Pentecostal Minister Training
Greetings! My name is Lolard Alan Simmons III. I am an America Pentecostal minister in the Greater Houston Texas area. A major challenge to doing ministry in the fourth largest city in America is an overpopulation of religious institutions. It seems there is a ministry on every block.
Christians here tend to assume everyone has their group chosen already. I cannot remember the last time a group knocked on my door. Witnessing efforts have gone nearly extinct. As a natural progression, apathy has settled into our congregations, regarding salvation experiences. Ministry focuses more on living “right” than on being saved in the first place. A burden for souls is an uncommon phrase to hear, and less so in application.
A secondary issue facing our Churches is a practice of aversion (literally, we turned away). Sometimes, this manifests as a simple inhospitality to visitors of certain groups or types of people. Examples would include the following: the homeless, poor, handicapped, infirmed, mentally disabled, interracial couples, unwed couples, expectant teenage parents, the LGBTQCIA community and many others.
Other times, it is a direct request that these people find a different location to gain ministry. It is as if we have forgotten the Great Commission to spread the Good News of the Gospel to ALL people.
My ministry dream is to realign the Christian world with just that message; ALL people means even those with whom we may be uncomfortable ministering. I am convinced, if we laid aside our aversions completely, opened our doors to ALL who want to join us, created a welcoming and nonjudgmental overall environment and make follow-up contact with these forgotten, forsaken and forbidden souls, we would have a massive increase in conversions to Christ.
This increase in conversions would inspire us afresh and anew. In turn, apathy would be less common or eradicated completely. A revival could spark into an inferno of Holy Spirit led the revival. We could see a radical change of atmosphere in our city, and in yours alike. Henceforth, evangelism is my primary focus.
I came to Jesus at the end of a revival meeting at the age of 11. I had been raised in a Christian inspired home. However, this evangelist brought the message forward to our Church in an in-your-face, now or maybe never again fashion. I felt as if the Holy Spirit might never speak to me again if I did not respond immediately. My pastor led me to Jesus at the beginning of that alter call. My brother, Scott was saved that night as well. Pastor Charlie Barnes baptised us shortly after that. Mt Zion SB Church in Piasa Illinois was a Church on fire for quite some time.
At the age of 14, I answered God’s call to preach. My first sermon was at that same Church of my salvation. By 16, I was pastor at Bethlehem SB Church in neighbouring Shipman Illinois. It was that same year, Pastor Lucille Anderson of Fidelity Assembly of God in Fidelity Illinois prayed me through the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. I was a spirit-filled Pentecostal pastoring a Southern Baptist Church. It was a God Happening every week. There was a sense of revival over our area.
I am currently being shepherded at Gateway of Hope Church in Houston Texas. My pastor is a spirit filled a man with a desire to raise up an army of well-prepared ministers, evangelists, teachers, deacons, elders, and worship leaders. He is not focused on numbers in the seats. He is our Apostle Paul, mentoring each of us. He invites these junior disciples to fill his pulpit regularly. My Church inspires me often. I thank God for them daily. There is an anointing constantly upon the worship team which flows into the crowd. We know that Jesus is a regular member.
My fiance was the main contributing factor in my return to ministry and seeking online training in biblical studies. He is my daily inspiration. Without David, the Holy Spirit would have had a much harder time of convincing me to leap out of complacency. I praise God for introducing us.
After many failed attempts to gain ministry studies that were affordable, flexible and inclusive, I happened across the advertisement for CLI. Christian Leaders Institute was exactly what I needed to complete my Pentecostal Minister Training that fits my schedule! As a full time truck driver, I work up to 16 hours a day and five or six days a week. The at your pace, no rush atmosphere of study is fantastic for me. The teaching seems sound, thus far. Leadership has a passion for this same revival I seek to inspire. Their scholarship class has been challenging, but not overwhelming. The material is well prepared. Their campus being online is impressive. Their reach is worldwide. They make exceptions for students in countries that are not receptive to the Christian message. I feel I have found a great place to grow.
As this article draws to a close, I would ask you to pray for my ministry in these following areas. I crave an overpowering anointing for souls, boldness to mention Jesus everywhere I travel to as many as will hear me, and a silencing from the Holy Spirit when I have spoken enough words. I sometimes say too much. I further ask that I be led to those souls the Church has chosen to leave out: those who feel forgotten, those who sense they were forsaken, and those who were flat forbidden from worshipping somewhere. I ask that God leads me to them. Pray for me, and I will pray for the readers of this posting as well. May you be blessed by his Spirit today. Amen
Read more stories at Facebook