Marc Silliman (Elder)
A story of God’s intervention into the life of Marc Silliman
As a young man I was introduced to the religion of golf by a life long acquaintance. Soon after that I found work in the business of golf for the privilege of playing golf without paying a daily fee. Over time I excelled, gained membership in the PGA of America as a club level Director of Golf, and received two prestigious awards from my colleagues in the Southwest Section of the PGA. Along with my work of gaining professional acumen, I was proficient at several of the vices that are prevalent in the game of golf. My favorite was the consumption of alcohol during and after a round of golf regardless of whether I had played or not. My practice of overindulging alcohol rendered me an ineffective husband and father by the time I went home.
While I knew my lifestyle was wrong, I held to the prideful idea that I would not fall to complete submission to alcoholism like many in my family had done. I was above that enjoying the worldly prominence as a successful golf professional. However, I remember that in 1995 immediately after receiving the top award of “Golf Professional of the Year” from the local PGA section, I was convicted of my unworthiness for such an honorable award. I decided then to try to change my ways. With little or no measurable success of my own over the next year, I strangely found myself hearing a message of truth from an evangelist/illusionist after a magic show at a church in Show Low, AZ. That evening I responded to God’s invitation that He brought through Felix Snipes and the Saints at Calvary Baptist Church and received His gift of Eternal Life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
While my salvation was complete, I reacted similar to many of the U.S. slaves following the enactment of the emancipation proclamation of 1863. I knew my former master and knew not how to live free from the bondage of sin so I returned to my comfortable digs at the golf course and continued to practice my favorite sin for a time. I am so grateful for the Saints at CBC and the Pastor-Teacher that God gave us as they persisted in arranging a follow-up meeting to invite me to their new believers’ class so that I could grow in my restored relationship with God.
Our gracious God exposed my sin against He and my family and gave me the faith to trust Him enough to repent of my most egregious sin of neglecting my beautiful children and most precious gift of a wife by practicing alcoholism. I further learned of my privilege to love my wife as Jesus loves the church and somehow I knew that I couldn’t do it alone. I prayed to God that if that was His design for my life, to love Cindy in such a way, I would need His help to make it happen. God has been so faithful to His promise to equip me to do just that. Please know that I am not all the way there yet. He is still teaching me. But I know the difference He has made as I never knew I could enjoy the gift of a person as I do today. Cindy and I love to spend time together, whether at work, at leisure, or even at play on the former 18 hole church. With Jesus in the middle of our lives we have a true love and respect for one another that we pray brings glory and honor to God for his transforming power.
God wonderfully used His church in 1996, and continues to use MBC and Pastor Steve, to teach me the things of God in obedience to the Great Commission.
Jeff Bevers (Elder)
As a young boy of 9, I attended a crusade in El Paso, TX where I accepted Christ as my Savior. I lived my life for Christ for many years as a kid. Other kids in school would call me Jesus freak and other things but I was on fire for the Lord. and I didn’t let that bother me. Growing up in a Christian home was a true blessing. We attended church every week and I went to MYF (Methodist Youth Fellowship) every week and was mentored by some very special people. But when I was about 16, I started following the world instead of the Lord and fell away from my walk for around 22 years. I went through a divorce and after that started to go back to church and searching for the passion I once had for Christ. Audrey and I fell in love with the Lord and each other and committed our lives to the Lord and to each other in 2001. We have a wonderful marriage with God at the center. He is now our focus. I strive every day to grow closer to the Lord.
Rick Cole (Elder)
I was born into a Christian home and accepted Christ at an early age. My parents were active in the Church and my attendance was not optional.
Judy and I were married at a young age in the Presbyterian Church where both our parents attended. My mother fell in love with Judy before I met her. I had just finished my first year of college in Michigan and had not caught up with my parents who had moved to Tucson, Arizona. We started dating after meeting in church my first week in Tucson. We celebrated 61 years of marriage this year (2019).
After our marriage, we both in time, became active in the Presbyterian Church, I served as a Deacon and Elder. However, my spiritual life became second to my insurance career. My priorities changed in 1977 when I reluctantly agreed to participate in a Bible study with three other couples. We all made a commitment to spend seven minutes alone with God every day. God took that seven minutes and convinced me that I needed to spend time in His Word and learn to know and understand who He was. I started reading through His Word in 1978 which has continued through the years.
We retired to the White Mountains 20 years ago and I became active in the local Gideon camp. I first met Pastor Steve Hair on a Gideon visit; I spent over an hour with him trying to answer the many questions he had about the Gideon ministry. These past 20 years he has been a spiritual source for me.
Looking back I see how God has blessed me. I have a wonderful helpmate, three children, six grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and a personal relationship with Jesus.
I look forward to serving the Church under His direction; please pray for me.
Caleb Hair (Pastor / Elder)
God tells us in Hebrews that His Word (the bible) “is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart” (4:12 ESV). We are also told that “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work (II Timothy 3:16-17 ESV).
Throughout my life God’s Word has been poured into me through its preaching, through fellowship with other believers, and, most important, through the Holy Spirit. God called me to Himself at a very early age and I have had the privilege of knowing Him more and more each and every day through the reading of His Word and prayer. God continues to work in my life as He promised He would. It is a great honor and privilege to be a part of Maranatha Bible Church (MBC) as we seek to be “a community reaching a community” through encouraging one another to live out the Christian life.
Steve Hair (Pastor / Elder)