How Good News Started

By One evening in 1986, I was praying. I had made a promise to myself that I would not stop praying until I had an answer. I desperately wanted God to give me some way to spread the gospel and support my family of six modestly. After about 3 hours had passed, it seemed that I was all alone in my living room. My prayers bounced off the ceiling. But I was determined to pray until I had an answer. A lot had happened the last few years. We lived in the Houston area and we had had three small car lots, a big house in Nassau Bay and my sons were in private school. Now we were in a house rent free in Spring that a friend of ours couldn’t sell. But I was much richer now. I had met the creator of the universe, been born again and He had changed my whole life. This evening though, my friend was not speaking. I didn’t understand then that you can serve God through any job or position. After another hour I heard in my spirit 2 words: Christian newspaper. I didn’t know what He meant. But you know, when you know, that you know, but you don’t know why. Well, I just knew it was God. The next day I called everybody I knew to see if they knew anything about a Christian newspaper. I couldn’t find anyone who did. Two days later Sue and I went to the grocery store together. When we were leaving I felt that I should pick up this free paper by the exit. I asked God if He wanted me to read it. He said no, just put it in the car. On the way home He showed me all about the Christian paper He wanted me to do. He showed me the name and that it was to be full of true stories from people from all denominations. Through the paper He was going to promote unity between churches, encourage believers to really believe, and the paper would also show how good and faithful HE is. A couple of hours later I was in the bedroom praying. I still had no idea how to do a newspaper. I didn’t have any money, didn’t own a computer (at the time I didn’t even know that I needed one). All I had was a friendship with the One who knows everything. I went into the living room. Sue was reading the newspaper that I had picked up at the store. Sue said, “Jim look here, the owner of this paper is looking for someone to learn typesetting and do ad sales for his paper. Maybe you could go to work for him and learn how to start your own paper.” Looking back I should have been rejoicing but I wasn’t. I wanted to work in ministry now. Not a year from now after working at a secular job saving my money and learning how to do what He was calling me to do. But what Sue said made sense. Monday morning I called the paper and set up an appointment for the next day. The paper’s office was in Humble, and I can’t tell you how long the trip seemed to me. It was the last thing I wanted to do. Call me to be a pastor, work with the homeless, be a missionary. But to work in a secular job for a year or more, at the time seemed awful to me. I really am a spoiled child of the king. When I got to their building, the owner took me to his office. His first question after looking at my resume was why I wanted the job. I didn’t know what he believed but I decided to be painfully honest. I said,”God told me to do a Christian Newspaper and so I want to work for you until I learn how, and then I am going to start the Christian newspaper He told me to start.” His mouth fell open. I was expecting anything, from all out laughter to treating me like I was a nut case that had escaped from the loony bin. Instead it was worse. He called his wife in and said, “Tell her what you told me.” Well I figured I had gone this far... so I said, “God told me to start a Christian newspaper and I want this job so I can learn how so I can obey Him.” Well, her reaction was not what I expected. She turned to her husband and said, “You told him.” He said, “I didn’t tell him anything.” Well, come to find out they were both Christians and God had told him on two days earlier that He wanted them to help start a Christian newspaper. They had said yes to God, but told God He would have to send someone. So that’s how Good News began. I worked with them for the next two months. We put out the first issue of Good News about six weeks after our first meeting. That was 33 years ago. Praise God!!!