Allan is Turning 80!

Rev. Allan McGuirl is turning 80 this month! He is the last remaining founder and currently the Director Emeritus of Galcom International.

The following is his testimony:

Allan was born and raised in the rural town of Billings Bridge just outside of Ottawa, Ontario. He and his twin sister were only three years old when their father died, leaving his mother with four children. While still a boy, he showed an early interest in electronics, wiring up his bedroom with alarms and various types of radios connected outside to an antenna. At the age of 13, at a summer camp, he came to know the Lord as his personal Saviour.

As a teenager, while working part time with Canadian Tire, he took advantage of the numerous opportunities to take courses in service and repairs of appliances, pumps and radios as well as, participate in seminars on management and advertising. After graduation from high school, his work with this company eventually led him to the position of Manager of Advertising and Public Relations for the 22 Ottawa Valley stores. This involved advertising in radio, television, newspaper and special promotions. One of these promotions was to schedule and organize Canada’s largest Antique Car Tour ever held in honour of Canada’s Centennial celebration in 1967 in the nation’s capital for the ever-expanding Canadian Tire Corporation. The success of the 350 automobile parade, 1200 seat banquet and resulting live coverage in the television studio netted Allan the offer of a dealership in a new area of the city to own his own Canadian Tire store.

Allan should have been thrilled with this offer, which promised wealth and success in the material world. However, he was increasingly sensing the call of God to a life of service and ministry.  The Lord was dealing with Allan and after fourteen years in the business world, he enrolled at Ontario Bible College, being out of school for over 10 years. Studies were fraught with frustration as he battled with dyslexia.  His marriage to Florrie, a school teacher and former director of Christian education by profession as well as graduate of the college, was a great asset in this area as well. In 1972, he graduated with honours with a BRE Pastoral Major. In May of that year he accepted a call to pastor the Grace Community Church in St. Marys, Ontario.  This pioneer work began with six families and grew under Allan’s leadership to a congregation of over a hundred with property ready for building.

In 1975, he felt God’s hand leading him to Mountain Gospel Church, Hamilton. This faltering work was in need of a leader. The Lord enabled Allan to build up the congregation in faith and in numbers, to oversee its amalgamation with the Caroline Street congregation and to build a Christian Education wing for its growing ministry. This grew from about 36 people to over 200 in various programs.

In 1982, after much prodding from the Lord, Allan accepted the position in Missions as Canadian Director of Gospel Recordings, Canada. With only $100 per month promised support, this was a major step in faith trusting the Lord to provide for the needs of the family, now including five children. Their policy was to receive no salary but trust the Lord, by faith, to provide each month and to not let your needs be known. Florrie and Allan were able to testify how the Lord met their needs month by month over the years while at Gospel Recordings.

The Gospel Recordings ministry (currently known as Global Recordings Network), had been without leadership for a number of years and had travelled through some rough waters. The Lord enabled Allan to sort out a number of these problems as well as present the mission across Canada. During this time, he was also interested in developing additional methods for reaching unreached people groups. Gospel Recordings was using records and cassette tapes.  Allan could see the need for building a solar powered fix-tuned radio for the Mission Field. But at the time Gospel Recordings was not ready for this technology.

About the same time, Ken Crowell, in Tiberias, Israel was working on a fix‑tuned radio and Harold Kent, in Florida, was also interested in reaching unreached groups with radio ministry. Ken had phoned Allan and through their conversation became aware that Allan had built a working AM solar fix-tuned radio. The Lord brought all three of them together and on August 15, 1989 Galcom International was established. Stepping out on faith the three men set out this motto ‘Jesus Christ is the head of this ministry. He is the founder, provider and sustainer for all that is accomplished; all praise and glory belong to Him’. The ministry vision was to provide durable technical equipment for communicating the Gospel worldwide. The primary tool is to make fix‑tuned radios in AM, FM and Short Wave and setting up low power radio stations in unreached areas around the world. We have now gone over nine hundred and fifty thousand  fix‑tuned radios that have already been distributed in every continent around the world except for the South Pole. This was possible with the help of hundreds of evangelical organizations networking with us to reach the unreached. These same wonderful organizations have also made it possible to set up about 160 radio stations around the world. Allan continues to be encouraged by reports of conversions, churches established and discipleship ministries that have carried on because of these radios and Christian radio stations that reach the poorest and non-literate with the Good News.

