Sunday, July 22, 2007


Ken getting ready to fly 7504x from Atlanta Ga. to Durango Mexico for difficult and dangerous Missionary Work. Example: Flying into a high mountain dirt airstrip 8700 feet high to LaNoria with just enough gas to get back to Durango with two people in the aircraft. Instead I flew out of there with three people, struggling to get airborne. High density altitude almost did us in. We got a woman who was dying with enceplelitis to the hospital in Durango and saved her life.

Years ago I made the mistake of telling the President of a Christian Missionary Training School that God talks to me. He astonished me by saying: “I’ve never had that experience. In fact I don’t even know when I got saved. I just grew up in a Christian home, and attended a Christian college. He went on to say that God didn’t call him to be a missionary. He just decided to try it and was successful. [whatever that means] He went on to say that God didn’t call him to be the president of this Missionary organization but he had the talent and ability to do it so he was elected as it’s president.”

I couldn’t believe my ears. The question in my mind was: "why did this young man feel comfortable without ever hearing the voice or the call of God and yet be the head of what was called a Christian Missionary Organization?"

I’m going to try to answer that question. The first thing that comes to mind is the great emphasis that is placed on academic education. No, I’m not against being educated. A woman once wrote to Charles Spurgeon and told him that God didn’t need his “book larning.” Charles Spurgeon wrote her back and told her that God didn’t need her ignorance either.

Any college graduate will tell you that before they get their diploma they have at least read parts of a stack of books about six feet high. Every airline pilot has studied books until their brains felt like mush. They have to learn thousands of rules, regulations, emergency procedures; the mechanical working of the aircraft, complex and complicated flight information, meteorology and the list could go on and on.

No one should ever put down knowledge. It’s always a valuable tool. For example, in over 50 years that I’ve had a pilot’s license I paid my dues, read everything I could get my hands on about flying and took lots of advise from veteran pilots. I was a Missionary pilot for years. It’s a dangerous business and several of my closest friends died doing it.

I gave up my dream of being a pilot in the Airforce to be a Minister of the Gospel. Years later God allowed me to do exactly what I had given up. I had learned to fly, but fogotten about flying and didn't have the money to drive a car much less fly an airplane. But God spoke to me "To buy an airplane and get ready to go to the mission field as a Missionary pilot". In less than a week I had the Cessna Skyhawk and was getting ready to be a missionary pilot. Yes, I was euphoric and filled with awe.

I’ve taken lots of people on flights across the country. One thing always happened. In my aircraft there was a radio speaker mounted on the ceiling of the cockpit just above the pilot’s head. A pilot talking to the control center sounds like Greek to a non-pilot passenger sitting in the right seat.

The message that comes back over the speaker above the pilot’s head is absolutely incomprehensible to the non-pilot. I’ve been asked many times: “What did they say? How can you possibly understand that message.” Well, the answer is simple. I’ve heard it before, I know what the message is probably going to be, and I understand the aviation language they are using.

In II Timothy 3 Paul told Timothy that terrible times would come in the last days. What he wrote describes our country perfectly. In verse 5 he said men would have a form of Godliness but deny its power. Have nothing to do with them. In verse 7 he said: “They are ever learning but never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”

How in the world can that be? Let’s take a look at the second chapter of Ist Corinthians verse 12: “We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. Verse 14: The man without the spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him. and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

This passage is telling us that being saved is much, much more than reading about or even believing that Jesus was the Son of God. Knowledge has it place but not here. Churches often try to teach people to evangelize by visiting people, use psychology, and clever arguments to lead a person to saying those magic words: “I believe Jesus is the Son of God, and accept him as my savior. Then they say: "I guess according to what you have told me, I’m saved.”

If someone had to tell you that you have been born again, you didn’t get it. The bible tells us that the devils believed and trembled but that didn’t mean they were saved. Knowing God is such a powerful experience that no one has to tell you that you have had it. My Uncle used to tell me that if the “stewards” in his church would get saved it would be the biggest revival in the history of their church.

I was taken to church when I was two week old and later on as a young boy attended every Sunday morning, Sunday evening and Wednesday night church service with my mother. I hated church. By the time I was six years old I could cuss for five minutes without repeating myself, and loved to tell my mother lies. At eleven years old I had heard all the hell fire and brimstone sermons you could ever imagine and by that time they had absolutely no effect on me.

One day at eleven years old in front of a store I heard a little Salvation Army brass band play “Down at the Cross-where my savior died.” They never knew it but I started to cry and walked into some bushes so no one could see me. I didn’t know what in the world caused that reaction. Over the next two week this strange thing would come over me and I would cry. Something was happening to me and I didn’t know what.

Then I heard the still small voice of God speaking to me. He said: “Your father is unsaved, and unless you do something he is going to be lost.” The country was just coming out of the great depression and my father was working hard to feed and clothe 9 children. He was so busy he never was very close to me. But it broke my heart to think of him being lost. God knew I was too stubborn and full of sin to be worried about myself and he reached me exactly where I was the most vulnerable.

