Rev. Penny Zerbel
The above message was written exclusively by Frank. I had to put some punctuations in and change a few words and take out a few words, but overall the writing is his. The reason this is so exciting is that four years ago he had a massive heart attack and had to have emergency stents put into one artery and was told that all of the main arteries to his heart were blocked and that he would need triple bypass surgery. A month later he underwent the surgery. It was a long day but, everything seemed to go fine. It wasn’t until later when he began waking up that we knew there was a problem. He was not making any sense when he talked and he didn’t seem to understand what we were saying. After evaluation, the doctors finally realized that he had unknowingly had a stroke during the surgery. It affected the area of his brain that controls speech. He was not even able to say my name. When I asked him who I was, he said, “The one who loves me”, but he could not say my name. When he began to be able to communicate a little he kept saying he had the wrong glasses and that he could not see. I did not understand what he meant because those were definitely his glasses. It turned out that he also had a stroke in the optic nerve which took out a large portion of his vision in his left eye. Some of the speech we were told, could come back, but he would never regain his eyesight.
His communication began to get better and he learned to adapt to his condition but, we were told that he would most likely not regain full function. Imagine not being able to read a book or especially the Bible, the way you used to, or not being able to sing the songs you had written in years past. In addition to these problems he has a long list of other health issues. But despite all of that, I am amazed at his attitude and his continued faith in God. Yes, there were times of depression and despair. Mainly, because he couldn’t stand the thought of not telling the gospel of Jesus to others and not being able to preach or sing again.
Over the years, we had to let all of our musical equipment go and have had to live on very little. I still work part time in a church as a music director but spend the rest of my time helping him and taking him to the doctors.
This past year God showed him that he can still spread the gospel of Christ and share the songs that he has written over the years. We need equipment that is compact and easy to move and gas to travel to the churches. If you would like to help us in our ministry, please donate or if you can’t donate, pray for Frank’s continued healing and for our ministry.
Rev. Frank Zerbel
For the past 25 years, I have been a pastor, worship leader, and a minister to nursing homes and prisons. In 2012, suddenly I felt that everything I had was gone. As I was coming out of heart bypass surgery, which I had to have following a heart attack, the doctors determined that I had a stroke during surgery. All of a sudden, I could not talk or sing the music that the Lord has given to me through the years. I felt that I could not do anything and there was no way I would be able to minister again.
But as time went by, God told me that even though I would not be able to pastor a church, He still had a place for me. He told me that I needed to let people know that no matter what happens to them, He will still love them and use them to minister to His people. For the first time since my stroke, I was able to play the music God has given me and find the words to tell my story. After that night, I realized that God was not done with me and He wants us to continue to share His message through music and testimony.
God is good. No matter what our struggles are, if we truly listen, Jesus will guide us and give us what we need. God has given me the ability to preach through the music and He is sending us out to work with churches and ministries and share the power and grace of Jesus Christ through music, testimony, and the Word.
All ministries need a team of people and resources to do God’s work. This is a great leap of faith. We are looking for prayer partners and team members to help with various activities. If you have a heart for ministry, we hope you will prayerfully consider supporting this work.
Here are some ways you could volunteer:
Traveling to churches as support staff and handling information table
Helping with set up and break down of equipment
Praying daily for this ministry team
Joining the musical team (selected on basis of need, personal testimony, and audition)
Consider donating to our ministry...
We plan to travel once or twice a month to churches and ministries to share testimony through music. This is the mission that God has given us. If you would like us to come to your church and share our story and the gospel of Jesus, we would love to come by. Thank you for listening.
God Bless you!