My first appointment as pastor was unusual: I was only a lay speaker – no qualifications.
I was put into this church in mid-year because there had been a scandal there and no real
pastor would go! I had little education then, but a lot of enthusiasm for the job. I didn’t
even have the authority to baptize. But that was OK; I didn’t believe in child baptism
anyway. I put off being credentialed for nearly 2 years because I wasn’t going to baptize
babies. In my denomination, it was required. Finally, though, they made me go to licensing
school and get some credential.
10 months before I went to the licensing school, a very young newly-wed came to me at
the church. She was in tears. She said something like, “I love Steve so much that I haven’t
had the nerve to tell him – I can’t have children. I’ve had three abortions, and the
last one made me the way I am. Would you pray for me, now that I’ve straightened my
life out, that I might have a baby for Steve and I?” Right there, I laid hands on her
womb area, confessing to the Father her desires, and that it would be made so through
the sacrament of the prayer of faith. That’s what I would do in those days. Soon after,
this young lady forgot about that prayer, but I did not.