Frequently Asked Questions of Pastor Terry
1What is your personal testimony?
I went forward at an altar call to receive the Lord just before my ninth birthday. I was raised in Southern California where my family attended a Southern Baptist church. As a young adult I eventually moved to Portland, Oregon where I worked as a police officer. I attended church sporadically as an adult but was never really able to find the peace I was searching for. Even though I would call myself a Christian my lifestyle in no way demonstrated that I had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. While a police officer fulfilling what I thought was the desire of my life, I knew something was missing. One evening while taking a walk around my neighborhood I looked up at a nearly full moon and called out to God to take control of my life. I wasn’t facing any particular problem but I knew there was more to life and God was the answer. Soon after that prayer I rededicated my life to the service of God. I submerged myself in studying the Word of God and began to grow rapidly. Some time later I felt led by the Lord to take a leave of absence from the Portland police department and begin theological studies. I would eventually leave the police department to continue my studies and begin fulfilling the plan God had for my life as a pastor.
2What kind of relationship do you have with your wife and children?
My wife and I have worked together for the last nearly 35 years pioneering and pastoring several churches. My wife is a registered nurse and has been the women’s pastor and the administrative pastor for most of that time. Even though we work together in the church and see each other every day we continue to be best friends. Our children are grown and have children of their own. We enjoy spending time with them and our seven grandchildren. Since they live in California we visit with them as often as we can.
3How has your wife influenced you in your personal and spiritual growth?
My wife has always been an encouragement to me in all I have done. During times of discouragement she would be there to spur me on to finish the race. I don’t know if I would be where I am today if not for my wife.
4What are your areas of strengths?
Areas where I tend to excel include leadership development, vision casting, teaching/preaching, developing people through discipleship training and mentoring, and tenacity as exemplified by refusing to quit before seeing the desired results.
5What are your areas of weakness?
Areas that I would consider weak are areas that take my attention from my primary responsibilities of teaching, leading and discipling the congregation. I am constantly working to improve my time management skills as sometimes the busyness of my schedule interferes with items of higher priority.
6What are your hobbies and interests?
My favorite recreation use to be riding my Harley Davidson motorcycle but I have since hung up the M/C and now ride a quad in the mountains. I enjoy shooting sports and I am active in Cowboy Action Shooting and Cowboy Fast Draw. I enjoy reloading my ammunition and I target practice as often as I am able. I am a firm believer in the 2nd amendment and believe that every free man and woman has a right to protect themselves. I believe that the 2nd amendment protects the 1st and all other amendments. My wife and I also enjoy taking long rides in the car while we listen to audio books on CD. I enjoy reading and playing golf though I don’t get much opportunity to golf. My wife and I enjoy vacationing where we can visit historical and Old West Cowboy locations. And of course I enjoy fishing.
7Describe your personal prayer and devotional life.
I try to keep my prayer life constant and consistent. There are times when I will spend a specific, dedicated amount of time in prayer. During this time I pray as the Holy Spirit leads, seeking His will not only for who to pray for, but how to pray most effectively. Most often I pray in short periods of time, but I pray more often. Smith Wigglesworth who was a man of faith and prayer with many supernatural results said it this way. “I never pray for an hour, but I never go more then an hour without praying.” He learned first hand what the scripture meant when it said pray without ceasing. My pattern for prayer is similar. I am constantly talking to God in prayer. This allows me to try and always hear God’s voice.
8Name some Christian leaders or thinkers, past or present, which have had the most influence on your ministry life.
Leaders who have influenced my life have done so by and through my reading and studies. This is where I have the opportunity to understand who they are and what they really believe. As you read numerous works of an individual, you learn the way they really think. Those who have influenced my life are to numerous to name, so I will list only a few. They include Francis Schaeffer, Norman Geisler, David Noble, Ravi Zacharias, John Maxwell, William Lane Craig and C. S. Lewis and many others who challenge me to think.
9Give the titles and authors of Christian and non-Christian books you have read.
Non-Christian books I have read recently deal with the prevailing world philosophy of today. These books help me understand our past and current culture and where we are headed as a post-Christian nation and how to respond with the Gospel. Some of these books include but are not limited to: Philosophy of Existence by Karl Jaspers, Socrates to Sartre by Samuel Stumpf, How We Think by John Dewey, Pragmatism by William James, Four Views of Salvation in a Pluralistic World by Dennis Okholm/Timothy Phillips and Way to Wisdom by Karl Jaspers. Christian books I have recently read include: Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton, The Case for Christ and The Case for Faith both by Lee Strobel, Deliver Us From Evil by Ravi Zacharias, Why I Am a Christian and When Skeptics Ask both by Norman Geisler, Inside Islam by Reza Safa, What You Need To Know About Islam and Muslims by George Braswell Jr., Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, Mind Seige by Tim LaHaye, The New Tolerance by Josh McDowell and The God Who Is There by Frances Schaeffer. These books, Christian and non-Christian, allow me to have a more rounded view of the world in which we live. Because of this, I am better able to respond to issues and needs of the church and society.
10What books have influenced your views on leadership?
The books listed is a short list of what I consider to be important leadership books which have made a difference in my life and have helped me develop my leadership skills. They include: Spiritual Leadership by J. Oswald Sanders, Why Leaders Can’t Lead by Warren Bennis, Principle-Centered Leadership by Stephen Covey, Leaders-The Strategy of Taking Charge by Warren Bennis/Burt Nanus, Leadership When The Heat’s On by Danny Cox/John Hoover and Developing The Leaders Around You by John Maxwell.
11If there has been a time when you were hurt deeply, please describe. What did you learn from this experience?
There is no pastor alive that has not been hurt deeply by someone (or many) he has pastored. I have learned much by those who have hurt me. One thing I have learned is how to forgive and continue to love the one who hurt you. It’s easy to become hardened to people in general and want little or nothing to do with the congregation. The idea behind this is, I don’t want to leave the ministry, but I don’t want anything to do with people. As a pastor called by God to love His flock, this mindset cannot exist. If you close your heart in fear of getting hurt you also close your heart to finding true loving and honest friends. God heals the hurts and He often does so through new friends.
12What is the order of your priorities regarding your responsibilities to the church and your responsibilities to your wife and children?
I work hard to keep my priorities in appropriate balance. There are those who teach there is an order of priorities to which Christians should adhere. The Bible does not have a list of priorities such as God first, then family, then job followed by church,etc.. If there was a list, every pastor would have a different set of priorities depending upon what was important to him. The Bible teaches that God has given all of us gifts and talents. The apostle Paul tells us in the book of Romans that the gifts and callings of God are without repentance. In other words, it is our responsibility to do what God has called us to do in the church and in our families without neglecting our other responsibilities. We must learn to balance all our responsibilities.
