Words fail me and tears flow and I’m not even trying to stop them. Bro. James Kilgore & Ima Kilgore have always been in my life for as long as I can remember. I love reading all the posts of what Bro. Kilgore meant to so many people. We all feel like we was his favorite. 😊 It takes someone pretty great to do that.
When I was growing up the Kilgore’s were highly admired and respected in our home. When Bro. Kilgore visited, it was as if The Lord was walking into our home. At one point in my teenage years Bro. Kilgore spoke words into my life that I have carried with me since that night. There have been those simple yet powerful messages that put me in the altar, on my face, asking God to please help me and give me a burden for souls and love for people like Bro. Kilgore. The warm handshake. The gentle hug. The firm, “Sis. Ronda…”(wouldn’t you like to know). 😊
When Bro. Kilgore became our superintendent in the Texas district you can imagine my delight when Sis. Kilgore asked me to be the organist for Ladies conference. I played those years along side Jeanetta Orange on keys. We had some great times. Sis. Kilgore had a certain way she wanted the music for those conferences and we did our best to make it to her liking. Bro. Kilgore asked me to play the organ for him on numerous occasions at camp meeting & conferences and I was always a little nervous but he was a gem to work with. However, (this is just a little funny) one year he had preached a beautiful message on unity and the man that was leading music for that particular service got up and began to sing the Sunday School song, “when we all pull together”. Bro. Kilgore was NOT very happy about that selection and came to me and said, “Ronda! This song is not right”. I quickly told him I sure didn’t choose it and he said, “I don’t care. Change it, now”! Yes sir! I did and did it gladly. We went on to have a wonderful alter service but whew! We laughed about it later but at that moment I wanted to crawl under the organ and I could have killed the man that put me in that position. On another note, I loved how he would go to the pulpit and begin to sing, “What a day that will be”. Won’t it be wonderful there”, “Jesus is the sweetest name I know”, and many other songs like these. Those were the most precious times for me as an organist. I will cherish these memories forever.
I could go on and on with memory after memory of Bro. & Sis. Kilgore, but I’m just one person in a sea of people with memories of great people. What a giant of a man he was. You are missed already, Bro. Kilgore and will be missed until we meet again. Tell Mother & Daddy that I press on in apostolic doctrine and identity and I will meet them in front of the throne, soon!
Rest in Peace my dear Bro. Kilgore.
The following thread is what has been happening on my facebook page the past few hours. Someone suggested I copy and paste it here on my blog. I thought it a great idea so here it is. I hope everyone receives a blessing by reading the great testimonies posted here.
You just never know. One of the men we baptized on Sunday is a result of the very first park service we had where we baptized his children. He came in contact with some of our people this past week and he remembered them from the park a few years back. He was ready for salvation and came Sunday, was baptized and received the Holy Ghost. You just never know what your efforts will produce.
Jason West 2 weeks later, a Family came knocking on her door downtown San Jose, and said she won the Free Bible, but she has to have the Free Bible Study that goes with it. 31 years later…here we are. I thank God for people that put time and effort of putting together that booth and sat that booth for hours, for a single mother to eventually push a 2 year old in stroller past it, and be drawn to it.
Ronda C Hurst Bro. Jason, That is incredible! Those folks’ crown will be full of stars. Heaven will be such an awesome place, just to see and hear the testimonies of how many people are saved because someone set up a peanut brittle booth at the fair and offered a free Bible Study.
