Testimony of Pastor Malcolm Wild—Part 1

Pastor Malcolm Wild at pulpit
Pastor Malcolm Wild at pulpit

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He Has Done Great Things for Me: Testimony of Pastor Malcolm Wild—Part 1

Testimony by Malcolm Wild, senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Merritt Island, FL
Photos courtesy of Malcolm Wild and CC Merritt Island

This is Part 1 of the three-part testimony of Senior Pastor Malcolm Wild of CC Merritt Island, FL. He has been pastor of the church for 36 years, supported by his wife, Carol; it was the first Calvary Chapel in Florida. In this installment, Malcolm shares how he and Carol were led to salvation in Jesus Christ.

Click to read Part 2: Malcolm shares how he grew in his faith and in ministry after he was saved. Part 3: Malcolm describes his call to pastor a church in Florida.

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Carol and Malcolm Wild, April 2017.

In Luke’s Gospel, Mary’s song of praise known as "The Magnificat,” includes the words, "For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name.” (Luke 1:49).

Many throughout history have echoed Mary’s words and told of the wonderful things that God has done for them, as I do now. The problem I find is not having to search for something to say—for His blessings in my life have been of great abundance—but rather, knowing what to leave out. The Lord did great things for me before I even knew it was Him doing them. I believe that He was working in my life before I ever became a Christian, and in His mercy, He protected me from my own foolishness. I thank God that He redirected my life and that those things that I desired most did not come my way.

 

Musical Success

In the 1960’s, back in my home country of England, I was in a band called The Zodiacs. (Even back then I was spiritual!) It was a time in England when there were more people in bands than not. Ours was not great, but we were okay. We got invited to go to Germany. I thought this would be a great opportunity for us because Germany is where The Beatles went for years and kind of got their start. But when my guitar player decided not to go, we lost that opportunity. He ended up quitting the band, which paved the way for a new guitarist to join—a young, 15-year-old boy named Alwyn Wall.

A short time later, when that band broke up, Alwyn and I became a folk duo and started writing our own songs. That is when we met a couple of The Beatles—Paul McCartney and George Harrison. George got us an appointment at Apple Records, (not the computers!) where they listened to our songs as part of their search for new young talent. But our songs were not the “pop” style they were looking for. We got turned down. We had almost made it to where we wanted to be, but God had other plans.

It reminds me of Saul who became the apostle Paul and how he almost reached his ghastly destination to accomplish his dreadful goal of persecuting Christians—until he was “arrested” by Jesus on the road to Damascus. Where would we have ended up had we been successful? I thank God that we were arrested by Jesus.

George Harrison was the one who turned us on to Transcendental Meditation (TM). How many people have traveled down that road and now wander in some mystic wilderness? I thank God that He revealed to us the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi for the charlatan he truly was. It was during the time of my disillusionment with TM and The Beatles, that the Lord did great things for me.

How wonderful it is that God does His "great things" through ordinary men! He does not need a person who exalts himself as some “great one” such as the Maharishi or even George Harrison, although George was a very humble guy. God doesn’t need the great ones of this world because He has His great ones. One of those was Howard Davies, who told me about Jesus.

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Pastor Howard Davies, the truck driver who first shared Jesus with Malcolm and now serves as his assistant pastor, prays with other pastors and elders at Calvary Chapel Merritt Island as they mark Malcolm and Carol’s 30 years of faithful service. January 12, 2014.

Hearing the Gospel

Howard was a truck driver at the time when I worked in a factory; he delivered goods there. And he told me the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ and invited me to his church. How I thank God for bringing Howard into my life! Also, my supervisor was a Christian, not as open to sharing the Gospel as Howard, but he did give me a book to read. In the middle of the book, it said to put this book down now and read the Gospel of John, so I did. What was my impression of Jesus? I thought, Wow, this guy really thinks He's something. He says He is The Door, He says He’s The Way, and if you drink of the water He gives, you will never thirst again. Who does this guy think He is, God or somebody?

Howard would witness to me and saw my interest. I was convicted of sin, even though I did not really understand it, because I was in the presence of someone living for Jesus Christ. When someone witnesses to others, they are light shining in the darkness.

Howard invited me to his church which was 10 miles away. It’s funny to look back now and realize that at the time, that seemed too far to go to church! So he also told me about an Assemblies of God church in our own town and said that the people there would be friendly and invite us over to tea. But then he went home and told his wife, Doreen, “I don’t know what I’ve done. I told a fellow at work to go to this church in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, but I don’t know anybody there, and I told him that they’ll be be real friendly and invite him to tea! Let’s pray!”

Now God’s hand was all over this because when Carol and I went to this little church, a visiting pastor was speaking that day named George Yeomans. He was also an evangelist, a soul winner. In fact, he actually had a school of evangelism in our town, although we didn’t know about it at the time. God did great things through this man.

After his message, we met Pastor George at the door, and had the following exchange:

“Have you ever given your life to Jesus Christ?” he asked us.

“Uh, sure” we replied, although we had no idea what he was talking about.

“When?” he asked.

Our reply: “Uh, I don’t know. Now, I suppose?”

We had no idea. So he took us, along with a secretary of the church, into another room. Carol went with her and I with him, and they explained the Gospel to us. I could hear Carol saying to the young lady, “I’m not a sinner; it’s my husband you want to see,” and then Carol turned her back on the lady! Pastor George could see that they were not getting anywhere, so he invited us to come to his office the next day for tea. Howard’s prayer was answered.

 

Saved

Carol and I were newlyweds, still busy settling into our house and painting and such. Now when it was time to meet with Pastor George, Carol was not excited to go. She decided that she was going to stump the pastor, planning to ask him awkward questions that no one would normally ask. I was unaware that she was under tremendous conviction of sin at the time. But before either of us could ask any questions, Pastor George told us all the answers to her questions.

We knelt and asked Jesus to be our Savior, and I knew that Christ had come into my heart. God forgave me and cleansed me of all my sins. He led us to the Lord on July 29, 1968, and George wept as he always did when he led people to Christ.

George urged us to go and tell someone that we had given our lives to Christ, so we went home and told my best friend, and now brother-in-law, Alwyn, and his wife Gloria, Carol’s sister. Two days later, we went to Pastor George’s church and all four of us went forward together. I don’t believe this little church had ever seen four people get saved all at the same time.

I remember the day of my conversion, after we left George’s office, walking my dog and telling the Lord, “I promise to think of You at least once a day.” Little did I know that the Lord never leaves us and was dwelling within me. We later wrote a song entitled, “Always on My Mind,” as we had learned that Jesus is always with us.

ccmerrittisland.org

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Pastor Malcolm enjoys a light-hearted moment with the congregation before beginning his message at CCMI’s “Reopen Service” after COVID lockdown. May 17, 2020.

 

All verses above are quoted from the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

© 2020 Calvary Chapel Magazine (CCM). All rights reserved. Articles or photographs may not be reproduced without the written permission of CCM. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.® Used by permission.

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