Make your own free website on Tripod.com

 

 

 

About The Ministry

 

Home
Up

 

"In the beginning, God created ..."

(Genesis 1:1)

How does God begin a new church? God creates, as is His nature, just as He created in the book of Genesis (1:3). "Then God said, "Let there be ..." and by the power of His word alone, a new church comes to be.

How Godís Church came to be? This then is the story of how Godís Church came to be. The story begins with how God choose to use two people, a husband and wife.

Wednesday, November 10th, 1999, Burt having come home from work was greeted by his wife with a question, "Dear, guess what I did today?" Burt had not a clue. She told him, "Iíve been out feeding the homeless." He replied, "Thatís wonderful Dear. How did this come about?" Then she told her husband that she woke up at 1 in the morning that Tuesday night, and began to pray. As a result, she received what the Bible describes as a word of wisdom from the Lord to "wait."

The Bible informs us that to receive a "word of wisdom" is a "manifestation of the Spirit" given unto Christians. (1 Corinthians 12:7-10) "But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues."

Now to be told at 1 in the morning to "wait", is not the type of message most would appreciate, even from God. Being told to "sleep" might have been more appreciated, but his wife was told to "wait". So Burt's wife adhered to Godís directive and stayed awake in prayer "waiting" till 3 in the morning. At 3 AM, she received a much more detailed word of wisdom from the Lord. The Holy Spirit told his wife that the following day she was to take the long folding table from the back porch, and place it in her Ford Explorer. She was to make 150 hotdogs, potato salad, a garden salad, acquire soft drinks and bottled water and feed anyone who wanted food down at 6th and Towne in Los Angeles. God actually gave her this address. This area of Los Angeles is where many homeless people live.

When Burt's wife told her husband all that she had done, he told he was proud of her. She confessed, "I didnít tell you this morning, because I was afraid you might think me silly and try and discourage me." Burt told his wife, "No Dear, not at all. To the contrary, I am very proud of you. You heard from God, and you did what God asked you to do." From that day on, Burt's wife has gone to that address in downtown Los Angeles to serve those in need now the last two Sundays of every month. Her husband has supported her in this.

Time passed. Beyond feeding the needy, both Burt and his wifer had been appointed Elders in a small Christian church. One Saturday in February 2001, Vilma Hagler, a lady in this small Christian church came to Burt and said, "The Lord has a word for you." Surprised, Burt responded somewhat in humor, "Well, I hope itís a good word?" Velma replied, "No, Iím serious. The Lord has a word for you." Burt responded, "Well, in that case I am prepared to receive that word now. What is the word that the Lord has for me?" Velma answered, "I donít have it." Burt asked, "Well then, who does or how have you come to this conclusion?" Velma replied, "The Lord has impressed upon me that you are to go to the Bonnie Brae house. There you will meet a gentleman called Frank. When you see Frank, he will have for you a word from the Lord." Since Burt had never heard of the Bonnie Brae house , she then explained to him that this house was indeed where the Azusa Street revival had started here in Los Angeles in the early 1900s.

Burt then asked, "Does Frank know me?" Velma replied, "No." Burt asked, "Does this Frank know that he has a word of the Lord for me?" Velma answered, "No." Burt asked, "Does Frank know me or know Iím coming?" She replied, "No. When you see him, then he will receive a word of the Lord for you and give that you that word." Velma then gave Burt directions on how to get to the Bonnie Brae house. Burt thanked her for the information, and told her that he would investigate her claim.

Burt decided he would have his wife accompany him as a witness when he visited this Bonnie Brae house. Consequently, it took him more than a month to coordinate their combined visit. Finally, on Saturday, March 24, Burt and wife as well as her youngest daughter all arrived together at the Bonnie Brae house, a place they had never been; to met people they did not know; and to receive a message they had not expected.

The Bonnie Brae house is somewhat like a museum of the earliest days of the Pentecostal movement. When Burt, his wife and daughter entered into the house, a man indeed named Frank, as well as his wife met them. Frank Lennon is an ordained minister in the Church of God in Christ. About five other individuals arrived when Burt and his wife arrived and all then were given a tour of facility. After the tour, everyone sat down together in the museumís living room so that Frank could explain how he came to manage the Bonnie Brae house, and to describe the houseís history as it related to the founding of the Pentecostal movement. Frank then went on to say, "Now that I have explained the history of this place, I have been given a word of the Lord to share with at least five people seated in this room today."

Frank turned to Burt first. Then, he spoke to his wife's daughter. About four years prior, this daughter had developed schizophrenia. She received treatment and medication, and has this physical condition well under control. This daughter has also been a special child. She was born mentally retarded. What he said to the daughter was most remarkable so let us begin with that first.