His life verse is Psalm 37:5 “Commit your way unto the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will bring it to pass.” Allan often says “it’s reaching out committing ourselves by taking hold of God’s hand and watching Him work.”

If you are interested in reading Allan’s book “Waves of Hope” which is about the beginning of Galcom International and stories of Allan’s travels, or if you are interested in Allan speaking at your church, feel free to contact our International office at 1-877-242-5266 or email us at galcom@galcom.org. You can also contact Allan directly at   allan@galcom.org  or 1 877 242 5266 x 225.

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A Must Read

Waves of Hope  - book cover.JPGIn honor of Galcom’s 25th Anniversary, Rev. Allan McGuirl, one of Galcom International’s founders, wrote a book which has become a popular read, so much so that he had to commission another printing.

Allan McGuirl is a skilled storyteller and in the book he weaves the story of his life from his early years to his desire to serve God and the way that God impressed upon his heart to start Galcom.

God has led many to learn about Galcom’s ministry because of this book. The book also
tells of Allan’s many trips to numerous continents throughout the world, sharing Galcom radios and God’s message of forgiveness. Even his wife and children have stories to tell which are included in the book.

Here is an excerpt from the book about reaching far east island of Micronesia:

“It’s lunch time and the natives on the island invite us for lunch.  In their living room is no furniture, just some cardboard on the floor.  We sit on this leaning against the wall, I look into the kitchen where a lady is squatted down cooking over a little stove.  I’m not sure what I ate but I have learned to ask no questions.  They brought in two coconuts and with one quick chop of the machete, they cut off one end, just like that, and we had fresh coconut milk to drink.  Have you ever tried to drink out of a coconut shell without slobbering down your shirt?  Quite a challenge!  People were delighted to receive the GALCOM radios we brought and fascinated at how they worked.  As we traveled back, we committed the harvest from these radios into the Lord’s hands.”

 

If you are interested in receiving Waves of Hope, contact the office at 1-877-242-5266.

The Promises of God, Part 5

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The Promises of God, Part 5 by Allan McGuirl

We have been going through a series on the Promises of God and how God cares for us.  Let me share one verse that I am sure you are very familiar with.  Philippians 4:19 says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”  What does this verse mean to you?  It is saying God will watch over you, care for you, protect you and give you wisdom in time of trouble to find an answer.  Let me give you a short story of how my God will “meet all your needs” – no matter what.

Back in December of 1999, just before the turn of the century, the airlines were giving great specials on flights because many people were afraid to fly.  I’m sure many of you remember the “Y2K” scare.  At that time I was preparing to install a 2,000 watt FM station in Oouagadougou, Burkina Faso, West Africa.  I got a great deal on a flight for December 30th for the transatlantic flight to Paris arriving early on the 31st.  With a long stop-over there, I arrived in Burkina Faso tired and hungry.  Pastor Michelle welcomed me and provided me with a Coke for the drive to the guest house.  He suggested I have some rest and then he would pick me up around 9:00 for a Watchnight Service for New Year’s Eve.

Bringing in my tools and suitcase, I saw the bedroom.  It had a double bed with one sheet on it, no blanket, and a huge oversize cushion for a pillow.  I settled in, rested for a while and then wandered down to the guest-house kitchen.  There was no one in sight, so I was wondering what to do for supper.  My wonderful wife had given me some packages of raisins, peanuts, cashews, almonds, granola bars and dried apricots, so I had a snack, thinking there will probably be food at the church service at 9:00.  I attended the worship service but there was nothing served for a snack, and nothing to drink.  The pastor dropped me off around 1:00 a.m. and said breakfast would be at 8:00.  I was looking forward to that!

