I
In the Power and Might of His Spirit

 I quit sharing these stories about this part of my life long ago because most people could not believe them. Even thought my motivation was honorable, I thought they could be used to encourage people, but too often they were thrown back in my face as telling tales of a fabricated past. Even as I recount these events to myself they do seem pretty amazing to me so I imagine how they must seem to others. Now after all these years I realize that these stories are important and do serve a purpose to encourage others for what is just around the corner for us all. For many who have never experienced being used personally to produce supernatural solutions of miracles to life's problems and spiritual warfare, it is something you must know you are able to have for yourselves as part of your heritage and inheritance as a child of God. It is not for an elite few or some higher level of faith it is for the everyday average believer that in spite of yourself these gifts are made ready to use in your daily life as unwarranted grace.

In saying all of that I am going to take you to the late 1970's in Detroit Michigan at the beginning of one of the first evangelical motorcycle groups, it's birth and establishment by the Lord in very hostile times.


 

Before the club was a reality
 

From my childhood I knew the realities of the dark side of the supernatural and had no problem expecting the supernatural dimension of a relationship with the Lord so this is how I grew into the supernatural side of a relationship with our Lord..

I had successfully written several tracts for my home church, the Shalom House. I really loved writing tracts and had a desire to distribute these on a larger scale and decided to make a major investment and buy my own offset press. This was 1975, back before home computers so the offset press was the only way to go in printing technology. I had a lead on a used one perfect for what I wanted and felt so certain that it was the Lords leading. But the deal fell through. I was very disappointed, but I prayed and asked the Lord for direction. I mean this is what I really wanted to do in ministry what could possibly be more exciting than that?

That night in a dream the Lord showed me what could be more exciting, A Christian Motorcycle
club! I would have never conceived such an idea but why not? I mean I had the prior background and experience riding for Satan in a club back in the late 60's so maybe this could become a reality riding for the Lord! I mean that would be fun while serving Him. I shared this idea with my Pastor and he said with some reserve, “... it wouldn’t hurt to prayerfully pursue the idea and see if the Lord opens the doors for you.”
With the money I saved for the press I bought another motorcycle found the name King's Kids from a popular book, How to live like a King's Kid It was humble but accurate to what we were going to become. With prayer our colors were created which is the patch worn on the back to show who you are and where you came from. Instead of Detroit on the lower rocker we had New Jerusalem our heavenly home. As we grew everyone thought we were from New Jersey, Oh well. I had the first one made up and sewed it on my back. I made up an invitation tract asking people to join or come by our clubhouse for more information. Now true, I actually had no club or clubhouse but my number was on the tract  and I would tell people that things were in the making and to keep in touch. I was always accurate  in describing what was currently going on but always projected to others what would be. This was exercising faith and it paid off. First I had to go through an illusion from the enemy.


The Illusion to Quit

Soon after I received the calling of the Lord to start a motorcycle ministry in 1975, I got in
a motorcycle accident. The doctor treating my right wrist, tried to break the bad
news to me that I would never ride a motorcycle again. You see a small hooked
shape bone that functions to pivot in the wrist was broken and severed off all blood supply
to it. The result was supposed to be a dead non functioning bone that would lock up my
wrist so I could not hold a throttle so I was supposed to never be able to ride a motorcycle again. Well, in my mind, God had clearly called me to start this motorcycle ministry so how could I do that if I couldn’t ride a motorcycle? This had to be an illusion created by Satan to convince me to give up. Instead I prayed about it and received my favorite scripture as a Spirit bearing witnessed response in Romans 8:28. By this I knew without presumption, I could claim a healing. I told the doctor I would ride again as he put my hand in a cast. He looked at me pitifully as a deluded person. The nurse at the reception desk added her skeptic comments. She had an obvious attitude toward anyone of any kind of faith. As soon as I left the office with my new cast I modified it so I could continue to ride my motorcycle believing that it was necessary to just get back on and ride for the Lord. I never let the doctor know what I had done.

 The next visit and resulting x-rays proved to the doctor that my bone was dying. At first this hit me like a punch to the head but I soon recovered as I reviewed what the Lord had told me, (and the fact that I was riding my bike daily anyway). As I left the office, the nurse at the desk also looked at me as some poor blind faith fool setting himself up for a great disappointment. Without any further signs wonders or anything else I waited another three weeks in another cast. I didn’t break
off the cast but I did modify it so I could move better in changing gears on my bike.
 

When I came into the doctors office for this last time, the doctor and the nurse had a
somber composer and pitifully looked at me with almost shame as I was sunny cheery and
ready to take my cast off and ride. I will never forget their faces after the x-ray results were confirmed by the doctors examination. He came back looking like he just saw a ghost and faintly said to me, you can go now.” What do you mean I can go? As the doctor had
gathered his composure he declared in a very professional tone, Well according to the x-rays there is nothing wrong with your wrist you are completely healed and I cannot explain how? Praise the Lord, Thank you Jesus! is what I shouted loud enough that everyone including the nurse at the front desk could hear me. I wasn’t shy about telling both the doctor and the nurse who healed me and why. I then went into sharing a testimony that left the nurse shaken to the bone as all her assumed knowledge was instantly trashed by this miracle.

This was only the start of many miracles I was to experience. Instead of being the object of the miracle as in this case, I would be the vessel used by the Lord producing miracles for others. I was about to learn there was a big difference between being the receiver of miracles or the vessel to provide miracles.


