FGBMFA PRESIDENTS NEWSLETTER – JANUARY 3, 2010
THE RETIRED PEOPLE IN YOUR CHAPTER HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO BECOME AMERICA’S AND THE FELLOWSHIPS MOST VALUABLE RESOURCE
In September of 1986, a Christian businessman by the name of Norvel Hayes was speaking in our Full Gospel Business Men’s Pacific Northwest Men’s Advance. During the course of the meetings Norvel described something I will never forget… he related that Jesus came to him (in a vision) and sat in the car with him, and said, “If my people would only worship me more, they could have whatever they asked.” Jesus went on to say, “Most churches advertise an 11:00 worship service, but nobody worships me. They just sing a few songs, take the offering and preach a sermon.” I don’t remember anything else that Norvel said in that meeting, but I can still remember those words: “…no one ever worships me.” For the next several weeks all I could think about was what Jesus had said to Norvel Hayes: “If my people would only worship me more, they could have whatever they ask… but no one ever worships me.” Several weeks later I made a covenant with myself, not with God, but with myself, that whenever I would wake in the night, I would arise and worship the Lord just because He is God. Therefore, since September of 1986, it has been my habit that when I wake in the middle of the night, I rise and go into another room of our home where I worship the Lord and pray. For over fifteen years I never missed a night, I arose every evening to worship the Lord and pray. But one day the Lord showed me that I had become prideful of the fact that I hadn’t missed a night of prayer in over 15 years, and for a time I quit the rigid daily routine of getting up in the night to pray.
I still arise often in the middle of the night to pray and worship the lord, but it is no longer a matter of pride and routine, it is now a desire of my heart. I do so because I want to fellowship with the Holy Spirit and enlist His assistance in dealing with the issues facing our Fellowship, our Nation and My family. During the last year particularly I have felt the need to pray in the Spirit much, many times for four to six hours a day. Today was such a day. It is not unusual for me to pray much of the day, often as I drive from place to place, exercise or accomplish routine tasks while praying in the spirit. One of the beautiful things about praying in the spirit is your mind is free to deal with the world around you while your spirit along with the Holy Spirit is free to pray as the Spirit wills.
Some of you older men may remember that for many years starting in the early 1990’s I led the Morning Prayer meetings at the World Conventions of the Fellowship. In the mid-ninety’s I asked Dr. Terry Peters and his wife Gerry to join with me in leading those meetings. Gerry Peters who is fluent in several languages would translate the meetings into Spanish, as well as other languages. Often we would ask men and women from other nations to pray in their native tongue, German, French, Norwegian, Japanese… while the rest of us would pray softly in the Holy Ghost. Those meetings grew until there were two to three hundred or more in the 7:00 AM prayer meetings. As I have traveled in Africa, Central America, Asia and other areas of the world, the men in those areas often say that they remember me from the Convention Prayer Meetings. I know the same thing is true of Dr. Peters.
When we started Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship in America in 2006, Dr. Peters was one of the first Directors to join with FGBMFA, and I asked him to serve as National Director in Charge of Prayer. The Prayer Exhortations posted on the FGBMFA website have mostly been written by Dr. Peters. In the years that I have known Terry Peters he often talked about a sign painter named Morris Means who mentored him in the early days of his Christian walk. Morris who recently passed away at the age of 88 lived in East Texas, in his later years he was in charge of prayer for the Greenville Texas Chapter and a mentor to Doug Raines who heads up our National Outreach Ministries.
For Christmas this year Dr. Peters and his talented wife Gerry sent me a book entitled “The Art of Seeking God – Developing a mighty and effective prayer life” authored by his old mentor Morris Means. Since Morris was a relatively simple man who hadn’t attended a university, I hadn’t expect his book to be so articulately written, every page was filled with meaty information, but it was presented in a wonderfully interesting and artful way. My first thought was that he must have used a ghost writer, someone who took Morris’ notes and actually wrote the book for Morris. Last night while talking with Douglas Raines and he related to me that he had known Morris for many years. He explained that Morris had been born again while reading a Full Gospel Business Men’s Voice Magazine when he was 41 years old, thus he had always been very close to the Fellowship. Doug remarked that when he first read “The Art of Seeking God” that he was also taken back by the journalistic quality of the book and asked Morris specifically whether he had written the book. Morris assured him that he was the author, and that he had used no ghost writer. He like the biblical David apparently walked so close to God that the Lord simply made his hand like the pen of a ready writer.