13How did God confirm your call to the ministry? Have you ever deeply doubted this call?
God placed in my heart an overwhelming desire to preach His Word. In obedience, I took a leave of absence from my job as a police officer in Portland, Oregon and began my journey of preparation for ministry. It was during an assembly at school one day that the Lord, in a supernatural way, confirmed my calling into the ministry. Later, I had other Christian leaders and pastors confirm this confirmation.
14Do you hear from God? How does He speak to you?
I hear from God like any other believer would hear. I believe the Lord speaks to me through the still small voice, the inward witness, my conscience and sometimes what seems like a clear audible voice, though this does not happen very often. Most of the time when I hear from God it is through the voice within that I have come to recognize over the years as God’s leading. I have learned how to test what I hear and in many cases wait for conformation. When God speaks to me on a more prophetic note I seem to “know” it is God. Whether it is prophecy or Word of Wisdom or Knowledge it seems clear and precise. After testing the word over the years, it seems to prove itself fairly accurate.
15What are your personal, ministry and family goals over the next ten years?
My personal goals are to continue my religious studies while I continue to develop my pastoral gift and grow in my relationship with God. I must continue to study God’s Word so that I am always being challenged to grow while I draw near to God. My ministry goals are to continue as a senior pastor in a church that wants to grow in their understanding of God, to raise the level of commitment to knowing and loving God. My family goals are to continue to be a good husband to my wife and a loving father and grandfather to my grown children and their children.
16Please describe your preference for continuing education in ministry.
My preference for continuing education is two-fold. The first is continuing my theological studies. Continuing my studies keeps my mind fresh and my heart hungry for God. The longer I pastor, the more I recognize the need to systematically study God’s Word. As I mature as a pastor, I develop new insights on previously studied material. New studies add to what I have learned and give me greater understanding of scripture. My desire is to be the best pastor I can be so that I can lead my congregation to new places with God. One can never stop learning and growing. My second preference is attending specific conferences or seminars which address subjects where I need refreshing or updating.
17Inspiration and Inerrancy of the Bible
I believe that the original manuscripts of the Old and New Testament comprise the full, inerrant and divinely inspired Word and Revelation of God. It is, therefore, our complete authority in doctrine and practice. 2 Tim 3:16-17; 2 Pet 1:21.
I believe in one God eternally existing in three persons - Father, Son and Holy Spirit who have the same nature and attributes, but are distinct in personality and office. Deut 6:4; Jer 10:10; Mt 28:19-20; Mk 12:29; Jn 1:1-4, 10:30; Acts 5:3-4; 2 Cor 13:14; Heb 1:1-8; Rev 1:4-6
19The Person and Work of Jesus Christ
I believe that Jesus Christ is God manifest in the flesh, true God and true man, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. We believe that Jesus Christ lived a sinless life and died upon the cross as a substitutionary sacrifice for all who believe on Him as Savior and Lord. We believe in the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave, His ascension into heaven, and His personal, visible imminent return from heaven. Jn 1:1-3,14; Lk 1:26-38; Rom 3:24-26; 4:45; Phil 2:6-8; 1 Thess 4:13-18; Heb 1:3
I believe in the personality and divinity of the Holy Spirit, who Jesus Christ sent as a comforter to indwell, teach, lead and anoint believers. The Holy Spirit imparts spiritual gifts and was sent to “convict the world of sin, and of all righteousness, a and of judgment.” Mt 28:19; Jn 14:16,17,26; 16:7-11; Acts 5:3,4; 28:25; Rom 8:11,26,27; 1 Cor 2:10,11; 2 Cor 13:14; 2 Cor 3:17; Eph 4:4-6; Heb 9:14; 1 Jn 2:27
I believe in the church, both universally and locally, as the spiritual body of which Jesus Christ is the Head. The local church was established by Jesus Christ who gave some to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. The fivefold ministry is still a vital and necessary part of equipping believers to fulfill God’s plan and purpose in the church today. Eph 1:22,23; 4:11-16; Col 1:18
22Nature and Sinfulness of Man
I believe man was created in the image of God, that in Adam “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” thereby incurring physical and spiritual death (separation from God) and are in need of salvation. Gen 1,27; 2:17; Rom 3:10,23; 5:8,12; 6:23; Eph 2:8,9; Titus 3:5
I believe in salvation by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; that Jesus Christ gave “His life a ransom for many,” and “bore our sins in His own body on the tree”; that if you “confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead you will be saved”. We believe that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through Him. Mt 20:28; Jn 14:6; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Jn 2:1,2; Rom 10:9,10; Jn 1:12; 3:16,36; 5:24; 10:28; 11:25,26; 2 Cor 5:17-21; Eph 2:8,9; Titus 3:4-7
24Sacraments of the Lord
I believe in the sacraments of Water Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. These were established by Jesus Christ to provide a clear understanding so the believer is able to enter into the communion of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ through water baptism. The Lord’s Supper reminds us of what Jesus Christ accomplished for us on the cross. His broken body and His sinless blood would pay the price for the guilty who accept His sacrifice. Every time we receive communion we proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes. Mt 28:19; Act 2:38,41,42; 20:7,11; Rom 6:3-5; 1 Cor 11:23-27; Col 2:11,12
25Gifts of the Holy Spirit, Miracles and Healing
I believe that God continues to perform miracles, signs and wonders through the disciples of Jesus Christ. We believe that it is God’s will for believers to be baptized with the Holy Spirit as experienced by early Christians. We believe that healing was provided in the redemptive work of Christ and is available to every person. Mt 3:11; Mk 16:15-20; Acts 1:4-8; 2:4,14-21,38,39; 8:15-19; 10:44-48; 19:1-6; Ja 5:14,15; 1 Pet 2:24
26Rapture, Second Coming of Christ and the Millennial reign of Christ
I believe in the pre-tribulation rapture of the church and the pre-millennial reign of Christ which follows the second coming of Jesus where He will set up a literal 1,000 year reign on the earth. 1 Thess 4:13-18; Zech 14:16-19; 2 Tim 2:11,12; Rev 5:10, 20:3,6
27Heaven and Hell
I believe in a literal heaven for all born again followers of Jesus Christ who have accepted the substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross and remain steadfast in the faith. We believe in a literal hell, a place of punishment and torment, for all who deny and reject the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. Mt 10:28; 13:36-50; 25:31-46; Jn 3:16-21; 2 Thess 1:7-10; Rev 14:14-20; 20:11-15; 21:1-5
28The inerrancy and purpose of the Scriptures.