Finally, on a Wednesday night at eleven o’clock in the bed by myself I made a decision. I knew I would have to give up my passionate ambition to be an Army Air Force Pilot. I loved airplanes. I told the Lord that if he would save my Dad I would give him my life for the longest day I lived. As God’s peace came over me I knew I had a covenant with God and the Holy Spirit had changed me. Soon everyone in amazement knew it too. Even the dear black lady that helped my mother keep house and raise us knew it. She knew what I had been and had trouble believing what I had become. She finally said "he shore has changed."

I never told a soul why I became a Christian. When I finished high school my father offered to send me to college but when I insisted that I had to be a minister he said: “I won’t give you one thin dime to be a preacher.” Finally I left home with $2.38 cents in my pocket, a few clothes in a handbag, my bible and hitchhiked away from home to preach the gospel. I didn't know where I was going or what I would do. I knew absolutely nothing except that God had called me.

Later, I was married and had a daughter that my father had never seen. I got word in a revival that my dad had suffered a massive heart attack and if I wanted to see him I had better come home. I couldn’t pray a single prayer. I drove straight to the hospital and when I walked into his room the tears rolled down his cheeks. He said: “Son, I’ve got something to tell you. "I know Dad," I said. Then he said to me: "I’ve prayed and given my heart to the Lord. I want you to forgive me and bring your wife and that baby I’ve never seen to our house when I get out of this hospital.” We cried and rejoiced together. We all spent two weeks at home with family.

I never told him or anyone else why I became a Christian. It was private between God and myself. From then on he was my strongest ally and did what he could to help us. We had some really tough times but God always was faithful to us.

Years later I went to see my Dad. After 20 years of heart attacks, strokes and many physical problems he was so weak and sick he could barely walk and wanted me to help him out to the front porch. We sat down in a swing and he knew his time was short. He said, with tears running down his thin, wrinkled face, “Son, out of all the wrong things I’ve ever done in my life there’s one thing that troubles me to most. I regret that I was so blind and didn’t help you become a minister. Will you please forgive me for that?” I cried and hugged him and said “Dad, I can’t do that. I’ve never held anything against you and there’s nothing to forgive. He cried and said: “Please, just say the words to me.” Tearfully, I said: “Dad I forgive you.” We hugged each other and cried.

I never told him why I gave my heart to the Lord. A few weeks later he fell over and was gone. At the funeral I couldn’t shed a tear. I knew my Dad was safe. Running over and over in my mind was one thought. God has been faithful to his promise and now I must be faithful to mine.

When God speaks to us, we know it. It has some eternal purpose, and always involved his will for us. 20 years is a long time to wait for the proof but I never had a doubt that God would save my Dad.

I have a wonderful daughter and a son-in-law who are dedicated Christians. My three grandchildren are wonderful Christians and a constant joy to us. I’ve traveled and preached all over the world and have a wonderful life. The blessings of obedience are still going on for all of us.

My wife and I have been in full time Ministry together for over 57 years. We started Christian Ministries over 17 years ago. We meet people everywhere, in the strangest places, and pray with them often in public places. I create the booklets and CD’s in my office and we give them to needy people that we meet and pray with in the strangest places. Often we pray with them in the parking lots, shopping centers, and even on commercial aircraft. Their reaction is to say that they have been praying for help and know that God sent us to them.

It takes time for us to pray with troubled people and give them full color helpful booklets and a CD called “Songs for troubled hearts”. We have never asked for money but simply trust God to supply what we needed. Somehow we always have just enough to keep going. It’s really been amazing how God provides for us as we do his will.

(1 Cor 3:5-9 NIV) “What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. {6} I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow. {7} So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.

1 comment:

  1. This brought tears to my eyes. I kept thinking how wonderful this country would be if all pastors of all churches and denominations could give us the same assurance you have given. I know this account personally and living in your home - watching your ministry - was a liberating experience.

    I often wonder about other pastors and their experience with God. Why would I want to subject myself to the teaching and authority of a pastor who may not be as far in his walk as I am. It's hard to reach back to find progress. It's much easier and more productive to follow someone who has mastered the trail before you.

    I'm forcing myself to read a book called "Confessions of a Pastor" It's HORRIBLE. Don't read it. He claims he's getting real with God, but also says he can't stand a lot of Christians. How can you possibly love and preach to people you hate? And this man has a church with thirty-seven weekly worship experiences at nine locations. How truly sad!

    Dad, I am so very proud of you and mother and I'm so thankful for your ministry. They say only people inside a home know the true story. For all your readers let me assure them. I am a devout Christian today because my parents carefully lived it in front of me. My children are Christians because they have seen it lived in our extended families. Thank you for listening to that small voice. Thank you for being Pastor Ken.

    I love you,