I learned of God from my mother and father, Isabel and Henry Kearns. My mother shared the joy of Jesus by playing the piano and singing hymns at home. My father prayed at each meal. Unlike some cursing neighbors, he spoke quietly, like a Godly man. As a church elder he read scripture during the worship service. He worked hard but always kept the Sabbath. For example, when construction workers tried to work on his new home on a Sunday, he made them leave. I attended church with my parents every week and I always enjoyed going. When I completed high school, I had 12 years of perfect attendance for Sunday School.
God gave me a high school sweetheart named Mary who went to church with me. She led me and accompanied me to publicly acknowledge Jesus as my Lord and Savior.
This occurred during a Lay Witness Mission weekend as the congregation sang the hymn, “Just As I Am.” This was the first alter call our church had ever experienced. What a great way to start our life. We got married in this same church, blessed by God, our parents, friends, and pastor. Over the years this altar call was the first of many Mary and I have responded to that kept us on God’s path.
After our two sons were born, we attended a Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International (FGBMFI) conference in Wilmington, Delaware. During the conference, a friend named John led us in a prayer of gratitude to Jesus that allowed us to be baptized in the Holy Spirit and speak in tongues. This experience caused me to pray more and more, and I could see God answering my prayers. My wife and I taught our two sons about God and prayed with them.
I attended the Walk to Emmaus Christian retreat that helped me develop a closer walk with Jesus. I learned better how to listen to others and minister to them.
In my job as a Maryland State Trooper, I asked God to guide me to those abusing alcohol and drugs. As a result, it seemed that God directed me to find and arrest many individuals that were abusing alcohol and drugs and destroying their lives. I saw some of these individuals make dramatic changes for the good. Some broke free of these addictions and some turned to Christ to live the full life that Jesus provides. I prayed for guidance and protection for all of them. In the approximately 500 search warrants issued, we had no shootings and only a few scratches.
Then, my one son had a problem that almost destroyed us as a family. We experienced trouble but Jesus’ peace and joy were always my foundation. Together, my wife and I turned to God in prayer, asking for God to save our son, and giving our son up to God. We pleaded to God, admitting that we could not do it without God’s help. God delivered our son; in a few days he came back to us and back to God.
I attended the Walk to Emmaus Christian retreat that helped me develop a closer walk with Jesus. I learned better how to listen to others and minister to them. I became a more disciplined disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ by reading scripture. I shared this experience with my wife and the son who had wandered from God. He shared his faith and the Walk to Emmaus with his girlfriend. They were married and now share their faith with their two sons.
Because of Jesus’ calling me, I enjoyed many exciting and unexpected experiences ministering to others. Mary and I were able to go to the Democratic People’s Republic of Congo to share God’s love. We took many youth on mission trips in the U.S. In 2022 my wife and I had a once in a lifetime experience during a 10-day Holy Land Trip to Israel with 10 friends. We saw where Jesus was born, where he grew up, performed miracles, lived as a man, and shared the truth of the kingdom of God. We saw where he was crucified and died for us to give us eternal life. We saw how people from many cultures came to learn more about Jesus and where he lived. This experience has made reading the Bible and worshiping the one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, better than ever. My plan now, more than ever, is to seek God and his plan for the rest of my life.
More Faith Stories
I was rebellious because of everything I’d been through. I couldn’t take it out on my dad, so I took it out on my mom. My mom called the police on me. I didn’t care who they were. I wasn’t fazed by their authority.
We now have eight grandchildren, and my prayer is for all of us to one day be reunited in God’s Kingdom.
When my older son was in his late teens, he began to drink alcohol and it soon turned our world upside down. It was a long, harrowing ten years of severe alcohol abuse, car accidents, constant worry and sleepless nights. He nearly died twice.
I remember being in church and going up to the altar and crying. I was so tired of the life I was living. I needed help. I felt a sense of peace at that time and knew that if this Jesus thing can work for some of these other guys, then it can definitely work for me.
I said to myself, “Why should anyone envy me and want to be in my shoes?”
God has led me to amazing places in my life, so let me explain how God led me from South Carolina to Kenya.