Spirit and Truth Ministries
Biography of David Spakes
This web site contains a scrapbook and condensed biography of David Spakes,
Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville
and founder of
Spirit and Truth Ministries. In most cases, you can click on pictures
to see an enlarged photo in a separate window.
"This Is Why You Came Into the World"
called to preach
in 1988 and
called to pastor
in 2007. For the next couple of years, I prayerfully considered
opportunities pursue this calling as they presented themselves.
In the Bible in
Revelation 3:8, Jesus said,
'I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door
that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you
have kept my word and have not denied my name.'
Since the middle of 2010, I had been considering that the open door that
stood before me was that of presenting the message of Christ to people
like me who enjoy science, technology, science fiction, and the like.
On January 29 while Sheila and I were in service at Pathways Church,
the Holy Spirit told me something that absolutely astounded me.
Again without hearing any audible voice, I knew the
exact words God was speaking to me. His exact words to me were,
'This is why you came into the world.' It took me several
weeks to come to terms with this message. When has anyone been told
the reason why they were born? I came to believe that the door through
which I was to walk would be so challenging to my faith that I would
need this assurance by the Holy Spirit to stay the course.
Several months after this all happened, I asked the person in charge
of the audio-video library at Pathways Church if I could get a copy
of this Saturday night service. I learned that the only part of the
recording that survived was posted on
and it included only the baptism portion of the service at the beginning
of the hour. Here are some still shots from that video in which my
bald head can clearly been seen in the front row. This is where the
Holy Spirit spoke to me at the end of service while people were
gathered at the altar across the edge of the stage."
Launched Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville, Knoxville, TN
"I heard it said once that you can know that God has called you to
a purpose when your first waking thought in the morning and your last
conscious thought on the pillow at night is about that purpose. For
me, the idea of planting a new church had been on my mind for a couple
of years. Then God sent into my life an old friend
to give me the nudge that I needed for me to take the first steps on
the road to accomplish my purpose.
I filed the charter for Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville on
August 31, 2010, but we didn't start meeting as a church until February,
2011. The first half of the pictures in this set were taking during
some of our planning meetings.
The second half of the pictures in this
set show various ways we advertised the organization.
I recorded a one-hour presentation about the church vision and posted
it on YouTube and Facebook.
I also set up a web site for the church,
http://www.spirit-and-truth.net (also reachable at the address
Sheila and I bought T-shirts and wore them around town so that we were
like walking billboards.
We took a day off work and set up in a booth outside of the cafeteria
and bookstore at the University of Tennessee during the first week of
The church also advertised that week in the Metropulse newspaper
and purchased USB wristbands (containing a 1 Gb flash drive)
with the church logo and web site address to give away."
"From February until October, we held church services for
Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville in the Community Room at
Crestridge Apartments. I preached a sermon series titled
The Power of Promise
Hebrews chapter 11."
|Sermons Preached at Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville (2011)
||Power of Promise 01: Love is a Promise
||Power of Promise 02: Promise Presents Choice
||Power of Promise 03: Promises Must Be Shared
||Power of Promise 04: Promise Precedes Consequence
||Power of Promise 05: Promise Follows Following
||Power of Promise 06: Promises Will Be Challenged
||Power of Promise 07: Promises Carry Forward
||Power of Promise 08: Unstoppable Promises
||Power of Promise 09: Promise Reveals Persuasion
||Power of Promise 10: Waiting on the Promise
Science Café at Crestridge Apartments, Knoxville, TN
"From April until August, we held Science Café events
for Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville the Community Room at
Crestridge Apartments. This is a science discussion sponsored by
the church for two purposes. For church members with an interest in
science (like me), it is a recreational opportunity where Christians
can learn and talk about science with real scientists in a setting
that is something other than a debate between science and religion.
For attendees that are not Christians, it is an opportunity to be
around Christians and perhaps be persuaded that not all evangelicals
are against science.
During the first couple of months, a few people expressed an interest
to come but voiced a concern that they wouldn't know what to do with
their children during the meeting. Sheila said she would watch any
kids who came, and that sentiment blossomed into an idea for a
Kid's Café as a way for the church to promote science
education for children. In the month when the adult discussion
was about the rovers Mars Odyssey and Mars Exploration, Sheila
located age-appropriate videos for the children to watch and
designed an activity to build a wind-up toy rover. We set our
minds to develop the Kid's Café to a greater level in the
Star Trek Convention, Nashville, TN
"I made an overnight trip to Nashville July 29-30 with my friend
Chuck Baugher to attend the Star Trek Convention. This was a fun trip
for me and Chuck because both of us are old 'trekkies', but I
was attending primarily to find other people from the Knoxville area
and tell them about the church and Science Café activities
of Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville. On both days we attended,
I wore my church T-shirt and was a walking billboard. During that time,
I spoke with at least a dozen people who lived close enough to Knoxville
that they could possibly attend some of our meetings, and I passed out
a lot of business cards.
