Biblical Principle

  • Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest. Luke 10:2 KJV
  • Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:   Matthew 28:19 KJV
  • So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.   Isaiah 55:11 KJV
  • And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.   Mark 16:15-16 KJV

Jerry's Testimony

Jerry 1969 I'd like to share with you my testimony that involves me, but is not about me. It is about the power, mercy and saving grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I was very fortunate to have been raised in a Christian home. I was taught from a very early age to love the Lord and follow Him always. I remember going to Sunday School and church services and knowing what it was like to learn as a child how much Jesus loved me. I learned the old-fashioned gospel songs that I cherish today; Amazing Grace, Victory In Jesus, How Great Thou Art, The Old Rugged Cross... just to name a few. I was saved and baptized in Lexa Baptist Church in Lexa, Arkansas when I was a young boy. I remember the pastor was Bro. Pitman and we had a regular evangelist who visited us named Bro. "Red" Johnson. Brother Red gave me a bible that had a red cover and he filled out the front with my name, his name and one of his favorite verses, Philippians 4:19. To this day, that Bible means a great deal to me because it was given in love.

At about age 16 I discovered that I "knew it all", I didn't attend church regularly and lived like the world. When I joined the US Army at the age of 20, I began attending church again. I married at age 21, fathered a daughter at age 23 and a son at age 28.

But, what seemed like a somewhat normal life was suddenly about to change...

We all take tomorrow for granted. We think there will always be time to get saved, time to serve the Lord later, time to do whatever we want... In the book of Luke, Chapter 12 we are given the parable of a rich man.

"The land of a rich man produced plentifully, and he thought to himself, 'What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?' And he said, 'I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.' But God said to him, 'Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?'

We are not guaranteed tomorrow! My "tomorrow" was almost taken away from me.

On February 3, 1990 I was at work when a robber came rushing into the store. He came right up to me, pointed his pistol in my face and pulled the trigger. By the mercy of God, the bullet struck behind me but did not hit me! This startled the robber and he stepped back and fired 2 more shots at me, both striking me in the chest. One of these bullets ricocheted off of a rib and struck me in the spine, crushing my spinal cord. I immediately crumpled to the floor.

As I lay on the floor, I knew something was wrong since I could not get back up. I rolled myself onto my back. The robber knelt over me and put the gun in my face once again. I calmly told him to do what he had to do. He took the money I had on me and ran from the store.

I rubbed my hands across my chest and raised them up so I could see them. They were covered in blood. I knew I might bleed to death, so I found the bullet holes and placed my fingers in them to slow the bleeding. I then closed my eyes and began to pray. I asked for forgiveness of my many shortcomings, I gave praise to Jesus and I asked that if I should die today, that my family be taken care of and given comfort. While I was praying, the paramedics arrived and started asking me questions. I just ignored them and continued with my prayer.

Once I finished praying, I opened my eyes and asked the paramedics what they wanted to know from me. "I thought you were unconscious", one said. I said, "No, I was just saying a prayer in case I don't make it". They stabilized me and prepped me for the trip to the hospital.

Jerry 1990 I was rushed by helicopter to Tampa General Hospital. On the flight to the hospital my lungs collapsed. I motioned to the flight nurse that I could not breathe. He inserted a small hand pump and inflated my lungs. I gave him the OK sign as soon as I could breathe again; he replaced the bandages over the bullet holes. When we arrived at the hospital, they rushed me into emergency surgery. They cut me open from my belly button to just below my breastplate so they could assess the damage. As soon as they cut me open, I died. They called in a cardiac surgeon who opened me up all the way to my neck in an attempt to revive me, and he did... 7 minutes later. Many people ask if I saw a white light or a glimpse of Heaven - I didn't. It simply was not my time to die so I never crossed over. This was all part of God's plan.

If you think you have plenty of time before you decide to accept Jesus, think again. Where would I be now if I had not been a Christian and I had not been revived that day? What if you died today? Where would you spend eternity? Once you die there are no more opportunities to accept Jesus.

I was in intensive care for 14 days and I recall only a few brief moments of those 14 days. I was kept well medicated so I would not have to endure the tremendous pain associated with multiple gunshot wounds. On my 15th day in the hospital I was transferred to a private room and was fully conscious. The neurosurgeon who removed the bullet from my spine came in and introduced himself. He explained to me that the bullet had fractured the spine and crushed my spinal cord up against the opposite side of my spine. Due to the damage to the spinal cord, he informed me that I would never walk again nor would I have any use of my body below the T10 section of my spine.