Some of the greatest Biblical scholars have strong and differing opinions on the inspiration and inerrancy of the Bible. The three basic points of view would be the liberal, neo-orthodox and fundamentalist. I lean toward the fundamentalist point of view. I believe the Old and New Testament is the inspired, inerrant and infallible Word of God. As God’s Word it is the final authority for the believer on all matters of life and is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness. This would include the social, political and religious arenas. (2 Tim 3:16-17) “16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
29The nature of God and the nature of man.
God is spirit, infinite and self-sufficient. He is omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent. God is eternal and transcendent. He exists beyond time and is not limited or bound by time. God sees the beginning and the end of time as now, because He is not bound by time or subject to it. God knows the future from the present because both are, now, for God. God is transcendent in the sense that He exists apart from and beyond the material universe. God is immanent and present throughout the universe and very much intimately involved in the affairs of mankind. God is everlasting. He is without beginning and ending. At the same time He is intimately involved in the lives of mankind. His mercy and grace are poured out upon the earth in His love. He is righteous, just and forgiving. Man is created in the image of God. Man was created by God to worship and fellowship with God. Because of disobedience, man sinned and fell from God’s grace. Because of man’s sin and fall from grace, he is eternally separated from God. Salvation has been purchased by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ and is available to all who believe on the Name of Jesus Christ as Lord. “9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Rom 10:9-11)
30The relationship between the Believer and God.
The believer’s relationship with God is based on the redemption Jesus purchased on the cross. Sin that separated man from the Father has been washed away and the penalty for sin has been paid in full. This has made the believer a new person in Christ who was reconciled to God as the scripture says, “7 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.” (2 Cor 5:17-20)
31The atonement of Christ.
Because of the sin of Adam (Rom 5:18; 1 Cor 15:22) and our own personal sins (Col 1:21), we are not worthy of a relationship with a God who is holy. Because of this, we are helpless to correct the situation in our own power. Because God is righteous and just, He cannot ignore nor overlook sin but can provide a means of reconciliation. God provided a means of reconciliation in the OT through the Law where two goats were taken with one having hands laid upon the goat imparting the sin of the people and the nation into the goat and then releasing the goat into the wilderness. The other goat was taken and sacrificed on the altar. The blood of the goat was accepted by God as a substitute for the death the sinner deserved. However, in the NT we recognize that Jesus was our substitute who “not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption” (Heb 9:12). Because of His great love for us Jesus gave His life a ransom for many (Mark 10:45). In this God “laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (Isa 53:6; 2 Cor 5:21; Gal 3:13), so that all who believe in Him (Rom 3:22) might be justified and receive forgiveness of sin, atonement, and “be saved from God’s wrath through Him”.
32The security of the Believer.
This question has been debated by theologians for years. Of the two most widely accepted views which address this issue, one leans toward Calvinism and the other toward Arminianism. Calvin, on the one hand, believed you were predetermined to be saved and because you were predestined to be saved there was no chance of losing your salvation. Arminius, on the other hand, believed you could lose your salvation and the believers were encouraged to remain in the saved state. This debate is still raging today and has come no closer to gaining a majority view. Regardless of the continued debate, we do have the assurance of eternal life for everyone who has put their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and continues to live their life accordingly. The apostle John says, “12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:12-13) Basically, a person is born again when they truly accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. The Bible tells us that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. A person who gives their life to Jesus and continues to live for Christ never needs to fear losing their salvation.
33The role of women in the church.
I believe God has called and anointed women in ministry. Even though this is a highly volatile subject in some circles, the Bible is full of examples of God choosing and using women to fulfill His purpose. Throughout history we have seen many examples of women God used to preach the Gospel with outstanding success. Women have proven to be a powerful asset to any ministry.
34The ordination of women.
Scripture does not specifically address this subject. Since the subject is not specifically addressed in scripture and no other scripture forbids the ordination of women, this matter should be left up to the individual view of the church. In this case, the decision should be more of an opinion than a doctrine. I personally believe that God does not exclude women in ministry and ordination as man’s recognition of God’s calling should not be withheld from women with proven and accountable ministries
35The Second Coming of Christ.
The Second Coming of Christ is the return of Jesus to the Mount of Olives at the end of the seven-year tribulation. Here Jesus establishes His reign upon the earth for a thousand years. The Second Coming is separate from the Rapture, wherein Jesus returns in the clouds to receive in the air first those who are dead in Christ then those who are alive and remain. Both will be caught up together in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess 4:13-19).
36The Tribulation period.
This is a period of time that totals seven years directly after the Rapture recorded in Mt 24 and elsewhere which describes the events in the final days before the Second Coming. The seven years are divided by two three and half year periods known as the Tribulation and the Great Tribulation. During this time, God pours out His wrath upon the earth and upon those who continue to openly deny and reject the message of salvation through Jesus Christ. A secondary purpose is to give those who have continued to reject Jesus as Savior one last chance to be saved. Meanwhile the devil through the Antichrist and his false prophet continues to wage war against the children of God who were saved after the Rapture and does what he can to turn the hearts of those who have not made their final decision away from Christ.
37The judgment of unbelievers.
This is the final judgment of those who, in life, rejected the salvation purchased for them by Jesus through His sacrifice on the cross. During their life they had the opportunity to hear the Gospel message but rather than accept the message of hope they, for many reasons, chose to deny the Lord and their name was not found written in the Book of Life. The unbelievers who are not found written in the Book of Life are then judged according to their works, by the things which are written in the books. God judges the actions and deeds of each person based on what they did while in the world. They will see how their works did not and could not buy them their righteousness, nor could they work their way into heaven, nor could they wash away their sin. They will once and for all understand why it is that only through the righteous blood of Jesus can their sin be forgiven. And finally,those whose names are not found written in the Book of Life, “And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Rev 20:11-15), will be cast into the lake of fire.
38The persons of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and their relationship to each other.
The Bible teaches there is only one God, “…And there is no other God besides Me.” (Ish 45:21) “…we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is no other God but one.” (1 Cor 8:4) “…yet for us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and through whom we live.” (1 Cor 8:6), yet this one God is manifest in three Persons. The Christian doctrine teaches there is only one God, with one divine nature and being. This one Divine Being is revealed in three persons, involving the distinctions of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are joint partakers of the same substance, nature and majesty. It is easy to see the unity of the Godhead throughout scripture. In 1 Cor 12:4-6 we can clearly see the unity of the Holy Spirit, Jesus and the Father working within the manifestation of the gifts. “4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.” Throughout scripture we recognize where God speaks the Word, Jesus, with the operation of the Holy Spirit to fulfill the Word. God eternally exists in three persons the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
39Who is Jesus Christ?
