My Father arrived in the UK in 1951 my mother arrived in Britain the following year, they came as Missionaries from Jamaica. Numerous people have shared that my parents started the first 'Black' Pentecostal Church in Birmingham and later in Wales. As a child the church was full of the Holy Ghost Fire, I remember hearing my dad speak and noticing an awesome presence was in the building, was not frightening! no it was a reality that God was present there. Form our humble beginnings in Wales I have seen the West Indian influence has spread throughout the country into most denominational churches and has now become almost mainstream. I remember as a child people who loved God coming to church to pray and praise God. Miracles were a common occurrence my mum would keep praying until she got an answer. Originally Pentecost 'Shavuot' occurs 50 days after Passover. This is what is called the start of The Church. It is the day that Jesus Apostles and deciples started to praise God in other tongues. In the UK and throughout the world this gift of tongues was strange to most people and most denominations shunned this phenomenon like the plague and some churches still it as false.
In 1901 this baptism of the Holy Spirit started to fall on people again in America (after dying out through the ages). Since that time people who hunger and thirst for righeousness are fill to overflowing with Gods Holy Spirit which produces power. The strange thing is some people think miracles stopped with the Apostles., If that is so the church will alwas be in a sorry state but thank God, I have seen too much to not to believe the lie. Second hand information is crippling the churches.
When similar immigrants left Jamaica and came to the UK they would visit the Martin Family House in Aston Birmingham or Cardiff was the first stop for many of them. The 13 children are all truly talented which is a great testimony of God answering their devoted mothers prayers. Many of the children have highly achieved in music, fashion and the teaching industry. Gospel Raph spent many years has a boxer he turned professional then went on to being Barry Mcguigans sparring partner for his last fight in London, he also was on the under card fight when future heavyweight boxer Lennox Lewis who beat Gary Mason in 1991 at Wembley.
In June 1992 I had a personal encounter with God, someone may ask what does that mean? I will recall the events leading up to the encounter. Approximately three weeks prior to 15 of June at the ripe old age of 27, I was happy with my life and career, living in London as a single adult and quite content. My manager had arranged a fight for me in Sweden and on my return a Welsh Title fight was on the horizon. It must have been about 3am in the morning when I was awaken by an excruciation pain in my stomach, I thought my time on earth up! I picked up the phone to let my mother know that I'm going die, and to collect my body. As I was reaching the phone a voice said "pray" my answer was "oh yeah". My prayer went something like this "I know I havent lived the way you wanted me to live, or gone the place you wanted me to go, or lived the way you wanted me to live but if I die now take me home because I'm sorry. When I finished my prayer a peace came on me and I knew I was not going to die. I did not sleep much that night because I still had pain, but in the morning what was said last night was quickly removed from my mind 'life went on as usual'. My mother was 66 years old and living as a widow for 18 of those years, my dad on his death bed asked me to look after Mom therefore I felt it was my duty to help and protect her as much as possible and made it my duty to visit my mother home as much as possible.
While on one of my weekly or fortnightly visits to Wales my life would never be the same!
The day was like every other day in Cardiff town a friend of mine, Jonathon was walking beside me when we met a girl whom I wanted to be more acquainted with, after a little diaologue we agreed to meet in Lloyds Night Club Cardiff. Later that evening about 10.30pm while walking down the stairs I spotted the young lady and I called her over. Its important to know a persons name when trying to get to know someone intimately. Our conversation went something like this "Hi whats your name"? "Naomi" "Thats a strange name"? "its from the bible" she replied! "Where in the bible" I asked We had a biblical conversation about Ruth, Naomis mother in law, then she explained that she was Jewish as her mum was and Jewish mothers choose names for their children that have meaning. My mind went back to when my mother told me we were Jewish because her mum was Jewish this made no sense to me before until the memory of my brother being born in May 1967 not long before Israels 6 day war where they captured Jerusalem . Just before this war started the Lord Jesus said to my mum she is having a son name him Emmanuel which means God with us. Raphael means 'Healed by God' . As a child I was involved motor vehicle accident which left me in a coma and 11 months stay in hospital.
What transpired next was unusual for me. I excused my self and left the club heading towards my mums house. Empire Pool was still at the start of Wood Street. This is where Jesus spoke to me and said 'Give your heat to me or your going to burn". This may sound a bit crude or not very loving but God knows how to speak to each one of us as is needed. Immediately a vision appeared before me at the age of 8. Standing at my dad's church in Wells street, my prayer was I love you Lord and I want to follow you but not while I'm in school people will think I am a sissy but I promise you when I'm older I will follow you"! The scripture came to me which said today's the day of salvation! (2 Corinthians 6:2)
There might be many questions about how do I know it was Gods voice or what did it sound like, it was an external voice and it sounded like someone who knew me! The real test is any good fruit being produced in your life! I'm still in progress but my testimony will last until I leave this earth.
