lord Was Ready to Save Me CHANTELL SMITH

fter being warned by the prophet Isaiah to prepare for his imminent death, King Hezekiah pleaded, “Remember now, O Lord, I beseech thee, how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight” (Isaiah 38:3). His sincerity moved the heart of God to add fifteen years to his life (Isaiah 38:5). Hezekiah prayed and reminded God that he had been faithful and righteous. God responded to his request, and for many of us this is where the story ends. However, when I reflect on God’s faithfulness and provision during the changing seasons of my life, there is an oftenoverlooked part of Hezekiah’s story that resonates with me. Overwhelmed by God’s response to not only add years to his life but to give him triumph over his enemy, the king of Assyria, Hezekiah went on to write several verses of praise recounting his experience and thanking God for deliverance. The last of these verses states: “The Lord was ready to save me: therefore we will sing my songs to the stringed instruments all the days of our life in the house of the Lord” (Isaiah 38:20). When Hezekiah said “the Lord was ready to save [him]” it is as if it dawned upon him that the Lord had his deliverance in mind the entire time. In other words, even before the moment Isaiah famously pronounced to Hezekiah to set his house in order, God already had plans to give Hezekiah life and victory. Waking up every morning and choosing to believe, as Hezekiah came to realize, that God’s plan for our lives is ultimately good is what sustains me through each seasonal change. I am currently in my third year of a doctoral program in Hispanic studies. This is not the path I had in mind for myself. Although 30

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many have encouraged me to pursue a doctorate throughout the years, I envisioned it as something unattainable and fraught with stress and impossibility. I saw it as something that would siphon away years of time, as an exercise in frustration that would leave me at the top of a lonely, windswept apex, slightly smarter, but a wizened shell of my former self. Now that I’m here, however, I’ve come to see that my previous vision of what a PhD program is like couldn’t be further from the truth. The prospect of a PhD program as a whole may be hard to digest, but like many things in life, it is a process. And each stage of the process, through Christ who strengthens me, is doable. Now that I’m here, I can look back and see how the hand of God led me down this path. Now that I’m here, I know I am where I need to be. I wasn’t always secure in the knowledge of the hand of God at work in my life. If time travel were a reality and you were to take a trip with me three years back in time, you wouldn’t have seen a pretty sight. You would have seen a broken, empty, and spiritually bankrupt person. You would have beheld a woman utterly insecure in herself and in her identity in Christ. You would have observed me struggling to get out of bed every gray morning, unwilling to face another day, reluctant to come to terms with the person I had allowed myself to become and fearful that I was stuck with being me. After six months of studying abroad in Europe, I returned to the United States, broke and in desperate need of a job. I snatched up the first position offered me, doing what I had always done, teaching Spanish. This job was not like positions I’d had in the past, however. Nothing could have prepared me for what I was to face. I began the year optimistically, determined to be a light in the dark place of a public high school. I would not be that jaded, disillusioned teacher

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who had low expectations of his or her students and who treated them with disdain. I was going to show my students that they could do what I had done—learn a foreign language and have entire worlds opened to them. But after months of being completely disrespected and disregarded, after months of seeing the future being escorted out in handcuffs or toddling down the hallways pregnant, after months of witnessing fights break out and dealing with administrative ineptness, after months of not even having consistent, regularly scheduled days because of schedule changes and delays, I began to lose hope. And when I lost hope, I became useless as a teacher. I did my students a disservice. I began to despise my job. I began to miss days. I began to lose weight. I struggled with depression. I couldn’t believe the person I had become. This was not me. But it was. The effects of my demoralizing job were compounded by my refusal to confront my own personal and spiritual demons. Looking back, I can see very clearly what caused me to go off track: I allowed myself to believe a lie. I believed that God didn’t have my best interests at heart. I believed that I was destined for a life of dissatisfaction, and I began to make decisions based upon that lie. Eventually (and thankfully), I had had enough. This job and my lack of emotional and spiritual wellbeing had brought me to the lowest point I had ever been in my life. Something had to change. In the midst of writing up a stack of office referrals for a group of students’ latest antics, the next step hit me with a clarity I had sorely missed in my state of directionless instability at the time: Apply for a PhD! I

began my application that very day. I did something that I wouldn’t advise any serious PhD applicants to do—I applied for one program at one school and cast my bread upon the waters. It’s all or nothing, God. It’s either You or it isn’t. In the end, not only did I get in, I also received a prestigious research assistantship that allowed me to focus on my coursework for the first two years and that funded my first summer. (I would be provided with a teaching assistantship for my remaining years in the program.) It had to have been the Lord. He set things up in such a way that there was no room for doubt in my mind that it was His hand at work. Here’s what I see now that it was impossible for me to see back then: Sometimes God brings us through difficult seasons to spur us on to greater things. Had I been satisfied with where I was in my career, I never would have considered pursuing a doctorate. God used that horrible situation to light a fire under me. He would not allow me to be complacent, sauntering through life with a trove of unrealized potential. At one point in time, I never saw myself daring to undertake a PhD program. But now that I am in the thick of one, I am reassured that God knew what He was doing all along. I can say that I have had a Hezekiah moment—I see now that the Lord was always ready to save me. Chantell Smith attends New Life Apostolic Church in Watkinsville, Georgia, and is involved in choir, Sunday school, and nursing home ministry. JANUARY 2014

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NEW START BY JOHN HATCH

Upstate New York — It Is Being Done! athy Bassette said, “I’ll never forget the feeling that October day in 1992 when our young family including seven children made the trek from our little hometown of Chaumont, New York, to Oswego, the city of our calling.” The adventure had begun! Alan and Kathy Bassette are wonderful, down-to-earth people who do not just talk about the work of the Lord; they are doing the work of the Lord! This family is now birthing their third church in the New York District. Upstate New York is beautiful. There are 7.3 million people but only twenty-one churches. One can easily drive seventy-five miles through urban areas, towns, and country villages without seeing a single Apostolic church. Church planting is never without sacrifice. The Bassettes’ first home in Oswego was in the basement of an old church building that had been abandoned for years. When they first looked at the basement where they would soon live, it held several feet of water. The missionary, a mason by trade, cleaned and refinished the basement to make it livable. It had bare walls and a utility post in the center of the living room. This was their home for three years. They faced challenges they now laugh about—but they weren’t a laughing matter at the time. The church building was infested with bats that flew around at night. Each Sunday the Bassettes’ older children, Kellen and Kara, would help clean up the bat droppings to prepare the building for Sunday morning service. No wonder we call such church planters pioneers and heroes of the church! God has called others as well to be pioneers. It is being done!