Jesus is Christ, the Messiah, God in flesh. Jesus took upon Himself flesh and became man, born of a virgin. He is the Son of God, the second person of the Trinity. The scripture tells us that Jesus Christ is the Word of God made flesh. He is the Life and Light of men (Jn 1:1-4, 14). He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (Jn 1:29). As the second Adam, Jesus was sent by God the Father to be the final authoritative, sacrificial lamb. As the sinless lamb of God Jesus lived, taught and revealed the love of the Father to mankind who was lost and separated from God because of sin. Jesus taught God’s Word, healed the sick and raised the dead. He made it clear He alone is the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Him (Jn14:6). Jesus came to reconcile man back to God, and without Jesus, no man will see God (2 Cor 5:19). Jesus came to take the sin that condemned mankind upon Himself dying on the cross to pay the penalty for sin and redeem mankind (Gal 3:13). As Jesus Himself prophesied He arose from the dead after being dead for three days and three nights following death on the cross as the atonement for man. This paved the way for all who would believe on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved. For the Word of God says, “9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation” (Rom 10:9-10).
40What is your position on divorce?
Divorce has become as commonplace in the Christian community as it has in secular society. The fact that the Christian couple is not always willing to remain married and apply the Word of God in their marriage shows a lack of knowledge and understanding of God’s Word. Sadly, this is an epidemic that has consumed the church. The Bible says that God hates divorce. Divorce is, in most cases, destructive to both parties and the children. It is not God’s best and should be avoided whenever possible. The Bible does not teach that divorce is the unpardonable sin and any Christian who is, or has been, divorced should not remarry or is unqualified for future ministry. I personally do not recommend divorce, except in cases of abuse, and do my best to help couples avoid this option. I have developed a series of teachings on marriage and the family in an attempt to help marriages stay together or become strong and healthy.
41What is your position on homosexuality?
God has chosen to make this issue very clear in His Word. In Romans chapter one, the apostle Paul says, “21…although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.” “24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves…” “26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions…” (Rom 1:21-28). Regardless of how our hearts cry with compassion for those who may be close to us or even family who is living the homosexual lifestyle, the scripture is still clear. It is a sin and an abomination to God. Even though the current philosophical and cultural worldview promotes homosexuality as a legitimate and healthy lifestyle, this behavior is a choice which is the result of the fallen nature of man. All the rhetoric in the world will not change the truth that homosexuality is destructive to the individual, the family and society. Demonstrating the truth, in love, is the only way the person in bondage will ever find deliverance and salvation in Jesus Christ.
42What is your position on the ‘Gifts of the Spirit’ (e.g. tongues, healing, etc.).
There are several points of view on the operation of the gifts in the church today. Most of these views have evolved over the years to believe the gifts are no longer needed after the completion of scripture. This view is not based on scripture but opinion and speculation. Many feel the gifts were used by God to kick-start the church and eventually ceased to exist. This view is known as the cessationist view of the gifts. I personally do not believe there is scriptural support that God planned to cease using the gifts. The scripture teaches that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Heb 13:8) Whether the gifts are practiced and allowed to operate in a local church is up to the leadership and doctrine of that particular church. I personally believe God still uses healing and miracles to confirm His Word.
43What is the church’s responsibility in family traumas, such as child and wife abuse, abortion, homosexuality, sexual immorality, substance abuse, etc.?
The church is there to be a support and guiding light to any trauma that might occur. The church should not hesitate to call the proper authorities when needed to help or report when necessary or required by law. When the church has the proper trained and qualified staff to minister to a family member, we should do so with appropriate confidentiality. People with issues such as abortion, homosexuality, sexual immorality and the like will be ministered to as the need arises.
44How do you view the role of the Board of Directors in the church
Depending upon how the board of directors is set up within the church, it is usually done so with the purpose to help administer the business affairs of the church. These are usually men and/or women who have business experience and are able to give wise and sound advise in the business and financial realm. I believe the board of directors can be a strong asset to the church.
45What are your views on a woman in ministry leadership positions in the church
I believe God has called and anointed women in ministry. Even though this is a highly volatile subject in some circles, the Bible is full of examples of God choosing and using women to fulfill His purpose. The scriptures used to limit the ministry of women are most often taken out of context. Women are a blessing and a powerful asset to any ministry and should be involved in ministry.
46What do you believe and practice regarding the ministry of healing?
I believe God still heals the sick today as Jesus demonstrated during His earthly ministry. Proper instruction prepares believers in how to minister to the sick while at the same time teaching the sick how to believe God for their healing. Teaching and developing believers who desire to learn how to pray for the sick is an important need within the church.
47How do you relate to those within your church who have a different view of spiritual gifts?
I do not believe a person must believe the way I do about spiritual gifts. A person must make their own decision on how they will respond to the charismatic gifts. Over time, and with proper teaching, many of those who were originally concerned about the gifts or rejected them will become more comfortable, and in many cases, begin to flow in the gifts.
48What is your view on the “spiritual warfare” movement? What is your view on corporate prayer and intercession?
I believe spiritual warfare is a valid, biblical subject. It is a subject that is not well understood and most often taught incorrectly. With proper teaching and practical application it can accomplish dynamic results that benefit the body of Christ. I believe corporate prayer and intercession are strong tools causing unity in the body of Christ. When the body of Christ pray together much can be accomplished.
49What are your views on demonic activity in the lives of believers and nonbelievers? What should the church do to minister to these needs?
Jesus told the disciples to cast out demons. Being knowledgeable and available to deliver the demonized is the responsibility of every believer. The church should teach the believer what, when, how and where to minister to a person with demonic problems. There are those who feel a special call to this ministry and will spend more time learning and preparing for the deliverance ministry.
50Was Christ’s death on the cross absolutely necessary? Why or why not?
Yes, without a doubt. The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus is the core of Christianity. Jesus came to pay the price for the sin of man - the guiltless for the guilty, the sinless for the sinful. Without the atonement, there would be no redemption for mankind. The death, burial and resurrection is absolute.
51What does Christ’s resurrection mean for us?
The resurrection of Jesus from the dead revealed that Jesus conquered death and the grave. Death has no power over Him because their was no sin in Him. Scripture tells us that, as we were buried with Christ through baptism into death, we were also raised with Him into everlasting life. As believers, we have eternal life with Christ because of His victory over death, hell and the grave.
52Give a biblical view of baptism and explain its purpose.
We are baptized in obedience to Christ’s command. When we are baptized we are acknowledging the death of our fallen sin nature, what Paul calls the old man. This action, by faith, represents our understanding of our death with Christ on the cross. Paul says we were buried with Him through baptism into death and raised with Him to life.
53How does a person become a Christian? What is your view on once saved always saved?
A person is born again when they accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. The Bible tells us that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. A person who gives their life to Jesus and continues to live for Christ never needs to fear losing their salvation.
54What should be your involvement in church oversight (services, departments, committees, staff, facilities, etc.)?
