The Ballestero Blog

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The Sound Man Was Blind!

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The Sound Man Was Blind!

It was Youth Rally Night in the little Tennessee country church. I sat in the audience, only two or three of the people even knew me. The small building was very full. The weather very bad. The guests had all braved the storm. They opened the service with prayer. They prayed for the storm to pass on by. “We beta hope de Ward heas our pwayer!” That was what the tongue-tied service leader said, trying to encourage faith in the congregation.

Something was terribly wrong with the microphone. They tapped it, they shook it, and then examined the cord. Nothing worked. All heads turned toward the small sound booth. The sound man was not looking down; he was looking up while he adjusted the board. What? Then it became apparent. He was blind. The sound man was blind and he was the one adjusting the board! Someone had changed the microphone settings and he was trying to restore them by feel. He got it back pretty close to normal too. Unbelievable.

He also ran the computer music software for the overhead projector. The slides on the screen did not always match the words being sung. But, no one seemed to care.

The organ player was taking pictures of the congregation with one hand while playing with the other. She extended her arm full length toward the audience as she took the photos.

They sang! They worshiped! They Shouted. The visiting ministers were all asked to testify. The teenage guest preacher for the Youth Rally was really nervous and it showed. He had never “preached out” before. He preached with anointing and then conviction fell. Young people moved to the altar area to pray. While she played for the altar call song, the organ player took flash photos with her left hand, of the folks coming down the aisle.

No, it wasn’t “perfect church”, like some of the big churches might have, but the congregation went home rejoicing and happy knowing they had been in the presence of the Lord.

This is Home Missions

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 10, 2018 at 12:45 am

Don’t Bother Praying? Yes, You Heard Me Right… Don’t Bother Praying!

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Don’t Bother Praying? Yes, You Heard Me Right…

Don’t Bother Praying!

 

The Holy Scriptures screams the need for us all to pray. The Apostle Paul even said for us to pray without ceasing. Every pastor encourages his listeners to pray. I certainly agree with the admonition.

 

  • Yes, we know that God is a prayer-answering God!
  • He specializes in responding to our needs.
  • He specializes in healing our bodies and saving our souls.
  • He will hear a sinner’s prayer of repentance.
  • He answers all prayers for deliverance, forgiveness, and salvation.
  • He encourages us to just to ask, and He says, it shall be given.

 

But, There Are Times, When The Lord Tells Us It Won’t Do Any Good To Pray!

(Yes, You’ve Read That Last Sentence Right!)

 

1.) God Will Not Choose To Ignore Your Sinning, And Bless You Anyway…

Don’t Bother Praying!

Isa 59:1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

Isa 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

Those who think they can continually gratify their fleshly lusts and ignore God’s Word when they pray are only fooling themselves.  God is not in the mood to listen to them. Be warned.

 

2.) If You Still Want To Hang On To Your Sin…

Don’t Bother Praying!

Psa. 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:

(NLT) – Psa. 66:18 18 If I had not confessed the sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

(ESV) – Psa. 66:18 If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

 

3.) If You Refuse To Receive Instruction From God’s Word…

(Saying you’re not convicted, e.g.)

Don’t Bother Praying!

Proverbs 28:9 He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination.

 

4.) When You Ask For What You’ve No Right To Ask For.

Don’t Bother Praying!

James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

 (The Message) – James 4:3 And why not? Because you know you’d be asking for what you have no right to. You’re spoiled children, each wanting your own way.

 

5.) If You’re Guilty Of Destroying God’s Men And His Saints With The Sword Of Your Tongue, And With Your Railing…

Don’t Bother Praying!

Isa 1:15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood.

 

6.) When You Mistreat Your Wife…

Don’t Bother Praying!

1 Peter 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

(NCV) 1 Peter 3:7 …do this so that nothing will stop your prayers.

(The Message) 1 Peter 3:7 …so your prayers don’t run aground.

Every husband must show his wife honor and respect her at all times. If he doesn’t, there is no need for him to bother God by trying to pray. God already has said He chooses not to listen to that man when he prays. No matter who he is.