and preaching, while teenage daughter, Jenee´, handles the music. Working in daughter churches has been a great way to develop these budding ministries. The church plant in Fulton now averages sixty in attendance. Daughter works like Fulton are the quickest way to add souls to the kingdom of God; they multiply the number of people hearing the gospel, the total attendance, and souls being born again. That is apostolic! In 2010, Pastor Bassette became burdened for Utica, a beautiful city ninety minutes from Oswego. Ninety minutes, even in New York’s winter weather, has not stopped these pioneers from birthing a church in Utica. The Bassettes drive in for an evening service on Sunday and a Bible study on Thursday. Utica is already averaging forty-five in attendance. This includes several Spanish-speaking people and migrant workers. The Utica church has been blessed with a building; a former Catholic church they bought for only one thousand dollars. God works on behalf of those who pioneer. One memory of Alan Bassette’s missionary mindset was when he spoke at a New York District camp meeting. He told the audience, “I would rather be teaching a home

Bible study in a cigarette-smoke-filled living room to sinners with several children playing around than to speak at camp today.” The Bassettes love people. They have been called to be church planters and have been willing to sacrifice. They are soulwinners with a vision and a strategy for reaching the lost. The Bassettes were recipients of Christmas For Christ, Sheaves For Christ, and Church In a Day funds in their first church in Oswego, New York. Good investments! New York and the Northeast need more pioneers like the Bassettes. Perhaps you, your son or daughter, or a young preacher in your church will be among the pioneers who discover that it is being done. Action Items: • Lift your hands and praise the Lord for pioneers like the Bassettes who are involved in the ministry of reconciliation. • Fall to your knees and pray that the Lord will send laborers into the harvest. • Pray about becoming a pioneer church planter in upstate New York. • Pastors, plant a church in a neighboring community that presently has no witness. It is my belief that Jesus will guide and bless any sacrifice to reach people for whom He died. John Hatch is the New York director for North American Missions. The Hatch family planted a church in Batavia, New York. For information about the opportunities in New York contact John Hatch at jbhh1@ yahoo.com.

Now, Multiplication The Bassettes are now planting their third church in upstate New York. Owego is a revival church owning its own building. Average attendance is eighty-five. The Oswego church’s attendance was higher but Missionary Bassette released over twenty people who had been part of the Oswego church to birth a church plant in Fulton, a city fifteen minutes away. The Bassettes’ son, David, leads the way in Fulton by doing most of the soulwinning JANUARY 2014

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

CHERÍ GRISSOM

The Waiting Room 34

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am sitting in a room that I have not left for fifteen years. I have memorized every piece of furniture here and know every crevice in the wall. I came into this room via many open doors but there remains a single one that holds my interest. It is closed. It is not beautiful, but its rugged and splintered frame has a wondrous attraction for me. Each day I peek at it, wondering what lies on the other side and checking to see if it has yet begun to open. I know that I am supposed to cross that threshold, but I also realize that I must do so at the right time. One of the most difficult things in life is to believe that you have been set aside for a great purpose and then realize the time to bring that mission to pass has not yet come. I am a missionary kid. The years I spent on the field were amazing. While I was there I had the opportunity to reach out to the hurting and witness transformations in people who had little hope. I went onto the field a missionary kid, but I left the field as a missionary. I still am one, although for the past fifteen years my appointed field is no longer a country but a room. Upon my return to the United States I definitely felt a change. Something pulled at my heart throughout my teenage years and left me never feeling completely at home even though everyone told me that I was at home. I knew there was something more for me in life. I was prepared to stow away on a ship and sail at a moment’s notice.

I was just waiting for God to call me. There was just one problem; I was only fifteen. It took me years to begin to understand at that moment I was lacking so much in education and experience that even though God had a plan for me I had not become the person who could bring that plan to pass. The shoes were ready for me to step into but my feet were still much too small to fill them. God very slowly and gently brought this to my attention. He revealed to me the joy, peace, rest, and beauty in the waiting process. And so I sat in the waiting room. I watched as friends graduated from high school, jumped into ministry, and started families right away. I asked God, “Is it time?” And God said, “Wait.” And so I went on to university. After a few years of study I had gained some experience and maturity, and I watched as several of my friends went on missions trips and began to pastor churches. Once again I inquired of God, “Could my time be now?” Again came the gentle but dreaded answer, “Wait.” And so I entered the workforce and went on to graduate school. As I studied literature, language, and post-structural theory, I watched my friends become AIM workers and missionaries, and I was happy for them. My heart still ached, but by this time I had learned that I should not question God. He brings about the answers and opens the doors in His own time. And so I sat in the waiting room. And so still I wait. I am now nearing the end of an advanced degree that has changed my life, combining the eagerness of my childhood with the JANUARY 2014

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analytical skills and perspective I have developed as the adult that God knew I needed to become. I began to look around and see that this room with its mysterious door is not simply a waiting room; it is a training center. I have been going to school for twenty-four years now (since kindergarten). I have learned to speak a few languages, have become comfortable with the art of analysis, and have become well versed in critical thought. I am grateful to the professors who have taken the time to educate me and to expand my mind. Their guidance has been invaluable to me. But my education goes far beyond that. I have learned that my God can supply all needs, because I have been in need. I then witnessed Him come through in ways I could not begin to imagine. I have learned that God can take any situation and turn it around, because I have walked through impossible valleys with no hope of seeing the sky. I have watched in astonishment as His hands parted the clouds. I have learned that God is my banner, because I have been weak and frail, beset by enemies so frightening that there seemed to be no way victory would ever find this damsel in distress. God swept through my situation with power and might and made my enemies cower. I have learned that God is my comfort, because I have faced pain I never dreamed I could live through and have been pushed to the ends of my sanity and my faith. I marveled as God spoke peace to my troubled heart and often carried me as I waded through the shattered dreams of my own making. I have learned that God is my deliverer, because I have found myself tossed about, restless, yearning, and feeling I had no way of escape. I rejoiced as I beheld the One who is called Faithful and True charge into my darkness and with authority and might lift me on wings of mercy. And so I train in this training room. I began to take the lessons God taught me and to apply them to my life. It was then He revealed to me

