Going back a long way, in 1936 in Parkers Prairie, a town of one thousand
inhabitants lost in northern Minnesota, John Blake's mother prayed, asking God
to accept and send her son Johnny, three years old, as a missionary to Africa.
God told her no, that John would serve in Europe. She did nothing more
than pray, and did not reveal any of this to John, or to anybody else, until the
mission The Navigators assigned John and Alicia to Italy.
1955, after finishing his military service in Germany, John visited Spain to see "the
work" for which he had been praying during six years as a result of having
seen the film, "Banderilla", about the persecution of the Evangelicals
During this visit of only eight days, at six o'clock in the morning of the
last day, John way looking at the surroundings of Madrid, from the terrace of
the hotel, praying, asking God to send workers to evangelize Spain.
Having just started to pray for workers, John sensed an almost audible voice,
"Whom shall I send?" and just as quickly, he responded, "Here am I, send me".
Thinking about it later, he continued praying... "But what can I, a truck
driver, do as a missionary?" To which, God answered with another text
which John had learned by memory; "...Not by might, nor by power, but by my
spirit, saith the LORD of hosts..." (Isa. 6:8 and Zech. 4:6).
With this calling and the promise of Zechariah... after four years of studies
at Northwestern Bible College, two more years of preparation in Colorado and
another four years of experience in ministry in Italy and again in Germany with
the Navigators; at last, John, Alicia and their three children landed in Barcelona
ten years later, in May 1965. The first three years were for learning the
language and the Spanish culture at the University of
Barcelona. At the same time, he served as an English professor in the
seminary of the Federation of Independent Evangelical Churches of Spain (in
John quit teaching in order to dedicate himself fully to the ministry of evangelization
through films, as a worker with the
Billy Graham Evangelistic
Association (BGEA) in direct collaboration with the recently created
Action (in Spanish, EEA) to serve all of the evangelical churches of Spain.
In the same year in which Franco died, 1975, the Blakes moved to Madrid, in
order to facilitate the ministry and the trips throughout all Spanish territory.
We move on to the year of the birth of the Constitution, 1977. After nine
years of close relationship with Juan Gili, the BGEA decided to establish itself
in Madrid, independent of the EEA.
In this way, in February, although cold and rainy, in 1977 was born with deep
roots what today is known as DECISION (the name taken from the evangelistic
magazine of the BGEA), with John Blake as founder and director.
photo shows another goodbye of John. If we add up all of the days of the
trips of John in Spain, the result would be the chilling figure of 17 years
away from home.
"…they rehearsed all that God had done with them…" (Acts 14:27)