Reluctant leader.

In less than a year, there was about 8 members in the ministry and we had our first clubhouse a small building next to a rowdy bar in Detroit. We started a Bible Study, and a Saturday night coffeehouse. I was the reluctant leader of this group with the hopes that someday the Lord would send somebody with more experience to take over.

I was just three years old in the Lord but I had been mentored by a U of M graduate in theology who taught me to use reference materials to do a scholarly level study and did research for his first book on cults. My church the Shalom House, had some of the finest teachers ever. They were all students in the Word who taught a dynamics of self study and group participation on a college level as most all of this fellowship were college students myself already a graduate. But I thought the Lord must send somebody better than me to take over.

I had my mind changed from that idea when I went to a non-denominational meeting of Pastors and leaders where a man about my age came up to me and apologized for being intrusive but then began to prophecy to me about leadership. He then told me not to look to the left or the right because the Lord was not going to send anyone else because I was to be the one God chose. I did not know him and he certainly did not know me so he had no idea what I was wrestling with in my own mind but God did. He said I had to have confidence in that fact and let him do what needed to be done through me. I was being preoccupied looking for things and people that were not going to happen. Well great, I thought, this guy didn't know I was about to lose my position to the very ministry I started by someone who I knew was not the best choice for leadership. This same man who prophesied over me a few years later was the one to ordained me. First a few miracles helped get it through my head and the rest of the group that God had my back and I was truly the one he called to be the leader or rather Pastor..


Who’s the Boss?
  When I first set up our constitution and by laws there was no reference for such a thing to be found. There was no internet to download a sample copy of a constitution and Barns and Noble did not have a copy of “Ministry Bike club laws for Dummies. I was on my own to meld the two together. I had made the same mistake many recent Christian bike clubs have made. If you are going to operate or call yourself a ministry and be involved in presenting the gospel of Jesus Christ your leadership must be structured in conformity to the Word of God. In other words you cannot be effectively involved in ministry if your structure is secular with secular standards, it won’t work. You will have an inherent flaw because your structure does not take into consideration, spiritual warfare of which you most certainly will be subject to by naming the name of Christ. The scriptural guidelines for leadership requirements however anticipate and address the spiritual warfare aspect by the qualifications required for the leadership. We almost had a disaster happen to the ministry because we were not organized in the right way. We were a ministry with a vision and goals that included a mission statement that was purely ecclesiastic. However, our structure at the beginning was set up just like a motorcycle club, which included annual elections and job qualifications that were secular in nature.

After our first year of being together, we had our first club election. I ran as the incumbent President and we had one guy who wanted to be boss, and he ran against me. In the natural, Larry K was everything you would want to represent your club. He was a large 6' rough looking “Biker type” with a rough gravely voice. (I am 5'6 not so rough”) Just his appearance alone commanded respect and attention. He also had a charismatic personality that allowed him to be able to talk himself into or out of most situations. However Larry was a novice Christian with no experience in leading or even following any structure from a prior church or Christian organization. He was also one who never really got the important part of following Jesus. He lacked discipline and was a true rebel in nature. His grounding was incomplete with many doctrines that were mixed up with worldly views. We later found out along with his wife, that he led a dual life which included adultery, alcohol and drugs. He was eventually dis-fellowshiped for his unrepentant lifestyle. Before all of this however, It was no big secret in our group that I was going to lose the coming election to someone who could have gotten us killed for what we were soon about to face. How this almost happened was because of our secular structure and it had to go. The Lord was about to show myself and the rest of the group who the boss really was.

In just one week before the election, two events took place that required reaction without thinking on my part that established an unspoken truth, God was going to be in control of this group not man and he already voted and I was elected to be the Pastor not President of a ministry not a club..


My Dads Stronger than your Dad
Our first ministry building was a converted three chair barbershop located in a rough
section of Detroit called Brightmore. One evening at our new believers discipleship class
we had a local visitor drop in to say hi. Actually this was the owner of an occult bookstore
just around the corner from us and he claimed to be a Wizard from one of the many occult
sects which are rapidly growing in America. He rudely busted into our bible study an
announced himself and proclaimed he was going to cast a spell on all of us and our
organization to prove that his power was greater than our God. Wrong thing to say and the
wrong time to say it. I was instantly filled with righteous indignation. Two thoughts filled
my mind, a desire to put this vanity down and the protective instinct I had for the new
believers who could get messed up by a bad situation. Instantly my mind raced with scriptures quotations and images of Old Testament heroes standing firm against evil. I had a sudden surge of confidence that God would not be mocked and I could stand in the gap to this foolishness.

I jumped up from the table in front of the wizard and pointed right in his face as I proclaimed, In the name of Jesus I command you to shut up and leave you have no power here!. You will not be able to say another word until you leave this place.”
Being a Spirit led action, I immediately was taken back by what I had said and how I said it.
Fortunately, everything else happened faster than my thoughts. He could not finish his
sentence and struggled to say something and he couldn’t! Terrified he ran out of the
building never to pass our way again. What was meant to destroy faith became the perfect
event for new believers! As amazed as I was, I kept a composure to the rest, and simply
stated, “ that this was no big thing just God taking care of His kids.”

