Mid-Summer 2018

David & Vicki Creel

Mid-Summer 2018 Prayer Letter Update

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To Pray for FEBC, scroll down to Pray Now

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ…”   Philippians 1:2-6 NKJV

This greeting and prayer of the Apostle Paul echoes our hearts’ desire for you.  We are truly grateful for your partnership in the Great Commission, in taking “Christ to the World by Radio and Media.”

We would like to share with you some prayer concerns.  Thanks for joining us in prayer as the Holy Spirit leads you:

  1. Please pray for the people in Indonesia. As you may have seen in the international news, a few days ago, the islands of Lombok & Bali were hit by a strong earthquake. According to the news, about 300 people have died, 1400 were injured, and about 270,000 people are displaced or are in evacuation areas. Please see the latest news from BBC:  https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-45124972

We thank the Lord that our staff at FEBC’s station, Heartline Bali, are safe.  Please pray for them and the First Response Radio (FRR) team as they assess the situation.

  1. Please pray for David and the local technician in Mongolia, Tomroo, to have wisdom to solve problems with the transmitters at two stations in Mongolia. We thank the Lord that a third transmitter failure was recently resolved.
  2. Please pray for our shortwave staff in the Philippines to find a repair facility to fix the station’s audio analyzer.  Also, please pray that the staff will soon be able to repair the power modules in one of the shortwave transmitters.
  3. Please pray for our FEBC Thailand staff members as they go through a transition period with new leadership.
  4. Please pray for us and our IST colleagues as we make Fall travel plans.  May the Lord guide us, and may His will be done as we plan our travel schedules.
  5. Please pray that our staff in Jakarta will be able to repair the station’s antenna soon.

Again, thank you for praying with us. We appreciate your partnership and faithful support of our ministry with FEBC.

Three Chords!

29572864_10155561896358657_6184239175297045074_n.jpgReading:  Matthew 25:14-30 (NKJV)

Matthew 25:14-30

Title:  Three Chords!

“He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’”  Matthew 25:22 (NKJV)

I remember the time when I first started learning to play guitar. My good friend Aida told me, “If you learn three cords, you can play some simple songs.” Her words encouraged me.  However, after a few practice sessions with just three cords, my fingers were already sore.  Thankfully, my friend kept encouraging me, with the chords A, D & G, soon I was able to play a couple of simple praise songs to the Lord.

I was so excited that I bought a nice guitar!  I practiced and learned more songs even though, in the past, I thought I did not have any musical ability.  Later, as life and work became busy, I had no time to play and practice. So, I gave my guitar to a friend. After a couple of years, another friend gave me a guitar – which I also gave away. Then another guitar came.  I began to realize that maybe the Lord wanted me to be serious about playing the guitar. So, I returned to playing guitar and learned more chords.  As I learned more chords and more praise & worship songs, I found that my relationship with the Lord was strengthened and deepened.  I may not play or sing well, but I feel the presence of the Lord whenever I play guitar and worship Him.

Now, with the help of David my husband, I play the guitar, he sings and together we worship and praise the Lord.  As I look at my folder of songs, I am amazed and grateful to the Lord to see that it now contains many songs.  I started with just three chords and a few songs. Now, with the Lord’s help, I can play more than seven chords and have more than fifty song sheets in my folder! With this experience of playing three chords at the start, and then the Lord helped me learn more chords as I keep on practicing, reminded me of this verse in Matthew 25:24, “Lord you delivered me two talents, looked I gained two more talents besides them”.

Reflection:

When we give even one talent to the Lord, He multiplies it.

Prayer:  Dear Lord, thank you for the gifts and talents You give us.  Help us to worship and honor You as we use them each day.  Amen.

 

Published
Categorized as Devotion

David’s story

David’s Story Full Version!

The Creels' Catch

DAVID CREEL’S TESTIMONY (Full Version)

David Creel News Article 26APR71

(Newspaper article in Birmingham News, April 26, 1971, see page 2 below).

Greetings! My name is David Creel.  I was born in Birmingham, Alabama.  I am the son of the late Rev. George Creel and Jackie Creel who served several United Methodist churches in North Alabama.

As you can imagine, being the son of a United Methodist pastor, I grew up in church. I don’t ever remember a time when I wasn’t in church.  Every time the church doors were open, I was there.  I really didn’t have a choice.  I might not have appreciated it at the time, but I am so grateful now for my parents’ insistence on church attendance.  I am also eternally grateful for the godly example that my mom and dad provided for me and my sisters as we grew up.

As a child, I usually slept during church. Frankly…

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David & Vicki Creel

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David & Vicki Creel – serving with FEBC’s International Service Team.

FEBC (Far East Brodcasting Company) exists to bring Good News of Jesus Christ to those who have little or no opportunity to hear about God’s love for them. Every day FEBC airs the Gospel to 49 countries, in 124 languages, using 149 stations, with 842 hours of programming per day, 365 days a year.  Over 2 million responses are received each year.

David has been a missionary with FEBC since 1990 serving in Saipan for 18 years and more recently in the United States. David serves the radio ministry as a broadcast engineer. Vicki has been a missionary since 1997 serving in East Asia, Bolivia and with another missionary training organization in Alabama.