We drove to Nashville on Friday morning, talking with each other about
the Lord in the car on the way, and then we attended all of the Friday
sessions at the convention after we arrived. My old college buddy
Joe Roach, who moved to Nashville after graduation and still lives
there, met us for dinner, and we talked about the Lord until late in
the evening. The next day, Chuck and I attended the morning sessions
at the convention, and then we drove back home.
One of the highlights of the trip for me was meeting the actresses
Barbara March and Gwynyth Walsh and having my picture made with them.
In multiple Star Trek television series and movies, they played the
part of the 'Duras sisters'. At the convention, they made
their appearances in costume and in character. I certainly can't
deny it now...I am a true geek and nerd, guilty as charged!"
Science Café at Town of Farragut Community Center, Farragut, TN
"We began looking for other places to hold meetings, and the
Town of Farragut Community Center was available to us for three
meetings every six months at a very reasonable price. Sheila and
I met the director and walked through the facility before we made
the first reservation. The room could hold 75, and there was a
divider we could use to separate an area for Kid's Café.
We held our next two Science Café meetings here in
September and October. Spirit and Truth Fellowship of Knoxville
paid for catering for both of these meetings from Salsarita's
This Science Café, which had become known as
Science Café Knoxville, began operating independently
of church sponsorship after the October meeting and moved onto
the University of Tennessee main campus by the end of the year.
We wished them well, glad in the knowledge that we had helped to
get this group started. We began to look ahead to next year and
started making plans to launch another Science Café."
Cowboy Church, Las Vegas, NV
"Sheila and I vacationed in Las Vegas during the first week of
November. We chose this destination primarily because we are
fans of the sport of professional bull riding and had an opportunity
to attend the last day of the PBR Built Ford Tough Series World Finals.
Some of the bull riders are Christians, and they attend a church
service early on Sunday mornings before the sports event begins
later on Sunday mornings. This is called Cowboy Church, and we
make it a point to be in this service when we attend bull riding
events. Sometimes, church is held in the arena, but at this event
church was held in the parking lot. Here are some pictures from
our first morning in Las Vegas (click to enlarge). The last image is
a scan of the bulletin that was handed out (click to view as a PDF).
The two ladies who sang during the praise and worship at this
particular service were Leighann Hart and Candice Lostroh."
Helped with Operation Christmas Child, Sevierville, TN
"Karen Hall is also a member of Pathways Church.
She works with the organization called
and for the past several years she has headed up the collection of shoe
boxes containing gifts in Sevier County for Operation Christmas Child.
We heard that she did not have enough volunteers to operate the
collection center, so we offered to help. On Sunday, November 20,
we met her at the River Plantation RV Park in Sevierville after attending
the morning church service at Pathways. Inside the RV park's meeting
hall, we accepted the shoe boxes that were brought in, organized them,
packed them into shipping cases and stacked them against the wall.
She received nearly 1,500 shoe boxes over the course of several days,
and we helped with the last 20 or 30 cases."
"Ricky Castro is also a member of Pathways Church.
In late September, he told us that his mother owns a
historic church building
and organizes an event every year for the weekend after
Thanksgiving for which she needs the participation of preachers
and singers. We agreed to help. Sheila had to work on the Friday
after Thanksgiving, so my mother Ruby Lea and I went on that day.
On Saturday, all three of us went together.
The first six pictures below are from Friday night. The lady in
purple is Ricky's mother, Gwen Ford. Gwen's calling is to introduce
ministries to one another and to encourage cooperation between
churches of different denominations. That night, I sang with
Donnie Pullem, the Pastor of Lighthouse Christian Fellowship in
Dandridge, TN, and as a result of this meeting he invited me to
come to his church to sing and preach.
The remaining pictures are from Saturday. I played guitar and sang
with Pastor Donnie, several others in attendance, and with Ruby Lea.
Then I preached a sermon that concluded the
The Power of Promise
series. Donnie's wife Lisa also preaches and has a ministry of
interpretive dance, and she worshipped during several songs at the
end of the evening. The last photograph is a picture of
Preaching at Lighthouse Christian Church, Dandridge, TN
"I received the invitation to preach at this church after I
met Pastor Donnie Pullem and sang with him in November.
This church is located at a Christian Camp. I helped to play music
during the congregational singing and while the youth worshipped
with interpretive dance led by Lisa Pullem. I preached the Sunday
morning sermon titled The Most Important Verse in the Bible.
On New Year's Eve, we returned to be in fellowship with the Pullems
during their watch night service."
Spirit and Truth Ministries /