Take me out to the ball game
A popular weapon for city gang members is that of a harmless looking baseball bat. An
outsider would think there were many twilight double headers going on with so many bats
out late at night. The thing is that you cannot have a bat seized as a known weapon if you
were stopped and questioned by the police. Because of that fact it became the weapon of
choice. That same week at our same little place we had an acoustic musician playing on coffeehouse night on Saturday. Next door in the rowdy Detroit bar, it was noisy as always but this time some banging interrupted the normal sound level. It sounded like someone was tearing down the place next door. We could not continue our music so we stopped and poured out of our little place to see what was happening. I was the first out and saw a man with a baseball bat trying to beat the bar door down. It was not a solid door so it was being effectively breached. I was afraid someone was going to get seriously hurt or even killed. I told the guy, “Hey man, why don’t you calm down and come over here and chill out? “ He turned and looked at me and then growled, You! He was almost foaming at the mouth and now only several steps away from me. He raised up the bat ready to play baseball with my head and like before, I pointed to his face and said, “ In the name of Jesus, Satan I bind you, now put the bat down and leave” As if he were a toy robot someone had control of, in mid stride he stopped, put the bat at his side, turned around in a 180 and took about ten steps, opened a door to a parked car, got inside and drove off. My jaw must have dropped to the sidewalk, as no composure could hide my amazement this time.

This happened in front of the entire membership of my
group and many visitors from other ministries. I am sure this event was confirmation for me as well as the others who had the authority to be in charge. These were object lessons that we were all going to need for what was about to happen to us. It also served to let everybody know who God's elected already was. I won the election with only two votes for Larry and I am sure that was himself and his wife.

After the elections, by the memberships request, we dropped the election process
for the five fold word ministry and only had elections for deacons and elders. This proved to be the best and only way to structure even the motorcycle aspect of ministry. Shortly afterward, we discovered Larry’s hidden lifestyle. That put to rest the bike club aspect of structure and confirmed the wisdom of doing thinks the Kingdom way.

 

A Storm was brewing

By the mid seventies, many of the older “outlaw” type bike clubs had out grown the gang type image of being the public menace toward the general “citizen” population. Many of these clubs  had found niches in the organized crime world of business and profit to support their lifestyle and they didn’t want the cops snooping around to find out what they were up to. Some clubs ran guns and military weapons, others were into drug labs, prostitution and even contract killing . This was serious stuff that did not include the anti social behavior that Hollywood helped to create a decade earlier. In order to control the behavior of other clubs and prevent a lot of police attention toward themselves the Detroit Federation of Motorcycle Clubs (DFMC) was formed. About twenty eight of the oldest, biggest and most powerful clubs formed this alliance. The policy being placed upon the Detroit metro area was, no more new clubs would exist outside of membership in this alliance, and no established clubs would remain without joining and adhering to the alliance. In a matter of a few years many were fire bombed and beaten out of existence, or they joined the alliance out of fear and the desire to remain a club and keep their own identity to some degree. This pertained only to the “outlaw” type clubs and not the tour groups which were members of the AMA. This was the American Motorcycle Association which would sanction clubs that qualified. These on the most part were considered and called week-end warriors by the outlaw type clubs and were not viewed as a threat or competition as this culture was completely different and distinguishable by the police. The AMA tour type of bike clubs represent the forerunners to much of what has become mainstream biking today while the “outlaw” type are still outlaws.


First Reactions
It was in this tense environment where we first appeared and came on the scene in Detroit. No one knew what to make of us because there had never been anything like a “Christian" Bike club before, not in Detroit or even in the entire nation. After a decade of Biker films, the stereotype had been
made, any one with a black leather jacket riding a Harley was dangerous. The Church looked at us as a bunch of carnal minded kooks on the cult like fringe of things. At best they viewed us as well meaning but obviously, baby Christians trying to be a bit unorthodox and achieve the impossible by rather immature and unproven methods.
The bike clubs in total unbelief either figured we were a bunch of “churchy” types playing biker or that there was a catch and this was just a front cover and we were up to something, possibly competitive to their own operations. So their first impression was that we must be a front to scam everyone. In any case no one took us for real or understood that God was doing something new.  What you don’t understand you will put to a test and what you fear, you will attack.  Our clubs location and first step toward ministry with our first little clubhouse was in a very rough section of Detroit right next to a bar noted for fights and trouble. It was the perfect place for us to be, right in the center of situations and people that needed our help.


 

Who will you take a stand for?
Several of our members had been stopped and asked about our group by Federation members. Nothing violent happened and it appeared that they were just curious about who we were. The policy was explained and we were warned. They wanted us to remove our club patches that were on our backs commonly called colors. For any club to willingly drop their colors was a sign of cowardice defeat and one that did not usually happen until there was spilled blood. I asked our whole group to fast and pray about what we should do. We received two scriptures:

When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.” Isa 59:19:

This standard in the Hebrew means a refuge or fleeing to escape danger. In the surface rendering, a standard is something that makes a statement like a flag or banner. This connection was only made by another scripture that was received as the result of serious prayer and fasting.

You have given a banner to those who fear you, that it may be displayed because of the truth.” Ps 60:4

With these two scriptures we had some direction but we still did not know exactly how this was going to play out . Other members had received these scriptures and I told the group I would pray about it further.

