By Pastor Alan Langstaff/10.8.15
Last month, when I wrote about “Are You Selling Your Dream?’ I finished by saying I would share the story of a good friend of mine who, for a season, left his dream, but has now come back to it again; a man whose ministry reached every continent and into over 70 nations, with a mission of spreading the Gospel and ministry of healing to others, but left the ministry for a season and was not walking in his calling. The hound of heaven brought him back though and he is now serving God once more with a dream for ministry. Here is the story of Scott McKinney.
I first met Scott back in the early 1970’s, when he was on the staff of a great church in Anaheim, CA named Melodyland Christian Center. He had studied at Arizona State University and also at a Theological School. Scott was a very handsome young man, who met and married a lovely young lady Tania, also on the staff at Melodyland.
Later, after moving to Australia, they set up a base in the land down under, ministering across the country and extending into south-east Asia. I sought to help Scott during this time and on a number of occasions, we ministered together. I particularly remember teaming up with him for meetings in Hobart, Tasmania. He also was one of the speakers at our biggest conference Jesus 79 in January 1979.
A REMARKABLE TESTIMONY
There is one testimony from his ministry in Australia I want to share because it is remarkable in that the miraculous healing that took place was examined by some twenty doctors, two of which wrote, testifying to the miracle.
“My name is Sharon Foster. Nineteen years ago, I was born with an eye disorder know as a squint. My left eye turned out so severely that I could only use my right eye for seeing and even my left eye had only twenty per cent vision. The condition was so bad, that people often turned round to see to whom I was talking when in fact I was talking to them. . . .
I attended a Southside Christian Fellowship Crusade where Scott McKinney was preaching, and at the end of one of the meetings, Scott prayed for my eyes. While he was praying a wave of heat went right though my body, and praise God, my eyes were straightened.
The next day, I went into work, (I work at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital), one of the doctors said to me, ‘Are you Sharon’s twin sister?’ He honestly didn’t recognize who I was.
He could hardly believe me when I told him what had happened, but after examining my eyes, declared to his astonishment that they were perfectly straight. He asked my permission for another couple of doctors to re- examine them the next day.
But when I got to the examination, I discovered to my astonishment there were twenty doctors and interns present. Each one examined me separately and each one found my eyes were completely normal.
Dr. Farnsworth, an eye specialist who had examined me earlier in the year when I had applied to work at the hospital, decided she would examine me again – just to prove that my claims of healing were wrong, she said.
But after examining me for two and a half hours, she came to the same conclusion. I had indeed been healed. She found I could now use both eyes and that both were ‘perfect, in sight and anatomy.’
Now to the Glory of God I can testify that I have been healed.
Two Doctors from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital verify Sharon’s healing:
‘This is to say that I have know Sharon Foster for six months. Our first association was at Page Chest Pavillion when I was forced (out of curiosity) to ask Sharon which of her squint eyes was the good one. Her squint eye was so bad, one never knew which eye she was looking out of. Now to my amazement she proudly says she has been fixed – and indeed she has. She has no evidence whatever of a squint. She assures me she has had no operative procedures done. I support Sharon’s claim that she no longer has a squint.’ – Dr. J Coleman
‘I have known Sharon for 12 months now. I tested her eyes when she first came to R.P.A. Now to my astonishment her squint has disappeared and, as through tests I cannot prove her wrong, I support her claims that shehas been healed. Her eyes are now perfect in both sight and anatomy.’ – Dr A. Farnsworth
RETURN TO AMERICA
After five fruitful years of ministry in Australia, Scott and Tania moved back to America, where they led a historic church in Tulsa, which was going through a difficult period of transition. Then, the Lord moved them to Atlanta, Georgia, where they planted a new church and eventually installed a permanent Pastor. That church still exists today. I will always remember being at the church to minister in a Sunday Morning Service.
After that, they moved their base of operations to San Diego, CA with the desire to continue international evangelism from the geographically flexibility of the West Coast. There, they related to, a dear colleague of mine, Dr. Ken Chant was also out in San Diego, before he and Alison returned to Australia.
In 1990, tragedy struck when Tania, his wife, passed on and went to be full time with the Lord, leaving Scott with his two children, daughter Aaren and son Matthew. Scott continued on, very haltingly at times, ministering crusades around the world through these dark times for his family, which somehow did become darker, so he decided to stop preaching. He laid down his ministry.
Although the dream was dormant, the call never left him, but he was loosing touch. He took the energy he had and participated in the war in the Sudan. He fought against the opposing Islamic atrocities. He was the only ‘white’ officer in the SPLA (Sudan Peoples Liberation Army) from 1999 – 2004. The result of this long struggle was the creation of the world’s newest country South Sudan.
Still, as he put it, ‘on the loose,’ he took an undercover position in Columbia, South America, which resulted in a human trafficking operation being shut down. Through these times, he experienced many dangers, injuries and discomfort.
RELATIONSHIP AND MINISTRY RESTORED
In his own words, ‘through these times my close friendship with the Lord suffered greatly. How could it not? I had used all I had and missed Him. Thus I was led to spend months on a mountain seeking Him and coming down that mountain only to attend a Bible church each week in the year 2012. My well-noted Bible was again my friend and not my accuser. Forgiveness and the promises of God on which my life had been built again enabled me to truly live again. Feeling like I had been born again ‘again,’ the joy and the presence of the Lord became my strength as in the start. After this spiritual journey, I was inspired to speak and minister in downtown Los Angeles where I started.’
Now, that is quite a journey and what a great testimony. Scott, who had been used so greatly in times past, but had moved away from the dream the Lord had originally given him, has now seen the dream restored again. As I wrote before, the hound of heaven bought him back and the dream is now being lived again.
No matter where you are on your journey, it you have lost your dream, whatever that dream may be, you can return to the old dream or God can give you a new one. So, why not begin right now and dream again.
For more information on Scott McKinney you can visit his website at http://scottwmckinney.com.