yet another aspect of this beautiful place: this is an application room. It is where I take everything He has poured into me—loading me with experiences and education so I will be equipped to handle both the trials and the victories that are to come—and begin to apply them to situations I face in this room so I will know how to face them when I leave. Rather than longing to storm that door and to escape this place, I have learned to appreciate this room. I have learned I am here for a purpose. I am striving to become everything I can be and to learn everything He has to teach me here. I want to make sure I pass any tests He gives me here. And so I wait, train, and apply. The door before me has not yet opened. At times I can catch a glimpse of the light that beckons from beneath that weathered door, teasing me with what lies beyond. Yet for the moment the hinges rest in their appointed position and the handle sleeps on. Like me, they await with bated breath that moment they will snap to attention and usher in that change in the atmosphere. I have no doubt that the door will open one day—I have come too far on this journey to doubt that God will come through—but for the moment all I can see is the promise. I rest and hope in that. This room, so familiar now, still has much to teach me. Every day I discover something new and am grateful to have spent these fifteen years here. It is here that He daily loads me with blessings. Most of all this room has shown me that through all the hours of waiting there has been Someone else in the room with me. He has transformed me from a wide-eyed girl filled with dreams to a wide-eyed lady who has discovered that faith is the key to bringing those dreams to fruition. In my journey to become that lady I have learned that Jesus is a gentleman. And so until my time comes I will stay in this room—now precious and dear—and wait for Him to open the door.

Those Who Tell the Stories … continued from page 3

undermine the story of grace, and a skeptical world is unconvinced. John said of Jesus, “In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not” (John 1:4-5). The Greek word translated comprehended here can mean “overtaken.” Thus, some take this verse to mean that darkness can never overcome light. Regardless of the actual meaning of John 1:5, light is always more powerful than darkness. The light of Jesus Christ shining through us is more powerful than the darkness of the world around us. Those who tell the stories rule society. May we Pentecostals live in such a manner that we are able to convincingly tell the beautiful story of God’s amazing grace to a fallen world. Those who tell the stories rule society.

tential to influence and change the culture in which we have been placed. We are not here to blend in with the culture, but to change it. Those who tell the stories rule society. In verse 12 Peter said, “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.” I must keep on asking myself, “Is my conduct such that those around me are so influenced and impacted by my good works that it causes them to turn to Jesus Christ?” That is what separation is all about. Someone said to me, “We are different to make a difference.” If the difference between us and the unconverted does not make a difference, we must ask ourselves if we are staying true to the storyline. Separation is not a curse; it is one of our most effective soulwinning tools. Separation enables us to tell the story of God’s grace with credibility. If my manner of life does not demonstrate that I have been called out of darkness into light, I 36

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Cherí Grissom serves in music and media ministries at Athens United Pentecostal Church in Athens, Texas. Johnny Grissom is the pastor.

Simeon Young Sr. is the editor of the Pentecostal Herald.

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MULTICULTURAL MINISTRIES BY STAN GLEASON

An Apostolic Vision as Old as the Historic Day of Pentecost ll Nations Sunday is an apostolic vision that is as old as the account of the historic Day of Pentecost found in Acts 2. If you were God, and you had a message to communicate to every nation of the world, how would you do it? The Scripture says, “Now when the day of Pentecost was fully come …” (Acts 2:1). This language suggests an expectation, a longing, looking ahead with anticipation. It is obvious that God was intentional about every detail of that initial outpouring. Although as Pentecostals we are focused upon the fact that those first believers experienced supernatural wind, tongues of fire, and the initial evidence of receiving the Holy Spirit (speaking with tongues), it should not be lost in the narrative that this outpouring was lavished upon an international delegation. Acts 2 records for us the first All Nations Sunday: “And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men out of every nation under heaven” (Acts 2:5). The day of Pentecost was an international event on the Jewish calendar. The explicit message on the Day of Pentecost was that indeed the Holy Spirit had come as prophesied by Jesus (Luke 24:49), but the implicit message was that the Holy Spirit fell on a day when the world had gathered at Jerusalem. The genius of God was revealed in that He initially poured out His Spirit in one city, upon one prayer meeting, among one united gathering, and upon one hundred and twenty of His disciples and closest followers. But within hours their blessing spilled over into the streets where delegates from every nation were also filled, many of whom returned to their homeland and spread the fire of Pentecost. Thus, the precursor to the Multicultural Ministries version of All Nations Sunday was born. The Holy Spirit fell on one hundred and twenty Jerusalem locals, and then on about another three thousand that were from seventeen different nations and cultures from around the known world (every nation under heaven). Although they were “devout” (Acts 2:5), indicating they shared a common religious language (Hebrew), yet being from different nations they carried with them their national language, culture, and customs. The first-century church was an international

church, a reflection of the eternal church pictured in Heaven that will be from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation (Revelation 5:9). The church of the twenty-first century should embody the same DNA of the first and the last pictures of the church in Scripture. The world has come to us. Nearly every slice of our world has an international flavor, including athletics, commerce, marketing, corporations, education, and so forth. Why should the church be any different? The lastday revival is an all-nations revival. Jesus told us to “look on the fields” (John 4:35), not “look on a field.” He commanded us to go make disciples of all nations, not just our nation of choice. Jesus understood that the disciples had no clue about revival. But they did know something about fishing, so Jesus gave them a lesson about revival in their vernacular. Jesus instructed the disciples to let down their nets. What happened next was indelibly impressed upon their minds. They hauled in a record catch, but not for a big payoff at the pier. This was a vision of revival. Their net was lowered indiscriminately into the water, welcoming any color, size, age, or species of fish that found its way into it. A local church that will lay down its selective pole-fishing agenda and begin to indiscriminately lower its net into the waters of last-day revival will catch people from every group. When people walk into your church they want to see themselves on the platform and in leadership. Our local church should be a demographical reflection of our local community. Kansas City enjoys over sixty cultures,