In The Art of Seeking God Morris Means writes concerning the prayer life of many biblical patriarchs, men such as Moses, Joshua, Elijah, Elisha, David, Jesus and others. And near the end of the book he shares his some of his own experiences, and special tips on prayer which he had learned over the many years in which he has been a man of prayer. It was so well written and frankly so interesting that I couldn’t put the book down. I have included a quote from Morris’s book below that I found particularly profound and relevant to many of the men in our FGBMFA Chapters, something that every retired individual should take to heart.
As you know during the last six months, I have been encouraging the older men of the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship in America, the Moses, those born before 1960 to mentor the Joshua Generation, those born after 1960. But in his book Morris Means adds a very special truth to the “Art of Mentoring the Joshua Generation”. It is perhaps the greatest truth that he could have shared with you; let me quote in Morris’ own words.
“Retired people have the opportunity to become the most valuable resource America has. Other than people in prisons, retired people have more time to seek God and change the destiny of our nation than any other class of people.
Because they don’t have to work, they can become like Anna and Simeon who were a great factor in the arrival of Jesus on this planet. Anna was an 84-year-old widow who departed not from the temple but served God with fasting and prayers night and day.
Simeon was also retired. He didn’tfill his days pursuing hobbies or watching TV. Night and day he also was in the temple praying. God rewarded him with a promise that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Then one day while praying in the temple, the Holy Spirit spoke to him that the Son of God was in the sanctuary at that very moment. Simeon went in and saw the family of Jesus at the altar. He walked up to Mary and looked into the eyes of Jesus, the Savior of the world! (Luke 2:25-38) God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him, and now Simeon was being rewarded. He asked Mary if he could hold the child. As Simeon looked at Jesus in his arms he saw the masterpiece that God had sent to save the world. The Lamb of God! His eyes misted with tears, and his heart leaped with joy. Now He could die in peace.
God has tremendous rewards waiting for retired people who will spend the rest of their days seeking Him. They can do more to shape the future of our nation than all our armed forces combined and in the process have far more fun and satisfaction than from any hobby or pastime they could pursue.”
He says in another place that Most Christians don’t realize what an effective weapon repetition is. But when fervency, persistence, and repetition combine, Satan’s forces will always crumble.
“Out on the prayer road (a road on which Morris walked as he prayed) the Holy Spirit put it into my heart to pray for a youth prayer group. Night and day I would pray, ‘Lord send a youth prayer group,’ over and over again. I must have repeated it thousands of times—it became the cry of my heart. Finally He brought a powerful youth prayer group right into our house, where the lives of many young people were changed. (Dr. Terry Peters National Director of Prayer for FGBMFA was one of the oldest members of that youth prayer group) Do I think it would have happened if I had only asked once? NO WAY!! When I read that, I determined to pray more for the Joshua Generation, and for Joshua Chapters all across America, Will you Join me, will you pray over and over “God send me young men, men I can mentor to become Godly Fathers to the next Generation”.
One last thing… Morris says “Motivate yourself. Never depend on someone else to keep you motivated. We will all stand before God in judgment, and we will stand alone. God will not accept excuses like, “No one encouraged me to pray or taught me how.” Jesus tells us the queen of the south will rise up against such excuses as an example of what we could have been (Luke 11:31)
May I like Morris Means encourage you to take up the mantle of prayer; don’t be one of the foolish virgins who failed to keep oil in their lamp.
The book is available at half the published price through Kevin Rush and his wife… they have 1400 copies of “The Art of Seeking God” – Developing a mighty and effective prayer life – by Morris Means which they will make available to those desiring a copy.
You may obtain a single copy for $11.00 which includes shipping and handling.
Or you may obtain multiple copies by simply e-mailing Kevin Rush at the following email address email@example.com . Be sure to insert ” Prayer Book by Morris Means” in the email subject line.
In your email identify to Kevin the number of copies you require and your postal mailing address. Kevin will contact you by e-mail with the cost of the books and postage.
You may pay by check or money order payable to: Kevin Rush. 1512 Front Street Lynden, WA 98264
Or if you desire, identify to Kevin that you wish to pay on-line by PayPal. Kevin will have PayPal invoice you by e-mail.
You may contact Kevin Rush by US Mail at 1512 Front Street Lynden, WA 98264
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