Early the next mourning during my prayer time, that small still voice began to make sense about the scriptures, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. “Jim, what is the main message you are trying to get across to people? I said that you are Lord and God. That my son, is your banner that I give to you.”

Wow that was really cool I thought. We were to drop the “club colors” off our backs as a sign of humility and submission. No other club had ever done that to these guys before. Certainly we would not join their organization but we could submit to their requests in regards to the things of men. The King’s Kids colors were just the worldly institutional banner that proclaimed who we were. But God was going to replace this with his banner!  A place of refuge and the main point of our existence and purpose! The main message we would want to get across to all was that Jesus Christ is Lord and God!

The next month our new “banner” was made and sewn on every vest who was a member. A large white cross with a red boarder and wrapped text next to it in the biggest letters possible that simply stated, “JESUS CHRIST LORD AND GOD”! In my own mind I was thinking, “Just try and take these off our backs” This was as simple and basic as anything could be and just about as bold too. It was our banner given to us by our Lord to go out and proclaim Him to all! In a sense this was our war banner because we were about to enter a real war a spiritual war. When I shared this with the others, some became defiant. They liked the “statement” as we later called it but they did not like the submission of getting rid of our old colors. In an attempt to appease them and still try to maintain a club identity I created a small patch about a 5" circle of our “colors” to be worn on the front part of our vests. This idea took on a life of it’s own and is now popular nation wide with all kinds of clubs. The actual origin was this small attempt to keep our personal identity. We changed the MC Motorcycle Club to MM Motorcycle Ministry which is also used by many today.

Again the DFMC was dumbfounded and torn apart as to what to do with us. No one was ever willing to peacefully submit like that and in the same breath, replace it with a bold statement of “ Jesus Christ Lord and God.” It was politely, right in their faces. We took off mans thing but replaced it with a God thing and one even they didn’t want to deal with. I mean they weren’t actually colors but it was a challenge to their authority that we were not going anywhere we are here to stay. Just like the Hebrew National hot dog package says, “We answer to a higher authority.” Armed with two scriptures from the Lord and the personal guidance by them through the Holy Spirit, everyone in the group had the confidence that we were making this move under His direction and protection. So for awhile they didn’t do anything more. As we explained our purpose and goals I thought we had a peaceful understanding. We enjoyed this uncertain relationship for about eighteen months. Then suddenly and out of nowhere, we were given a plywood front to our place as someone tossed a rock through our large store type front window. The rock had a note glued to it. It was a warning to stop our activity as a club, join the Federation or cease to exist. The next time it would be a bomb, signed the D.F.M.C.

 

The Clueless Leader
This time I responded not as the fearless leader of a God ordained ministry but as a naive leader not realizing what I was coming up against. I actually thought that this must have been a prank by some local kids that knew about what was going on and were trying to stir up trouble. So what did I do? I marched right down to the clubhouse of the group whose President was also the President of the Federation. I walked right in showed them the rock and said. I knew this was too childish of a thing that you would not be a part of so I just wanted you to know that someone was trying to wrongly use your name to give you a bad image and scare us. We know you didn’t do this so we aren’t going to do anything about it, we just though you should know though. They were dumbfounded and didn’t even know how to react. In my innocence, I came off very bold and fearless, had a chance to unknowingly warn them against coming against a work of God and it threw them off for about six months.


 

Da Bomb:Trial by Fire
Then as promised we got the bomb. It was May 1st 1979. We were away on a run to Washington D.C. to attend the first national day of fasting and prayer for America. When we got back we were shocked to see the charred remains of only brick walls. Everything we had was lost. It is funny that in those times you find were you have placed your real value in things. I lost a Bible study library of books that would have made any Pastor happy. Probably around 1,000 dollars worth of books and study guides by 1979 standards quite impressive. But do you know what I missed the most? Not the expensive library or our new pool table or even some custom bike parts I left in the bathroom, but Christmas tree decorations. This was back in the time of innocence and the cultural holiday was not attacked for it's pagan origin then and Christmas trees were still “allowed” as a cultural expression in the church. So in this time, our first Christmas found us with a scraggly little tree and no decorations. My grandmother heard about this and gave us her collection from over the years. There were some from the 40's and 50's that were classic and brought back many childhood memories for myself. Everyone else in the club loved them too bringing back the same old memories for themselves. The books could be replaced but these decorations, meaningless by most, were irreplaceable.
 

We held a day of prayer and fasting to hear from the Lord about this event. We received several other scriptures warning about bitterness and fear. We also received promises that he would provide in our patience and faithfulness. By remaining physically passive but spiritually active our faithfulness was greatly rewarded. More miracles were to come. These were the kind of divine appointments as events that formed a protective wall around us and stopped the attacks also saving our lives.

 

Proclaiming Judgment; Can we actually do that?
After our first ministry building was fire bombed, we moved to our new place which was just down the road on Grand River Ave in a different neighborhood. This was like being on Main street in any other town. We were very visible to the public eye and began to have many wondering what we were all about. This made our coffeehouse nights crowded and kept us busy. New in this neighborhood we were faced with many new challenges.

