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And the word of the Lord was received, "hundreds will become thousands."

A Commission is Given: On Tuesday morning, November 10th, 1999, Jo Ann Wilkins received a (1 Corinthians 12:7) "word of wisdom" from the Lord. She was told during prayer 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 Town in Los Angeles, the area where many homeless people live. She did what the Lord requested of her, and has continued in this ministry with the support of her husband ever since.

On Saturday, March 24th, 2001, Jo Ann and her husband Burton received another "word of wisdom" from a minister they had never met and who had not been told in advance that they were either in ministry or feeding the homeless. In part, what this minister said to Burton is as follows, "Your wife is involved in a ministry downtown. ... My intent (God is speaking now) was that the two of you should operate as a team.... 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. ... In time, hundreds will become thousands... This is the beginning of My new church." Having received this instruction, the two have continued as a team. Jo Ann has feed the multitude, while Burton has preached the spiritual word. On June 12th, 2001 the state of California certified this ministry as a non-profit religious corporation named "Godís Church". Presently, Godís Church is feeding and preaching to approximately 220 people the last two Sundays of the month.

A Prophecy Fulfilled: God said, "This is the beginning of My new church." And indeed a new church has been started. God said the church would be His church, so the church was named Godís Church to denote literally Godís possessive ownership of that church and its membership. God said that the church would start with "hundreds" and indeed His new church has started with "hundreds." These prophecies of God have been fulfilled.

A Prophecy Given: But God also said, "In time, hundreds will become thousands." God also said, "You two are My instrument to save these peopleís lives." How could God use two little people to create a new church composed of a transient membership of hundreds into becoming a church of thousands? Indeed, Burton asked of the Lord through the minister as the "word" was given to him. "Lord, my wife and I are presently feed the homeless the last two weeks of the month. When do you expect us to expand that ministry to every week of the month?" And the Lord answered through the minister, "Iím leaving that decision to the two of you. You will know the time."

How do "hundreds" become "thousands"? Pastors Burton and Jo Ann have been spending considerable time in prayer seeking how "hundreds will become thousands", and indeed there are some strategic challenges and problems in arriving at that goal.

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Money: Although others have started to tithe to the ministry, the reason why Godís Church is only having services twice a month is because that has been the limit of the Churchís treasury to date. Finding people to attend is not a problem. When the Wilkinsí Ford Explorer starts driving down the streets of that part of LA, the poor and homeless simply appear from everywhere and begin walking to where they know the feeding and ministry will be. The reality is that were this ministry there every week, the numbers attending would undoubtedly double immediately. As much as Godís Church wants to provide those services, with the feeding and the raffle following there are not yet the funds.

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Logistics: Right now, Burton and Jo Ann pack their Ford Explorer to the max with food and items for the poor such that there is hardly room for the driver to drive the vehicle. Two other cars are used to transport items to services, but the point is that this is not a solution. Were services to become weekly, buying more SUVs to transport goods to the site makes no sense.

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Space: When Burton, Jo Ann and others arrive at the site for services, they set up tables and start to feed the people. The problem is that even though the sidewalks there are quite wide, there is not enough room for all the people coming and for more tables. Double those numbers of people, and then the Church has real problems. There would be insufficient room to feed the people and the time to set up and feed larger numbers becomes prohibitive.

The Solution: The Mobile Church and the Mobile Canteen! The design offered in this brochure is the solution that Burton and Jo Ann have come upon. They have prayed over the design at length, and presented it to the Lord. They have been told that the approach is acceptable to God. The Mobile Church frees up sidewalk space so that more can attend services. The Mobile Canteen will provide up to four food-serving lines, which will have the capacity collectively to feed more than a thousand people an hour. This approach offers to the poor of LA their own church; one that will minister to them where they live. The Mobile Church and the Mobile Canteen solve both the problems of logistics, and space. This leaves the challenge of money. A project like this is going to cost approximately $160,000. After these capital expenditures, there will be the necessity of dealing with the ongoing costs to finance this operation. The poor have no means to support such an institution. Therefore, both these capital costs and the ongoing costs must be financed elsewhere.

Godís Assurance of "Revival": When God was detailing this commission to Burton, Burton asked of God this question, "Will there be revival?" The minister delivering the word of wisdom to Burton answered, "This is revival!" Burton pressed the question again to the minister, "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." This assurance by God was made at the Bonnie Brae House, the original location of the Azusa Street Revival here in Los Angeles.

God promises revival, but how does Godís Church now encourage that revival? Is revival only for the poor and homeless of LA? Are they now the privileged class? No! A major move of the Holy Spirit cannot be a respecter of persons, nor the propriety of a single church or even a single denomination. For there to be revival, it must encompass the whole body of Christ; Catholic, Protestant, even Messianic Jew. Whether white, black, Latino, Asian, male, female, or gay, the rich, the poor, or the middle class, "love of neighbor" and the "love of Christ" requires outreach to all Godís children. To this end, note the design of both the Mobile Canteen and the Mobile Church. Above the driverís cabin of the Mobile Church is an orchestra balcony, when Godís Church has no orchestra. Above the Mobile Canteen there is a choir balcony, when Godís Church has no choir.

LA is filled with many fine churches representing a rainbow of denominations. Our God is a god of diversity, who loves mankind to such extent that He has promoted a thousand different marketing plans through these varied denominations all just to encourage relationship with His children. The leadership of many of these fine institutions will admit that they have insufficient opportunity to minister to the poor and to the homeless simply because their facilities and their congregations are geographically distant from where the homeless live.

The plan of Godís Church, and we believe Godís as well, is to make Godís Church the ministerial outreach for all LAís churches; to invite their choirs, their orchestraís to come to downtown LA and help us to minister to the poor. Are there not countless men and women in all of these institutions who would relish the opportunity to help serve in the Mobile Canteen? God has said to Burton, "You can preach! You can really preach!", but isnít Southern California filled with dozens if not hundreds upon hundreds of gifted ministers and priests who have within themselves golden words of inspiration that have been bottled up inside of them for decades that the poor and the homeless have never heard, and have up to now had no opportunity to ever hear?

The plan of Godís Church - and hopefully therefore the plan of God, - is to involve the entire body of Christ in this outreach to win souls for the Kingdom. Christ tells the believer, (Matthew 25:35-36) "I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.í " And Jesus said, (Matthew 25:40) "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me." Godís Church intends to invite the choirs, the musicians, those who are in ministry of helps all to come down and serve. Godís Church hopes that those gifted ministers and priests will be able to visit and preach to those who are in the greatest need of a spiritual physician. For some churches, this involvement will be once or twice a year, or even every other year. For other churches, their involvement will be by their own decision limited to ongoing financial support. It is the belief, hope and prayer of Godís Church that this united and collective involvement, this "love of neighbor", will so please Godís Holy Spirit, that revival will come not only to the poor and the homeless of LA, but that revival will then be taken back by all those who participate to engender a firestorm for salvation, souls, healing, and renewal the like of which may have not been seen in this country for a century. Certainly, the establishment and maintenance of Godís Church will cost money. But for the entire body of Christ, this is not a problem but rather an opportunity.

 

 

 

 

Copyright © 2001 [God's Church]