Connecting the Dots in an Unconnected World

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

35 Years

35 years ago today I was ordained to the gospel ministry. As I was doing my Bible reading this morning I spend some time remembering God's goodness to me.

From day one I have been both amazed and honored by God's call on my life and the confidence of the Seminole Heights Baptist Church in Tampa, Florida. God has allowed me to travel, preach and serve in ways I had never imagined possible.

I have preached overseas and in more than one-half of the states in our nation. It has been and is still evident that the gospel is the power of God unto salvation to all who believe. God's chosen method to save the lost is still through the preaching of His Word. During this time I have preached more than 150 revival meetings. The churches in which I have served and places where I have preached in revival and conference have seen nearly 10000 people trust Christ as Savior.

I have been honored by Southern Baptists to serve at every level of SBC leadership. In our Florida Baptist Convention I have served as First Vice-President, President of the State Board of Missions and Vice-President of the Baptist College of Florida Board of Trustees. In local associations I have served in numerous capacities. In each of these positions I have received more than I have contributed.

I have been blessed by the churches that I have served. Each church has been unique and presented unique opportunities. However, in each case they have blessed me by praying for and encouraging me as I have pursued doing the will of our Savior. For the past nearly 22 years I have been privileged to serve the good people of the Southside Baptist Church in Sarasota, Florida. These dear people have supported, stood with and honored me as their pastor. No preacher has ever known a better relationship with his people than the one I have enjoyed these past two plus decades.

Across these years God has brought new friends into my life more numerous than I can count. At times these were mentors, encouragers, leaders, peers, etc... These individuals have been lay people, denominational leaders and preachers. They each have been a treasured gift from God to strengthen and counsel me as I attempted to serve.

I would be remiss to not say a word about God's best gift to me, Ruthi. Ruthi has been my friend, my closest counsel and confidant and  my best source of encouragement. Withou exception she has been willing to follow me in my pursuit of God's Will. She has been mother to our children and co-laborer  in our service to churches. She is an excellent Bible teacher, musician and faithful servant of Christ  Her walk with our Savior is exemplary and has always challenged me forward in my own. I would not have reached this point in ministry were it not for Ruthi. A fine Deacon once commented that the church "put up with me" so they could keep Ruthi. I agree.

As I contemplate the past I renew my commitment to invest every ounce of energy given me by our Savior to make a difference for eternity as long as He gives me to serve Him.

Attempting to Connect the Dots...



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