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The Testimony and Call To Preach Of
Evangelist Avery Smith
I was raised in the small German town of Boerne, TX. At age 12, I was saved at a Christian youth camp. From that time until I entered college, I floated from church to church, when I would attend, and did not have any real convictions on many things. The first summer back from college, I met Erica. I soon moved back home to Boerne to go to school in San Antonio. While at the University of Texas at San Antonio, I was introduced to InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, a non-denominational Christian group for college students. It was here that I began to renew my faith again. In the fall of 1993, Erica and I enrolled at Texas A&M-Kingsville in Kingsville, TX. There had been a new IVCF chapter started in Kingsville, so Erica and I attended the meetings. Soon, I was convinced that I needed to find a church home for myself. I would pick Erica up from her dormitory, and we would try several churches out, one of mine, and one of hers. After a few visits to several churches, I decided to look in the phone book. It was here I first discovered an independent, fundamental Baptist church. I was intrigued as to what this meant, so Erica and I tried it.
In November of 1993, we made our way to Heritage Baptist Church of Kingsville. They had finished an all day revival service early that day, so we were the only car in the parking lot. We decided to go inside anyway, and as were getting out, the pastor, Evangelist Mac Woody, his son Paul, and Lester Pruitt came around from behind the church. We introduced ourselves, and Brother Woody invited us in the church. While talking in the foyer, he asked me if I was saved. Then he asked Erica, who responded, "I'm still learning." I had been leaving tracts for her to find from time to time, and had witnessed to her some, but the connections just weren't being made at the time. Brother Woody took this opportunity to share the Gospel with her, and she bowed her head and accepted Christ into her heart. Brother Woody likes to introduce us as the guy who showed up in a ten gallon hat, giant belt-buckle with an NIV under one arm and a lost girlfriend under the other. That's exactly as it was too.
We began to attend Heritage off and on thereafter. I remember telling Erica after the first sermon I heard Brother Woody preach that this is definitely the church for us. I learned more in his first sermon I heard than all the preaching I'd ever heard before combined. Later on, I realized it was because he was preaching with authority, and with the authorized Word of God (KJV). I began to have convictions about the version of the Bible I was using, my music, acquaintances and so on. Through the leading of the Holy Spirit and my own study, I now have solid convictions on the King James Bible, music, dress, etc., as outlined in God's Word. Brother Woody began instructing us on Soulwinning and sanctified living. In November of 1994, I surrendered to preach at the Methodist Hospital in San Antonio, TX, while visiting with the family of close friends of ours. A young man, Tigger, was in a coma, and God had impressed on me the need to share the Gospel with his classmates who had gathered there. After a brief prayer service in the hospital chapel in wich I gave my first ever "public" invitation, Tigger's older brother and my friend, Dwayne, accepted Christ. Several others raised their hands in response to the Gospel as well. When everyone left, I stayed behind, and surrendered my life to His service.
After surrendering to preach, I spent many hours of instruction in the field of church planting under Brother Woody. We went as a team to Hebbronville, TX, in a church planting effort. Here, we saw nearly 300 people call on Christ for salvation in 1 1/2 years of door-to-door evangelism. .
We would fly over to Hebbronville as a team in Brother Woody's Cessna 172. The trip would take us 30 minutes by plane verses 90 minutes by car. Later on, I became principal of the Heritage Christian Academy, and Erica was a teacher. We continued to serve in this capacity after the Lord moved Brother Woody to Upper Michigan. Recently, the Lord has allowed me to begin my pilot's training as well. I look forward to using aviation as a tool to spread the Gospel to rural America.
Brother Woody had spent 14 years in South Texas planting churches, and being impressed of the Lord of the need for churches in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, the Church Planter's Institute was moved to the Marquette, MI, area. As he was making preparations to leave for the north, preparations were made for me here to become the new pastor, which I remained for 1 1/2 years. I then, in turn, joined Brother Woody in the north to continue to assist him with the church planting ministry as God impressed on my heart more and more of the need for new churches in America..
Our first church plant experience in Upper Michigan was in a small town named Sagola. We knocked on every door in Sagola, Felch and Channing in this effort. We had Bible study services in the Randville Town hall, and had people saved and baptized. We also had the privilege of conducting the first-ever tent revival in Sagola.
After 2 1/2 years here, we attempted to consolidate our fruit to the main work located near Marquette. God has greatly blessed the work here. With His help, we hope to see many such works begun accross the rural areas of America through our efforts and as we help to encourage others to do the same.
Due to my secular education background and my Bachelors Degree in Agricultural Science from Texas A&M University-Kingsville in Kingsville, TX, I have had an intense desire to declare the truth of how Scripture and Science are not contradictory. As a result of this, God has allowed me to establish Creation Truth Ministries, dedicated to strengthening God's people through one-day or week long Creation Truth Seminars in Independent Baptist Churches. We also have a Creation based Vacation Bible School program for churches interested, and desire to penetrate the secular education systems to show children how it is scientifically impossible for evolution to be the reason we are here. Please contact Creation Truth Ministries if you have any questions or would like to schedule a meeting.
Also while in Kingsville, I realized the need for good printed material to be placed in the hands of the people of our churches. King James Transcribers was begun as a help to pastors and missionaries to put good quality material in their people's hands. When a person reads, they retain more information than just listening to a message. And because not many pastors and missionaries have the time or resources to put their messages on paper, I offer to do this for them. As the Lord continues to provide, this service is free of charge to Independent Fundamental Baptist pastors and missionaries. Love offerings for this service is appreciated, as it may take up to triple the time to transcribe a sermon than the actual length of the message. If I can be of help to you in this area, please contact KJV Transcribers..
For information on contacting Evangelist Avery Smith for revival meetings,
missions conferences or Creation Truth Seminars, contact:
Evangelist Avery L. Smith
100 Birchbrook Lane
Marquette, MI 49855
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