Frank began to talk with daughter, "Pardon me young lady, but could I ask how old you are?" The daughter had not said a word since entering the Bonnie Brae house, but rather had politely listened while Frank and others had conversed. Being somewhat surprised to be addressed, she hesitated to respond. Burt's wife replied for her, "This is my daughter. She is 30 years old." Frank continued, "The Lord is telling me that you have had a problem since birth. It has to do with your brain; something about the right side of your brain not communicating with the left side, and visa versa. God is telling me to tell you that you will be essentially healed and continue to progress." As you can imagine, this was incredibly wonderful news for Burt, his wife and her daughter. All in attendance received the news of this healing and claimed it with the greatest of joy.

After this Saturday meeting, Burt came back to the Bonnie Brae house three days later to seek greater clarification of exactly the depth of the daughterís healing. He asked the Lord through Frank whether this healing would correct either her mental retardation or would it be a healing of her schizophrenia; because if it were a healing of the daughterís schizophrenia, this would mean that she could be taken off the medication that she has been taking after this two week period of time. Frankís response, after consulting with the Lord, was that the daughter would be healed of both. Frank told Burt that her progress would be slow. In other words, after this second Saturday Burt and his wife could expect this daughter to mature intellectually on a yearly basis as if she was a normal child simply growing up.

Frank had also spoken with Burt and as well. Frank began his conversation with Burt by asking, "Your name, Sir?" Burt replied, "My name is Burt." Frank continued, "Burt, the Lord is telling me that he really loves you. He really loves you! You can preach! You can really preach!" Burtís duties in the small church had been to conduct the liturgy and to give a sermon to the churchís congregation once a month. Apparently through Frank, God was showing his approval of how Burt had been presenting His sermons.

The minister continued, "But Ö " (here then came a criticism of Burt, however gentle. Matthew 5:15, Mark 4:21, and Luke 8:16) "God does not light a candle to place it under a bushel basketÖ" Burt understood this to mean that although the content of his sermons was appreciated, that the Lord was telling him that his preaching gift was not being affectively utilized in the small church. The minister continued, "but rather one places that light upon a lamp stand so that it gives light to the entire house." God was telling Burt through this minister that he was to speak elsewhere. (Luke 8:17) "For nothing is secret that will not be revealed, nor anything hidden that will not be known and come to light" The minister continued, "Hello! Hello! Are you receiving this?" The minister wanted to emphasize what he had just said. Burt nodded his understanding and his surprise.

The minister continued, "Your wife is involved in a ministry downtown." Burt's wife replied, "Yes, I was given a word of the Lord to feed the homeless. We do this the last two weeks of each month." The minister continued, "Burt, I never Ö (Notice at this point, God was now speaking strongly through the minister to Burt in the first person) Burt, I never intended that you were merely to be the financial backer of this operation." Everything the minister was saying was the truth. Burt and his wife did not know this man. They had never met this man. Their arrival at the Bonnie Brae house had not been disclosed in advanced. Yet, this minister knew all these things about this couple.

Burt had been the main financial backer of this food ministry. God continued to speak through this minister, "Rather, my intent was that the two of you should operate as a team; that this is to be a new church, and the two of you are to pastor that church. You are to preach to them, and your wife is to feed them. What you are doing is like the front lines in a war. These people are on the precipice to Hell. Your ministry is like a Mash unit: Youíre dealing with the walking wounded. You two are My instrument to save these peopleís lives."

What a surprise! What a blessing, but also what a sobering responsibility. God then began to prophesized through the minister about His new church, "In the beginning, there will be hundredsÖ" Burt replied to both the minister and God, "Itís already hundreds! Were feeding over 200 every time we go down there." The minister continued, "but in time hundred will become thousands." This has to be of God. Burt and his wife could not possibly do this alone. Only God could accomplish this. The minister continued, "Youíre going to need a sound system." Burt answered, "Iíve already gotten a sound system for my wife." Burt was referring at the time to a megaphone he had purchased for his wife. Almost immediately he realized that God was speaking of a larger scale. The minister continued, "Youíre going to need it. This is the beginning of My new church." After this, the minister laid hands upon my Burt and his wife, anointed both of them with oil, prayed, and commissioned the two of them as evangelists in Godís work.

On Tuesday when Burt came back to this minister and asked for some clarification, he asked, "Will there be revival?" The minister answered, "This is revival!" Burt asked, "Is this your opinion or is the Lord telling you that this is revival?" The minister replied, "The Lord is telling me that this is revival. Revival has already come. It is in your ministry." Burt asked, "Will there be healing?" Before the minister could answered Burt pleaded with the Lord, "Look, these people are hurting; physically, spiritually! Theyíre without homes, without purpose. Theyíre diseased, on drugs, alcohol, prostitution, AIDs... Some are without sound minds. When you sent Moses into Egypt to free the Jews, you did not send him alone. No, Your presence was with him and You equipped Moses with a rod to do miracles, and his brother to speak for him. If Your ministry here is to succeed, is it not just as important to equip us as well? If hundreds are to become thousands, healing will accomplish that." Burt was pleading with God. The minister answered that in time, with prayer, direction, and obedience, healings will indeed begin.

 

 

Copyright © 2001 [God's Church]

Home Up Next