Jack Turner

Jack TurnerHow God used the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship to Fire Me Up

   Eighty-nine years ago in the Ozark hills of southern Missouri, during a time of absolute poverty, a boy was born. From childhood, I was a leader and an entrepreneur. As a kid, I sold my pet pig to purchase my only bicycle. A few years later, I saved one hundred dollars and my father said, “Son, I can buy you ten sheep with your one hundred dollars and put them with my flock.” I sold the wool. But the real joy was that the sheep didn’t have just ten lambs, they had twins! In less than a year, I had more than doubled my one hundred dollars. So a life was formed, and I was always looking for an opportunity.

   In 1944, at the age of fourteen, I attended a small country church with a large youth group. During an invitation, I jumped out in the aisle and said, “Come on gang!’ Lined up in front of the church with all of my friends, and made a profession of faith. We were all baptized in the river near my father’s farm.

   The problem in my life was that I didn’t have a “real” personal relationship with the Lord.

   Reaping the harvest of my hard work, I had one of only two cars in high school. So I forgot about school and my life went in the wrong direction. Even though I was always in church, sometimes I had to kick the beer cans out of my car on Sunday morning. With a bit of trickery, I got my high school diploma. But later, I had difficulty being admitted into college.

   In the midst of this lifestyle, I found an attractive blond girl who was a Christian. Even as a luke-warm believer, I knew I wanted a Christian family. So 67 years ago, God changed my life through her. We built a major farming operation and then, I was drafted for the Korean Conflict. Because I was very discouraged with all the problems created by the severe droughts of the 1950’s, this provided an opportunity to get out of farming.

   After leaving the military, I enrolled in college, where I studied business and economics. A semester before graduating, we bought a Ben Franklin Franchised store, which we operated for thirty-four years. In an effort to promote our business, I worked really hard and joined several organizations including a (liberal) church. Soon, as Chamber of Commerce president, my office secretary invited my wife and I to a local home Bible study. My first thought was, “I bet a lot of funny stuff goes on there.” I’m not interested, and replied, “I think I’ll just wait.”

   Now, eight or ten years later, the home Bible study leader moved away. News went out that he was going to be speaking in the community building on Sunday afternoon, and wanted to see everyone. Finally, at that point, I had my life straightened out with the Lord. After his ministry, I went up and told him what a blessing I received.

   This is where my life of fulfilment in the Lord began. The leader of the homegroup put his hand on my shoulder and said, “Jack, our little house group prayed for you and your wife for three years.” Wow! This explained everything. Satan heard this and began to throw everything at me. Like Job, God allowed it and used it to draw me to the Lord.

   In 1965, when I was thirty-five years old, even though I never prayed a prayer or even read a Book of the Bible, attending church all my life, in desperation I cried out, “Lord, I’m desperate, I’m discouraged, I’m depressed and I need help!! Lord, help!” Then the glory of God fell on me and transformed me. Now I can’t keep quiet. I started reading my Bible and it came alive! When this happened, we were in a political study group. Our leader was transferred and the Chamber of Commerce secretary suggested we make it a Bible study. We were all members of mainline denominations. She introduced Dennis Bennett’s book, “They Speak in Other Tongues. “

   No one knew anything about speaking in tongues and this book became crucial in our meetings. An intense Bible study started and the Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship was mentioned in this book. “I’ve got to check this out,” I thought. Finally, I found out about their meetings and our study group descended on a small banquet of about 30 people. I was overwhelmed, not being able to explain what happened. I never experienced the presence of the Lord like this and was glued to my seat.

   Everybody left except the president. He told me, “Brother, would you like to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit?” In such a mental state, all I could say was, “UH… UH… I don’t even know what is going on.”  

   After this, our group never missed a meeting. I was so excited. No one knows what we’re experiencing; so I started recording the meetings. Even before I received the baptism, I told the leaders that we have a “bear by the tail.” With your permission, I’ll call the chapter presidents in Tulsa, Kansas City, and St. Louis to find who the powerhouse speakers are. They said to go for it. I then began buying round trip tickets from Los Angeles, Orlando, New Jersey and others. Finally, after praying and praying, I did receive the baptism. The break-through was Acts 2:4 “They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they began speaking in tongues.”

Suddenly, the president had phased out. Here I am at the front recording and had secured the speaker. Even with zero full gospel experience, I began leading the meetings and did this for over ten years. At that time, we didn’t have any active officers, but we worked together. Attendance was 100, now 200, then 300, even building to 400, which caused space problems for meetings.

   Then another problem appeared. At the end of the meetings, mass confusion would happen when maybe twenty-five to thirty people would come forward to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit. I began renting hotel conference rooms, where two of us would give five minute Bible instruction to the respondents in receiving the baptism. The instruction also helped to maintain order.

How God has blessed us! We decided to have a large regional convention. I told the twelve or thirteen men if they would back me, and with the help of other chapters, I would take care of all the details. Now, through lots of prayer meetings, our men bonded together and the Glory of God fell on the convention. Twenty-seven hundred were in attendance to hear Pat and Shirley Boone speak.

   As a result of my involvement, I’m being invited to speak to other chapters all over the four-state corner. What a joy to see many, many men and women being filled with the Holy Spirit with, most of them coming from the same luke-warm background as my own.

   In 1968, another phase of my life started. Sadly, I had to have a guy arrested for an offense against our business. God used this incident to propel me into jail ministry to help hurting people. Recently, to the glory of God, I received a 50-year service award for weekly jail church services in two county jails. Five to ten services are held weekly. It’s beautiful how God uses these terrible Satan inspired events in men and women’s lives to get their attention. With the anointing of the Holy Spirit, I share that Jesus loves them and will set them free and give them peace and hope by accepting Christ. To the praise and glory of the Lord, we see hundreds and hundreds of lives born into the Kingdom of God.

   My God-given entrepreneurial spirit causes me to always be looking for a business opportunity. We formed Turner Enterprises to umbrella retail, real estate, and outdoor advertising. This spirit led business experience has evolved into a ministry, which has grown from local to national and international sharing of God’s spiritual principles of business as taught in Proverbs.

   What a joy it is to serve a living and loving God, having a passion to share what He has and is doing in our life!

Jack and Sammie Turner                                                                               

Jack and Sammie celebrating sixty-seven years together                

Jack Turner's Hearing His Voice Testimony

Click on PDF and set the printer to print both sides in color using landscape and fold.