the beginning, God created ..."
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.
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."
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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."
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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."
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
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
Copyright © 2001 [God's Church]