A man who abandons his wife and family needs to remember that the only prayer God will entertain from him is one of true and complete repentance. He also owes the same repentance to his wife and family.

Sir: Don’t Make God Place A ‘Do Not Answer” Stamp On Your Prayer Request.

 

7.) If Your Refuse To Forgive

Don’t Bother Praying!

Mat 6:15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

 

  • God hears the prayer of the humble.
  • God hears the prayer of the repentant.
  • God hears the prayer of the submissive.
  • God hears the prayer of the obedient.
  • God hears the prayer of those hungry for Him.

 

May We All Pray Prayers That God Will Hear!

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 8, 2018 at 8:08 pm

He Was Ashamed Of His Stuttering, But He Gave Him A Tract Anyway!

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He Was Ashamed Of His Stuttering, But He Gave Him A Tract Anyway!

 

(To The Embarrassed Man, Who Stuttered… Thank You!)

 No one knows your name.

 

You came out of nowhere. You stopped when you saw the car teetering on the edge of the cliff with the front tires dangling out into space.

A young man sat behind the wheel with his foot on the brake desperately trying to keep the vehicle from moving forward. Only a wrecker could pull the car back onto the road. His friends had gone to get one.

Uncertainty showed in your body language. You knew you couldn’t do anything for the car, but yet you came closer. You walked with your head down and only glanced up to make sure you were walking in the right direction.

When you arrived at the driver’s window, you dug into your pocket and pulled out what looked like an old and well-worn Gospel Tract.

You were nervous and stuttered badly as you handed the tract to the Catholic boy behind the wheel.

It seemed like it took you forever to say, ‘I want you to read this.”

The young man thanked you and watched as you shuffled out of his life. But he never forgot you.

He wondered why the tract you had given was old and not new. Was it your personal favorite or was it the last one you had?

 

What You Didn’t Know!

You didn’t know that the young man had been raised Catholic.

You didn’t know that he had been a gang leader in Los Angeles and a fugitive from justice as well.

You didn’t know that he wanted to turn his life around.

You didn’t know that he would read your old tract slowly taking in every word.

You didn’t know that when the tract talked about the coming of the Lord and asked the question, “Are you ready?” that the young man realized he wasn’t ready.

You didn’t know that you were the first person to ever make him think about his soul being lost and that he needed the Lord.

You didn’t know that he prayed, “God if there is more for me from You, then I want it. If it is real, I want it.”

 

What You Never Knew!

The power of a single tract.

The young man soon visited an Assemblies Of God Church in Fresno, California.

Rev. Charles Price preached him to the altar that night and he received the Holy Ghost speaking in tongues.

 

What You Couldn’t Have Known!

The past caught up with him and he went to San Quentin Prison.

He regularly attended a Bible Study group.

His cellmate was a backslider from a Trinitarian church and he once had the Holy Ghost.

The cellmate would watch the others in the Bible Study group but never join in.

One day the cellmate received a tract from his wife about Acts 2:38. She had just been baptized in Jesus Name and wanted him to be as well.

The backslidden cellmate didn’t want the tract, so he gave it him.

 

What You May Never Know!

The young man you gave the tract to, read this 2nd tract and received a revelation of the Oneness of God and the importance of Jesus Name baptism, and was thrilled with the new knowledge.

He preached his first sermon in the prison yard. “Though Thy Sins Be As Scarlet, They Shall Be White As Snow!”

After being released, he went into the Army and searched for two years for someone to baptize him.

He found that place in Christ Church, Oregon City, Oregon. The Pastor, Andrew Baker baptized him in Jesus Name.

His family disowned him for leaving the Catholic Church.

He married the most lovely and godly young woman you could ever hope to find. They had five children who also were baptized in Jesus Name and filled with the Holy Ghost.

He pastored nine churches, six of which he started.

He evangelized everywhere for twenty-five years and pastored twenty-five years as well.

His sermons were life changing and unforgettable.

All who have his tapes and CD’s still treasure them.