I was just 26 years old when I heard this. Being told you will never walk again is not something you want to hear at that age, or any age for that matter. I had many family members in the hospital room with me and I asked that everyone leave so I could be alone. I was not angry, just deeply saddened by my situation. My Aunt Betty (my grandmother's sister on dad's side) stuck her head back in and asked if she could come in. Of course, I said yes.

Now Aunt Betty loves the Lord like no one I have ever known. She serves Him with all her heart, mind and soul without reservation. She has more faith than anyone I have ever encountered. Aunt Betty sat on the bed beside me and told me "Do not listen to the doctor because all he knows is medicine". She then asked if I knew what the bible said about prayer and I said "I certainly do". And I quoted Matthew 21:22, "And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith." Regarding faith, James 1:6 tells us "But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering." If you ask but do not have faith, you cannot expect your prayer to be answered. Aunt Betty then placed her hands on my shoulders and began to pray. I remember hearing 2 or 3 words as she began to speak... then nothing. I have no memory of anything for the remainder of that day. It is as if time skipped to the next day. Perhaps the prayer was between her and God and I wasn't meant to hear it even though it was on my behalf. Perhaps the Spirit interceded because she did not know what to pray for.

The Bible clearly states in Romans 8:26, "Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered." This could be the reason I have no recollection of her prayer.

18 days after being shot, they discharged me to go home. They wheeled me to the exit in a wheelchair but when I got to the door I held out my hands and stopped us by pushing against the door jamb. I told the nurse I wasn't leaving the hospital in a wheelchair. I pulled myself to my feet, supporting myself by holding on to the door frame and I walked over the door threshold on my own!

Don't ever let anyone tell you that God doesn't perform miracles anymore! God is just as powerful today as He was the day He created the Heavens and the earth.

Now I still have many problems and painful side-effects from my injuries but I am able to walk very short distances on my own and be a testimony to others. I am considered disabled due to many physical limitations, even though I am not in a wheelchair all the time. I put a lot of effort into concealing my physical problems and I try to always have a smile on my face!

I used to wonder why God allowed all of this to happen to me and why I was allowed to live. Why did I have to endure so much? What did I do that was so bad that this was allowed to happen to me? Turns out, it was simply the devil trying to keep me from God.

James 1:13 tells us, "Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God," for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one." Maybe this was my test, my turn to be Job. But no matter what evil befalls me, God makes good of it. In Romans 8:28 it says, "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose."

So I asked God to show me His purpose. I believe that all of this happened so that I can share my testimony and be a witness to others. I prayed and asked God how He wanted me to go about this. He laid the idea of the RV Outreach ministry on my heart.

We knew we could not afford a camper, so we asked God for guidance. He let us know that if we sold everything we owned, we would have just enough to get a camper. So we did... we had several yard sales, posted items on Craigslist and sold it all. Yes, everything except what would fit in a 19' camper. It was hard to get rid of all the things you spent a lifetime collecting, but it got easier as we started selling it off. It was actually quite refreshing once we were done. After all, it is just stuff and life is so much more than stuff.

The RV Outreach Ministry is where Cynthia and I stay in a small camper and visit RV Parks, campgrounds and churches across America sharing this testimony and the Good News of Jesus Christ. At the campgrounds, we provide Christian fellowship, we lead Bible studies, we offer Bible study materials to adults and we host activities for children. We also provide free bibles to anyone who will accept it. Maybe that bible will mean as much to them as the one that Brother Red gave to me.

Jerry 2008 We knew that we would need an income and a place to live. God made everything fall into place as my Social Security Disability check is the income and the camper is a place to stay. We can freely travel as the Lord directs us and always have an income and a roof over our heads!

Now I will share a few of the things that we encountered on our travels, while retaining the privacy of those involved.

We arrived at a campground in Virginia and had already set up our site. A big motorhome pulled in across the street but due to its size, the driver couldn't get it in the spot. I walked over and offered to guide him in and he readily agreed. I showed him a road he go on to allow him to come in from the other direction where it would be much easier for him to park. In the short 5 minute ride, I shared with him a little about my testimony and what the Lord has done for me. We got him parked and I went back to my campsite and did not hear from the man for a day or so. Finally, his wife walked over and asked just what I had told her husband as he could not stop talking about me. I shared with her what I told him and invited them over that evening for the whole story. They came over and we spent several hours talking. It turns out this man was a Christian and had been married to an atheist woman for 30 years and had lost the joy of his salvation. Just the little that I shared with him that day brought back that joy and his current wife (a Christian lady) was amazed at the change in him. You see, we never know what someone else needs to hear so we should always be ready to share Jesus with everyone we meet.