The next morning at 8:00 a.m., I was in the dining hall with two other American missionaries for breakfast.  Just then a man appeared in the kitchen and said, “Sorry, no breakfast today, come back at noon.  If there’s no one here, just help yourself.” I was thinking that the Lord has promised to supply our needs according to his riches in glory.  So back to my room I went and enjoyed some more of the snack food my wife had packed.  Normally, she only puts in a few things, but this time she had packed quite a bit extra – how did she know?  I was very thankful and decided I would definitely be in the kitchen by 12:00 noon.  After spending some time working on the plans for the station install I made my way to the kitchen; there was only one other fellow there – no one else was around.  I looked in the fridge and there was an old dried up cabbage and a bare soup bone.  Now, Lord, you promised to meet our need.  It was more than 24 hours since I had had a meal.  Back to my room I went carefully rationing out the remaining snack foods.  I had a rest and continued working on the plans for the station.

At around 4:00 p.m., Pastor Michelle dropped in saying, “Hi, Allan, how is everything?”  I didn’t tell him I had had to put my coat over me at night to keep warm because in this desert country it can get very cool at night, but I did bring up the matter of no food.  He apologized when he realized it was a holiday and the staff were not there.  He took me down to a roadside restaurant – if you could call it that.  Reading from the French menu, I ordered chicken noodle soup.  Pastor Michelle asked for barley soup.  When it arrives I look down at it and there were very fine stringy noodles and little orange rings floating on top.  “Oh,” he said, “That’s chicken foot soup, do you like that?”  Wow, as hungry as I was I really wanted to say, “No!”  He saw my hesitancy and asked if I would like to trade.  The thick barley soup looked very inviting, so I took him up on his offer.  Soon my stomach was a little more settled.  The ten days I was in Burkina Faso, I averaged about one meal a day.  The Lord did supply my need according to His riches in glory.  We have been so blessed in North America. Let us never complain when we realize the situation in other lands.  We got the 2,000 watt station up and running, although we had one challenge with it.  Our one big transmitter had been shipped ahead and the curious recipients of the shipment had opened up all the boxes and emptied everything in a huge heap all over the cement floor.  As I prayed for wisdom to put everything back together, I was thankful that it was cement and not a dirt floor.  Nuts, bolts, screws, etc. all gradually found their rightful place – thank you, Lord.  And praise God that this radio station has been sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ for the past 15 years.

 

If you would like to read more from Allan, you can order his book, Waves of Hope, for $10.

 

The Promises of God, Part 4

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The Promises of God, Part 4 by Allan McGuirl

Psalm 18

It has been interesting to see many of the promises in the Bible; things we can learn about how God is there to watch over us.  But life is not always a bed of roses.  There are challenges, struggles and even times of weakness.  We get tired, lose energy, and sometimes feel overwhelmed with the work load that we have to carry.  There are times when life is a real battle in overcoming the spiritual attacks of the enemy.

But “be of good courage,” the Bible says; there is hope and answers to the dilemma you face.  There are accounts in the Bible where individuals faced some tough times.  I think of Daniel facing years of death threats at the hand of King Saul, not knowing at any moment when he could be trapped by Saul’s army.  But notice David’s attitude.  In Psalm 18:1-3, David gives a great testimony: “I love you, O Lord, my strength.”  Here we see the source of his strength.

I really like verse 2, “The Lord is my rock, in whom I take refuge.”  I have often gone for walks into the hills and observed some magnificent rocks.  You go back every year and see those same rocks virtually unchanged.  And although over time they may weather and change, Jesus our solid Rock has not changed.  He is always there to support us.

Then in verse 4, David is being surrounded by the enemy.  In fact David says, “The cords of death entangled me.  The cords of the grave coiled around me, the snares of death confronted me.” I don’t know if any of you listeners have ever been in a life and death situation, but that day David was in big trouble.  It seemed like there was no way out.  What do you do at a time like this? Here is what David did!  Verse 6 says, “In my distress, I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help.”  You can see his personal relationship with the Lord.  The Bible says, “From His temple He heard my voice.”  If we skip down to verse 16 of this Psalm it says, “He reached down from on high and took hold of me; He drew me out of deep waters.”  God was there to help in the situation David was in.

Verse 17 says, “He rescued me because He delighted in me.”  But why such an experience; why does He delight in David? It’s because God chose to love him and lavish him with His protection, and also because David was a man walking with the Lord. He goes on to say, “according to the cleanness of my hands He has rewarded me. For I have kept the ways of the Lord.” Is David claiming to be without sin? Not in any way!  But David knew the greatness of God’s mercy and that confessed sin would be put out of His sight.  He knew the meaning of Psalm 32:1 and 2, “Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the one whose sin the Lord does not hold against them and in whose spirit is no deceit.”