and The Life Church currently enjoys approximately 20 percent of those cultures. We not only post the American and Christians flags, but there are dozens of flags hanging in our sanctuary, celebrating the cultures of the world that have come to the Midwest. At a recent All Nations Sunday at The Life Church we were blessed to host United States Congressman Emanuel Cleaver II who is also the co-pastor of St. James United Methodist Church in Kansas City. When he walked through the door of the sanctuary he stopped dead in his tracks and took in the powerful presence of God sweetened by (in his words) a “rainbow of color.” He noticed the twenty-two cultures that were present that day as he took the pulpit and was overcome with a powerful anointing upon the congregation as he made his remarks. All Nations Sunday sponsored by Multicultural Ministries is a premium opportunity to expose your local church to the multicultural harvest that is all around us. Celebrating multiculturalism is as apostolic as the Day of Pentecost. And one more thing: it will provide the best after-church “dinner on the grounds” you have ever had.

Stan Gleason serves as pastor of The Life Church in Kansas City, Missouri. He is also the assistant general superintendent (Western Zone) of the United Pentecostal Church International.

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

CHAELA JEAN APOSTOLIC YOUTH CO TESTIMONIALS

RPS

Germany, 2013

Kein Zufall— No Coincidence his past summer I was privileged to be a part of the AYC trip to Germany. I cannot definitively say what I was expecting at the outset of the trip, but I can tell you that my experiences far exceeded anything I would have imagined. At our first stop in the city of Berlin we were a part of the first church service with the Suppan family. We witnessed the power of God as He filled a first-time guest with the Holy Ghost. The new birth experience is always special, but what really set this one apart was that the man who received the Holy Ghost was in Berlin for a gay pride conference. Our team had spent the first day in Berlin singing and passing out fliers in one of the city’s main plazas. This man, along with many other visitors, was reached as a direct result of these efforts. My involvement in AYC Germany allowed me the opportunity to see God work His perfect plan and timing. It was no accident that fifty Holy-Ghost-filled young people were in Berlin. It was no accident that we began reaching and interceding in Berlin—the atheistic capital of the world—the same weekend as an international gay pride conference. Coincidence is not an adequate word to describe dozens of visitors impacted by AYC students. Visitors were handed a flier by an AYC team member. They responded and experienced the awesome power of God for the first time. One of my favorite stories from the trip was when my friend Jocelyn had the chance to act as an interpreter for a Spanish native lady in the Berlin church. While our translators delivered the message in German, Jocelyn ministered to this lady in Spanish—talk about a multicultural service! But here’s the best part: Germany was not Jocelyn’s first choice 38

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of the AYC destinations. The trip she wanted to go on happened to fill up. She was placed on the Germany team, and there happened to be a ministry opportunity that only she could fill. In these moments, I stand back and ask the question “Is there really anything too hard for God?” During our time in Heidelberg, we had a day of evangelism followed by a street service in the city center. As we were singing, several groups gathered to listen. One man stood near the front, never moving. He was transfixed by what he was hearing. As one of the team members approached him, he turned with tears streaming down his face. He asked, “What is this I’m feeling when they’re singing?” The man was from the Middle East, and he was visiting his son in Heidelberg. Our small service on the rainy streets of Heidelberg was his first encounter with the presence of God on a personal level. God placed the AYC team in the right place, at the right time to reach out to someone who was hungry. He was ready to receive the Word of God. I do not know the end of the story. The pastor in Heidelberg planned a Bible study with this man. Beyond that I may never know. However, God knows where that man’s story needs to go. He is working it out for His glory. However, I choose to believe that God used the AYC team to reach at least two nations. Only Heaven knows the full impact of every AYC trip. Even if what I experienced was just a drop in the bucket, it was enough to change my life. Chaela Jean is twenty-four years old. She is working as a ministerial intern at Abundant Life Church in Baltimore, Maryland. David Reever is the pastor. This was her first AYC trip. Top: Heidelberg, Germany Right: Berlin, Germany

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

CHARLA MALLIC O AT APOSTOLIC YOUTH CO TESTIMONIALS

RPS

Domin ica Repub n lic, 2013

Llamados a sequir— Called to Go was thrilled to be accepted to AYC Dominican Republic, and I was ready to experience the world of missions. While on the beautiful island, we witnessed many miracles and many testimonies were shared. A few hardships were endured but God remained faithful to us and blessed our efforts. It was a life-changing and humbling experience that helped to activate a piece of my calling and establish a deeper passion for missions. Upon arrival in Santo Domingo, we were greeted by the humidity of a tropical climate. The people were friendly, but the fast-paced culture was a bit overwhelming. I was enthusiastic about the work we would be doing in this gorgeous country and was prepared to meet new people and try new things. Rated as one of the most dangerous places to drive in the world, one of our first experiences was driving through the hectic streets. Cars, buses, and motorcycles whizzed past us in unsynchronized fashion. Our first church service was in a basketball court pavilion. We had an incredibly energizing service that lasted for hours. It was encouraging to connect, dance, and praise God with the Dominican people, despite the language barrier. After our visit to Santo Domingo, we started our journey to Santiago. While staying in Santiago, we traveled to Haitian villages to evangelize and hold services in small community churches. We went from door to door in the villages to pass out tracts, invite people to church, and pray with them. The most memorable experience was preparing gifts for the Haitians. We did hands-on evangelism and demonstrated the love of Christ to everyone we met. I remember walking along the bumpy dirt roads and witnessing the povertystricken families. Many of their houses were small and empty. Their beds were near the ground and there was barely enough food on the table. Children were playing baseball with a lead pipe and plastic water bottle. When I looked into the children’s eyes my heart broke. Such innocence, youthfulness, and desperation were portrayed on their faces. The precious Dominican people opened my eyes to fully understand missions. It gave me a deeper burden for souls. They ignited my passion to spread God’s Word throughout the world. 40