You would have cried and rejoiced listening to him preach under the anointing.

You would have cried listening to him and his wife sing.

His son became a preacher.

Of his four daughters, one died in her teens, the others are involved in ministry.

Two of his son’s in law are preachers.

He has eleven grandchildren who all have received the Holy Ghost and have all been involved in ministry of some kind.

Five became pastors.

Of his twenty-one  great-grandchildren, those who are old enough have been baptized in Jesus Name and filled with the Holy Ghost.

The oldest ones are presently preparing themselves for the work of the Lord.

 

What I Want You To Know!

He never forgot your willingness to witness, in spite of your stuttering and embarrassment.

You were the first one to ever witness to him, even though you simply handed him an old tract.

He’s not here today to say thank you.

He died on September 11, 1994. His wife, Content died on January 13, 2012.

So I would like to thank you for him!

 

You see, I’m his son.

His name was Carl Joseph Ballestero.

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 2, 2018 at 7:54 pm

“Tell Him You’re Stupid!”

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Tell Him You’re Stupid!

The National City Church, Rev. Leamon Reynolds, Pastor. circa 1959

Betty parked her Austin Healey convertible in the parking lot and walked into the modest-sized Pentecostal church in National City, California. She was doing quite well for a single girl in the business world in the late 1950’s.Betty Picklesimer looked professional in her classy dark suit. She was, after all, an Officer at the local Bank. She knew very little about Pentecost, only what her brother had told her. She had seen wonderful changes in him and wanted to visit his church.

She sat near the back on the right side as she entered the revival service. The church was full. Her brother, Alan Picklesimer was already a member there. He was 21 and the Sunday School teacher for teenage boys. I was 14 and in his class.

 

My father, Carl Ballestero was the nightly evangelist. Betty came down to the altar when he finished preaching and the invitation was given.

She repented and cried for a long time. When she finished praying, she asked to be baptized. The church rejoiced and shouted when she received the Holy Ghost and began speaking in tongues while still in the water.

The next night, Betty was back in service again. She was praising God and rejoicing in her newfound relationship with the Lord.

During the altar service that night, Betty began praying with new seekers in the altar. My father became curious about what this new convert was saying to them.

Betty began praying with a woman from Tijuana, Mexico. Here she was, a well-dressed professional businesswoman, praying with a very poor and uneducated woman. Dad moved closer so as to overhear her words. Betty shouted words of encouragement into the little lady’s ears.

 “Tell Him you’re stupid! Tell Him you’re ignorant! Tell Him you don’t know nothing!” Betty was yelling in the new seeker’s ear. “That’s what I told Him and He gave me the Holy Ghost!”

The Mexican lady immediately received the Holy Ghost!

 

Seeker?

Are you ready to tell God that you’re stupid?

That you’re ignorant?

That you don’t know anything?

Maybe you should.

The Holy Ghost comes easily to hungry hearts that are willing to humble themselves!

 

Sister Betty Picklesimer 2007

Written by Martyn Ballestero

May 25, 2018 at 4:32 pm

Posted in Holy Ghost, Salvation

Just Imagine!

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Just Imagine!

 

Just imagine a thoughtless and demanding husband who is married to a wife who caters to his every need. Imagine him sitting relaxed in his little command center, his Lazy-Boy, while he bellows out orders.

  • “Hey Pearl, bring me a Diet Coke.”
  • “Get me the newspaper.”
  • “Did you call Bob like I asked you?”
  • “Get the phone will you, I’m busy.”
  • “How much longer do I have to wait for supper?”
  • “Since you’re up, get my slippers.”

 

Just imagine a man who constantly makes demands like that on his wife. If she complied willingly and without comment, he’s a most fortunate man.

Just imagine what she might feel like if he never thanked her for serving him.

Imagine too what she would think of him if all he ever did was make more demands and never took time to talk to her or say sweet words of affection to her.

Imagine what future the relationship would have if the man said, I don’t really have time to talk to you, I just need you to do what I asked you to do.

Some wives might be content to be in a relationship like that, but I have never met them yet. A loving relationship is not a one-way street.