Proper church administration is important in order to have an effective and smooth operation. The different teams working together allow and enable the church to grow in a healthy manner. It produces strong leaders and strong ministries. Departments and committees should have appropriate leadership in place and meet with the pastor or selected committee when necessary to report. Staff and other permanent ministers will meet regularly to advise of the status of current projects.
55What is your view of the church government (elders, line of authority, congregational government, and so on)?
Biblical church government is necessary and, when properly administered, very effective. Scriptural church government allows and enables the church to grow in a healthy manner. It produces strong leaders and strong ministries. The most effective church government is the style of church government practiced by the apostles in the book of Acts. This style is known as elder leadership, with the pastor recognized as the senior elder and visionary of the church.
56How do you view the role of elder(s) in the church? Describe the relationship between the senior pastor and the elders. What scriptural passages support this view? How would you deal with conflict with an Elder?
The role of elders is very important for the spiritual oversight of the church. The elders, along with the pastor who by position is the senior elder, work together as a team to spiritually oversee and guide the ministry of the church. We first see the appointment of elders in the church in Acts 14:23 where Paul and Barnabas appoint elders to continue pastoring the local church. We also see the gathering of apostles and elders in Jerusalem to discuss an important issue. After the discussion is complete James, the senior elder and pastor of the church in Jerusalem, stood up and made a decision based on the discussion by the apostles and elders and his interpretation of the scripture. This is the example and guideline used today by those who follow the elder principle. If there is a conflict between an elder and myself, I would attempt to work out the difficulty between us. If this did not work, I would invite the other elders into the discussion and have them help determine the correct solution. If the conflict did not involve me personally, I would try to work with the elder to solve the problem. If I could not resolve the issue, I would ask the elders to intervene.
57What are the motives and methods for church discipline? Whose responsibility is church discipline?
Church discipline is sometimes necessary. Jesus and Paul both give instruction on how to accomplish this in a way that will correct the problem and hopefully, bring the violator back into right-standing with Christ. In Matthew, Jesus tells us to first speak to the individual alone. If that does not work, then take two or more to discuss the issue. If that still brings no solution, the church is to be informed. Rarely is the last action necessary. But, if it is, it must be done delicately and with care. Paul in 1 Corinthians 5 tells us there are times when the unrepentant believer must be removed from the church in the hope they will repent and return to Christ. We must always remember the goal is to see the person repent and brought back into right-standing with Christ. Church discipline should be administered by the spiritual authorities in the church. This would include the elders and pastor.
58What should a Christian Education program look like?
Strong children, youth and adult ministries are vital for the health of the church. If children enjoy attending church, while at the same time learning God’s Word, they will more likely remain steadfast in their Christian faith when they are older. It is the responsibility of the leadership to prepare and present the Gospel with excitement, yet without compromise. The purpose of the Christian Education program is to disciple the believer to know, understand and live out God’s plan and purpose in your life while developing a close intimate relationship with our Lord and Savior.
59What kinds of support should be given to the Sunday School and other teachers in the Christian Education Department?
The education department should be given all the support needed in order to accomplish the goal of teaching the believer and equipping them to fulfill God’s purpose for their life. This would include, but not be limited to, financial support in obtaining curriculum, supplies and for training seminars; continuing education as needed to develop teaching skills; and leadership training to help department heads train their staff and solicit volunteers.
60Please describe your preference for adult education opportunities.
Adult education classes should cover two areas, vertical and horizontal. The vertical area addresses the believer’s relationship with and knowledge of God. Here, the individual believer develops and matures as a disciple of Christ, learning about God and how they, as a new creature in Christ, can relate to God. From this knowledge and understanding of God the believer is able to grow in an intimate relationship with God. The horizontal area incorporates instruction on how to fulfill God’s plan and purpose in the believer’s life. During this segment, believers are trained and equipped to successfully manage and overcome the everyday issues of life. Subjects included in adult education would be marriage and the family, overcoming fear, stress and worry, basically the how to’s of life taught in the Bible. Adult education classes should teach the believer how to apply God’s Word and live a victorious life. Classes would change throughout the year in order to incorporate the different subjects desired and needed by the church community. Our philosophy of ministry is to equip the saints for the work of the ministry (Eph 4:12), and to prepare the believers to “always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you…” 1 Pet 3:15
61What leadership style do you have? Are you casual, autocratic, consensus based, micromanage, etc?
My leadership style varies depending upon the personality of the individual leader or group with which I am working and their maturity, capability and commitment. The leadership styles I use most frequently are Visionary: With the visionary leadership approach, I communicate the mission,vision and general strategy to the group or individual leader who demonstrate a high degree of maturity, capability and commitment. I delegate authority to the group or leader, allowing them to determine an appropriate course of action. I will periodically review the mission or vision with the group or leader to keep them on track and focused. After discussing the vision and goals with the group or leader, they decide how best to implement the plans within the vision I have presented. Participative: This style of leadership allows me to delegate responsibility and authority in decision making to other team members. With this approach I explain the problem or objective and then define the boundaries within which the group may decide. When I use this style of leadership, regular reporting by the team member is used to assist them in maintaining their focus. The team member’s maturity, capability and commitment will determine how often reporting will occur. Hands-off: I use this approach on the occasion where failure will not cause serious problems for the individual or the church, or when failure will make the individual more willing to accept correction and instruction. When using this approach I allow the leader or group to determine the plan or task without direct oversight or reporting. This style is best used when the person or group displays a high level of maturity, capability and commitment and has a proven record of success and completion. This style works best when I am confident in the leader or group’s ability to make right decisions.
62How do you get the most out of the people under you?
I have found that people are most effective when you help them to achieve success. When they know you are interested in what’s going on in their life and ministry, they are willing to give a greater effort for the whole team. People want and need to feel wanted, needed and appreciated. When we acknowledge and recognize their abilities, talents and efforts, they enjoy being a part of the team. Then when they have consistently done a good job, we recognize and reward their efforts. This can be done by publicly acknowledging their achievements or other forms of special recognition.
63How do you manage full-time staff and part-time individuals working in the church?
If you attempt to lead everyone in the same manner, you will disenfranchise one or more in the process. I believe in helping volunteers, leaders and staff to recognize and develop their God-given purpose and then release them to fulfill that purpose. The following is my personal life vision. It will help you understand my purpose in life. My vision is “to devote my life to help people discover and develop their gifts, talents, and abilities, enabling them to live their purpose and fulfill their destiny by impacting and transforming those they influence with the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ”. My reward as a pastor comes when I see people released to do what God has called them to do and they do it with success. I want to see leaders equipped and trained to the place where I can delegate responsibilities and then merely oversee their efforts. I have an open door policy for leadership where they know I am available for them if there is a need, question or problem they wish to discuss. When the leaders and staff succeed, we all succeed.