Okay, Jason got me to thinking……..When my grandmother (Layne) received the Holy Ghost way out in West Texas (Mountain Top), she was the only one to receive it in that revival. The Lord spoke to an old time preacher man (Wilkins) to go …out there and have a revival. There was no church. He just went out and started preaching. My grandmother was touched and repented. She was so desperate to receive the Holy Ghost that she began to fast because she said that food didn’t taste good. My grandfather was an incredible cook and a Southern Baptist. 🙂 He was so angry that she was under so much conviction and not eating that he fixed a meal of Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Biscuits, Cream Gravy, etc and set it on the table and called for the children (Dean, Scoper, Murray[my dad], Doug and I can’t remember if Don was born yet) to come to the table and eat. He called for Grandma too. They all came, ready to eat. Grandma approached the table but when she stood there and looked at the food she began to cry and said she couldn’t eat. “What do you mean you can’t eat”, Grandpa said. She replied, “I want the Holy Ghost”. At that moment, she fell to the floor under the power of the Holy Ghost, speaking in another language as the Spirit gave the utterance. She was ecstatic! Grandpa was furious! Eventually, he received the Holy Ghost too. My dad (Murray L. Layne) received the Holy Ghost in a hog pen that they had cleaned out and scrubbed to make a prayer room.
Even though some may say that was not a successful revival, I must differ. If Bro. Wilkins had not obeyed the call of God to go then my Grandmother may never have heard the gospel truth. And, consequently my dad would not have heard the call of God on his life. Not to mention the countless thousands that his ministry has touched through saints and ministries that were under his. Including: Keith (his son), Linda (daughter) married to Wendell Elms (both sons are preachers of the gospel). Myself (daughter) married to Nathan Hurst (our son is a preacher of the gospel and our daughter is married to a preacher of the gospel). Karla (daughter) married to Gene Holley (both sons have a call of God on their lives). Like I said, Heaven will be an incredible place to see the many souls whose lives were changed simply because ONE man answered the call to go to West Texas and hold a revival and ONE lady received the Holy Ghost and this precious truth.
Do you think I’m going to give up?! Well, think again. This Truth and my heritage is way too precious to me to allow anything in this world to stop me from entering Heaven’s gate!See More
Sister thank you for sharing with us this great testiimony…I am a product of your father’s ministry, received the Holy Ghost in his church 1965 and have been preaching the gospel for 40yrs.
Your grandparents were very good friends with my …parents when we lived in Fresno and I remember many an evening visiting with them. What wonderful people they were. I remember Pop Layne testifying of how God had saved him and delivered him from coca-cola, among other things. Precious memories and their finger prints are on my life. I too have a precious heritage…again, thanks! God Bless…See More
Ok so after reading the testimonies here goes. Thirty years ago the church I was saved into used to go out every Saturday and knock on doors and offer free bible studies. They each took maps of part of the city with their route in yellow …high light. The men who had our area felt as if God told him to go off his highlighted route and to knock on our door. That day he spent 3 hours with us, my husband and I, telling us of the one God message. We did take the bible study, got baptized and received the Holy Ghost and I will never turn back!!! The wonderful thing is I found out later that my grandpa was a oneness preacher in the UPC and that my mom was raised UPC but because she was backslid and estranged from her heritage she raised us Catholic. Still God remembered the prayers of my grandparents, that I’m sure they prayed and brought, eventually, all of the grandchildren to baptism and allowed each of them to receive the Holy Ghost.See More
Ronda C Hurst @Rene, That is so awesome! Holy Ghost Inspired witnessing is the best! What was your grandfather’s name? The Lord stored your grandparents tears/prayers in a bottle and when it was time He poured them out on you. Your testimony brought tears of thankfulness to my eyes.
God is not a respecter of persons but He is a respecter of principals. He has plans for everyone to accomplish great things. Don’t believe anything other than Jer. 29:11(Amplified Bible)–For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.
Here are a few principals to help you start today!
1. Work Like it is up to you and pray like it is up to God! Work hard and pray hard! God wants to help you more than you want His help.
2. Have a concise plan of where and what you want to accomplish. Write it down in detail. Then write down how you think you will accomplish it.
3. Do 5 things every day that drives you in that direction.
4. ASK for help. Surround yourself with a team of people who share your passion.
5. Contact someone who has already done what you want and ask for them to coach you. Be willing to do what they ask.
6. Align yourself with the authorities in your life.
7.Be grateful for every opportunity that comes your way and give 110% like it is where you already want to be.