 

Then There Is The Flip Side Of That Problem.

 

Imagine a demanding wife that is married to a husband who she expects to cater to her every need.

  • Her Honey-Do-List never ends.
  • Her requests are only for her benefit.
  • She nags him if she doesn’t get what she wants when she wants it.
  • She feels like he doesn’t love her unless he is always giving to her and doing things for her.
  • His needs are not even on her radar screen.
  • She has no time to just talk to him.
  • He can’t remember when she last said, “I love you.”
  • Her world is only focused on her own happiness.

 

What A Mess! I Can’t Imagine Living Like That!

I don’t know who would ever want to enter into any kind of relationship such as this. How could their life’s story have a happy ending? What future do they have? It’s a world without love!

 

Yet That Is Exactly The Spiritual Relationship Many Of Us Have With The Lord.

  • The only time we talk to Him is to make more demands.
  • Our prayers are only to ask for more.
  • We ask for healing.
  • We ask for finances.
  • We ask for housing, transportation, and employment.
  • We ask for blessings for ourselves.
  • And yes… We are invited to ask. But…
  • We never just take the time to say,  “Thank You, Jesus.”
  • We are too busy to just stop and ‘chit-chat’ with Him.
  • We find ourselves so busy asking for more favors that we almost never stop to say, “Have I  told You today Jesus, that I love You?”

 

What’s The Chances Of Our ‘Relationship’ With God Lasting Very Long?

Actually, I am afraid it sounds one-sided.

It doesn’t sound like much of a relationship.

If it were a marriage, it might soon go on the rocks.

 

So, Where Is Our Walk With God Headed?

 

Just Imagine…

Just Imagine a husband been separated from his wife and writing over five dozen letters to her. Imagine the wife taking the unopened letters from the mailman and stacking them on the coffee table for all to see. Just imagine her never reading the letters from her husband. Imagine her thinking, “How precious of him to write, but reading his letters is boring to me.”

Imagine the two of them talking on the phone from time to time and him realizing by the things she says and doesn’t say, that she has not been reading any of his letters. Now what?

Absurd as it may sound, it happens everywhere, every day. We have letters and epistles written to us. Although cherished by us all, The Holy Bible remains unread and untouched. It is placed on the coffee table for others to see. But many of us will die, never reading what He wrote just to us. Now what?

 

Just imagine what our life would be like if we told the Lord several times a day that we loved Him, and not just asked for something every time we prayed.

Just imagine what our life would be like if we read the letters He wrote to us and got to know Him better!

Just imagine knowing Him in His fullness!

Just Imagine!

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

May 21, 2018 at 8:50 am

The Unanswered Call

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The Unanswered Call

 

This was the third time in an hour that I heard the incessant ringing of the phone on the other side of the motel wall. There were people noises of talk and laughter, but no one seemed to want to answer the phone. Why not? Why would they just let it ring?

Did they think they knew who was calling and didn’t want to speak to them? Were they so content with the present situation in their life, they didn’t want any interruptions? I will never know.

 

As the guy in the room next door, I didn’t have any authority. I could not command them to answer the call. I could only be frustrated because they didn’t.

I have no idea what the call was about, nor do I need to know. It’s none of my business. Yet, the fact remains, they were called and they didn’t answer.

They were called, and they ignored. There even came a second attempt to get them to stop and answer the call but to no avail. As if that was not enough, the call came the third time and was again ignored.

Would the caller give up? Would the caller try again? How many callers even try past the first time? This one tried three times without any response.

 

My frustration was only that of a weary traveler. I didn’t know who the people in the other room were, nor do I know who called. It is just one of those moments travelers soon forget.

On the other hand, as a full-time minister of the Gospel for fifty-five years, I have seen precious people I know receive a Call from God and not respond. They kept on talking and laughing with friends and family like nothing had just happened.

The ringing noises in their heart went silent for a while, then after a time began anew.

 

Heads of family, friends, and ministry turn and look at them in wonderment. Why don’t they answer The Call?

