by carol pipes
GodTalk is talk of the townWhen Pastor Chris Wells
began asking God to show him a way he could effectively engage the culture, he
had no idea that God would answer him in such an unusual way.
As pastor of The River in Winnipeg, Chris is on the lookout for
opportunities to take the message of Jesus outside the walls of the church. So
when CJOB, the citys top talk radio station, asked Chris to co-host a live
Christian call-in show, he jumped at the chance.
Name: Chris Wells
City: Winnipeg, Manitoba
Mission: Sharing Christ with searching listeners over the air
It all started in 1997 when Peter Warren, host of the morning call-in show,
verbally attacked a Christian guest and kicked him off the show.
The radio station was flooded with mail from irate listeners. Chris also
responded but in a positive, loving tone. He challenged the host to an on-air
debate on the facts of Christianity. The program manager accepted Chris
challenge. The three-hour show prompted such an amazing caller response that
CJOB offered Chris and another Winnipeg pastor, David Balzer, a regular slot on
Sunday evenings for their own call-in show.
GodTalk was born and is now in its third season. Chris and David designed
GodTalk to be a safe place for people to ask questions about God and have
honest dialogue about faith and spirituality. Capitalizing on the interest in
spirituality, they bring in guests with different perspectives.
This makes for lively, thought-provoking and sometimes controversial
dialogue, says Chris. Our views evangelical Christian beliefsare the
springboard for every discussion. Interviewing rabbis, Hindus, Muslims,
atheists and agnostics, Chris and David open discussion with: This is what we
firmly believewhats your view?
Our perspective is unapologetically Christ-centered. We believe all people
have dignity and worth no matter what they believe. And we believe all people
are looking for God whether theyre conscious of it or not.
Chris gets excited when a nonbeliever calls in with a tough question. Thats
one more person we can share the gospel with.
GodTalk can be heard on Winnipegs CJOB 68 on Sundays, 7-9 p.m., CST.
Listeners can also tune in on the Web during the program at www.cjob.com.
Nothing can still her voice
Clara McCormick is 63 years old and suffers from diabetes, but she doesnt let
her age or the disease keep her from singing the gospel and sharing her faith
Name: Clara McCormick
Location: Bowie, Maryland
Mission: To help someone find the way to Christ.
Known as C & S Adorned, Clara and her singing companion, Sherry
Alderson, have been sharing Christ through music in nursing homes for more than
a year. Clara doesnt let being in a wheelchair slow her down. I pick her up in
a van equipped for handicapped people, and off we go, says Sherry. Clara wants
to reach as many people as she can with the gospel for as long as God gives
My ministry with C & S Adorned is one of the greatest things that has
happened to me, because it gives me the opportunity to tell others what God has
done in my life, she says.
Clara felt a burden to start sharing her faith one day when she was home
with her daughter doing housework. I started to focus on Christs death on the
cross and His shed blood for my sins. I began crying and praising the Lord with
such deep-felt emotions.
I believe God was burdening me to share my faith with others.
With all her family gone now, Clara focuses her attention on performances at
area nursing homes and the small choir she started at the senior apartment
building where she lives. When I sing for people who are unable to walk, or go
to church or to a concert, I feel this is really Gods will. Its such a blessing
to be able to share with others my love for the Lord.
Please dont send me to AfricaKelly Swain was nine years old when she first knew God was
calling her to missions. I attended a youth musical. There was a song about a
girl who was afraid God was going to call her to Africa, Kelly recalls. I sat
in the pew, scared to death, and told God I could never go to Africa or be a
missionary and begged Him never to call me.
Name: Kelly Swain
City: Rock Hill, South Carolina
Mission: Sharing Christ in the work place and on the dance
Soon, God changed my heart and all I wanted to do was be an international
missionary. I wasnt sure where or what to do, but I knew thats what He was
calling me to do. Kelly focused on social ministries at the Scottish Baptist
College in Glasgow.
She also interned with the Glasgow City Mission. I worked with the mothers
at the center, and God really used that time to confirm that this was the
direction of ministry I should head.
Kelly Swain (right) gives a high five to Gary, age 2, whose mom is
taking classes at the Christian Womens Job Corps, a ministry of the Womans
As a US/C-2 missionary, Kelly now serves at the York County Christian Womens
Job Corps in Rock Hill, South Carolina. This ministry helps low-income women
become more self-sufficient, explains Kelly. I work with the children of the
women who are in the program. Ive been developing prevention and intervention
activities such as mentoring, after-school programs and summer activities.