8. Take risk. Sometimes when you live on the edge you will fall off but you will miss 100% of the opportunities that you never try! The worst thing that could happen is most likely where you already are.
9. Take serious action today. Don’t wait one more day!
10. Do what you love! Most likely your gift is in someway connected!
We were blessed to have with us this past Wednesday Night, Michael and Miriam Sponsler. The Sponsler’s are missionaries to Argentina. They shared with us their burden for the country of Argentina and Bro. Sponsler preached a great message on, “A Place Prepared For You” (not sure if that’s correct title). Mike if you read this, you can correct me on the title. 🙂 It was a message of great faith.
We enjoyed fellowship with the Sponsler’s not only because of their missionary status but also because they are dear friends. Miriam was raised in Kennewick, Washington and was in my in-law’s church. She was 10 years old when they went to Kennewick over 40 years ago. She stated in church Wednesday Night that she owes her salvation to God and Pastor and Sis. B.J. Hurst. How precious it is to see one of yours fulfilling the call that God has placed on their life. I know my father and mother in-law are proud of Miriam. In fact, it is her brother, Wayne Clemetson that now pastor’s the church in Kennewick since my in-laws retired. So, now you can see why this was an extra special time for all of us.
Miriam, if you read this, I love you bunches and am proud to call you friend. Even though we don’t get to be around each other that much, I always enjoy it when we can.
I read this yesterday and found it very interesting, I guess because my husband is a minister and we have always felt like we had the most blessed life in the world. I know there are times of great sacrifice and sometimes you are disappointed but all in all this is a wonderful life. I wouldn’t trade it for any other. We are BLESSED!
Pastors—perceived to be some of the most under-appreciated and in-demand workers in America—are actually the happiest and most satisfied in their jobs, according to results from a newly released survey by the University of Chicago.
The survey found clergy to be the top job for satisfaction among American workers, 87 percent of clergy reported being “very satisfied”. Firefighters (80%) and physical therapist (78%) were also the “most satisfied” in their profession. Clergy also out-ranked other American workers as being the “happiest” (67%).
The most satisfying jobs are those involving caring for, teaching and protecting others, and creative pursuits,” said Tom W. Smith, director of the UC Survey at the National Opinion Research.
Other top jobs include education administrators, painters and sculptors, teachers, authors, psychologist, special education teachers, and operating engineers, with more than 60% saying they are very satisfied.
Another recent study released by the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love and conducted by such top universities as Harvard and the University of Chicago—had also found that people who give to and help others on a REGULAR basis feel the happiest.
And, might I add…. We are the happiest when we give with a pure heart and joyful spirit/attitude, asking for and expecting nothing in return. HOWEVER!!!!! YOU CAN’T OUTGIVE GOD so WATCH OUT! You just might be overtaken by a blessing!
Daddy had an incredible love for young people. When he was young he was the Youth President of the Western District, U.P.C.I. I hear stories even today from pastors and their wives in the Western District of how much Daddy and Mother meant to them as teenagers going to camps and conventions, etc. When he pastored in Fresno, California back in the sixties, he was driving in town one day and saw a young “hippie” boy on the side of the road. He said that his first inclination was to say, “go get a haircut and a job, boy”. However, when he had that thought he said that God spoke to him and said, “why don’t you try to see that boy through my eyes”? And he began to weep. He later preached a sermon entitled, “Seeing the Lost through the Eyes of Jesus”. It was a great sermon. He also experienced great revival with just those kind of young people. Well over 100 of them received the Holy Ghost and was baptized in Jesus Name. Some of them are in ministry today and some are still in the church there in Fresno and in various congregations around the nation. God led Daddy and Mother from Fresno to Houston to Rialto, CA to Mesquite, TX to traveling for 5 years and then going to be the leader of the Lighthouse Ranch for Boys in Louisiana. Everywhere they went they impacted young people! I just wonder, when the rewards are handed out in Heaven how many jewells will be in their crowns?