64What is the relationship of the senior pastor to the Elder Board?
The elders, along with the pastor work together as a team to spiritually oversee and guide the ministry of the church. The pastor is scripturally the senior or chief elder among the elders. According to Acts 15:6 we see the apostles and elders gathered in Jerusalem to discuss a doctrinal issue. After the discussion is complete James, chief elder and pastor of the church in Jerusalem, stood up and made the final decision based on the discussion by the apostles and elders and his interpretation of the scripture. This is the example and guideline used today by those who follow the elder principle.
65What is the role of an Elder within the church?
The role of elders is very important for the spiritual oversight of the church. The elders, along with the pastor who by position is the chief elder, work together as a team to spiritually oversee, shepherd and guide the ministry of the church. We first see the appointment of elders in the church in Acts 14:23 where Paul and Barnabas appoint elders to continue pastoring the local church. Elders are a vital part of successfully shepherding the church. They are involved in teaching, overseeing departments, discussing doctrine and sharing the vision with the people.
66In what ways can leaders best communicate their vision for the church?
Through the spoken word by the pastor and demonstrated by the words and actions of the leaders. The pastor must be the visionary of the church, casting the vision for the whole church so the people have a clear understanding. This vision, contrary to popular belief, takes time to recognize and develop. The development and the implementation of the vision is best accomplished by the leaders of the church working together to recognize the goals and heart of the church.
67What does worship mean?
Worship is a vital key in leading people to the throne of God. Contemporary and traditional forms of worship are both valuable and beneficial. Traditional worship, such as hymns, remind us of our hallowed past and allow us to stay connected to our spiritual roots, while contemporary praise and worship allows us to enter into a fresh breath of God’s Spirit. Worship allows the believer to focus on God and helps them prepare to receive from God’s Word. Worship paves the way to receive God’s Word with an open heart. Worship was so important to God He created an angel by the name of Lucifer with musical instruments created into his body. Lucifer was the anointed cherub that covered God’s holy throne in heaven with heavenly worship. He led the heavenly choir in worshipping God until the day iniquity was found in him and he rebelled against God and was kicked out of heaven forever. This same Lucifer has taken his musical talents and perverted and corrupted them and now uses them to corrupt music that was once holy to God.
68Overall what style of a worship service do you prefer?
I enjoy both contemporary and traditional forms of worship. Both styles are valuable and beneficial to leading people to the throne of God. Traditional worship, such as hymns, remind us of our hallowed past and allows us to stay connected to our spiritual roots while contemporary praise and worship allows us to enter into a fresh breath of God’s Spirit.
69What style of worship music do you like?
My personal preference is traditional hymns and contemporary praise and worship. They both move my heart to worship and honor God.
70Describe the content of a worship service (music, prayer, preaching, etc
A basic format would be to begin service with praise and worship that encourages the believer to focus on and draw intimately toward God. This allows the Holy Spirit freedom to minister to the congregation in whatever way He wills. After worship we often move into having our healing team pray for the sick and minister to the needs of the congregation. We do this at this time because of the heightened presence of the Holy Spirit during and directly after worship. After ministering to those who desired ministry, We begin to teach and preach the Word of God. At the end of service we give an altar call for those seeking to receive Jesus Christ as Savior. Before closing, we receive tithes and offerings.
71What is your belief regarding exuberant forms of worship (dancing, spontaneous and/or rehearsed, banners and/or flag waving, etc.) in church services?
This can be a challenging area to address. When we accept or reject something altogether, it doesn’t allow for the free movement of the Holy Spirit. Problems are often avoided when there is mature oversight so that order and balance are maintained. There is some behavior and activity that is not appropriate at any time. Otherwise, acceptance of different forms of ministry are based on what the leadership and congregation are comfortable with. Proper, mature oversight helps prevent overzealous and fleshly behavior from disrupting the service. Each situation would have to be judge on an individual basis.
72How often do you think a church should celebrate a communion service and what is your preferred method?
How often is basically left up to the individual church and their tradition. The Bible does not specify how often communion must be taken, only that it should continue until the Lord’s return. I personally serve communion once a month. My current method has been to have the ushers come to the front of the sanctuary where my wife and I hand them the trays after I have taught and prayed over the communion elements. They hand out the elements and we receive them together. This by no means is written in stone
73What style of preaching do you enjoy the most?
My teaching style uses topical and expository with narrative as it fits the message of the sermon. The subject matter and text will determine which style is used. When teaching a series such as marriage or family, I will tend to use a more topical application. If teaching through a chapter or book of the Bible, I will do more expository teaching. I enjoy using PowerPoint presentations to help the congregation follow along and keep focused on the subject. Drama and video is used to help make the message clear. I strongly believe the spoken Word is the most effective way to plant the seed of God’s Word in the heart of the believer. I often interact with the congregation in order to help them think outside the box and recognize how the sermon is applicable to their everyday lives.
74What balance do you strike between application and instruction in a sermon?
Good instruction allows the meaning of a biblical passage to become clear to the student of the Word. This instruction allows God to make clear how the scripture can best be applied. A preacher who knows how and when to use good application can make unclear passages in scripture come alive. People want to know how to apply the Bible in today’s world. The Bible is living and can be applied in our lives to give us guidance. I try to use both instruction and application when teaching.
75How would you rate yourself as a communicator on Sunday morning sermons?
I enjoy the opportunity I have to relate with the congregation during the sermon. My passion is to make sure people can clearly understand the message and know how it applies in their everyday life. My teaching style is relaxed, often using Powerpoint to help keep the congregation following along. I would consider my style to be more of a teacher/preacher.
76How do you know when a congregation is experiencing true worship?
When the congregation has entered into the presence of God we sense a holy peace and joy that only God can provide. The people are focused on worship and nothing else seems to matter. Entering into that place of worship is more of a personal journey and can be experienced even when others are not there with you. The heart of the individual is open and ready to receive the Word of God.
77What should the members of the congregation experience on Sunday mornings?
Whenever the congregation gathers together to worship on Sunday or any day, they should experience an intimacy with God - a time when they come face to face with God’s holy presence. It is vitally important that their hearts are open to receive teaching from the Word of God with a willingness to live the Christian life. They should want to return, not because they are being entertained, but because they realize their need and love for Christ.
78What should a church look for in a pastor?