During a Bible study a local resident came in and asked if we could help her out with a problem in the neighborhood . She said that the local convenience store down the road from us was selling pornographic magazines on open racks uncovered and easily accessible to the kids in the neighborhood. She added that they appealed to the owner without any response and even contacted the police and city officials without any results. I am not sure what she thought we would do, be Christian bouncers or become an intimidating influence? The last thing I wanted to be a part of was a Vigilante or bullies for Christ. But nevertheless I was willing to try something. I went down to talk to the owner in the most polite and gentile manner I could. I asked him to please remove the magazines in accordance to the local laws and ordinances which required that they be behind a counter with jackets over the covers. He became foul mouthed and was not willing to listen to
reason. He realized he was in a section of the city that was pretty much abandoned by law, justice or civil rights. Nothing was going to happen by his resistance and he knew it. Well this is where the Lord sort of put himself into the situation. Our discussion had reached an impasse and I realized there wasn’t anything else I could do. Suddenly a text of scripture came to mind.

Galatians 6:7 which states, “Be not deceived for God is not mocked, whatsoever a man sows, that also shall he reap."

 I felt the Lord say to me warn him! I turned to the man as I was leaving out the door and proclaimed, “My friend, God is not pleased with what you are doing or your attitude, when I leave here know that his wrath is going to be upon you. Your business will suddenly drop off until you will be out of business or it will stop when you comply with the law and remove the magazines from off the floor and cover them up.” He was speechless as I left the store and I thought to myself, What do you think you are doing? Do you know what you just said? You think your some kind of an old testament prophet or something! You can’t do that! You are going to make yourself look like a fool! My response back to those thoughts were, “Lord I hope your leading was in this and your gonna back me up on this
one.”

After that encounter, I told the woman to give it about a month and we will see what
happens. A month to the day, the store owner came to my place on another Bible study night and said. Sir, please come to my store and see what I have done. Please pray to God to restore my business? I have done everything you asked and I promise to keep it this way please come and see.” I excused myself from the study and as we walked to his store he poured out his heart to me. He said he was a Christian and that he and his brother saved up their money to leave war torn Lebanon to come to America the great Christian nation. There they felt they would have religious freedom from the Islamic extremists, and enjoy the beauty of a better lifestyle in a Christian nation. When they got here and saw what America was really like they lost all faith in God and man. Because of what happened in this last month, he said he knows there is a God and he asked me what should he do now. I said well you could get rid of those magazines entirely and never sell them again and after that, start going back to church and begin to trust God again. Well, shortly after that, the magazines were gone from his store. I believed he followed up on the rest also. We, our bike group, started to become regular customers in support of his changed heart and won over a new friend. God’s judgment is not about revenge it is about change in a direction toward him. Yes sometimes we can do this! An enemy became a friend.

 

How Big Are We? The Gideon Trick

Because our new clubhouse was in such a visible spot, a Detroit Newspaper writer lived near us and sensed a story . He came to many of our regular events to write an article about us. Later that year he won a national award for the story he did on us. The Detroit Free press however heard about this story and sent a famous international news correspondent Harry Cook to do a Sunday feature in the week end news magazine that went nation wide. We never sought out this attention and I sort of played it down. But God had a plan and the nation wide publicity was just a part of it. Instead of running away in fear or foolishly trying to get some form of legal retribution or some kind of revenge back at the Federation we allowed the Lord to direct us. So far that translated out to a bigger and better clubhouse with maximum exposure and now a flood of press attention that increased our ability to minister to others.

I can’t even imagine what the Federation must have thought. In their confidence they probably figured they finally got rid of those pesky Jesus freaks, only to find one day there are twice as many of them in a clubhouse twice the size of the old one and right in the most visible section of the neighborhood! The first week of September 1979 found ourselves on Fridays front and back page of the Detroit News. In competition, the Detroit Free Press that next Sunday featured our group on the front page of their Sunday magazine in full color and syndicated, meant that the same article appeared in every Gannet press owned paper across the nation! To respond to the one up nature, Channel 7
television WXYZ which was owned by the Detroit News did a feature documentary
on us for a local News program..
It didn't end there as the 700 club got wind of our ministry and sent out a news team to do a feature on the 700 club. All of this was attention had less to do with what we were doing and more to do with being something new or a novelity. The bigger picture led of the Lord was simply that the Lord was protecting his kids from getting killed and had an old plan used before to accomplish this. This was all done within the months following the bombing. It seemed like everywhere the Federation members  turned it was Kings Kid this and that. The next spring, one couple from our group took a vacation to the Grand Canyon and the California coast. While at both locations different groups of Detroit Federation members saw them. At the same time one of our guys went down to Daytona beach for a spring break run on his bike, he was also noticed by some Detroit Federation members in
Tennessee and Florida. Like Gideon, we were given the appearance of being a vast nation-wide ministry very visible and well known when in fact there was just a few locally.


 

Return of the Clueless leader.

A few weeks later when everybody returned from their spring ventures the annual spring Motorcycle swap meet was going on at the State Fair grounds. This was sort of the unofficial kick off for the years riding season and we had a rather large display of parts and free custom tailored literature including our own club newsletter which we freely distributed. I had been involved in a motorcycle accident that was a close call to death. What remained by spring was a broken leg and a cane to help me walk. I saw a short stubby guy in front of our table, typical grizzly biker type built just like me only bigger limping with a cane on the opposite leg. Seizing the opportunity to make a joke, I said to the guy, hey we could stand next to each other and be book ends. He laughed and I asked if he got his like I got mine. We shared accident stories and then he said he had read about us in the paper and thought is was a shame about what happened to our clubhouse. He then offered that if there was anything he or his club could do, let him know. I
never noticed that he was in a club and had not noticed what colors he was flying. I noticed his President patch on the front so I knew he was top dog of some group and probably a DFMC one at that. He leaned over and told me about the sightings of all the King’s Kids and asked in a very serious tone, “How big are you guys anyway?” With a sudden unction of the Holy Spirit a boldness and confidence came over me to be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove, I answered back smoothly, “Well, we are as big as we need to be.” He accepted that answer and didn’t press the issue. As he turned and walked away I saw the famous skull and crossed pistons with the upper rocker name OUTLAWS, on the side MC and the lower rocker DETROIT.