David & Vicki were married in April 2014 and are now serving together with FEBC. In their new role, they provide engineering support for FEBC’s radio stations in Asia.

To support the ministry of the Creels click here

Or checks can be sent to:

FEBC, Box 1, La Mirada, CA 90637-0001

 

DAVID CREEL’S TESTIMONY (Full Version)

David Creel News Article 26APR71

(Newspaper article in Birmingham News, April 26, 1971, see page 2 below).

Greetings! My name is David Creel.  I was born in Birmingham, Alabama.  I am the son of the late Rev. George Creel and Jackie Creel who served several United Methodist churches in North Alabama.

As you can imagine, being the son of a United Methodist pastor, I grew up in church. I don’t ever remember a time when I wasn’t in church.  Every time the church doors were open, I was there.  I really didn’t have a choice.  I might not have appreciated it at the time, but I am so grateful now for my parents’ insistence on church attendance.  I am also eternally grateful for the godly example that my mom and dad provided for me and my sisters as we grew up.

As a child, I usually slept during church. Frankly, if I’ve been out late the night before, I still have some trouble with that, but I don’t think I’m alone in that confession!  My mom can tell you about a time as a child when I had fallen asleep on the pew during an evening service, everyone went home, the lights were turned off, and I wasn’t discovered to be missing until a short time later!  I, on the other hand, was clueless – still asleep on the pew!

Around the age of 10, I began noticing that my friends were sitting up and paying attention, so I decided that I needed to do the same. It was around that time that I realized that my parents’ relationship with God did not guarantee that I was right with Him.  I needed my own personal relationship with Jesus Christ, the one who gave His life on Calvary so that I might spend eternity in heaven with Him.

I distinctly remember hearing the gospel clearly presented by my dad one Sunday morning: how Jesus died for my sins, and how I needed to ask him for forgiveness, and invite Him into my heart. But, I did not go forward during the invitation.  However, I promised myself that I would go forward the next Sunday.  So, during the invitation on November 24, 1968, I made my way to the altar at Walker Memorial United Methodist Church in Birmingham and was saved.

Here is a quote from my dad’s journal on that day: “David saved! Thank God…this morning, my son David made his way to the altar alone to be saved.  Jesus faithfully saved him as he wept his confession to God.  Hallelujah…I couldn’t speak further.  Granville (our choir director) dismissed.  Thank you, Jesus forever!”

Although I was saved at that time, I really didn’t do the things one needs to do to grow as a Christian. Sure, I still went to church, but I didn’t really spend much time in Bible study and prayer.  Just as in the physical realm, one must eat in order to grow, so it is in the spiritual realm.  In I Peter 2:2, we are told, “like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation…”  It wasn’t until a few years later that I realized the importance of this fact and did what it took to grow as a Christian.

But, even at this early age, I believe that God was preparing me for missionary service.

  1. I learned electronics by observing dad’s repair of antique radios. Many a spare moment was spent with my dad in the basement working on his latest project.
  2. I went with dad to WDJC-FM in Birmingham where he had a couple of radio programs. Through these visits, I became friends with Chief Engineer Jimmy Long and developed a keen interest in radio.
  3. On one of the trips to WDJC, we stopped at the Baptist Bookstore where I picked up a copy of the book “Skywaves” which told the story of how a mission organization called Far East Broadcasting Company was using shortwave radio to broadcast the Good News of Jesus Christ to far-away lands. This book further “sparked my interest” in radio as a possible career.
  4. Around this time, I built my own small AM radio station using a low power transmitter obtained from a gentleman at the local electronics store. I also developed an interest in amateur radio and received a license at the age of 13.

During my high school years, I drifted away from my commitment to Christ. Although I never did anything terrible – just the usual teenage stuff – I was still rebelling against God.  The best way to describe those years was a “roller coaster” experience.  I wanted to live for Christ, especially after a particularly good youth retreat, but never had the power to “follow through” with a consistent walk with the Lord.  I tried to be a “fence walker” with one foot in the church and the other in the things of the world.  I wanted to “talk the talk” of being a Christian but didn’t have the power to “walk the walk.”

Just before my senior year in high school, God used several events to “get my attention” including a couple of car wrecks and a move from Sheffield to Gadsden. The move to Gadsden, just as I was about to begin my senior year, was particularly hard to accept.  But even this was a part of God’s wonderful plan for my life.

During my senior year, I really got tired of my “roller coaster” Christian experience, but I didn’t know how to change myself or the situation. I began to earnestly pray and seek God for the answer.  A devotional book that I had been reading mentioned how the Holy Spirit can help us live the Christian life.  Shortly thereafter, our church had a “Lay Witness Mission.”  This was a weekend event where ordinary lay people (not preachers) came and shared what God had done in their lives.  During this event, I heard several people share how Christ must not only be our Savior, but He must also be Lord of every aspect of our lives.  I also heard a lot about Acts 1:8, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

On Sunday, October 12, 1975, I rededicated my life to Christ, allowing Him to be Lord of my life, and asked God to fill me with the Holy Spirit and to help me live a consistent Christian life.  This He did!  He gave me a new desire to read and study His Word and to pray during a daily quiet time.  He also provided some wonderful Christian friends to help me in my spiritual journey.  I learned much about the Bible from my dad and benefited greatly from the example and encouragement provided by both mom and dad.