A church who is seeking a pastor or people who are looking for a church to attend often wonder who is the right pastor. This is a heavy responsibility which will have an affect on their life and the life of their family for many years to come. Often a church with a new pastor hopes the pastor will be able to fit into the vision the church has already created without realizing that every pastor has been given a vision from God that fits their personality, character, temperament and calling. It is important for the church to discover the heart and vision of the pastor to determine whether that vision will fit with the direction of the church. The vision of the church does not have to match perfectly but must be compatible with the vision of the pastor. My vision is “to devote my life to help people discover and develop their gifts, talents, and abilities enabling them to live their purpose and fulfill their destiny by impacting and transforming those they influence with the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ”. My desire is to teach the uncompromising Word of God and prepare believers to fulfill their God-given destiny. Without realizing it, Christians have been increasingly adopting spiritual views that come from eastern religions and other worldly philosophies. Because we remain a largely Bible illiterate society, few are alarmed or even aware of the slide toward syncretism. We must prepare our congregations and the congregations of the future to recognize and know the True Gospel and settle for nothing less.
79What are your views on church growth and church planting?
Both are beneficial and depends upon the vision and resources of the church, the qualifications and availability of the leadership willing to be involved in a new church start. My first preference is to grow the church large enough and healthy enough to have a strong, positive influence in the community. A larger church, because of manpower and finances, can accomplish an enormous amount of good for the kingdom of God. However, because there are leaders who have a call to pastor, these future pastors should be encouraged to fulfill God’s purpose in their life. This would require them to be prepared, equipped and released to either pioneer a church or plant an off-shoot from the larger church. Developing future pastors and leaders and helping them plant new healthy churches should be the responsibility of the larger church. Providing direction, finances and temporary oversight will help build the kingdom of God and not man’s kingdom.
80What criteria do you tend to use to evaluate success in ministry?
Success is obedience to God’s purpose for your life. Pastors and churches have a tendency to judge success by numbers in attendance and finances. Because of this, we have plenty of large churches filled with content people who do not know Jesus as Savior nor do they realize they are following a polluted worldly philosophy that has been dressed up to look like the Gospel. Numbers are important when they truly represent people who are being discipled, equipped and released to do the work of the ministry.
81In outreach and missions, what is the correct balance between meeting physical and spiritual needs?
Meeting a physical need is often the doorway which allows you to meet the spiritual need, that of presenting the Truth of Jesus Christ. While the physical need is often easier and more visible, the spiritual need is eternal and more important. A good balance is to do one without neglecting the other; looking for unique opportunities to share the love of God in a practical way while sharing the Gospel.
82What is your favorite Bible translation? Why?
My preferred version is the New King James Version. The New King James keeps the strength of the original wording of the King James while making difficult passages easier to understand by replacing old English with today’s modern English. My second choice is the New Living Translation.
83On what social and moral issues do you feel the church should take a stand and how is this properly expressed?
Every moral issue is important to the church. Traditional, family values are constantly under attack with a culture war raging. To say one issue is more important and the church should respond to this alone would be inappropriate and wrong. The church should be made aware of, and kept abreast of, the social and moral issues of the day. It is then that we allow the Holy Spirit to move upon our hearts as individual believers, encouraging us to respond as God leads us.
84What is the place of the small group in the life of the church? What is the ideal structure and content of a small group?
Small groups have become very popular and effective in ministering to the needs of the people. These groups are an important part of the ministry, especially in preparing leaders and developing individual gifts in the attenders. Small groups allow for more intimate relationships to be developed, assist in shepherding the flock and create an atmosphere for people to build lasting relationships. The structure of the group will depend upon the vision of the church for small groups and the character of the community. Content may be determined by the make-up of the group, such as singles, seniors, or other homogeneous groups where the content is established by a specific purpose for that group. Small home groups have become a vital part of many of today’s churches.
85What emphasis should the church have with youth and children?
Strong youth and children’s ministries are vital for the health of the church. If children enjoy attending church, while at the same time learning God’s Word, they will be more likely to remain faithful to God when they are older. It is the responsibility of the leadership to prepare and present the Gospel with excitement, yet without compromise. Special preparation for youth must be incorporated into their biblical instruction with the purpose of preparing them to remain faithful and strong to their faith while they attend secular college.
86What is your view on unusual spiritual manifestations?
This is another area that is difficult to be dogmatic. I have seen things that I believe were not of God and needed to be dealt with, while on the other hand, I have seen God move in unique ways with supernatural results. We should remember just because there are manifestations we are unfamiliar with or uncomfortable seeing does not always make them unscriptural or demonic.
87What is the purpose of gathering together for a church service?
The Bible tells us to not forsake gathering together. The apostle Paul makes it clear that Jesus established the church, not man. According to Christ the church is where the apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher equip the saints for the work of the ministry. The church is a place where the lost can hear and see a practical and living demonstration of the Gospel. It is also where Christians are discipled, their gifts developed, and their calling recognized and proven. The church is a place where believers, as a family, come together to worship God and love one another.
88Do you believe in the five-fold ministry? How should it function in the church?
Absolutely, the five-fold ministry is the plan of God explained clearly in Ephesians chapter four. When the five-fold ministry is operating within the local church, the congregation receives from each of the gifts. Each of the five-fold ministry gifts have a special anointing to impart. When the pastor ministers the Word of God, he imparts from his unique anointing to the body of Christ. When the evangelist or prophet preaches, they impart their unique anointing. It is beneficial when the five-fold ministry is able to work together within the church.
89How would you bring correction in a service to a prophecy that does not match the Word of God?
If the word is obviously incorrect, it must be responded to. A soft answer explaining the error can correct the mistake and yet not destroy the person who is trying to be obedient to God. If the prophecy comes from someone who is condemning or out of line, the correction may need to be more severe and public.
90How would you address a guest speaker if they taught something contrary to scripture?
It is understood that a guest speaker may not believe everything the host pastor or church believes. This is normal and not necessarily a reason to respond. Hopefully the congregation is being taught how to judge the Word for themselves and will recognize an opinion that is different. If there is a major issue such as rejecting salvation by grace, a response would be warranted. First, I would clarify what was said, making sure it wasn’t simply misunderstood. Then I would respond by stating what we believe on the matter. Thankfully, in all my years of pastoring this has not happened.
91Who should maintain order in a service?
The pastor is the person responsible for the service. If the service is out of order, he alone should respond. If someone else, such as an elder, believes there is a problem that person should go to the pastor and discuss it, with the final decision being made by the pastor. If the pastor is involved in the service and there is a problem the leaders should take the initiative and handle the problem.
92What do you feel are your spiritual gifts? How have they been affirmed and confirmed?
The gifts of the Spirit I have most often seen operate in my ministry is the word of wisdom, word of knowledge, discernment and prophecy. Other gifts such as faith and gifts of healings have flowed on occasion. These have been affirmed and confirmed through many years of ministry where people have acknowledged how the operation of the gifts made a difference in their life.
93What do you like most about the ministry? Least?