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After evangelizing in Haitian villages, we went to the Dominican’s UPCI youth camp. This was a phenomenal experience. We danced, learned, grew, and glorified God for hours with young people our age. It was an exhilarating, inspiring, and sweaty experience. Many adventures accompanied the uplifting God-moments on this trip. We went to the market (Sambil Mall), Christopher Columbus’ burial site, Tres Ojos Caves, and rode a cable car up a mountain. The adventures we went on completed the trip in every respect. Overall, Dominican Republic AYC is the greatest adventure of my life. I am grateful to have experienced this beautiful country and to have witnessed missions firsthand. Apostolic Youth Corps presented me with the opportunity of a lifetime, and I will cherish each moment and memory collected from this life-altering trip. It gave me a new perspective on missions as well as a passion and burden for souls. I encourage everyone to invest in the Great Commission to “go … into all the world, and preach the gospel” (Mark 16:15). Charla Mallicoat is eighteen years old and serves on the AV team for Auxano Youth in Cincinnati, Ohio, under the leadership of Pastors Norman Paslay II and Thomas Ellis. She is also involved in Red Life campus ministry at Miami University. This was her first AYC experience.

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[THIS IS MY STORY]

God’s Placement PAU L D E N N I S

n 1951 twenty-one-year-old Arless Glass joined the United States Air Force. When he took his basic training test for job classifications, he scored high on all nine tests and was allowed to choose his field. He chose the chaplaincy and was stationed at Craig Air Force Base in Alabama, where he worked as a chaplain’s assistant. For a short time he was assigned to teach a teen Sunday school class; then he received orders for an overseas assignment. This did not agree with Arless. He decided that after chow (dinner), he would go to his Sunday school classroom and pray and pray—pray all night if necessary—to get those orders changed. He knew God could get him out of this assignment. The first words out of his mouth were “O Lord, I don’t want to go overseas!” A near-audible voice replied, “But, Son, I want you to go overseas.” His all-night prayer meeting lasted five minutes. He accepted God’s answer. “That’s good enough for me, Lord” On July 13, 1951, Arless boarded the USN Patrick troop ship bound for Japan to play his role in God’s plan. After twelve or fourteen days of ocean travel, the ship docked in Naha, Okinawa. As Arless served his country, he also served his heavenly Commander-in-Chief, witnessing to everyone who would listen. He made inroads in the government bureaucracy and was allowed to use a room in the chapel at Camp Kuwai to hold Bible studies. He taught both military personnel and the Okinawans who worked on the post. Ninety-five of his buddies accepted the good news and were baptized in Jesus’ name, including Clifford Gustafson and Kenneth Fields, who became ministers with the United Pentecostal Church. Many more nationals Arless reached were baptized by the local Japanese pastor. One evening when he came in for Bible study he found a note on the pulpit saying he could no longer use the chapel. No explanation was given. No contact reference was named. He went looking for a place to hold the Bible studies. A couple of young Japanese ladies attending his class told him about their little church, The Spirit of Jesus Christ, not too far from the camp. Contacts were made and he was granted permission to use their building. The class grew. Because of the number of Okinawans attending, Arless enlisted the help of an interpreter. Working as a chaplain’s assistant, performing his military duties, and holding services at the Japanese church kept Arless moving and fulfilled his soul. 42

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On July 13, 1952, Arless received a call that his father had passed away. He needed to return home. This was a hard blow. Arless had to make a decision. He loved his parents, but he also loved what he was doing. The love of God had bonded him to these people. He knew that if he returned home, the military would reassign him to a new unit in the States. He would not be able to return to Okinawa. God was blessing the work. Arless knew that if he returned home, all would be lost. The hard decision was made. He told his family, “I cannot come home.” After this, the Okinawan work expanded. Each week he ministered to fourteen classes of military personnel and Japanese civilians. The Okinawan people were starved for the Word of the Lord. He baptized scores and witnessed them receiving the Holy Spirit, but many needed more training than he was able to give them. Leonard Coote’s Bible school, the Ikoma Bible College in Nara, was progressing. Arless contacted Leonard Coote about sending some of his converts there. They agreed Arless would send four the first time and four later—seven ladies and one man. Leonard Coote wrote about these students: And I just wish that some folks who were not fully in favor of the erection of the Bible College ordinarily could have been with us at the New Year’s convention of 1954 when the Okinawa contingent of seven girls broke down, wept as if their hearts would break as they pled with God for a mighty visitation of the Spirit upon their land. From the tithes and offerings, the church sent monthly funds for the students’ schooling. Leonard Coote said he would take care of their travel and housing expenses. After their graduation some of these students stayed in the mainland and others returned to Okinawa. In May 1953 Arless boarded the USN Randall returning to the United States. He later recalled, “I stood on board watching a group of the church people looking for me. When they saw me waving, Pastor Tokeshi held up one finger, then eight fingers, then five fingers. I knew he was saying, ‘Page 185.’ In their song book it was, ‘When We All Get to Heaven.’ Then they all began to sing. Oh! What a sendoff that was.”

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Paul Dennis is an author and retired missionary. This article has been excerpted and adapted from his book on the history of the Oneness Pentecostal movement in Japan, A Promise and a Plan, being published by Word Aflame Press. The book is due out spring 2014, and is available from the Pentecostal Publishing House. For more information on Arless Glass, read his autobiography The Master’s Cowboy, a Word Aflame Press book, also available from the Pentecostal Publishing House. JANUARY 2014

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[ P E N T E CO S TA L L I F E ]

“Better Than”

in the Book of Proverbs

ADAPTED FROM A C O M P I L AT I O N B Y A R LO M O E H L E N PA H

roverbs 8:11—Wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. Proverbs 8:19—My fruit is better than gold, yea, than fine gold; and my revenue than choice silver. Proverbs 12:9—He that is despised, and hath a servant, is better than he that honoureth himself, and lacketh bread.

Proverbs 19:22—The desire of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar. Proverbs 21:9—It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house. Proverbs 21:19—It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.

Proverbs 15:16—Better is little with the fear of the Lord than great treasure and trouble therewith.

Proverbs 25:7—Better it is that it be said unto thee, Come up hither; than that thou shouldest be put lower in the presence of the prince whom thine eyes have seen.

