Then, at the Queensland State Assembly in May 1985, my paper on Miracles and Pseudomiracles was received as part of the Report by the Committee on the Charismatic Movement. There, I was also appointed to the 1985 Queensland State Assembly's Code Committee.
Right after the Assembly, I received a call from my old friend Dick Bacon in the U.S.A. He was then in Dallas, and asked me whether I had any interest in perhaps considering a call to the North Dallas Congregation within the Presbyterian Church in America and within the great State of Texas. I indicated I am always open to any call, and was planning in June 1985 to visit my aged parents in South Africa (whom Ihad last seen back in 1978f when they visited us while we were still living in Mississippi).
TheNorthDallasSessionthenaskedmetoflytomy parentsviaTexas–andindicatedthat it would pay all Brisbane to Dallas round-trip travel expenses and other related costs, if I came and preached for them en route to my parents. I could then myself chip in the extra and buy a round-the-world air ticket (from Australia via the United States and thence by way of South Africa back to Australia). In Dallas, however, a godly lady later gave me $1000!
So, early in June 1985, during the Seminary's Winter Vacation, I flew from Brisbane straight to Vancouver in Canada, and thence on via Seattle and Denver to Dallas. In Dallas, I preached seven times. There, I also saw the oil tycoon J.R. Ewing's Southfork Ranch — where each episode of the blockbuster T.V. serial in the "Dallas" series was then being filmed.
The Dallas Congregation wanted to call me, but I then indicated that even if I were to accept I would not leave Australia until at least January in 1986 — thus teaching at the Queensland Seminary for at least five years, as previously agreed. I then flew out of the United States from Houston and, by way of the Isle of Salt in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea — on to Johannesburg, and thence to Cape Town.
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From there, my old friend the famous Christian Architect Pieter Pelser flew with me in a private plane to Ashton (where he was designing a building). There, my father with his bosom friend Joepie van Zyl picked me up, and drove us all back the short distance to Barrydale.
Inmy beloved hometown ofBarrydale,IpreachedfortwosuccessiveSundaysintheDutch ReformedChurch(asaresultofwhichIwas subsequentlyapproachedastothepossibility ofmy returning hometo becomeBarrydale's"ResidentTheologian"). Then,afterthatblessedreunion with my parents and the wonderful folks of my home town in South Africa, I returned by way of Cape Town and Johannesburg and Perth to Brisbane in Australia early in July.
A few weeks later, the Presbytery of North Texas half way round the World "placed" the call into my hands (effective January 1986). Indeed, even the U.S. Consulate in Sydney then cleared my whole family for re-emigration back to America as Permanent Residents there, if I was of a mind to accept the offered appointment in Dallas. However,afterverymuch prayer in which I strenuously sought the Lord's guidance, I finally declined it.
Soon thereafter, in September 1985 I was a Delegate elected by the Queensland State Assembly to the federal General Assembly of Australia — in Melbourne. The GAA is traditionally a truncated body alias a contracted Synod, not directly representative of every Congregation (as in the Dutch Reformed system) — and hence smaller than some State Assemblies. There in Melbourne, I was elected to the GAA's College Committee, to its Committee on Office in the Church, and to its Committee on Relations with other Churches.