I like the personal touch, whether it’s teaching God’s Word or mentoring people who are hungry for a deeper intimacy with Jesus. I enjoy being with people who love worshiping God. I really enjoy studying God’s Word whether it’s for sermon preparation or personal, spiritual development. I don’t enjoy strife and conflict or having to correct or rebuke a fellow believer who refuses to live as they know they should. I least like being in ministry when I see people continue to make wrong choices even after they have had good, godly counsel. The bad goes with the good, but the good outweighs the bad.
94How would you describe your temperament? Your social style? How do you use this “style” to build teamwork?
If you are familiar with the four categories called choleric, sanguine, phlegmatic, melancholy, I am choleric with a second being sanguine. The choleric is an assertive, natural leader who is internally motivated and driven. The sanguine is a people-person with a spirited personality. The two personality traits together make for a good leader. This personality enables me to be able to lead with a friendly, yet assertive attitude. I don’t easily get angry, yet neither do I allow leaders to fall behind in their responsibilities.
95What is your personal practice in regard to tithing? What is your view of tithes and offerings in the local church?
I believe tithing is scriptural and should be practiced by every believer. My wife and I are committed to tithing and giving offerings. I preach on tithing once a year in a stewardship series and more, if necessary. During offerings I teach a short thought on tithing or giving to build faith for giving and to encourage the believers to be faithful in their tithes and offerings.
96What experience have you had with conflict in the church?
Over the years I have had my share of conflict. Earlier in my career I did not handle it as well as I should have. Over time, I have grown in wisdom through many years of experience. I have learned to wait on the Lord and allow Him to counsel through the Holy Spirit before I become involved. More recently, I rarely seem to have much conflict. I am not sure if it is that I have more wisdom and do not respond the way I used to therefore neutralizing the possible problem. Another answer for less conflict in my life and the church could be that what at one time seemed urgent does not seem as urgent today.
97When you find yourself in conflict with someone, should reconciliation be sought? What is the best method for reconciliation?
Reconciliation is always the best result, when possible. Sometimes that can only come with time and healing. Some people live to cause problems and regardless of what you do, they will remain contrary to you and the situation. The only thing you can do is forgive them and go on. Hopefully, over time, they will realize the error of their way and return with a humble heart. When that happens, respond properly to their appeal and love them as Christ would. Asking forgiveness and humbling oneself is the quickest and most godly way to begin the process of reconciliation. If this fails, give it to God and move on. Do not allow their unforgiveness and unwillingness to obey God hinder you from moving forward with God.
98Do you feel you should be accountable? If so, to whom and why?
Personally, I submit to certain people close to me whom I have come to trust over the years. They are peers who understand the difficulties of being a pastor. I keep in contact with them and fellowship whenever we can. When times of need arise, I contact them and we either talk on the phone or see each other in person. Secondarily, I willingly and voluntarily submit to my elders. This is a spiritual submission so as to have them cover me with prayer and Christian oversight. Over time, close friendships among the leadership in the church will be developed as a level of trust is developed.
99Have you personally mentored/discipled anyone?
Yes, mentoring is very important to me and has been a very positive experience. I have mentored many men over the years who have matured to be strong, godly leaders. I have developed a mentor program where I purposely disciple and mentor a limited number of people at a time. This is a year long process which continues long after the initial discipleship process ends. Through this mentor program I have seen maturity develop in the lives of those who seriously accept their responsibility as a believer. With one-on-one time and with such openness, there is a life changing effect that takes place.
100Define a healthy church.
In order to have a healthy church, it is necessary to disciple believers and develop mature leaders who work as a team to fulfill the vision of the church. A healthy church will have a strong foundation where the people have a firm knowledge of, and passion toward God. A healthy church will reach out with love to those around them with the eternal message of Jesus Christ.
101Define revival. Define a move of God.
A revival is the reviving or refreshing of believers who, over time, have become weary with a loss of zeal for God. A move of God is when God moves in a sovereign way and pours out His Spirit on a people to bless and renew their zeal and hunger for Him. A church should zealously pursue an intimate, passion for God. As they draw near to God, He will draw near to them. He will pour out His Spirit on those who worship Him in Truth.
102The role of vision in ministry is a high priority. Briefly describe your ministry vision. How do you best communicate that vision to the congregation?
My vision is to build a church with a strong foundation where people have a firm knowledge of, and passion toward God. This includes discipling believers and developing mature leaders who work as a team to fulfill the vision of the church. My personal vision is, “To devote my life to help people discover and develop their gifts, talents, and abilities enabling them to live their purpose and fulfill their destiny by impacting and transforming those they influence with the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.” Frequently communicating the vision to the congregation develops faith in individual believers to “link up” with the vision of the pastor and the church.
103How do you prepare your congregation for change and help them during the process of making changes?
I believe that change is exciting and refreshing for everyone involved. When a change is needed, I make sure I have the leaders behind it and behind me with all their heart. Then the leaders and I impart the benefits of this new and exciting change. People are more willing to change than we give them credit for as long, as they see the necessity.
104How do you experience “rest”, and what value is it to your ministry?
Rest is very important. I do not believe a pastor can operate successfully trying to pastor 8 to 5 Monday through Friday. It is important to take the necessary time off whenever needed throughout the year in order to stay fresh and creative with ministry and ideas. It is also important for the leaders to know how to rest. It is also valuable for the pastor to get away to rest and relax with the elder/leaders and their spouses. This allows for relationships to mature and intimacy to develop. The team is much more able to work together when they rest and play together.
105Please describe lay participation in church services.
Lay ministry is vital to the operation of the service. Lay ministry involvement includes leading worship which incorporates a vocal team, musicians and sound technicians; ushers who oversee the smooth operation of the service; altar workers which include our prayer team; and our hospitality team which coordinates refreshments to help create an atmosphere for fellowship at the end of the service. Additionally, our lay ministry is responsible for our Christian education department which includes children’s and adult Sunday school classes.
106What does family ministry mean to you?
Family ministry is a part of the basic philosophy of the church. It is interwoven throughout the whole of the church. As a church with a family focus, our ministries are dedicated to every area of the family. From children’s Sunday school to the adult discipleship training, our Christian education considers the entire family. Specific support is given to individual families where needed.
107Please describe the role of church fellowship.
Jesus was our example in how fellowship impacted those around Him. He ate with His disciples and those who were not yet following Him. In Acts, the apostles went from house to house fellowshipping and breaking bread with one another. Fellowship in the life of the church is the initial “glue” in forming relationships. This is vital because relationships are at the heart of building a sense of “family” and “belonging” in a church. When people feel a sense of family, they know they have support in time of need.
108Caring for each other means?
Caring for each other is allowing God’s love to influence how you respond and relate to others. It’s doing what you can to make others feel wanted, welcome and needed. Caring for others means putting aside your issues and prejudices so others can feel accepted. Caring for others is something you do deliberately because of God’s love that flows through you.