Vol. 11 Issue 4
Holy Convocation 2013
Bishop Forrest R. Nance, Jr.
Hallelujah, Praise the Lord, what a Holy Convocation in which God once again walked among this great “Nation”. We were given instructions, from God through our Apostle Grant, to strengthen and enable us to walk humbly with our God. Before talking about the Holy Convocation, I must mention something about the Uth4Christ Summer Camp.
The children had fun and participated in many activities during their stay. They often sang songs that inspired campers and counselors to let their light shine wherever they went. You could see the joy and happiness on their faces as they learned about the light (Jesus). It touched my heart and caused me to think about the simplicity of God and how important it is for the saints to send their children to this camp to learn how to be examples of that light. The Uth4Christ Camp was a blessing to all attendees and set the tone for the Holy Convocation. JUST LET THE LIGHT OF CHRIST SHINE!!!
The message and instructions that Apostle Grant delivered from God to the NFCOG “Nation” signaled to the people that God is positioning them to be a wonder to the world and there is no God like Him. Placing twelve stones symbolized the crossing over into another realm or position in God. It is now our responsibility to go forward while maintaining obedience to God and possess the promises. Israel developed three types of attitudes when God moved them into another realm, an attitude of “but”, “if only”, and “why”. “But” attitude — they looked at the people and walled cities; they allowed their perception of the facts, rather than the promises of God to dictate their response to the challenge. Instead of mobilizing themselves by faith in God they let fear paralyze them (Num 13:28). “If only” attitude — they complained about their situation and chose to remain in bondage under an oppressor rather than live in freedom under God’s sovereign care (Num 14:2). So we cannot let adversity cause us to cry out “if only”. “Why” attitude — in thinking God does not know what he is doing, brought them out so they could die by the sword (Num 14:3). God can and will cause us to overcome the barriers in our way. There will be formidable challenges in possessing the things God has for us, but we cannot question or doubt God’s power, goodness, and wisdom. In all of your endeavors, do a comparison of God and your situation and you will find that God is bigger and able to handle the situation. God calls us to Himself, to live a life of faith: “Now the just shall live by faith…” (Heb 10:38). Now my fellow NFCOGians, as we go and possess our God-assigned promises, we cannot shrink back from the challenges with bad attitudes, but press forward trusting in His power, His goodness, and His wisdom.
How precious is the presence of the Lord. It restores, heals, refreshes, brings an abundance of pardon and mercy. It instructs, embraces, fortifies, and delivers. Yes, it saves the soul and gives strength to the weary.
Scripture admonishes the believer to rehearse the wondrous works of the Lord, and that is exactly what this Fall issue of NFCOG news is purposed to do.
As we recall our 17th Annual Holy Convocation, may our recollections provide strength and renew promise to you — having full assurance that in God’s Holy presence, there is fullness of joy!
Missionary Edith Smith writes…
A Fresh Perspective
The Holy Convocation of 2013 was a glorious event, and it held special meaning for Pastor Paul and me because it was the first gathering of the National Fellowship Churches of God, Inc. (NFCOG) that we attended as members of the organization. While we have attended many functions of NFCOG and were blessed by them all, our commitment to membership brought a deeper understanding of the mission of NFCOG and our role in accomplishing it.
The business world uses the phrase, “Fresh Eyes” to describe how newcomers to an organization can benefit it, by sharing observations that they make. As I participated in, watched, and felt what occurred at the Holy Convocation, my observations were that the leadership of NFCOG is “sold out” to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, and there was no glorifying of individuals, traditions or self-servicing messages or activities. As a result, the spiritual environment was one in which the Holy Spirit was in control. Praises went up to the Lord and the anointing and power of God fell in a mighty way!
Another observation that I made was that the saints of God displayed unity in the Spirit. While we recognize the importance of leadership, someone once said that a leader without followers is just an individual going for a walk. NFCOG is blessed to have followers who are committed to doing God’s will. That is why I believe that the message from Apostle Grant to “Go Ye” was heard and will be obeyed.
Finally, as the “Richmond County Crew” embarks on the new path that is set before us in the Northern Neck of Virginia, we are inspired to go forth in unity to do God’s will. Remembering that it is “Not by might nor by power, but by His Spirit”, says the Lord.