History teaches nearly all of the 12 apostles of Jesus were martyred or killed in some terrible way. The strange thing was if they denied that Jesus rose from the dead they could have gone back to their old way of living.
Why do people have a problem with other people who say they see Jesus? In 1992 Jesus appeared and spoke to me face to face as he did to Moses, it was a strange event, because I was in a foul mood with someone who loved Jesus and I thought they were a hypocrite. The Lord never spoke to me about the person I was upset with, he showed me myself how he saw me.
There are people who live this Christian life thinking that they can live as they like because they accepted Jesus as there messiah. Living the Christian life guarantees you will get to heaven, this cannot be denied. When Jesus came his problem was with the hypocrites. Jesus took me in the spirit and showed me how people get judged. Have you ever heard people who say they almost died many will say that they saw their life flash before them! What I experienced was that in the spirit there is no time it is always now like Faith is. God knows all and sees all its now. This should make it clear God said to Jeremiah before you were formed I knew you, there are many statements which show God is the alpha and omega, but it is all now, thatís why we can read revelations today.
The Bible clearly states that liars and thieves go to hell, but the bible also states that hell was not made for us humans it was made for the devil and his angels. Jesus came to give us life this life is only in Jesus, Hence the name born again or new birth from above, that we have access to the Kindom of Heaven. I saw that if a person is stealing money from his boss then in the judgement he is actually doing the act in front of Jesus and it cannot be denied because your with Jesus watching yourself commiting the act of stealing. Because of Gods righteousness you cannot enter in to Heaven, you know this because The Spirit of God will convict you by the law of The Spirit. Never the less if you confess your sin God is always ready to forgive. Unless you blasphem the Holy Spirit
To talk about an experience you never had would be like explaining the taste of an orange fruit to someone who has never tasted or seen an orange!
Faith believes what the bible states.
Someone once said, that everything in the bible is truly stated but not everything stated is truth.
Spirit filled people should understand this. There is a teaching that once you are saved you are baptised with The Holy Spirit and its all in the package. Some denominations say if you do not worship on a Saturday you are breaking Gods commandment, some even say once your saved no matter what you do your saved forever.
God is God and he cannot lie, God is the same yesterday and forever. Walk in the Spirit and do not fulfil the lust of the flesh. Jesus left the church with a five fold ministry to mature the body, each ministry has a unique part to play, when they are operating as they should the body will be healthy. Develop your own individual ministry and be the person God created you to be. Do not be a clone when God made you he did break the mould, there is no need for you to copy anyone else. There are many different gifts in the body of Christ if you own a business support the ministry, if you have the gift of helps help people. Whatever your gift use it because God will judge you on how you used your gifts and talents. I remember one of the first times God spoke directly to me in an audible voice, God said "do not keep passing the cup" he was letting me know that when trials come I need to trust that he will get me through them. Its good to hear the Voice of God!
When God speaks it does not matter what others say, there is a reality that only God can give, it brings the word of God alive, and dispels the dead letter. Let God be true and every man a liar in other words if you hear a word that contradicts The Word of God there is a problem because God cannot lie.
Not everyone will be a fire lighter but every believer should carry a light. A fire lighter will walk with the fire of God which should catch others alight, be honest to yourself do you affect people everywhere you go, are people blessed in all you do or do you imagine that you do, but really its only a fantasy. A dead church is a disgrace a luke warm church is worse. When a problem is recognised, it can be rectified, if the problem is ignored it will not go away. I need God more and more each day lets go from glory to glory. Greater is he that is in me than he that is in the world. Ask yourself is this statement true in my life have you been truly been baptised with The Holy Spirit? are any gifts operating in my ministry? is Gods presence still real to me. let me put it this way if Jesus came to visit you today would your house and life be in order?
The Life of a Christian should be to imitate the life of Christ. George Muller was a man who realised that it was his duty as a Christian to help as much as he could. He never asked for any money and yet he built houses in Bristol and took orphans off the street. He was a selfless man who practiced what he preached. History is full of people who sacrifice to help others. History has acknowledges the work they have done.
When God moves we dont need gimmicks or seductive music to entice people to go to church, a nation will be drawn towards God if Christians stop loving the world so much and start loving the one who created us.
I love this statement ' You can follow Jesus without loving Him! But if you love Jesus you will follow Him!