I was just goofing around with the President of the Detroit chapter of the Outlaws! One of two biggest baddest clubs in the entire world! What was I thinking! People get hurt for being so familiar with these guys as a stranger! When I was younger, I was teasing a spider and then turned it over to see the hourglass on its abdomen. What I felt like then is how I felt now. Trying with success I kept my composure but inside I was this cartoon character going, “ duh, dee, dooo OUTLAWS not good, run, be scared, do something.” Again God was in control even though I wasn’t.

All of this reminded me of Gideon and his small band of an army. The Lord made their enemies think they were a huge and vast army when there was just a small band of faithful followers who trusted in their God.

The Federations whole goal was to keep things on a low profile. How could they now come up against a high profile ministry which seems to be everywhere doing nothing but good things. Now they would have to back off and they did. We had many federation members as they saw us on the road, they would wave and showed a desire to let us go in peace. “When a mans ways are pleasing unto the Lord he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” They had put us to the fiery trial and tested us. We neither ran in fear or retaliated with legal means or in anger sought revenge. All we did was wait on the Lord to raise his standard against the whole situation...and he did.

 

Moving Time Again

Like any story there are always those who have hard hearts and only want evil. The leader of the Federation took all of this personal and like Pharoah to Moses still sought to find revenge in spite of what the majority of his alliance said. He wanted revenge on us for our refusal to go away or submit to his authority. By this time we had become the big organization we appeared to be before. We had Three chapters in Michigan, One in Cleveland Ohio and one in Sarnia Canada. From all of the publicity we branched out to have a prison ministry, youth ministry and speaking engagements just about everywhere on a weekly basis. With my parents contribution, we had 40 acres up north that we developed into a camp ground for summer retreats and annual Bike rallies. We had our own garage to work on our bikes and a 65 passenger school bus for all of the women, children and other church members. Our numbers increased to the point we had to move again into a larger place and back into Brightmore.


Bo, the President of the Federation had his club headquarters in Brightmore. He did not like us in his backyard and let us know so. Shortly after we had moved into a rental hall, the place burnt down mysteriously. No answer was ever told as to how the fire started and no one seemed to even care. The place was well insured and the owner came out ahead and never rebuilt in such a depressed neighborhood. For Bo it became personal and I was his enemy. After this fire he made sure we understood that We were never to come back to his neighborhood in Brightmore or the same thing would happen and more. Yes that was a personal death threat from him and needed to be taken seriously.
 

We were now homeless, it was summer so we met in a public park in Brightmore. Many were added to our church because of it. Heading toward cooler weather however we had to start concentrating on finding somewhere to set up shop. Now we all felt led that Brightmore was our home ground but decided to prayerfully look everywhere else first. Everything that should have been never became. It was if the Lord was not allowing us to be anywhere. Every door was shutting in our faces and nothing was working out. Finally I called for a time of fasting and prayer. We had received a couple of scriptures, a dream and a vision. Compiled together, we were to look for a white church building with a steeple something like you would see on a post card. It was to be on a street beginning with an E sounding something like Eden?, and we were going to get this place in some kind of symbiotic relationship. I have long since forgot what the scriptures were but I do remember at the time when we were putting the pieces together it helped in directing our attentions where they needed to be. Frankly this seemed kind of weird to me like
a spiritual Easter egg hunt.. I had a hard time wondering if this was really the Lord.

One evening at my house, a few members came over yelling with excitement, “We found it, We found it Jim. “ What do you mean? I asked. “We found our next place this just has to be it!” “ OK and where is it at? “Jim, it’s just blocks away from your place.” “So it’s in Brightmore?” “Yes just down the street!” Why was I not surprised. It would be just like the Lord to stir things up and place us right where we were told not to be. I had a gut feeling we were to remain in Brightmore all the time but never said anything to anyone.
Only four blocks north and another six blocks east from my house stood a small white church with a small steeple on the corner of Burt road and EATON! This was spooky. It was run down with waist high weeds, I must have passed this place hundreds of times and never noticed it before. It had an old sign stating that it was a former Church of God. I called the headquarters and inquired about the building. An official called me back and stated that they could find no one to fill this church and that being over 75 miles away, they found it hard to maintain. They asked me if I was willing to maintain the place and pay for utilities we could have it rent free. Now how could all of these little pieces of a puzzle come together in such a complete fashion except it be the Lord.

Now I understood why the Lord pieced this together in the way he did. It was so we could clearly see his hand in putting us in the most dangerous place possible. We could have faith that it was truly Him leading us. Little did we know but we needed this confidence of confirmation for what was to happen next.


 

 

The Final Straw

Several events merged into one big event on a Saturday night in August of 1980. Earlier that day I had been officially ordained and was celebrating this at our coffeehouse night.

