Following the Trail of Jesus (Adventures in Religion #12)
By John G. Lake
August 22, 1935
I want to tell you the story of an unusual family. I am going to call this story, “Following the Trail of Jesus”. A number of years ago I felt as if I wanted to do something out of the ordinary to call attention to the subject of Divine Healing. So I went to the newspapers and posted $500. Then I announced that if anyone who was sick or diseased would come to the Healing Rooms and be ministered to for thirty days, and if at the end of that time they were not substantially better or healed, they could have the $500.
Over at Monroe, Washington, was a man by the name of Paul Gering, who had got to fooling around with spiritualism. That dear fellow was an open, splendid man. He was a hard-working business man. After he got to fooling with spiritualism nobody could live with him. He was more like a raging lion than a human. He went all over the U.S. seeking deliverance from all kinds of folks who were praying for the sick.
He read my announcement and became interested. He sent me a telegram asking, me to come to Monroe and put on a meeting, and, of course, pray for him. He met Mrs Lake and me at our hotel and drove us out to his home on the outskirts of the city. He walked into his home and stopped in the middle of the dining room and fell on his knees saying, “Mr Lake, I am waiting for you to pray for me that I may be delivered.” We laid hands on him and prayed, and, bless God, the power began to go through him. He was completely delivered, the demons were cast out, and he was baptized in the Spirit. From that time on hundreds of people have been saved and healed and baptized in the Holy Ghost under his ministry. Now he is a great wheat farmer in the Big Bend country. Last night I spent the evening at his home and conducted a public service for his relatives and neighbours.
Just let me follow the trail of Jesus with you in that family for a few minutes. His sons were unsaved; his daughters were unsaved. One by one, after the father’s deliverance, the faith of God in his heart laid hold on God for his family. They became converted and baptized in the Spirit until his entire family, including his beloved wife, was saved and baptized in the Holy Ghost.
Mr Gering had a brother, Joe, a hard fellow and a heavy drinker. He owned a farm down in the country. His wife was distressed for she saw he was gradually losing his grip on his affairs and squandering his money, and they were getting into financial difficulty. She was a woman of prayer and was praying for him. Finally one day he came to visit Paul Gering. Paul said, “Joe, I am going to Spokane to attend Mr Lake’s meeting; come and go with me.” We were conducting meetings in our tabernacle. When they came, we were in the prayer room. The meeting went through without anything unusual occurring until we were practically ready to dismiss. This man, Joe Gering, was sitting on one of the back seats. A lady turned to me and asked, “Who is that man on the back seat?” I said, “That is Paul Gering’s brother.” She said, “The Lord told me to go and lay hands on him and pray, and he would be saved and baptized in the Holy Ghost.” I said, “Then you had better go and do it, sister.”
She went back to him and engaged him in conversation and finally asked if she might pray with him. He said he had no objection to her praying for him. So she laid her hands on him and began to pray, and as she did, the Spirit of God from heaven came down on him, and in a few minutes he yielded his heart to the Lord and prayed through until he got a real witness from heaven and began to rejoice in the Lord. After he rejoiced for awhile she said, “Now you ought to be baptized in the Holy Ghost.”, He knelt down again and began to pray, and after a few minutes Joe Gering was baptized in the Holy Ghost. That man’s soul was so full of rejoicing that he spent the entire night singing and praying and rejoicing and talking in tongues and sometimes in English. In a few days he was out among the sinful and sick and getting folks saved and healed.
Here is another portion of the story. These men had a sister who lived at Palouse, Washington. She was unfortunately married to a very wicked man. She developed a tumour, and he insisted on her being operated on. She tried to tell him that in their family the Lord always healed them. He would not listen and insisted she be operated on. They brought her to St. Luke’s Hospital in Spokane and she was operated on. A dreadful infection developed and they wired to the family that she was going to die, so the family began to gather here to see her. I knew nothing of these circumstances.
I was riding up Monroe Street when the Spirit of the Lord said, “Go to St. Luke’s Hospital and pray for Paul Gering’s sister. She is dying.” I went immediately and inquired at the office and was directed to her bedside. I laid my hands on her and began to pray, and the Spirit of the Lord came upon the woman, the infection was destroyed, and in ten minutes she was sound asleep and the next day was on the highway to a blessed recovery. These are some of the things that take place when folks get into the line of God.
Their old mother was a godly woman who lived at Palouse. She had been notified that her daughter was likely to die, and when she got the word she went into her closet and interceded with God and prayed for the daughter’s deliverance. I believe before God, that when God spoke to me it was the answer to that mother’s prayer. He sent help through me, and the Lord made her whole.
Gerber Girl’s Healing
One day Mr. Lake and I were present in a gathering of Christian people where these Gering people were and some of their neighbours. A family by the name of Gerber had a girl 17 or 18 years old. She stood up with her back to us, and I remarked to Mrs Lake, “Did you ever see such a perfect form? That girl would do for an artist’s model.” But when she turned around I was shocked at her appearance; I never saw anyone so cross-eyed. It was a dreadful sight.
Later I talked to the father and he told me that surgeons would not undertake to straighten her eyes. They said it was impossible, and if they undertook it she was likely to lose her eyesight. Presently the young girl came over our way and I said, “Sit down, little woman, I want to talk to you.” After talking a few minutes I stood up and laid my hands on her eyes. The Spirit of God came upon her and in three minutes time those eyes were as straight as they were supposed to be. She is now married and has a beautiful home and lovely babies. Her eyes and heart are straight.