Speakers’ faith talk draws large area gathering


 By Justin Joiner
Yellowstone Newspapers

       Speaking to more than 1,000 people Sunday night, retired Lt. Col. Oliver North said people need to find out what their mission in life is.

“My mission in life changed dramatically in 1978,” he said.
Despite his accomplishments as a best-selling author, syndicated columnist and host of “War Stories with Oliver North” on the Fox News Channel, North
said when he became a believer in Jesus Christ in 1978 it was amazing.
“The most remarkable thing that I’ve done ... is come to know Jesus as my Lord and savior,” he said.
After prodding from his commanding officer, Lt. Col. John Southy Grinalds, he started reading the Bible on his way to a mission across the Atlantic. He said he started reading in the book of Genesis. North said he kept reading and that led to his conversion.
“I would never have found the path for someone who led me that far,” he said.
North said it was his hope and prayer that people would understand where they are going and why they are going there. He said people in small groups and prayer groups know where they are going and small groups can also help people find Jesus.
“This country needs that,” he said.
Just like his commanding officer was to him, he said people need to be a Christian example to their children and everyone. He said it is important because 80 percent of what people learn is from modeled behavior.
Tony Hall, who served in the House of Representatives for more than 20 years, also spoke Sunday night, saying there is more to life than success.
“I was very successful ... I was a businessman and did well,” he said.
“There has got to be more in life than success.”
He said he found out what Jesus means on a trip to Ethiopia. There were more than 1,000 sick people waiting to be treated, but the local clinic could only take five. Hall said he saw 25 people die while they were waiting.
“I never got over that,” he said.
Hall now serves on the Board of Advisors of Opportunity International, which is a charity that seeks to end poverty through microcredit lending to entrepreneurs.
He said he feels Jesus when he helps others.
“It is not about us. It is about Jesus,” he said.
Lt. Gen. Mick Kicklighter’s message focused on putting God first.
“The Lord is very demanding,” he said. “He will only accept first place.”
Like North, Kicklighter also talked about small groups, including the National Prayer Breakfast. Kicklighter said during World War II, several members of Congress started holding prayer meetings. When Dwight D. Eisenhower took the presidency, he asked if he could join in and the first prayer breakfast was born.
Kicklighter said every president since Eisenhower has attended the breakfast.
The most troubling times in Kicklighter’s life is when he walked without Jesus, he said. He said in addition to staying in a good church and making quiet time to be with God, Kicklighter said small groups are important. 

Published May 5, 2010

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