This was the same time a film crew from the 700 club came into town doing a documentary bit on our ministry for their program and they filled the small stage with their mobile equipment. It was also opening night of our new coffeehouse in our new location on Burt Rd and Eaton in Brightmore exactly where we told not to be. My friend and favorite local musician, Phil Ponessa was playing acoustical guitar. Phil has an angelic voice and can minister in music that brings in a special presence of God’s Spirit.

It was in this crowded yet serene atmosphere that a sudden intrusion interrupted the nice flow of the Holy Spirit. Like something out of an old forties war movie, four bikers came busting into our place like the Nazi Gestapo, pushing the double doors on the entry a bit past their limits smashing into the walls behind. One guy came rushing up to the camera putting his hand in front of it yelling, “ turn it off “ to the cameraman. Two others stood guard at the doors, left and right like guard dogs while the other walked down the center isle commanding the congregation, ,Where’s your Boss?. I recognized Bo’s voice from behind me and stood up saying, “ that would be me, what do you want?” “Come with me outside now! Was the barking command from Bo. I went down to the center isle and followed him out onto the porch. I also noticed that they were all packing and wanted us to notice that fact. (They had their guns with them) At the same time very clearly I heard the voice of the Lord tell me, “Do not respond to him in any way just look him dead in the eyes and love him with my love.” As Bo stood on the porch yelling in a very excited and demanding manner, he scolded me for disobeying his orders. I calmly explained our situation and the leading the Lord gave us as to why we were here. I even apologized for disobeying him and explained that we had to obey the Lord instead and warned him he should accept the will of the Lord. He went back to take a swing at my face with all his might and got half way through the motion when he suddenly stopped. He did not stop on his own power but it was as if he was being held back by something invisible. White knuckled and twitching in his biceps he was using all the strength he had to try and follow through. He became scared with a terror in his eyes as he cowered back into a corner yelling incoherently , it’s too easy, it’s too easy, then he put his arm down to his side and yelled at his guys, Come on it’s too easy were getting out of here. I had no idea what the heck he was talking about but like puppets being invisibly controlled they got on their bikes and left.


 

My Dad and another member were ushers that night and were on the porch to witness what had happened. They went inside and told everyone (who were all in deep prayer during the events) what had happened. After a short prayer of thanksgiving, we went on with events as if nothing happened and had a great night. The next week end, our coffeehouse closed early and I went home. In that short time four bikers from Bo’s club came back and this was the only time anyone ever suffered any physical attack. One member had an ingrown toenail and was limping in pain but he showed up to perform his usher duties anyway. When the four returned, they came in and started busting up all of our trophies that we had won at different bike events. They came up to Paul who was the ranking member there that night. One of the biggest guys standing at about 6'5, saw his open toed sandal realizing there was something wrong with it and ground his heel onto Paul’s foot. Paul stood there and smiled underneath the pain and told him, That’s OK Jesus loves you anyway and so do we.” This caused him to get off Paul’s foot . Suddenly from the street in front of the church a huge spotlight lit up the whole front. From the patrol cars speaker a voice declared, This is the Detroit police is everything alright in there?” Paul and John both declared, “everything’s cool, these guys are our friends”. The police responded. “OK just keep it down in there OK? Needless to say, the bikers left without any further words.
The guys came right over to my house and told me what had just happened. I know why I wasn’t there. The Bible promises that God will not put on you more than you can bear. If I had been there I am afraid my pastoral instincts or rather my paternal instincts could have gotten in the way. If I had seen them bully Paul or the others in a physical way I would have turned into a little wolverine and messed everything up.
Now we all had a dilemma. Just like the bully that just beat you up after school, you would have to see him in class tomorrow. We were all going to a large swap meet tomorrow and they would certainly be there. How should we act what should we say or do? We all prayed at my house for guidance and direction . We received no personal direction that night but I told everyone not to worry by the time we arrived at the meet we will know what to do.

Judgment and Peace
That mourning in my prayer time I heard the Lord speak to me, Warn them of my wrath and judgment, plead with them to accept you as my servants and do not fear them or their numbers or stature I am with you. Wow sounds like something right out of the O.T.! Well that was all I needed to have the confidence to proceed with a plan I know God was behind. Instead of sheepishly waiting to be approached and skirting around them, first thing when I get there I will seek them out and confront them in a manner Jesus would. No problem when you have the creator of the entire universe on your 6!

It must have looked comical as all get out. I mean here is all of me 5'6" approaching a guy 6'5", a dyslexic match of Mutt and Jeff . I came up to him stood slightly on my tip toes so I could put my arm around his shoulder and pull him off the main isle to talk to him. I then proceeded to tell him, “ You know if we were the kind of people you think we are we would certainly not be here today and we would have had you arrested last night. When are you going to understand we are here for you as servants of God to help you if and when you ever need it? You need to understand we are not afraid of you and we are not angry at you either. We are not trying in any way to compete with you.. We will never go away and we will never retaliate. We are as our name states, King’s Kids. We are God’s children. How do you think a parent would react if someone kept trying to do harm to their kid? He will bring it to an end in any way necessary. God told me to warn you, that he is not pleased by what you are doing and will not allow it to go any further. Now this is not a threat by us to you. We will never do anything to defend ourselves, we are going to let God take care of that but we care about you guys and we do not want you to be on the end of God’s wrath. This is real man, think about it, why would I be here now if it wasn’t? I am trying to tell you something you don’t know. Have you ever experienced anyone like us before? No, but we don’t have to be enemies. We love you because God loves you, please change your attitude toward us before it is too late.” He stood there dumbfounded not able to say a word, so gracefully, I just left and went back to our booth.

