“And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;” 1 Timothy 1:12
My heart is full today.
I feel blessed far beyond what I deserve.
Last night, at our home church, 18 men gathered around me for several hours to encourage me, bless me, lay their hands on me, and ordain me into the Gospel ministry. These men have had, collectively, hundreds of years in the ministry. I was so humbled to be surrounded by these giants of the faith, and to hear of their recognition of God’s hand in my life.
I would like to thank the following men for not only having a part in my ordination, but for investing in my life. God has used you!
- Charles Blackstock — My pastor and close mentor and friend. (over 30 years of ministry)
- Carl Braswell — Church planter for years and now missionary with Macedonia World Baptist Missions. (over 50 years of ministry)
- Jeff Bush — Missionary to Argentina and now Director of Vision Baptist Missions. (over 10 years of ministry)
- Robert Canfield — Assistant pastor at Vision Baptist Church. (about 5 years of ministry)
- Trent Cornwell — Assistant pastor at Vision Baptist Church. (about 7 years of ministry)
- Mark Coffey — Missionary to South Africa with Vision Baptist Missions. (about 10 years of ministry)
- Austin Gardner — Close mentor and friend. Pastor of Vision Baptist Church and missionary to Peru for many years. (almost 40 years of ministry)
- David Gates — Close friend and missionary to Egypt with Macedonia World Baptist Missions. (about 5 years of ministry)
- Alfonso Gonzalez — My assistant while I pastored the Spanish church in GA, now pastor of Iglesia Bautista El Faro. (about 3 years of ministry)
- Kevin Hall — Missionary to South Africa with Vision Baptist Missions. (about 10 years of ministry)
- Brandon Mayes — Missionary to China and now Deputation Director for Macedonia World Baptist Missions. (about 15 years of ministry)
- Rex McPherson — Missionary in Wales and now Pastor of Galilean Baptist Church. (about 30 years of ministry)
- Larry Monroe — Pastored for many years now assistant pastor at my home church. (about 20 years of ministry)
- Cory Sexton — Friend for years and now pastor of The Church at Hoschton. (about 10 years of ministry)
- Donald Swaim — My grandfather and missionary to Mexico and US hispanics with BIMI. (about 30 years of ministry)
- Richard Vance — My dad and missionary printer with Macedonia World Baptist Missions. (about 18 years of ministry)
- Thurman Wade — Pastor for several years, now Director of Macedonia World Baptist Missions. (about 50 years of ministry)
- Frank Whitmire — Pastor for several years, now assistant pastor at my home church. (about 30 years of ministry)
For years, I have seen God do great things over and over again in my life, and I’m constantly reminded that it’s not about me… it’s all about HIM! I’m just an earthen vessel, he’s the real treasure. Knowing this humbles me. It is an honor to serve the King of Kings. It is a privilege that God would see it fit to put me in ministry. It is a joy to be his voice in this world.
I want to also express my love and gratitude for the one that is by my side — that is, my wife, Aubrie. There’s no one else that has loved me more, encouraged me more, inspired me more, helped me more and will ever be with me more than her. Ministry can come and go, but she will be with me until the end. I tell you, God has been super good to this ol’ boy!
Recently a good friend and one of my mentors, Austin Gardner, began a podcast on leadership. It has quickly become one of the things I look forward to most each week! I encourage you, if you are in any type of Christian leadership role or desire to be some day, check it out! It will be a great investment of your time. Each week for 10-20 minutes you will hear loads of practical & biblical advice. This is one of those things that will be invaluable in ministry.
You can check the website above for updates each week or subscribe for free in iTunes by clicking here.
The Spanish podcast, which is also helpful and sometimes deals with different issues, can be found here.
There is an amazing conference going on at this very moment (Thursday at 10 AM through Friday at 1:30) and you can join in by clicking this link. Dr. Earl Jessup and others are speaking about planting churches here in the US and around the world. Unfortunately, I am not able to attend this conference in person, but I’m so thankful that they are streaming this. I need to learn!
Let me know if you have any problems getting connected.
Here is the conference schedule:
10:00 – 11:00 am Session 1 With Earl Jessup
11:00 – 12:00 pm Session 2 With Earl Jessup
12:00 – 1:00 pm Lunch
1:00 – 2:00 pm Session 3 The Man God uses for Church Planting Chris Gardner
2:00 – 3:00 pm Session 4 Involving others in the Ministry Jeff Bush
3:00 – 3:15 pm Break
3:15 – 4:00 pm Session 5 Launch Promotion Jason Holt
4:00 – 5:00 pm Session 6 Austin Gardner
5:00 – 7:00 pm Diner
7:00 – 8:00 pm Church
8:15 – ? Discussion
9:00 – 10:00 am Session 7 Austin Gardner
10:00 -11:00 am Session 8 With Earl Jessup
11:00 – 12:00 pm Session 9 With Earl Jessup
12:00 – 1:00 pm Session 10 With Earl Jessup
1:00 – 1:20 pm Q & A With the Panel
I strongly believe that Latin America is one of the ripest areas in the world for church planting. The countries are open. The people are receptive. The Gospel is starting to take root. I believe we are on the verge of seeing a massive revival!
If you get a few minutes, I want you to check out this a brand new website chock full of resources for church planting in Latin America. It’s called The Latin Bridge. You see, in order to see this revival come to pass in our generation, we need more laborers and we need to get the right tools in those laborers’ hands.
If you or somebody you know are interested in becoming a church planter, or if you’re a layman or pastor that wants to have a part in seeing people reached with the Gospel we’d like to be a bridge. Check out the website here!
The application has been sent and we have an interview with Macedonia World Baptist Missions tomorrow morning. Lord willing we will start raising support in 1 month. wow….
It is incredible to see how God has worked in His timing and opened so many doors for us. We are very excited to be going to Colombia, South America to plant churches, win the lost and glorify the Lord Jesus Christ.
We are about to start filling up our deputation schedule. If you would like us to present our work in your church please let me know. Send me a message, or give me a call at: 770-519-1689.