Faithing the Facts

“Follow the leading of the Holy Spirit,” Is my directive to each one who has an idea regarding prayer for Pastor Fay.

The Spirit’s leading is vast and diverse. We have completed 21 Days of Fasting and Prayer. We have prayed through the night. Some are praying the night through in the hospital parking lot. Others are prayer walking around the hospital. Others are fasting and praying in groups. Others are fasting and praying alone.

We encourage you to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. He is faithful and true.

Be sensitive in your comments and conversations, remembering Pastor Fay’s family is walking life’s most challenging journey. The faith/fact experience is at the core of our Christian experience. Faith never goes against reason, but faith often goes far beyond reason.

Always remember that the often quiet and behind-the-scenes Pastor Chuck Niemann, their daughter Nicole and her husband, Trevor, Chuck’s sister, Fay’s father (Doug), and Fay’s sister and brothers (and their families) are all people of GREAT faith. You can imagine their experience of the faith/fact dilemma.

Consider the words of the Apostle Paul regarding another man of tremendous faith, Abraham.

“Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact…”

Romans 4:19

Our Christian faith and the facts of life are held in simultaneous tension. The Niemann/Riley/Sheneman/MCA Church faith is strong. Our faith, however, does not turn a blind eye to the extremely difficult facts regarding Pastor Fay’s challenging physical battles. The Apostle Paul, a man of grand faith, had this same conversation in his day.

I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24 but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. 25 Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me.

Philippians 1:21-26
  • Notice the Apostle’s faith – I will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body.
  • Notice the Apostle’s facts – Whether by life or by death.
  • Notice the Apostle’s faith – To live is Christ!
  • Notice the Apostle’s facts – To die is gain!
  • Notice the Apostle’s faith – If I go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me.
  • Notice the Apostle’s facts – I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far.

Many pastors have walked the faith/fact journey with people they dearly love. It is a humbling privilege to be invited into the faith/fact dilemmas of life. Chuck Niemann is boldly facing the faith/fact experience of his bride in a heroic fashion. Chuck is living out his bride’s favorite Bible passage:

5 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. 6 Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them. 7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest. 8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. 9 Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Joshua 1:5-9

Pastor Chuck Niemann is a Christian role model. His faith/fact discipline is on display for all to see. Chuck, none have navigated this type of tumultuous water better than you. I am proud of you, my friend.

We are ready, all of us, for Pastor Fay to sit up, eat, and head home to work in her Anchorage garden.

We are also ready, all of us, for Pastor Fay to sit up, eat, and take her first walk in the Garden of the Lord with the one who “takes me by the hand and leads me to the promised land.”

So, how do you pray? As the Holy Spirit leads you.

Together, we are “Faithing the Facts.”

22 thoughts on “Faithing the Facts”

  1. Thank you Pastor Kent, I have walked this journey recently with my son and saw Gods healing touch. I a m also still walking it with a very dear friend battling cancer. It is a dilemma when we are faced with losing a loved one and still fighting the good fight of faith. I am praying for Faye and her family may God give them strength and peace.

  2. Very well said. Many , many moments come into my mind as I ponder life, hope, disappointment and faith. It can rip your heart to pieces. Perhaps at this time one thing helps me… the song Gary and Jael sang at MCA and recorded on a cd …“God hath not promised “.

  3. MCA has many members already in Heaven and wrestled with these matters of faith and facts, many times. Thank you Pastor Kent for the scriptures that help us frame our petitions.

  4. Tremendous reminder. We live by faith, praying Lord, we long for our desires to be fulfilled this side of heaven. But in humility, we submit our desires for your greater plan and declare thy will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven.

  5. If Heaven really is all that we read about in the Bible, and I do believe it to be so, Fay and the rest of us who have Christ as our Savior, have a home that we should be looking forward to dwelling in. Life here on Earth is sweet, but Heaven is sweeter by far. Meanwhile, let’s be about the Father’s business until He calls us home. For some, the road may be long. For others it may be short. In either case, the time will come when we will all get together. What a day of rejoicing that will be.

    1. Sheldon, you are a giant in our lives. Thank you for the many years of planting God’s word into our lives. Hurry home to the 907.

  6. God is faithful. These words are comforting and timely. Thank you.
    “The faith/fact experience is at the core of our Christian experience. Faith never goes against reason, but faith often goes far beyond reason.” So very true.
    We are called to faith and to prayer….”Prayer imparts the power to walk and not faint.”
    I am strengthened to continue praying…..

  7. Knowing Pastor Fay, before her and Chuck were married as Childrens Pastor at MCA, the impact she had on my two girls, and her simple steadfast faith through all these many years continues to humble me. She has remained steadfast and consistant and her joy unspeakable full of God’s glory. My heart aches…but I know she is in God’s hands. I don’t have the words to adequately express my graditude to you for your walk. nor to thank you for your grace. I am praying…

  8. I have been praying for Fay since I heard she was in the hospital. Thank you for this Word. I know God is with her and Chuck and their daughter as they have been His faithful servants.. God has a journey for all of us that leads us Home. I trust God for whatever his answers are because I finally understand His heart! I recently have had over ten people in struggles of life and death. In my Faith I wanted to tell them what they and their families wanted to hear….but Gods plans are best and He has a path that we will walk…either today, next week, next year or several years from now. I finally have learned and accepted His plans for us are best. Thank you for being obedient to God for this posting. I needed to confirm what He has been teaching me. I appreciate this more than you know! Thank you. Know I will be holding Fay and family up in prayer.

  9. I still remember the first time I met Pastor Fay. She was teaching a class at Far North and I was visiting in Anchorage. I still have a few notes dated 11/4/91 that I took from her class on Life of Christ. I think one of her recent assignments had her once again teaching. She not only taught with words but also with her life. She has been dedicated to loving God and to her work of caring for people and leading them to Jesus.

    When I think of MCA I often remember the song “Living By Faith” and sing it to myself. God has used MCA and the many people there to be a blessing to me.

    I am so glad I got to talk with her this past June. My wife and I are praying for Chuck and the other family members.

  10. Pastor Kent, this is a very excellent word of faith and fact. It spoke to me heart as sometimes I still struggle with loss. Praying for you and the mca family through these difficult and challenging times. Sharon Marchand

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