After that day we never had another attack. God began to work fast. Bo’s attacks were not
representing the Federation and many friends and hearts that had been won over to the Lord started to dissent against their leader. Years later we learned that there were entire clubs that threatened to quit the Federation if he kept up these attacks against us. Many individual voices from many of the clubs became advocates for us and our group. Within that month of September, 1980 out of the four who attacked us, One died of a heart attack, One was shot in the head and the bullet a .22 cal remained in his head as a floater. The only cycle he would ever ride again was a bicycle. I visited him in the hospital and he gave his heart to the Lord. Another got life without parole as a habitual for killing a 19 year old girl, blowing half her skull off with a point blank 45 cal. I knew the girl and was witnessing to her about the good things of the Lord.


And then there was Bo. I got a word from the Lord for Bo. I knew he would never listen to me in person so I wrote him a letter warning him of something very specific. This really took a leap of faith as I had no knowledge of anything going on in Bo’s life. The warning went something like this. “What you are plotting to do will only come back on you. The very people you now lead will hunt you down like a fugitive unless you stop and change your decision. You will lose everything and gain nothing. “ I literally begged him to not do whatever this meant. I never got a reply.

 Instead just about everyone in the bike community head what happened the same day. Bo was addicted to cocaine and somehow needed a lot of money right away. He was the Treasurer of the Brightmore Businessmen Association . I found out he got that position because of his association with the Hardware stores owner who was the president of the association. His store had caught on fire destroying all records of the association including the financial ones. Another association was on to the fact that there were grants given to the association for home improvement through HUD that were missing. After this convenient fire the owner moved to Livonia an uptown suburb and ran for Mayor and won! Bo must have seized the lost record opportunity to help himself, he stole the entire account! Oh, he also had access to the Federations finances and wiped them clean too. His mothers house was shot up twice and then fire bombed. He left town and probably to this day they are still looking for him if they haven’t already found him and disposed of any evidence. In any event his days of ruling anything in the Detroit metro area was over for good. He became the hunted fugitive by the very people he once led just as the Lord had told me to warn him of.

After this, we experienced peace with all of the bike clubs and respect too as being people who really came from their culture knowing both how to work and rider on bikes and also willing to pray and help them in a time of need. There has been an enduring peace and respect for all such
ministries in Detroit and today many of the Christian Bike clubs enjoy an acceptance, respect and peaceful co-existence that was first established by the many willing servants of the King’s Kids and what we had to endure to establish this bridge to peace and communication.


Conclusion

Believe it or not this was the short version of the beginning and establishment of one of the first Evangelical Christina motorcycle Ministries on this planet. Just like any new work the Lord is doing or new time of events that cause a major change in life as we know it, we may find ourselves with the rules and playing ground to not be well defined but when our relationship with the Lord is well defined through prayer and fasting we can be prepared, empowered, protected and provided for in every way. At times it only requires acting on faith or not acting, but with patience but in everything waiting on the Lord. In every miraculous event there were reasons known or unknown to us that always drew people toward the Lord, delivered us to safety and had some Godly practical reason behind the action either through us or for us. This is nothing like the antics you see preformed by TV evangelists in a three ring circus environment or the videos of Kundalini spirit filled worship from run a muck Pentecostalism or the gold fillings and angel feathers of Charasmaniacs.


 

Please don't get me wrong I am full gospel. I believe all of the gifts are still here for today and am ready for a end time blast bigger than what is recorded in the book of Acts for the last days. But this is going to be real producing real fruit of changed hearts and protected people in a time of need. These are going to be events with a practical need and application not the superficial bovine excrement we see as “Revival” today. If you want the real deal ,while the gifts are free, the accurate application is not. There are no shortcuts, no quick fixes. You as a filter must be in a selfless place in a servant role which only comes with prayer and fasting. Yes fasting that means not eating food of any kind for a short time and feeding on prayer and reading the word. This helps you get you out of the way and clarity of communal thought with the Lord. Funny how all Christian meetings start of end with food! Coffee doughnuts or pot luck, it is what we are good at.


 

The first National Day of prayer was in 1979 with no frills or thrills just fasting and prayer. Before that one ever took off it was overshadowed by all of the “Big Ministries” who rallied together for the 1980 event with big names food vendors and the whole circus act. And it went that way until Kieth Green came on stage. He was a prophet that is needed in this time as he rebuked everyone there for their blind self indulgence and lack of vision. He got real with everyone. I am no Kieth Green but the spirit of his message in this quick fix short cut instant generation needs to be given again. The only way any of us are going to walk in the power and might of God's Spirit through the World's judgment in victory, peace and power is going to be by our willingness to pay the price of discipleship and that means to be disciplined .


 

My prayer for all of you is to get ready, begin to fast and pray and seek the Lord if you will do that the gifts will come, the power will come, the knowledge and wisdom to know what to do and when to do it will be there. Be ready for the time is short and the days are going to get evil.

Sincerely, In His Service, Jim Wilhelmsen