My history started with David Wilkerson back in the late 70’s. David Wilkerson, author of the famed book “The Cross and The Switchblade” was travelling America preaching in crusades. I was pioneering a new church in the city of Yuma, Arizona and wanted him to come to our city. The date was set. The crowd was in the convention center. I listened to him preach a message on the “spirit of suicide”. I can still in my mind see that service from years back. I must confess that I thought he missed it that evening, until the altar call. Hundreds poured forward. And I watched as hands were lifted in the crowd of those who were contemplating that evening of taking their own life. I never again questioned anything that man of God preached. As I drove him back to the hotel following the service we talked at length of his call into the ministry.And the impact of God upon lives of people all around the world. I can still recall the afternoon in Springdale, Arkansas picking up the phone in my office and calling him at his office in New York City. He was well aware of the trouble that was brewing in the congregation I was pastor of at the time. We talked at length of the history of that particular congregation. He was well aware that the church was splitting. He told me that he would commit one year to paying my salary and office space for a new work that would be started in the city I was in at the time. He kept his word to me. Today there is a thriving congregation in the city I was in at that time.
I do not write in my blog today to simply name drop. That is not my intention. On April 27th, while driving with his wife Gwen, David Wilkerson was tragically killed in an automobile accident. As I read the news article that came across my computer I was shocked and saddened as so many are today. A giant has left the scene of time. As I sat at my computer this morning I can hear a conversation that I had with Missionary Morris Plotts. Taking him to the airport, following a powerful ministry on the previous day, Morris Plotts said something to me that has stayed with me all these years. His statement was, “we are indestructible until God gets through with us”. Evidently God was finished with David Wilkerson.
I for one am grateful for the impact David Wilkerson had not only on my life, but my ministry. He was a mentor to me. I honored him, respected him, trusted him, and knew that he was in touch with heaven, not only as he wrote, but as he spoke prophetically from time to time. This week my wife was cleaning out some of her material to throw away. She laid a folder on the kitchen cabinet for me to look at. The folder was full of old messages by David Wilkerson that will be kept in my file for reading. Messages that will live on.
Times Square Church in New York City, a church David Wilkerson founded, and The Springs Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado where his son and daughter-n-law Gary and Kelly pastor are no doubt in shock. My prayer is for God’s strength to be poured into their lives at this time. And we pray for Gwen Wilkerson who was with her husband in the accident and is in critical condition at the time of this blog.
On Wednesday, April 27, 2011 David Wilkerson wrote his final blog. He posted it to his website. He wrote with a prophetic pen under the Spirit’s direction. Here is what he posted. “To believe when all means fail is exceedingly pleasing to God and is most acceptable. Jesus said to Thomas, “You have believed because you have seen, but blessed are those that do believe and have not seen” (John 20:29).
Blessed are those who believe when there is no evidence of an answer to prayer—who trust beyond hope when all means have failed.
Someone has come to the place of hopelessness—the end of hope—the end of all means. A loved one is facing death and doctors give no hope. Death seems inevitable. Hope is gone. The miracle prayed for is not happening.
That is when Satan’s hordes come to attack your mind with fear, anger, overwhelming questions: “Where is your God now? You prayed until you had no tears left. You fasted. You stood on promises. You trusted.”
Blasphemous thoughts will be injected into your mind: “Prayer failed. Faith failed. Don’t quit on God—just do not trust him anymore. It doesn’t pay!”
Even questioning God’s existence will be injected into your mind. These have been the devices of Satan for centuries. Some of the godliest men and women who ever lived were under such demonic attacks.
To those going through the valley and shadow of death, hear this word: Weeping will last through some dark, awful nights—and in that darkness you will soon hear the Father whisper, “I am with you. I cannot tell you why right now, but one day it will all make sense. You will see it was all part of my plan. It was no accident. It was no failure on your part. Hold fast. Let me embrace you in your hour of pain.”
Beloved, God has never failed to act but in goodness and love. When all means fail—his love prevails. Hold fast to your faith. Stand fast in his Word. There is no other hope in this world”.
I personally believe that hell trembled every time Mr. Wilkerson’s feet hit the floor. Now that he is gone, may hell fear those who will step to the plate and run this race which is set before us!!!!