GROWING UP PENTECOSTAL

Confessions KDP Cover-BrownellNote: FREE! The book, Confessions of a Pentecostal, first published by the Assemblies of God’s Gospel Publishing House in 1978, became available for Kindle in 2011 after being out of print for years and many used copies sold online. The Kindle version is free of charge March 9-12 at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0088OP460

 

                                          GROWING UP PENTECOSTAL

                                                      By Ada Brownell

Few people have the wonderful heritage I did.

No, I didn’t grow up among rich lords and ladies or with an impressive blood line. Spiritual wealth became the gold mine available to me.

I had pastors who believed the Word; lived it; preached it.

As a spectator in my growing up years, I witnessed people kneeling in repentance and being changed by the power of God.

One of the most spectacular conversions was an aunt. Beautiful, personable, talented, she  turned away from God in her teens. In her 30s she woke up, spiritually bankrupt, her marriage in trouble, and thinking of ending her life.

One night, Mom persuaded her to come to church. My aunt cried out, “I’m lost!” interrupting the pastor’s sermon. She rushed forward to the altar. With wide eyes, I heard her repent with screams and guttural groans. Then the joy hit. She praised God all over the church. From that day until she died at age 91, she was still dancing with joy and living for God.

I had seen youth I knew were rebellious and a black mark on the church. One night a whole pew full of guys who gave my sisters grief threw their hands toward heaven in surrender to the One who forgives sins, repented and were filled with the Spirit. They became different young men and still serve God or did until death.

My seven older siblings accepted the Lord in their youth and our house was filled with music and their singing.

I saw miracles. A friend was healed of leukemia. A child healed of diabetes never had the problem again. I saw people healed of deafness and sicknesses.

I accepted the Lord when I was age 5, was filled with the Spirit about age 9, but I was in my early 20s when I had a life-changing encounter with God. My husband and I moved to Thompson, Utah, population 100. No church. Three bars, and the tiny grocery store was in a bar.

Formerly a youth leader, I was discouraged. We traveled 38 miles to Moab to church on Sunday night because Les worked weekends. Seemed the pastor thought the days of revival were over. I became so hungry for God’s touch, I started praying at home.

One night when I stood up to testify about God’s faithfulness, the spirit of God poured over me like warm oil. Joy bubbled out of me with praise to God in a language I didn’t know.

Afterward I told God if he’d send me a helper, I’d start a Sunday school in that town. Within a week a wonderful Baptist woman my age moved there, and we started a Sunday school in the school house. Every child in town enrolled.

Although I’d written fillers before, Thompson, Utah, is where I became a writer and that’s where I became a journalist–a correspondent–and ended up with a career.

God’s power literally changed the destiny of our family not only for eternity, but in this life as my brother, Virgil Nicholson, became an educator and the force behind Evangel College’s great accreditation. Joe, also an author, headed the music department at Evangel College for  years and also served as academic dean of Berean College. Everette pastored many years. The girls were used of God in many ways.

To God be the glory.

 

CONFESSIONS OF  A PENTECOSTAL

When Ada Nicholson Brownell was a child, a faithful Christian neighbor witnessed to her mother. Not just once, but almost every day. ada-brownell.jpg“The family did everything to get rid of her,” the author recalls, “but she came to ur house…her Bible tucked under her arm, an enthusiastic smile on her face.”

Then Ada’s older sister attended a Pentecostal service at the invitation of a teenage friend. One by one all 10 members of her family were saved and received the Pentecostal experience.

 

Ada tells of those early childhood days, what it was like to grow up in a Pentecostal home, and then of her continuous search for spiritual fulfillment. Her search has not been without trials, sickness, and disappointments. But God has given her an abiding strength and a vibrant faith to overcome these problems. Her inspiring confession of faith will encourage and bless believers everywhere.

 

The book was listed in  2011 among 10 recommendations on Pentecostalism by The Library Thing.

 

Free March 9-12 http://buff.ly/KmLPMi

Call to sanity: Bishop Eddie Long

I really didn’t think I was going to address this subject, but the more I hear about it, I feel compelled to do it. I’m talking about the situation that Bishop Eddie Long is being named in.

 I think as Christians we have lost perspective. Part of the reason why I didn’t think it was a matter worth talking about is because this is a legal issue between the accusers and the accused. Yes, Bishop Eddie Long comes on television. He’s still a human being and so are the young men who are involved in this process. I do recognize that is sad to see Christians involved in things that go against our beliefs, but we can’t lose perspective these are human beings as well. Sin is sin; lies, abuse, murder, adultery, stealing is all the same in the eyes of God. “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone” John 8:7

 It comes down to this…someone needs to repent and someone needs to forgive, end of the story! I don’t know who is guilty or who is not and it’s not my place to know. I know that if justice is not obtained on earth it definitely will be achieved in heaven, so all I hope is for a transparent and honest process from both parts and that whoever did comes forward with the truth and repentance and who ever received the offense is ready to forgive.

 Why did I decide to write this? I’ve heard of fellow Christians enraged by the situation, which it’s understandable, but I think we are focused on the wrong thing. Our duty right now is to pray for all the parts. For those who are near Bishop Long and the young men, they need to pray for wisdom to give adequate counsel and to determine where God wants them to be at this moment in time. We all need to pray for a congregation that is hurting because of these allegations.  

 I have never stepped a foot on New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, but I feel for all the people in the congregation, because I can understand that they are hurting. This is their time to look to God and not towards men for their answers.

 I love my pastors. I’ve been part of my church family for 5 years now and I have a great respect for my leaders. I do recognize that they are humans and that just like me they can fail and that because of their visibility their attacks are way bigger than mine. I pray that God covers their every step, but if tomorrow something was to come out, true or not, my pain needs to turn into prayer because I can not forget that before they are my pastors they are souls to the Lord. Isn’t that what we as Christians are called to do?  Isn’t our job to go after the lost? I don’t know who is lost in this case and as it’s not my job to judge, so I don’t care. I do exhort everyone to pray for ALL; Bishop Long and the young men that have filed these accusations. Both sides are hurting, and both sides are important to the Lord.

 Be blessed.