It was in Scotland that Kelly realized how important it is to have
non-Christian friendships. I went through a period in college when I was
surrounded by Christians and pretty much abandoned the things and activities I
loved like music and dance to be more involved in church-related pursuits, says
Since moving to Rock Hill, Kelly has rediscovered her love for dance and has
started taking lessons again. Im a firm believer that God wants us to use the
gifts and talents He gives us for Him to work through, but also for us to
enjoy. Dance happens to be my thing. I love it, and it gives me an incredible
opportunity to get to know and be friends with non-Christians. Ive been able to
share similar struggles with them and how God brought me through. They are also
curious about my job, so that opens opportunities to share my faith as
She says her best advice for being on mission is to figure out who
you are and who God has made you to be, and then live lifesharing as you
US/C-2 missionaries serve for two years in the U.S. or Canada. For more
information call 770-410-6499 or visit www.answerthecall.net.
Cowboy preacherIve been a country kid all my life,
says Mike Infanzon, pastor of First Southern Baptist Church of Cornville,
Arizona. This certified journeyman farrier, or horseshoer by trade, once led
the life of a rodeo cowboy. Now when he attends a rodeo or heads out to the
prairie, its not to ride bulls or rope cattleits to preach the gospel and share
the love of Christ with cowboys and cowgirls. You wont find me in a suit on
Sunday mornings, says Pastor Mike. I preach in my cowboy boots and
Name: Mike Infanzon
City: Cornville, Arizona
Mission: Reaching out to a rural community.
When most kids were playing ball, Mike was learning to ride bulls in the
junior rodeo. He was six when he rode his first bull, and at 18 he decided to
go pro. And so he began his life on the Professional Rodeo Circuit (PRC).
The rodeo is a gypsy life with lots of temptations, he recalls. I
participated in more than 100 rodeos in 52 weeks. So between January and
December I was away from home probably 300 days out of the year.
Mike became a Christian at 25. I was taught about Jesus growing up, but no
one ever told me about having a relationship with Him.
A nights drinking binge changed everything. I woke one morning in the barn
of the only Christian I knew. Only God knows how I got there. This fella told
me I was messing up my life and that what I needed most was Jesus. I asked
Jesus into my heart right there on the barn floor.
Mike started going to First Baptist Church, Lancaster, Texas, and was
discipled by one of the deacons. He continued on and off the PRC for the next
seven years. I slowed down a lot.
During that time he moved to Arizona. I felt God calling me into the
ministry almost immediately after I became a Christian, but I had no idea He
wanted me to be a pastor. He eventually saw that God was leading him in that
Aside from his ministry at First Southern Baptist Church, Pastor Mike also
ministers at rodeos. He helped plan a Christian rodeo last November as part of
Phoenixs Strategic Focus City emphasis. I have a fierce love for cowboys on the
rodeo circuit brought about by years of competing side by side with them.
Building partnershipsLincoln Bingham describes himself as having been born into
ethnicity, poverty and obscurity simultaneously, all of which were to be
barriers to hinder success, he says. But a total surrender of my life to the
lordship of Jesus Christ has not only overcome those barriers but all
Name: Lincoln Bingham
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Mission: To help build strong relationships between African-American
and Anglo churches.
As cooperative ministries consultant for the Kentucky Baptist Convention,
Lincoln tries to determine everything from pulpit exchanges to church
partnerships. We have churches that do joint worship services, training events,
reconciliation dialogues and recreational activities. Our goal at the state
convention is to have churches of different ethnicities working together in
Under Lincolns leadersip, African-American ministries in Kentucky have seen
amazing growth including the establishment of an annual pastors conference and
the J.L. Roberts School of Religion which both host 3,000 participants.
Lincoln attributes the success of his ministry to a total surrender to
Christ. Its absolutely awesome how God can use you, says Lincoln. It will amaze
and surprise you.
For information about how you can impact African-American church planting,
contact Ken Weathersby at 770-410-6232 or visit www.namb.net.
SEVEN ways you can be on
mission through prayeran essential ingredient of any mission
1. Call 800-554-PRAY (7729) for current missionary requests.
2. Visit www.namb.net/prayerline for a list of missionary birthdays and
3. Subscribe to the North American Missions Prayer-Gram by calling
4. To identify where missionaries are serving and how you can pray for them
visit www.namb.net /missionaries.
5. Subscribe to Missions Mosiac for a list of both North American and
international missionary birthdays by calling 800-968-7301.
6. Adopt and pray for a Strategic Focus City by visiting www.namb.net/prayerline.
7. Call 800-395-PRAY for international missionary requests.
A Southern Baptist Convention entity supported by the Cooperative Program and theAnnie Armstrong Easter Offering® ©Copyright 2013 North American Mission Board, SBC