Meet The Board: Brian Martell
I was born in Maine, lived in Newfoundland until age 9, and finished growing up in New Mexico. I grew up knowing that Jesus is the Son of God. I have always known this and thought that I was a Christian. At age 13 I was baptized along with my older brother and dad at Boles Baptist Mission in Alamogordo, NM.
I studied the Bible at age 16-18 with the Bronsons, a couple that lived near us. Later I learned that they followed Garner Ted Armstrong.
I wanted a wife, not a girlfriend; and I got a good wife. I wanted a son and got a great one; I wanted a daughter and got a wonderful one. All I wanted I received. I thought I was a good man. In 1974 at 27 years of age, my wife Peggy was going down to White Mud Lake to be baptized. She had given her life to the Lord and was walking in obedience in baptism. On the way down to the water she prayed and said to the Lord Jesus that this wasn’t going to work because she was going to serve the Lord but knew that even though I thought I was a Christian, I wasn’t. She lived with me and knew it wasn’t true. She asked the Lord to do something. HE did. He smote my heart, showed me my sins, and saved me right then and there. I was weeping and said, “Stop!” As Peggy was going down to the water, I said, “She is right with the Lord, but I need to be forgiven. I need to be baptized!” Peggy sat down, and I was baptized instead. When I came up out of the water, the brother said, “How would you like to baptize your wife?” I said, “Sure;” and with that brother we both took part in Christ baptizing Peggy. I was elated!
We were in a small home fellowship when we heard about the Shield of Faith conference a few years later and decided to go. The couple that told us about the conference also challenged us not to eat or talk to the people who we went with but to eat and talk to total strangers instead.
We were terrified, but we did; and God loved us through ministry and His people. That was in 1976 or 1977. We have been involved with Shield of Faith ever since.
At that time there were three conferences a year. We were only able to attend the spring and fall conferences. Years later there was only one conference a year. In 1997, Peggy had been praying that we needed the encouragement of the conferences more than once a year, and we started seeking the Lord about doing another conference. The Lord opened the door two years later, and the first conference was held in Idaho. This year is our 15th year of doing the conferences for Shield of Faith near Spokane. We have been so blessed to be used of the Lord and encouraged by meeting God’s chosen ones, the saints. We would encourage others to step out in faith and do those things God is prompting you to do! In Christ, Brian Martell