Elder Sarah Brown writes…
Here of late, when the Nation of NFCOG comes together at the Annual Holy Convocation, God speaks a Word then He walks among His people as if to say to us, “You have heard my Word through my servants. Now, I come and walk among you again to because you have taken my Word to heart, believe it, and apply it to your lives.”
I am waiting for the day when all He does is walk among us; when the Nation gathers to show forth His Power so much so that any unsaved in the near vicinity comes to witness His Power and believe on Him.
To me, being in Holy Convocation is like being in a revival because in the end, my soul is reassured, my spirit is comforted, my mind is at peace, and my relationship with God is reconfirmed — and life seems to be in a deeper perspective.
Our Vice-Bishop Forrest Nance fortified us charging us to remember who we are. We are a Nation, called by God to show forth His Name in the earth. We should not fear, or give in to the cares of this world by being deceived by riches; but be fruitful in the Word, that men, women, and children might be drawn to His glory and come to worship Him.
Pastor Cheryl Miller reassured the Nation that God has not brought us this far to leave us. We should not fear, but place our complete trust in His ability to provide our every need. Although things are crazy and upside down at times, He is always there with us in the midst of every situation. He invites us to trust in Him more than the things we have obtained. Jesus encourages, “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” Matt 6:20-21 (KJV). For if we do this, we will never be disappointed in whatever we do or with what we do or do not have. Frankly, if we do get to a place where we lose things, if we place our complete trust in God, we will realize how little we do need and how much more He can provide.
Our Presiding Prelate, Apostle Ivan Grant, Sr., spoke declaring the Lord’s Name to be excellent. We should strive to live excellently as we endeavor to work excellently. In all that we do, it should be done as unto the Lord. We will all be judged by our works. Our good works can only come forth when we have dedicated our all to the Lord and prove our worthiness to Him as we put our trust in Him.
We should try to avoid disappointing God, but rather, endeavor to please Him. We are to persevere to have the same mind, and the spirit, when we are together and even when we are apart. We are not to forget the Words God has spoken to us in our 17th Holy Convocation. Remember, we are healed! Do not allow Satan to steal what we have heard or make us doubt that it is done! We are to always pray for one another as we work together for the common goal — keeping God as the top priority in our lives as He continues to build the Nation of NFCOG.
Happening in the Nation
Healing from Multiple Losses
Elder Cheryl Miller, Pastor of NFCOG’s Baltimore Mission Church in MD, recently loss her two brothers Mark Roberts and James Gordon, Jr., as well as, the matriarch of her family, 95 year old Aunt Irma. NFCOG rallies around her with much prayer in this her time of great sorrow.
“Richmond County Crew”
The Nation of NFCOG, with open arms, welcome Emeritus Pastor Paul Smith and Missionary Edith Smith. Their recent God inspired departure from Mt. Olive in Warsaw, VA to join NFCOG has spawned a delegation in that area – affectionately calling themselves the Richmond County Crew. We embrace them and anxiously anticipate the work God is birthing in this new territory.
Melody Herndon Miller, a faithful member of Baltimore Mission Church recently experienced the loss of her father Jeremiah Herndon. Melody is the wife of Gerard Miller, Sr. (son of Pastor Cheryl Miller). Our prayers at her loss, for her and her family, are for God’s healing.
At the Homegoing of Her Beloved Mother
Elder Marlene Brown, Pastor of St. Joseph Holiness Church, Atlantic VA, accepted the perfect will of God on August 28, 2013 when Mother Virginia Harmon Parker went home to be with the Lord. Mother Parker lived a full 88 years, was a faithful and dedicated member of Miracle Breakthrough Deliverance Center under her son’s pastorate (she faithfully attended St. Joseph as well). Her full life of service to the Lord and churches birthed a rich legacy. She lived to witness all 7 of her children give their lives to God. Many pastors, elders, evangelists, and faithful church workers in her family are realized because of her example of holiness and faithfulness. To God be the glory!
Elevation is from the Lord
NFCOG Chief Apostle Ivan Grant, Sr. traveled to Franklin, VA for the Services of Consecration & Installation of the Board of Bishops at the Apostolic Faith Church of God (Trinity) Headquarters General Assembly on August 17, 2013. This visitation was purposed to witness and glorify God for the great work being done in the life of his brother in Christ. Bishop Vernon Mines, a long-time friend and fellow-laborer in the Gospel, is worthy of the office to which he has both been called and sanctioned by the church. Our continued prayers are for him as he embarks upon this new work.