What do you think?  Let me say, I believe that with the way the world is going, its violence, horrible crimes, and repulsive situations, that we could one day be surrounded by the enemy.  Although we may not be surrounded by a literal army, we may be surrounded by forces of evil in our lives.  We need to keep short accounts with God so that we have clean hands.  Maybe in your heart right now you are saying, “I need to make things right with God. I need to confess my sin to him and be forgiven.  I want clean hands.”  There is a precious verse in I John 1:9 which says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”  Why don’t you do that right now?

 

If you would like to read more from Allan, you can order his book, Waves of Hope, for $10.

The Promises of God, Part 3

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 The Promises of God, Part 3 by Allan McGuirl

We have considered a number of promises in relation to God and man.  We have seen how He watches over our circumstances and provides help and protection, but now we are going to zero in on a number of specific promises.  Today we will talk about His promise of wisdom.  Let us look at the definition of wisdom.  According to Merriam-Webster, “Wisdom is knowledge that is gained by having many experiences in life.”  No one has more of that knowledge than the God who created us in the first place.

We read in James 1:5, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God who gives generously to all without finding fault and it will be given to you.”  Wow!  Praise the Lord for this promise.  God not only offers us wisdom, but he will not criticize us for not having enough on our own.  Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, said in Proverbs 9:10, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.”  When we put these two verses side by side, we can see that genuine respect for a holy God makes us humble enough to be open to His wisdom.  On our own, we look for wisdom in all the wrong places.  When we put God in His rightful place as our Creator, God and Master, then we recognize that true, dependable wisdom comes from Him.

How often have you heard man’s wisdom in the saying, “Do it now and apologize later”?  That’s what King Saul decided to do.  God had given him specific instructions for battle in 1 Samuel 15:22.  Saul thought his plan was better, so he took the spoils from the defeat of the Amalekites and then decided to make an offering to God from the best of the sheep.  God’s word through the prophet Samuel came to him very clearly, “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen than the fat of rams.”  Saul was rejected as king and his life spiraled downward until he became an unhappy, pathetic man.

On the other hand, we can look at King Solomon.  When he was anointed, God came to him saying in 1 Kings 3:5, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.” Solomon’s request was for wisdom, and the Bible tells us God was pleased with his request and not only gave him wisdom but wealth and power as well.  At that point in Solomon’s life he feared God as his creator, God and master.  Although he lost his commitment to God in the latter part of his life, he did know that true wisdom came from God.  What a contrast there is between these two kings.

What do you need wisdom for in your life today?  Don’t rely on man’s wisdom.  We gain understanding and knowledge of God’s promises and truth by digesting His Word on a daily basis.  Ask God, in faith, and he will give you the wisdom you need day by day, and decision by decision if you truly honour Him.

God bless you as you look to Him for wisdom today.

 

 

If you would like to read more from Allan, you can order his book, Waves of Hope, for $10.

 

 

The Promises of God, Part 2

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The Promises of God, Part 2 by Allan McGuirl

Today we continue looking at all the promises of God from different perspectives.  Now, when I say, “all”, there are over 3,500 promises God makes to us in His Word.  We are going to take one at a time, and I guarantee you we will not go through all 3,500.

You know, there is one Psalm that all of us know that is full of promises.  That is Psalm 23.  We only have time to cover them in point form but I trust it will be an encouragement to you.

Everyone is familiar with the first verse where it says, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want.”  This Psalm is often used at funerals, but I want to approach this from a different angle regarding the promises of God.  There is real joy, comfort and blessing as we look at this day-to-day experience in walking with our Shepherd.  I call this our relationship.  The Great Shepherd is guiding our steps – what a privilege.

In verse 1 it says, “I shall not be in want.”  He is our resource. Over the years as missionaries, my wife, Florrie, and I could tell endless stories of how our Shepherd has provided over the many years.

In verse 2, it says, “He makes me to lie down in green pastures.”  Sheep need rest and so do we.   As the Shepherd watches over the sheep, so Christ watches over us.  We can rest in His promises and care – Wow!  Verse 2 says “He leads me beside quiet waters.”  Sheep need water.  I am reminded of the refreshing water of His Word daily quenching my thirst.

