At age 71, Fred Forbis has become a published author.
The longtime resident of Geist Valley Estates has never considered himself much of a writer. He just had a story that needed to be told.
“If I had any purpose in my life … it was to write this book,” he said, as we sat talking around his dining room table along with his wife Beverly.f
His book is entitled, “Winds of Hope: A Life Journey revealing truth of the Kingdom of God.” It’s an autobiographical account of supernatural experiences and answered prayers.
Although decidedly Christian, it’s not your typical read from the Christian bookstore. Forbis says he’s heard a lot of advice about how to reach out to God, but his book is quite the opposite.
“I’ve just never heard that many people talk about how God reached out to them,” he said.
In his book, Forbis recounts supernatural experiences he says God used to guide his spiritual growth. These experiences include angelic visits, a vision in the clouds and even physical touches from and unseen hand while praying.
Although Forbis was raised Methodist and is now a member at East 91st Street Christian Church, he’s never cared for denominational labels or narrow doctrines. In the preface of his book, Forbis says he feels much like the apostle Paul when he said, “I was not taught by man … but by Jesus Christ.”
At 10 years old Forbis started seeking the truth about God, and at age 19 he made a decision to shift his attitude on prayer. Until that point, he had believed what he’d been taught: Sometimes God doesn’t answer prayers.
Then, after praying with a friend, God answered a prayer he thought impossible and provided a place for them to live when they had no money. From that point on Forbis decided it’s only worth praying if you believe God will answer.
That approach to prayer has produced some stunning results for Forbis, who has witnessed many medical miracles after praying for those who were considered terminally ill. A plant manager at a company where he once worked was in a coma after suffering two heart attacks and strokes, and co-workers were just waiting to find out where to send the flowers. Forbis, however, decided to pray, and the man returned to work six months later.
“People have to get into that mode of mind that everything is possible,” Forbis said.
Forbis was so inspired to pray for people that he held a few prayer services over the years, and in 1972 he even sought out a newspaper article to solicit names of the critically ill to lift up in prayer. The Indianapolis News published an article on Forbis at age 36, describing him as “going it alone, without a banner or church to speak of, promising nothing other than a prayer of love.”
That article produced a flood of phone calls, and Forbis found himself praying for others several hours a day.
The funny thing is, Forbis says he rarely prays for himself. He only thanks the Lord for His protection, love and guidance.
“I’ve always had trouble asking God for something for me,” Forbis said. “He’s always taken care of my needs.”
Forbis maintains that anyone can see miracles happen if they just pray for one another in love. He suggests starting the way he did: Just pray for everyone who crosses your path, be it at work or even the grocery store.
“I built my love for others just asking God to bless the people I came in contact with,” he said.
Forbis said his purpose in writing “Winds of Hope” was to bolster the faith of believers, as well as encourage those who don’t believe in God to seek Him. He especially hopes readers will start believing in the power of prayer.
“I would love to inspire them to a deeper faith, a more assured faith,” Forbis said.
You can order a copy of Forbis’ self-published “Winds of Hope” by visiting his website at www.fredforbis.com, where visitors may also submit prayer requests and comments for the author. Forbis also hopes to visit area churches for book signings.