Johnny Godair was born to Hershel and Irene Godair in the small farm town of Portageville, Missouri, on July 14, 1940. His parents received the Holy Ghost in the year 1948 and began pastoring a small country church in 1949. He received the Holy Ghost and was baptized at age 15, then graduated from high school in 1958 and began evangelizing full-time in 1959 until 1962. As a single young man, in 1962 he founded the church in Malden, Missouri, starting with zero members. In 1963 he married Mickey Sue Kerr, whose father pastored in Morehouse, Missouri. God sent revival in Malden, and together with their growing family they pastored the Malden church until 1973. At the time they left Malden in January 1973, there was an average of 310 per Sunday. In April 1973 Bro. & Sis. Godair and their two daughters came to North Carolina to establish another home missions church, this time in Durham. The new work began on Watts Street, and God added to the church daily such as should be saved. Soon there was a crowd. By summer of 1974, the church grew to fifty in attendance. The Lord focused the attention of all of Durham on the infant church when a man was raised from the dead during Sunday morning service.