Proverbs 15:17—Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and hatred therewith.

Proverbs 25:24—It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman and in a wide house.

Proverbs 16:8—Better is a little with righteousness than great revenues without right.

Proverbs 27:5—Open rebuke is better than secret love.

Proverbs 16:16—How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!
 Proverbs 16:19—Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. Proverbs 16:32—He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city. Proverbs 19:1—Better is the poor that walketh in his integrity, than he that is perverse in his lips, and is a fool. 44

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Proverbs 27:10—Better is a neighbour that is near than a brother far off. Proverbs 28:6—Better is the poor that walketh in his uprightness, than he that is perverse in his ways, though he be rich. Arlo Moehlenpah has taught chemistry at three colleges and many courses at four Bible colleges and pastored two churches. He has written three books including one on creation vs. evolution, a subject he has presented at many churches and other meetings.

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MM T


Top Twenty Church Offerings

for giving to Mothers Memorial 2013! Offering total: $2,287,662.44 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20.

Pentecostals of Alexandria/Alexandria, LA–Anthony Mangun/Terry Shock . . . . . . . . $25,000.00 1st Pentecostal Church/Panama City, FL–Allen Crabtree . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20,200.00 United Pentecostal Church/Klamath Falls, OR–Randy Langley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20,068.75 Apostolic Faith/Racine, WI–James Schumacher. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19,386.51 Calvary Tabernacle/Indianapolis, IN–Paul Mooney . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18,484.00 1st Apostolic Church/White Hall, AR–Chris Dixon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17,551.00 1st Apostolic Church/Toledo, OH–Chris Dillingham . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15,120.37 South Flint Tabernacle/Flint, MI–Robert Henson . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14,189.69 Pentecostal Assembly/Eau Claire, WI–Paul Bennett . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14,021.28 1st Pentecostal Church/Baton Rouge, LA–Dan Davis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13,540.00 Calvary Tabernacle/Tampa, FL–James Wolfe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12,222.22 United Pentecostal Church/Bourbon, IN–Mark Cottrill . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12,123.13 1st Pentecostal Church/Bastrop, LA–Dwight Fulton/A.J. Fulton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12,020.00 1st UPC/Leesville, LA–Mark Christian . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12,015.45 1st Pentecostal Church/Bossier City, LA–Jerry Dean . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,752.87 United Pentecostal Church/Ripples, NB–Don McCarty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,752.50 Apostolic Faith Tabernacle/Pearcy, AR–Dennis Anderson . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,674.00 The Sanctuary UPC/Fairbanks, AK–G.A. Parrish. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,500.00 Powells Grove Pentecostal Church/Jayess, MS–Ronnie L. Turner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,300.00 Parkway Apostolic Church/Oak Creek, WI–Anthony Tamel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10,299.00

Top Ten District Offerings 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Louisiana Arkansas Illinois Texas Indiana South Texas Florida Wisconsin Ohio Mississippi

Resources from Ladies Ministries: The Girl in the Dress Covered by Love Unmasked For more information or to purchase, call Ladies Ministries at 314.837.7304 ext. 412. www.ladiesministries.org

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God and Water

“The spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters” (Genesis 1:2).

R.L. GILSTRAP

rom the beginning God has had an affinity with water. As essential as water is to our physical existence, it is no less essential to our spiritual existence. We find “water” mentioned the first time in the beginning verses of the Bible and the last time in the ending verses (Revelation 22:17). Sandwiched between these two occurrences “water” with its plural occurs over five hundred times. From the description of the earth in this verse we understand that there was no separation of water from what flowed without boundaries on the surface of the earth to the vapor that swirled in heavy bands around the earth. The earth in its primordial existence was a wet wonderland. The beauty of the earth was brought from water by the Lord. Many strange creation concepts have been conceived by man. The Babylonians believed in a world made from a commingling of fresh and salt water. Pima Indians believed Mother Earth was impregnated by a drop of water and creation was the result. Of course, Christians believe “in the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Not only is water necessary to sustain physical life, water in the Word of God is a symbol of God and salvation. God’s alliance with water is one of the most interesting studies of the Bible. There is nothing simpler than water in its composition, and nothing more complicated than God. Simple water is comprised of two atoms of hydrogen joined to one atom of oxygen. God is …! Two-thirds of the earth’s surface is water. Our bodies are twothirds water. We cannot live much longer than five days without water. The earth’s water is 97.5 percent salty and 2.5 percent fresh. About two-thirds of the fresh water is frozen. Americans use about one hundred gallons of water each day. Millions of the world’s poorest subsist on fewer than five gallons daily. Almost half (46 percent) of the world’s population have no water piped to their homes. Women walk an average of 3.7 miles to get water every day. One out of eight people in the world lacks access to clean water. As we cannot have physical life without water, we cannot have spiritual life without spiritual water. Jesus told the woman at the 46

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well, “Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again” (John 4:13). He was referring not only to the physical water that people drink, but also to the water that the world has to offer. Jesus said, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit which they that believe on him should receive” (John 7:37-39). We can learn something about the living water by studying the qualities of natural water. Our daily water, being a liquid, flows anywhere and everywhere. If there is a path for water to flow, it will seek that path. Anyone who has ever had a leaky roof will attest to this. Water seeks to enter anything designed to keep it out. If there is not a path, it will work on making a path. God’s Spirit, the living water, seeks to enter every heart of those who welcome Him and those who do not. “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10.) The hearts that resist Him and try to keep Him out are not excluded from His attempts to enter. Another physical quality of water that tells us a lot about the living water is its ability to seek the lowest level. Before builders had more sophisticated instruments, they would often use water to find the lowest level. Rivers flow in the valleys, for all the water that falls at higher elevations always seeks the valleys. This quality of the living water should encourage everyone who feels they are not worthy of the Lord. People criticized Jesus for eating and drinking with publicans and sinners. But Jesus said, “They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5:31-32). The Mississippi River is called “The Father of Waters,” for it receives all the water from all the rivers of both the eastern and western watersheds. Simply, all the water that falls east of the Rocky Mountains and west of the Appalachian Mountains runs into tributaries that eventually drain into the Mississippi River. To be able to have this kind of influence over all these tributaries, it must be lower than all of them. Our heavenly Father, who is higher than all, dressed Himself in