In verse 3 we read, “He (that is Jesus) restores my soul.”  Restoration is His healing power keeping us.  Although we may falter physically, and mentally, He keeps us spiritually renewed.  Isn’t He a Great Shepherd?  Also in verse 3 it says “He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.”  How does He do that?  I think of the Holy Spirit who indwells each child of God guiding our conscience when we would wander off the pathway of righteousness.  Thank you Lord!

Verse 4 deals with our relationship.  “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me.”  Christians are not immune to danger – dark, scary, and difficult experiences that can try to overcome us.  “Relationship” with our Shepherd will carry us through.

Verse 4: Then there is the rod – “Your rod and your staff, they comfort me”  I picture the “rod” as a symbol of authority – we are under His control, by His staff.  He is the all-powerful One who overcomes evil.

Verse 5 says, “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.”  I think of a great reception – a huge banquet table – bearing every kind of food and reserved for God’s people.  How important it is to feast on His Word, the Bread of Life, and be strengthened day by day.

In verse 6, “Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life.”  God’s unfailing promise that His goodness will attend us to the grave. His love is always surrounding us.  What more could we ask?

Then, “I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”  Yes, rejoice in heaven with Jesus for all eternity.  So many great promises! I trust you are experiencing each one in your daily life as we reflect on the truths of this great Psalm.

May the Lord richly bless you, and I trust you know the Lord as your personal Shepherd.

 

 

If you would like to read more from Allan, you can order his book, Waves of Hope, for $10.

The Promises of God, Part 1

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The Promises of God by Allan McGuirl

Over 3,500+ promises are found in the Bible. I am sure almost all of us at times have been “weary and burdened” over something in our life or our family.  Jesus, the Master of all comfort, says in Matthew 11:28 and 29 , “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened and I (that is Jesus) will give you rest.”  Not “maybe,” or “hopefully,” but “I will.”  Oh how I love the “I wills” of God.  Are you looking for God’s help, weary one who is so burdened?  God says in Proverbs 8:17, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me (the Lord) with all your heart.” In Matt 7:8, “One who seeks, finds” and in Jeremiah 33:3, “Call and I will answer…”

Weary and burdened, God says, “Come to Me and I will give you rest.”  What is the definition of “weary”?  I am sure some of you reading this could say, “I’ll tell you fast, Allan.”  Physically and mentally exhausted by hard work, exertion, and strain; fatigued eyes, brain, and arms: how does this sound for weary?  And often this is caused by the burdens we carry.  What is the meaning of “burdened”?  Here it implies something difficult or unpleasant that you have to deal with or worry about.  You can carry a heavy load mentally.

I am sure there are many elderly people who are burdened that they are a hardship to their children.  Children can be burdened with the news from their doctor that their mother has breast cancer.  A family can be weary because their son has just gotten into trouble again.

But let’s go back to this precious promise found in Matthew 11:28 and 29.  Help is on the way, one could say.  Listen to these five steps as an encouragement to you.

  1. “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened.” That’s every one of you.
  2. Yes, you who are weary and burdened, here is an “I will” of God. “I will give you rest.”  Rest simply means, most obviously, to lie down and sleep, refrain from fear, labour, or exertion.  Relax and be free from anxiety.
  3. But something interesting is happening here, for the Lord says, “Take my yoke upon you.” What is Jesus talking about?  He uses the word “yoke.”  What is it?
    There is the example of harnessing two oxen together to plow a field or pull a wagon, working as a team.  God is saying, “I want to come alongside of you to help you carry your burden and to help relieve your load.”
  4. And then Jesus says that while He comes alongside you, yoked together with you, comforting your heart, you can learn from Him. In His presence we become aware of the fruit of the Spirit itemized in Galatians 5:22 and 23: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and even self-control for those who would want to lash out in times of weariness.
  5. The more we learn about Jesus and His gentle, kind way of working in our hearts, God says (listen carefully), “You will find rest for your souls.” That’s God’s promise.  So read Matthew 11:28 and 29 over and over again.  Claim it and enjoy peace for your soul as you are yoked together with Jesus, our eternal Friend.

 

 

If you would like to read more from Allan, you can order his book, Waves of Hope, for $10.