February 2017 Newsletter - Testimony by Fred Van Delden
Hello all who read this brief outline of my journey thus far, I was asked to write a short exposé on my coming into Forerunner Ministries, which is led by Apostle Mike Petro.
I first heard Apostle Mike Petro speak through three cassettes that a friend from Cairns had sent me. He said, "You have a listen to these.” At that time, I was going to a church in a city called Sale about 85 kilometers from my home, so I could and would listen to them while driving. For about a week, I played the teachings, listened, and thought WOW!!!! This was a strong word of things that I knew were going against the norm, like perfection, epe knossos (to know HIM intimately), and much more.
I eventually yelled in the car in agreement, “YESSSSS!!!!” with a warrior cry. I know this is right; I knew I had come to a truth. I spoke to Apostle Mike once on the phone (as I lived some 4000 kilometers away from where he was). I shared some things, like the loss of my daughter and about how I heard the LORD say some things to me.
Some things the LORD told me were, “I have made you a sword in my hand.” Then the LORD said, “The sword doesn't do the fighting, but the hand that it is in, does the fighting.” Apostle Mike said “I might even use that one myself.”
As I write this, even now I see how immature I was, because it was like I needed to validate myself.
We talked about the church that I was connected with in Sale, Victoria, Australia, which is affiliated with a large church in Malaysia. Apostle Mike said he knew of this church and stated it was in the lesser mysteries, only really a type of shallow way.
I eventually enrolled in The School of the Prophet, but I never began the study. I was very aware of Hebrews 6 & 10, which Apostle Mike had preached. So my thinking at the time (but now I see my understanding was wrong thinking) was if I mess up in sin, there is no coming back. Really, also it was me having justification for me to not to come into the secrets and mysteries at that time.
I know now it was wrong thinking, but in hindsight, I see GOD'S hand in it all. He had kept me away from the religious systems (so to speak), bible schools, even a pastor friend whom I still love. I had always wanted to come under the headship of someone, but there was never someone who felt right for me. I see in some of it, that I was very single minded and would have thought that the path I was on was the truth – whether it be a bible school, or the ministry I was to learn from.
While in Europe with one of my sons, who was playing professional soccer at a youth level, we would talk about the cassettes from Forerunner Ministries, which I had received from my friend in Cairns.
I ended up working in a mining camp on upon coming back to Australia. Many, many things started to happen here in the camp. GOD would speak to me often. My friend (who sent these tapes back in 2006) was also working in the mine and stayed at the same camp. He and another older lady felt that Apostle Mike was too strong and hard. I said to them, regardless, "I know what he says and what he carries is the truth. He is ‘the’ and a voice for GOD.”
I knew sometime in the future I would present myself before him. I knew Apostle Mike had returned to the USA from Australia, but I did not know all the circumstances. The journey continued and was still unfolding. So little did I know, I would be working with refugees on two islands as a security officer and later as a sport and recreation officer, also that I would start building another house. Then I lost my job, broke my neck, all in 2014, among other things that happened to me.
A month out of my neck brace, I knew I had to reconnect to Forerunner Ministries, so I started to search for Forerunners and found that I could the connect with Forerunners in Queensland, Australia. I contacted them shared some of what God was doing with me. The pastor with Forerunner AUS impressed upon me to come up and visit, and he said Apostle Mike was going to be in Australia at the end of 2014. I knew this was a GOD-appointed time for me. So, 6 weeks out of my neck brace, I went up to Cairns to meet Apostle Mike. I came to one of his meetings in Townsville, and from that time onward, I had dedicated myself to this ministry. It took quite a time for me to get into a pattern and really did not get into anything with substance until I eventually moved to Innisfail. While studying with the Forerunner family, I was introduced to Ancient Hebrew. It was really more of a character building time in those 4 & 1/2 months, which was a maturing process for me.
I NOW SEE GOD'S AMAZING WISDOM in dealing with me, as I can be very impulsive, make excuses, get side tracked with my own things. Now I see the LORD is getting me to a certain level of maturity to now go to the next stage/level.
The most amazing thing I have noticed is even though we need to fight and resist certain things in our lives, it's been the inherent power of his Word, his language. Things just start to change without trying, only being willing to obey. And even that comes in a way that you can't help but want to change- only just to have a willingness to walk with Him (to walk together with the FATHER).
So I have come to a place - and it is ongoing - of realizing and wanting to do and follow HIS will for my life and give out freely as he has given out freely to me!!
Shalom brothers and sisters, Fred Van Delden