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flesh and came to this world as a servant. “And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:27-28). Jesus said, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me. This he said, signifying what death he should die” (John 12:32-33). A liquid always takes the shape of its container. Pour water into a bulging container, and the water will fill the bulges. Pour water into a strangely shaped vessel, and it will easily take the same strange shape. Many people feel they are too different to receive the living water. But it does not matter how different or strange a person may be, God’s water knows how to take the shape of that vessel and fill it. For this reason we find those who yield to the gift of the interpretation of tongues speaking in their vernacular. If God’s Spirit did not take the shape of the container, a believer with a limited vocabulary would sound the same as a believer who possesses a golden tongue of oratory. Water as a solvent has the ability to dissolve. Water as a purifier has the ability to wash away impurities. Water as a coolant has the ability to lessen the heat in objects. Water as a lubricant has the ability to ease the operation of moving parts. All of these physical qualities of water have beautiful applications in the spiritual realm. Living water can dissolve doubts and many other stubborn stains of sin. Living water can purify a life sullied by sin. Living water can cool and calm a heated relationship. Living water makes everything smoother. A flake of snow falls at an altitude of 14,190 feet on Pike’s Peak in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. The spring sun melts it. Joining other flaky friends, they form a drop of water that we will name “Drew.” Drew joins other drops, forming a small stream that eventually reaches the South Platte River near Colorado Springs. As a part of the river, it flows until the South Platte joins the North Platte in eastern Nebraska, forming the Platte River that cuts across Nebraska to reach the Missouri River on the boundary of Nebraska and Iowa. Flowing south and east, it crosses Missouri until it reaches the Mississippi River near St. Louis. From there Drew feels like a riverboat

captain as he joins his friends and rushes to the Gulf of Mexico below New Orleans, Louisiana. All along the way animals and people have their thirst quenched and their crops watered by its downward flow. Now let us pursue this same drop of water on a much different journey. Drew runs down the mountain eventually winding up, as before, in the Platte River in Nebraska. But swimming too closely to the bank he gets near an eddy. “Eddie” shoves Drew up against the bank and “Clay” quickly absorbs Drew. Now Drew begins to filter through layers and layers of rock until it reaches a huge underground lake known as the High Plains Aquifer. The High Plains Aquifer (or Ogallalah Acquifer) covers 174,000 square miles and is underneath parts of eight states (South Dakota to Texas). At its deepest it reaches four hundred feet (as deep as a forty-storied building). Thousands get their drinking water and irrigate their crops from this aquifer. So a farmer drills a well and pumps Drew, the High Plains Drifter, up to his cornfield in central Nebraska. Drew is drawn up into a stalk of corn and becomes part of a juicy kernel on an ear of corn. Note Drew’s trip all the way from a snowflake on Pike’s Peak to a bit of juice in a kernel of corn in a field in central Nebraska. When farmers abandoned their homesteads in Haskel County, Kansas, during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, they had no idea they stood atop part of the High Plains Aquifer, one of America’s most abundant underground reservoirs. Twenty years later, water pumped from the aquifer transformed the region to the nation’s breadbasket. Today the county has about eleven hundred producing wells that nourish its multimillion-dollar farm economy. If you are experiencing the dryness of the Dust Bowl in your life, remember you are standing on a spiritual aquifer that can satisfy all your thirst. It is estimated the High Plains Aquifer will go dry in twenty-five years, but the fountain of living water will continue to flow until every soul who seeks its flow is satisfied. R.L. Gilstrap lives in Houston, Texas. He serves as pastoral elder at Bethel Tabernacle in Houston. David Fauss is the pastor. JANUARY 2014

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General Conference 2014

September 30 - October 3 St. Louis, Missouri America’s Center

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LAUNCH YOUR MINISTRY BY SYLVIA CLEMONS

“Pray Ye Therefore …” n Matthew 9:36, Jesus was moved to compassion because He saw so many wandering around like sheep with no shepherd. He knew they had great need, were without guidance, had no real purpose and were hungry. In the next verse, He uttered the familiar words: “The harvest is plenteous, but the labourers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.” In the agricultural world, abundant crops are produced because the farmer plows, plants, and patiently tends them. He worries over his crops; they are something he cares about financially and emotionally. But come time for reaping, he can’t harvest the crop alone. He needs workers to help bring in the harvest before it is too late. There is a critical window of time for harvesting. Obviously, if God had chosen to do all the work Himself and manipulate this world and all of us in it, He could have. He could call up laborers without our praying, or our help. But that has never been His plan. He asks us to pray it into existence. He chose to work through His church and made Himself dependent on us to be His hands and feet and mouth. In this partnership, He does His part through calling people to Him, desiring to bring us back into intimate relationship. And He asks us to do our part as laborers in the field of the world. Yet, I wonder how many of us really feel the depth of compassion the Lord felt as He saw the needs of the people? Do we truly mourn the lack of laborers? Do we personally have a deep sense of the “pray ye” to which Jesus has called us? If the Lord is doing His part—and we can be assured that He is—then we can know there is a harvest ready to be gathered in. God’s Spirit is unhindered. He is relentlessly working to touch people and redeem the broken and lost. Because of His compassion and calling, souls are waiting for someone to speak Truth

to them. Without God’s Word and the purpose and direction from it, they wander. They are attracted to other things that capture their attention. They are searching for something to make them feel whole, something to give them purpose. So they look to Hollywood; they look to money; they look to chemical substances as substitutes, all while trying to fill the gaping hole and the gnawing hunger. May I suggest there are several reasons we perhaps fail to pray as we should for the laborers? First, if we don’t yet love our neighbors as ourselves (see Matthew 22:39), then it is difficult to have the compassion and burden needed to rise to this request to pray. Without our compassion and without