  • Everyone else knows whom it’s from.
  • Everyone else knows what it’s about.
  • Everyone else knows what it entails.

 

Why can’t they realize how important and urgent it is to Answer The Call?

  • It’s not like everyone gets The Call.
  • But He chose to call you.
  • He makes no mistake when He calls.
  • He knows your number and called you, but you chose to make excuses and find a reason not to answer.
  • The day of that unanswered Call may be the day that causes you the most grief.

 

Fear not. If The Call is from Him, He will NOT let you fail.

  • If your phone is still ringing, PICK IT UP.
  • If it has gone silent, ask Him to forgive you, your fears, and lack of faith. Tell Him that if He ever calls your number again, you will ignore everything else and answer His Call, no matter what it is about.
  • When He Calls, He means business. And there is no greater or more important business in the world, than His!
  • Listen… do you hear anything?

Is that the phone again?

It’s time to answer The Call.

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

April 26, 2018 at 11:30 am

Posted in The Call Of God

The Holy Ghost, Without Tongues, Isn’t!

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The Holy Ghost, Without Tongues, Isn’t!

 

 

 

Isn’t what?

It Isn’t THE Holy Ghost!

There Is Only One Kind Of Holy Ghost.

 

Everywhere in the Scriptures where the Holy Ghost was poured out or given unto men, there was a noise associated with its appearance. The use of the definite article, ‘the’ (meaning only one) is connected with the words Holy Ghost, 89 times.

There is no such thing a quiet-kind of Holy Ghost, or a non-speaking-in-tongues Holy Ghost. No one receives the Holy just by praying the sinner’s prayer and saying they believe Jesus is the Son of God.

 

1)  Speaking In Tongues Was Prophesied In Isaiah.

Speaking in tongues always accompanies the Gift of the Holy Ghost.

Isaiah 28:11 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people.

Isa 28:12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.

 

2)  The Speaking In Tongues Was Prophesied By Jesus.

 Mark 16:17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

 

3)  When The Holy Ghost Was First Given On The Day Of Pentecost, They All Spoke In Tongues.

 Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

Acts 2:3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.

 Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

  • The evidence that they had received the Holy Ghost was that they spoke in tongues.

 

4)  Peter Said That The Holy Ghost Experience Was For Everyone, Just Not Those In The Upper Room Or For Those Present.

Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?

Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

 Act 2:39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.

 

5)  The Proof That Cornelius And His Household Actually Received The Holy Ghost, Was That They All Spoke In Tongues Just Like Those In The Upper Room.

 Acts 10:44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.

Acts 10:45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Acts 10:46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,

Acts 10:47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?

  • When the Gentiles spoke in Tongues, Peter was convinced that they had received the same experience he had.

 

6)  Just Because You Are A Believer Doesn’t Mean You Have Received The Holy Ghost.

Acts 19:1 And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples,

Acts 19:2 He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Ghost since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost.

Acts 19:3 And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism.

Acts 19:4 Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.

Acts 19:5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

Acts 19:6 And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied.

 

7)  Do NOT Confuse The Gift Of The Holy Ghost, With The Gift Of Tongues.

  • The Gift of the Holy Ghost is necessary for Salvation.
  • The Gift of Tongues is given to some who already have received the Gift of The Holy Ghost.

Paul: 1Co 14:18  I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all:

 

 8)  The Holy Ghost Is Jesus Christ In You.

Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory

 

9)  The Lord Will Not Claim You As His Child Unless You Have Received The Holy Ghost.

Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

 

 10) Everyone Must Be Born Again Of The Water And Of The Spirit To Be Saved.

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?

John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

  • Born Of Water = Baptism in the Name of Jesus
  • Born Of The Spirit = Holy Ghost, Speaking In Tongues

John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

John 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

 

Don’t Stop Praying And Seeking God Until You Have Received All That He Has For You!

 

If It Is Real.

If it is From God.

If It Is For You.

You Want It!

You Need It!

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

April 23, 2018 at 11:47 am

Posted in Holy Ghost, Salvation