My Life, Chapter Four

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how far we've come

Charles CooleyI just finished my 86th birthday and it was a great time with family gathered around, all except Elisabeth’s family who were in California. All the well-wishers were astounding. A talk with my oldest daughter, Wynter, made me realize I must finish the thoughts about my life. My children are all grown now, most with families of their own. It is such a blessing to me to see that they all have a love for the Lord and for His Word. They might not think the way I think, but then Anita and I raised them to use their minds as well as their spirits to follow the Lord and the Holy Spirit. As a result, they are all going to different churches, but they all owe their devotion to the Lord. 

Years ago (The 1970s) while attending a meeting, an evangelist gave me a prophesy. His name was Dick Mills, and he would prophesy by giving a list of Scriptures. He called me out of a crowd of several hundred and gave me this list:

Psalm 1:6 “For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.”

Psalm 138:7-8 “Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me; You will stretch out Your hand Against the wrath of my enemies, And Your right hand will save me. The LORD will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O LORDendures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.”

Ecclesiastes 7:8 “The end of a thing is better than its beginning; The patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.”

Exodus 14:15 “And the LORD said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward.”

Deuteronomy 2:3 “‘You have skirted this mountain long enough; turn northward.”

Joshua 1:3 ““Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you, as I said to Moses.”

Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

It is important that you know Dick Mills was a stranger to me and I to him. He could have had no idea what I was going through in the natural. At the time I had just been kicked out of the Lutheran Church I was attending, and was a deacon in, for saying that infant baptism was not the born-again experience!  I had begun attending a Pentecostal Church in Eau Claire named Harvesttime Chapel and the pastor and I had begun a ministry known as Interfaith Fellowship. In the several years that it ran, we reached 100s with the message of the Baptism with the Holy Spirit and held the largest evangelistic outreach Eau Claire had ever seen with the Nicky Cruise meeting. But as that ministry began to close down, and I was seeking God what to do. In Strum, where I lived, people were still shunning me and calling me a heretic and people in the Assembly of God church I was attending wanted to know why we didn’t encourage those who being baptized in the Holy Spirit to leave their churches and come to theirs? I tried to tell them that God hadn’t told me to do that, but they didn’t understand. This was my situation when I received this word, and it was a great comfort to me. God counted me as righteous, and He was promising to be with me. He was assuring me that the ending would be better than the beginning and that He would perfect His work in me. Something I greatly needed! Then came a curious message – “turn northward”. Little did I know that Daystar Ministries was starting a Discipleship school named Eden in northern Wisconsin and that Pastor Bill Lemke who had ministered to Anita would be leading it. As soon as we heard it was starting, we headed north.

We made many great friends at Eden over the years and received much good and needed ministry as well. My family grew as well. Several attended the discipleship schools, and many found their lifelong mates there as well. After Bill Lemke retired as Pastor, I became Pastor for several years. Many from Eau Claire were attending our meetings and we eventually decided to start a church in Eau Claire. We named it Restoration Church where I pastored for the next several years until the elders asked me to step down. It was a very painful time, and Anita and I began attending a little fellowship in Alma Wisconsin where God had prepared a pastor just for us, named Kim Erickson. It was such a good time of resting in the Lord and receiving His loving ministry. I shall never forget the love and comfort we received from Kim and the other members in that fellowship. 

retreat center 2010 002

Eventually, my daughter Rachel and her husband Helge Enok rebuilt their old barn into a beautiful Christian Center and a small group of us began fellowship meetings there. I am still there, waiting on the Lord and letting Him fulfill His desires for me so I can say with Paul, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.” We meet on Sundays, usually with a fellowship meal following, and twice a week for prayer. 

As I continue waiting on the Lord, He has encouraged me by blessing the blog I began in 2014 named Prophesy for Today. It currently has 156,000 views and is seen in 20 some countries. I have seen the truth of Paul’s word from the Lord –

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” – Eph. 2:10

father training childrenIn all my experiences with the Lord, I have finally learned what is the greatest ministry He has for any man – to be a good father! Abraham is called the father of our faith but why did God give him such an exalted title? It was because he was a true father.

“Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? “For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.” – Gen. 18:17-19

In other words, Abraham won the favor of the Lord because he would train his children in the way of the Lord. The same applies to us men today. God cares about the children. God told the prophet Malachi “He seeks godly offspring. Therefore, take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth. “For the LORD God of Israel says That He hates divorce, for it covers one’s garment with violence,” God told King David that children were the heritage of the Lord.

Now I know that with today’s ungodly laws such as ‘no-fault’ divorce, many are left with no recourse but divorce, but through prayer they can yet be a godly influence on their children. In fact, many if not most of the laws passed in our country are now against God’s command for us. I want to encourage my children to pay attention to the words of the prophet Malachi as he prepared the people for the end time days –

“Remember the Law of Moses, My servant, Which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel, With the statutes and judgments. Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet Before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.” – Mal. 4:4-6

God has not forgotten His 10 Commandments which He gave Moses on Mt. Horeb, and He expects society to remember them also. When a corrupt Supreme Court removed them from the schools in 1980, every Christian parent should have removed their children from those schools as well! Or replaced the Court! The Day of the Lord is coming but, before that day God is going to send Elijah, or someone in the spirit of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children. That means to remind fathers of their responsibility to train their children in the ways of the Lord. God commanded –

“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.” – Deut. 6:6, 7

“Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren,” – Deut. 4:9

“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” – Prov. 22:6

God gave the primary responsibility to the fathers, not the wives and certainly not the public schools! If you must have your children in the public schools, then you had better be involved in what they are teaching them. And if they are teaching homosexuality or transgenderism or socialism or Wokism or other un-truths, you had better let your voice of opposition be heard and if they won’t listen then remove your children. One day you are going to have to stand before a righteous God as your judge and give an account of how you raised your children, and you won’t be able to blame the public schools for false teaching then. And God is also going to hold pastors accountable for not teaching these things! And also, don’t depend on your church to train your children, it is not their responsibility, it is yours.

I have tried to pass these principles on to my children but, I have failed to give them the total attention they deserved. I was often too taken up with pursuing my so-called ministry instead of giving attention to the one ministry most important to God. I hope and pray they and my grandchildren and great grandchildren will be shown by the Holy Spirit the importance of these things and that He will cover my mistakes. 

congressional BibleAs a father of 8 children, 23 grandchildren, and 12 great grandchildren, I know what an awesome responsibility this is and how often we fathers fail. But we can repent and ask God for strength to fulfill His commands if we know them. The greatest help we have is the Word of God in which God’s expectations are clearly laid out for us to follow. And they must be followed first before government’s mandates, society’s demand, or even our own will. God’s will must come first.

While education is a fine thing, my children were all college educated, the foundation of education must be an understanding of God’s word, the Holy Bible. It alone is the truth and beside it all other education pales in understanding and wisdom. Scripture declares –

“Buy the truth, and do not sell it, also wisdom and instruction and understanding.” – Prov. 23:23

and that truth is found in God’s word, the Bible.

Cooley Family Day 2022In 2020 I felt led by the Holy Spirit to have a Cooley Family Day in which I would celebrate the family God has given me and encourage them to follow the Lord in all they do. I wanted to remind them of God’s claim on each of their lives and His willingness to help them carry out His will. I have done this now for three times, once each year. Most of my family have been there for these events and I pray there will be good fruit from them. The above picture was taken from the Power Point show I did for the 2022 event where over 60 attended. I plan to do one of these events each of the remaining years that I have. 

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