Daddy had an incredible love for my mother, Lila Marie. I remember as a girl when Daddy would leave to go pray for someone or just take care of business in town, that he would stop at a pay phone and call Mother just tell her that he loved her. We would get tickled about it but it left an impression on me that I will never forget. He treated Mother with utmost respect, and she returned that to him. I believe that the greatest gift you can give your children is that you love one another. There is security in that for kids.
This coming Sunday is designated for Father’s Day. What a great day! I probably had the best Dad in the world. He was a man of “Steele and Velvet”. My Dad was strong in his beliefs and convictions. He was a preacher/teacher par excellent. I loved Wednesday Night Bible Study. Daddy’s teaching was incredible. Oh yes, he could go awhile but it was always good. The wisdom of my father astounded me at times. I would sit and listen to him talk to young people, friends and ministers (when I was allowed to) by the hour and gleaned so much from these times. He just made sense.
On a more personal level: I remember one time when I broke up with a boy that HE wanted me to break up with. Afterward, I went to my room and laid across the bed and cried. In a few minutes I heard a light knock on my door. I didn’t answer because I knew it was Daddy and I thought he was going to reprimand me for crying. However, he came on in and he just sat on the bed and put his arm on my back and then I heard him crying. That’s when I looked up at him with tear stained cheeks and red eyes and said, “Why are you crying? You wanted me to break up with him”. And he said, “I’m crying because I know you are hurting.” He was just that kind of father. How could a girl want for more?
Daddy always was the more serious type when it came to church. He was always joyful in his worship but he didn’t want any foolin’around in church and sometimes funny things just happen. Why is it always more funny when you know your’re not supposed to laugh? One time my older sister, Linda, a friend named Patsy and myself sang a song on Sunday Morning called “Things are Gonna Be Better Afterwhile”. It was horrible! Patsy sang the lead, Linda, alto and I was in the rafters on tenor. We finally made it to the end of the song and when Daddy got to the pulpit he simply said, “I sure hope things will be better afterwhile”. Linda was humiliated and I was laughing so hard I was crying and Patsy had the nervous giggles. I could write a book about funny things that happen in church. One time Daddy was preaching and he said, “I’m so glad to be in the widdle (middle) of God’s mill (will)”. Needless to say we had a good laugh over that one.
I loved it when I heard Daddy pray. He sounded like he was talking to one of his friends. When I was young we lived right across the street from the church and on many occasions I would walk over and sneak into the church or stand by his office door and listen to him pray. I always wanted to have a walk with God like him. It just seemed like as soon as Daddy said, “Jesus”, that He was right there. So many times when we was about town, in a resturant etc. Daddy would simply say, “Thank You Jesus”, ” I love you Jesus”, “Hallelujah” or “Praise God”, and give praise to God wherever he was. He walked with the Lord on a daily basis. His relationship was not just a Sunday thing. It was all the time. He was a friend of God.
Daddy didn’t have much in this life by some standards, although we were always blessed. But he left me a legacy that is far more precious then any amount of money, houses or lands. Even in Daddy’s death he was preaching. Oh, not like he use to do when he stood in the pulpit but nevertheless preaching just the same. The nurses loved to come into his room and listen to him talk about the things of God. I watched them as he would talk about heaven and their eyes would fill with tears. I knew they were feeling the presence of God. I was feeling it as well. I remember one nurse in particular that came into the room and you could tell she was a little frazzled. I said, “Are you okay”? And she said, “Oh it’s just been a rough day. I love to come into Mr. Layne’s room because it is always so peaceful in here”. Yes, I would say he was preaching, even on his deathbed. There is a peace of God that passes all understanding that comes with a life that has been completely sold out to Him.
Daddy passed from this life on April 5, 2004. I am so blessed to have had such a Godly, loving father.