Has my life been perfect or without sin since that time? As a missionary, do I “have it all together?”  Of course not. Just like everyone else, I am a sinner saved by grace and sometimes have struggles.  But, with the help of the Holy Spirit, I have been able to live a much more consistent Christian life since allowing Christ to be Lord of my life.  The verse that I feel best describes the way to live a Christian life is Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

Just after my high school graduation, I was invited to go on a short-term mission trip to Haiti. This experience really helped me to see “first hand” the needs of people in impoverished lands.

I began to sense that perhaps God was calling me to be a missionary – but not in the traditional sense. I was fascinated by the idea of using high power shortwave radio to tell the people of the world about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  I felt that God was calling me to be a technical missionary.

With that in mind, I enrolled in the pre-engineering program at Gadsden State Junior College. I later transferred to Auburn University where I majored in Electrical Engineering.  God also provided a cooperative education job with Alabama Power Company in Gadsden to help cover the costs of my college education.

During this time, I made my second short-term missions trip – this time to shortwave radio station HCJB in Quito, Ecuador. This trip further strengthened my conviction that I was to be a missionary engineer.

Upon graduation from college, the door to missionary service did not immediately open, so I accepted a job as an engineer with Alabama Power Company in Oneonta, Alabama. I worked there for 7 years, from 1983-1990.

During those years, I continued to pray about missionary service and believed that one day the Lord would open the proper door which would allow me to serve as a technical missionary.

Around 1986, I became re-acquainted with the Far East Broadcasting Company through a group called “Intercristo.” This is a Christian organization which matches one’s interests and education with potential mission agencies – a bit like a Christian referral agency.

In 1988, I visited one of Far East Broadcasting Company’s shortwave sites in a place called “Saipan,” a small island in the western pacific. I greatly enjoyed this experience and began to pray about the possibility of returning as a full-time missionary.

In 1989, I applied for career missionary status with FEBC and began the process of raising my financial support, which took about a year to complete.

At first, the leadership of FEBC wanted me to serve a one- year term at their San Francisco station and then move on to the Philippines. This was a major test of my faith and commitment since I really wanted to return to Saipan.  I made no mention of this to the FEBC leadership but made it a matter for prayer.  I distinctly remember praying something like this: “Lord, if you want me to go to San Francisco and the Philippines, I will go.  But, Lord, you know that my heart’s desire is to return to Saipan.  May your will be done.”  About a week after praying that prayer, I got the word from the FEBC leadership that their plans had changed and that I was heading for Saipan!  The words of Psalm 37:4 were certainly true: “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.”

I began my first term of service on Saipan in October of 1990 where I served for the next 18 years. During those years, I greatly enjoyed my role as an engineer for KSAI (our local AM radio station) and KFBS (our international shortwave radio station).  Working for the shortwave station was particularly gratifying since millions of people in Russia, China, Mongolia, Vietnam, and Indonesia were coming to know Christ through the radio ministry.

In 2008, I came back to Alabama in order to take care of my aging parents, Rev. & Mrs. George Creel.  During those years, I was on assignment to partner ministry Galcom International.  In that role I designed and built Christian radio stations in various places around the world including Zambia, Albania, Malta, Pohnpei, Paraguay, Belize, and Indonesia.

In 2010, I met Vicki at Brasher Springs Camp Meeting near Gadsden. Later, at the suggestion of a mutual friend, we began corresponding.  We met again in 2013 while Vicki was serving then as a volunteer with SIFAT (Servants in Faith and Technology) in Lineville, Alabama.  We were married in April 2014.

In 2012, my dad passed away and my mom in 2014.  After the death of my parents, Vicki and I were asked to serve on FEBC’s International Service Team. Currently we both are serving with FEBC’s International Service Team (FEBC IST) providing technical support to our radio stations in Asia.

In my testimony, I have shared a lot about my experiences as a missionary. But remember, we are all called to be missionaries.  We are all called to share Christ in appropriate ways with those around us who do not know Him.  Each time I leave my home church’s parking lot, I see a sign which reads: “You are now entering the mission field.”  Let that be a challenge to us all.  This can involve developing a relationship with someone over a period of time and then sharing Christ at an appropriate moment.  This can be done while sharing in another’s grief.  Or, this can be as simple as leaving a gospel tract along with your tip at your favorite restaurant.  The point is to find appropriate ways in keeping with your personality, gifts, and talents to share Christ with others.

In closing, I would like to thank you for allowing me to share a bit about my “faith journey”. I would also like to end with a challenge to each of you.  If you have never made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ, won’t you do it today?  Or perhaps your spiritual walk has been similar to the “roller coaster” experience that I described earlier.  If so, Jesus wants to be Lord of every part of your life.  If you will surrender your life entirely to Him, the Holy Spirit will help you to live a life that will honor God.

David Creel News Article 26APR71B.jpg