reapers in the harvest field. I suspect He makes divine appointments with these hungry souls crossing our paths every day. Do we recognize those appointments? Do we respond with compassion, speaking to them of God’s love? Every believer is a laborer. Because we are God’s children, we have been redeemed for a life of service and our work is waiting for us in the field. One of the questions is, “How attuned are we to the work and the calling?” Jesus knew that as His disciples prayed for laborers, they would indeed become the very laborers they were crying out for. If we spend time praying for laborers, then we ourselves become better laborers. We often become the answer to our own prayers. Let us begin to pray more fervently for laborers to help in the abundant harvest. Let us ask the Lord to help us feel the compassion and burden for this special work in the Kingdom. Pray that those whom God is calling will hear His call and not be distracted or pulled away by the call of the world. Pray that a laborer will reach that soul at exactly the right time to harvest. Let us also pray for the pastors, men and women around the globe whom God is using as He places in their hands the precious treasure of souls being harvested. Pray that all of us as laborers will not become weary in well doing but continue to pray and work in the area of ministry to which He has called us (Galatians 6:9; 2 Thessalonians 3:13). Pastors, Launch Your Ministry has many resources available to help you in the preparation and development of the laborers. Go to launchyourministry.com to find the resources and a plan for training the reapers who are coming forth.

Jesus knew that as His disciples prayed for laborers, they would indeed become the very laborers they were crying out for. these prayers, fields ready for harvesting will be left to perish. Souls who are hungry for something they don’t yet know about, will never know. They will not be gathered in; they will die in the field. Second, perhaps we don’t believe enough in the power of prayer to bring about the results of supplying more laborers. Do you believe that your prayers yield results? Has God ever healed you? Has He ever provided for you in a time of great need? If He has done those things (and many more, I suspect), why would He not be thrilled and diligent to answer the specific prayer that He asked us to pray? Jesus is Lord of the Harvest (see Matthew 9:38 and Luke 10:2). He is planting the crop; He is caring for it and patiently watching over it as it develops and matures toward harvest time. Now He waits for us to be the

Sylvia Clemons is an ordained minister of the United Pentecostal Church International. She is also a licensed counselor on staff at Hope Center Church in San Antonio, Texas. Nathan Scoggins is the pastor.

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Letters to the Editor I am the Ladies president of the Quebec District, and for a year now, we have been publishing a condensed electronic version of Reflections magazine in French, with the permission of UPCI Ladies Ministries. We are requesting permission from you to publish the French translation of the following article in our magazine: “Start the Year with a Stop List” (January 2013 issue of the Pentecostal Herald). Thank you for your assistance. God bless. —Liane Grant Editor’s response: Please feel free to publish the article. We ask only that you cite the Pentecostal Herald.

I appreciate the November issue of the Pentecostal Herald, particularly David Bernard’s concise and informative article “Doctrine of God in Early Church History,” Eugene Wilson’s account of visiting Leadership Summit (more ministers need to visit outside events), and Justin Conway’s and Ann Ahren’s references to books that can open up our thinking. I also appreciate Nate Binion’s wide-open perspective. The coverage of the Youth Conference mentioned several youth ministries I didn’t know about and will now try to initiate in my work. Thank you for this issue. If in future you go all-online, as more publications are doing, you will be able to devote more resources to not printing on paper and mailing but on spreading the content so it can be used much more flexibly as people click, “like”, tweet, and share the magazine with more people. — Stanley Scism Editor’s response: Thanks for your comments and suggestion. The Pentecostal Herald is currently available online to subscribers of the printed version of the magazine.

I love the Pentecostal Herald. As a new Pentecostal lady (I’m sixteen years old), life in this world is sometimes discouraging. I came into the church by myself, leaving everything behind. I especially appreciate the My Hope Radio interviews by Tiffini Countaway. I search for good, wholesome music by Pentecostal artists and have found a few pretty good ones on myhoperadio. com. I have started listening to Kaylx Ballestero, Joy Garr and a couple of more artists. Your articles cause me to think—they’re not just something to read when I’m bored; they’re inspiring. The October 2013 issue (“On Being Pentecostal”) came right when I really needed it. My testimony is similar to Chris Anderson’s testimony (“Delivered from the Occult”). My first experience with Pentecost was similar to that of Deanna Dugas (“My First Pentecostal Worship Experience”). Keep up the good work. As long as you keep publishing, I’ll keep reading. —Selena Guloroco

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I heard that the Pentecostal Herald is now available in a digital format. If this is the case, is it possible to convert from a physical magazine subscription to a digital subscription? I discovered that all issues of the Pentecostal Herald up through 2004 are available on a DVD, which is searchable from PPH. This is a great resource. —Kevin Prince Editor’s response: Thanks for your inquiry. You heard correctly, the Pentecostal Herald is now available in a digital format to subscribers of the print version. However, if you choose that option you will also continue to receive the print version. If you don’t wish to keep the physical magazine, I suggest you donate it to a library or to the waiting room at a doctor’s office. I enjoyed Scott Graham’s article (“Captivated by Worship”) in the November Pentecostal Herald. I had never thought about why the other prisoners did not try to escape when their chains fell off. —Chad Flowers

Send letters for possible publication to: syoung@upci.org, brosser@upci.org, or Pentecostal Herald 8855 Dunn Road • Hazelwood, MO 63042-2299. Letters may be edited for style, grammar, punctuation, or length.

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Bread


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The new 2014 BREAD Bible from Word Aflame. You want everyone in your congregation to think biblically. The best way to accomplish this is to motivate them to read their Bible every day. The BREAD Bible is a resource you can place in their hands to make daily Bible reading a reality. Now in chronological order, this softcover Bible provides a new way to follow the BREAD program and read the Bible through in one year. At only $6.99 each when purchased in a case of 24, every member of your church can participate!

• Now in chronological order • Coordinated with the annual BREAD program • Focused thoughts by Apostolic authors to begin each reading • Daily reading to complete the Bible in one calendar year • A certificate for recording your completion of reading the Bible • Only $6.99 each in a case of 24 • King James Version • Detachable bookmarks • Also available: a new Children’s BREAD Bible (25343).

Start the new year with a whole-church Bible reading campaign with the BREAD Bible. Scan or visit www.wordaflamepress.com/breadbible to watch a video about the BREAD Bible and to order.

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Pentecostal Herald January 2014