Now for a little more dramatic encounter. I went into Mexico with some friends on a day mission trip on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving. We took food, water and the gospel to the poor in Reynosa, Mexico. As we were coming back into the US at the border, we were flagged to go into secondary inspection. When we got there, they took all of our passports and took them into the customs office. They came back a minute or so later and handed every their passport... except me! They asked me to come with them into the office and I did. Once in the office, I was shoved into a holding cell and the door slammed shut. About an hour later, the door opened and I asked what in the world was going on! They told me I was a wanted fugitive and I was being held until the county sheriff came to get me. Now. to my knowledge, I have committed no misdemeanors or felonies and certainly am no fugitive but they had to figure that out for themselves. About another hour passes before a deputy sheriff from Hidalgo County, Texas shows up to take me to the county jail. The deputy was kind enough to call Cynthia and tell her what was going on and where I would be. After getting booked into the jail, I told them to make a phone call to whoever flagged me as a fugitive and this would all be cleared up... so they picked up the phone and made the call. Well, remember that it is now late Wednesday afternoon the day before Thanksgiving and everyone had gone home early, so the phone just rang and rang. Well, yours truly spent 6 days in Hidalgo County jail enjoying fine jail cuisine for Thanksgiving. To be honest, jail is nicer than some of the places I slept while in the Army... the problem with jail is you can't leave and the company isn't that great. Anyway, I immediately asked for a Gideon's Bible and asked the Lord why He had me there. I made conversation with the other inmates and soon started hosting Bible studies. The guy in the bunk to my left was an American gang banger, the stereotypical thug you see on shows like LockUp. Now this fellow didn't really attend the Bible studies but since his bunk was right next to mine, he got the message. He finally started asking me questions about my faith and this man ended up giving his life to Christ!

Another inmate was a Mexican gang banger, all tattooed up, big bulky guy with an even bigger gang banger attitude. This guy ruled the pod and everyone steered clear of him. If he wanted to change the TV channel, he just changed it. If he wanted to use the sink, you moved out of his way. Now this guy also heard the Bible Studies but never participated. Once day he was pacing the room for his exercise, and he paused by my bunk during a Bible study. He only paused for a few seconds then started pacing again. The next time around he stopped. When he stopped, everyone else immediately went back to their own bunks. I asked this man if I could do anything for him and has sat down beside me. He talked about all the bad things he had done in his life and that after hearing me, he wanted to be saved but had been told by a Catholic priest he could not because he hadn't been married the Catholic way (not sure what that is). I explained to him that he could be saved if he wanted and I explained what he needed to do. I prayed a short prayer for him then together we prayed the sinner's prayer and immediately the Holy Spirit came over him. He trembled and shook then started to cry. He hugged me and thanked me but I assured him I was simply a messenger and that only Jesus does the saving. He instantly became a new man with a new attitude. The other inmates were shocked at the change in him.

On the 6th day that I was in the jail, Monday the next business day that everyone was back in their offices, they made that fateful phone call again and this time someone picked up on the other end. I didn't know it at the time but I was being processed for release. I was holding another Bible study and had about 10 inmates around my bunk. I wanted to sing a song but was unsure of one that everyone would know, so I had murderers, robbers, gang members, drug dealers, illegals, etc. sitting around my bunk singing "This Little Light of Mine". The look on the guards faces was priceless. One of the inmates told me that I truly did not belong in that jail, but I told him that the Lord had me there for a reason and when the reason was fulfilled, the speaker on the wall would call my name and I would be released. Almost instantly, the speaker crackled and called my name telling me to get my stuff as I was free to go. Oh, the looks on the other inmates faces. They asked me to pray for them before I left and I did. Who would have thought it could be such a blessing to be mistakenly locked up?

I have so many more stories about the work that God does through us but it is too much to put here. With all that I have been through (being shot, being crippled, getting thrown in jail, etc.), do I think it was all worth it? One day when I am in Heaven and someone walks up to me and tells me that they are there because of me, then yes, it is all worth it. If you don't yet know Jesus as your personal savior and you'd like to be that person in Heaven one day, then visit this page and learn how you can be saved right now!

We would love to be able to get back out there and we know that God will provide a way. There are so many lost people in this country and we can't wait to once again travel and spread the Good News of Jesus Christ. On the home page is a donate button if you feel inclined to help. In any case, your prayers are greatly appreciated and may God bless you!


Read Cynthia's Testimony