Refined and Refreshed: A Year Later

It’s been a while. Honestly, it’s been over a year since my last blog post.

For those of you who don’t know (or don’t remember because it’s been a long time), I was the pastor of FaithPoint Community Church for eight years. I planted the church in 2011, and we ended up closing the church in 2019.

I questioned whether or not I had made the right decision. I had wrestled with this decision for six months. As I wrestled with not preaching on a regular basis and no longer being the pastor of a church, I thought that I no longer had anything worth offering. As a result, I quit blogging.

I started working on sending out resumes to churches. As of 2020, I had sent a résumé to eight states. We visited different churches and ended up joining a church that my friend pastors. I missed preaching a lot. I missed leading a church and being able to worship with God’s people. What I did not know at the time is that God needed me to go through a time of refining and being refreshed.

During this time, some other things happened that I am grateful for:

  • I put more effort into streaming. I continued streaming on Twitch and then moved to DLive. I am very pleased with DLive as a platform and I will continue to stream there for as long as possible.
  • I now have two podcasts. The Lionhearted Podcast is on Twitch and DLive. We just streamed our 30th episode. The Lionhearted Podcast is on both platforms, but I hope to be able to stream on DLive exclusively soon.
  • The Coffee With The Pastor Podcast is on DLive only. I use Streamlabs for this podcast and for all other videos except for gaming with my boys.
  • I canceled my paid WordPress site and moved back to a free WordPress site. Since I was no longer blogging, and I was not making a lot of money working part-time, I could no longer afford the domain name and the hosting.
  • I started a ko-fi account for support, and I am also an affiliate for a few companies. I am an affiliate for Gamer Grind Coffee and NoName Nerd.

But things started to change in July 2020, and I would like to share with you how I got to where I am now.

In July 2020, a pastor friend called me and told me that he had run into a friend who told him that their church was currently looking for a pastor. Immediately after that phone call, one of the deacons of that church called me. He scheduled me to preach at their church in September. We met for coffee a couple of times so that we could talk about various church-related topics and get to know each other a bit. I preached in September. I was told that they were also looking at two other men to be their new pastor.

I received another phone call from this deacon informing me that one of the men could not meet their scheduled date to show up and asked if I would be able to take their place. I did. I also preached for the other guy that could not make his scheduled date. That turned into preaching the last Sunday in December.

The day before I was supposed to preach, I received a phone call from my deacon friend. He told me that I needed to be prepared to speak with the pastor search committee after the service.

They were kind enough to allow me about an hour and a half to make sure that I had time to have lunch with my family before going back to the meeting with the pastor search committee.

The meeting took a little over an hour. There were no hard questions. The conversations that I had been having with the deacon over coffee had been discussed with the rest of the pastor search committee. They did ask about my wife and boys. They asked about insurance and asked me if I wanted to have an office. They asked if I wanted to know how much I would be getting paid. They were very kind and they seemed pleased with the answers I gave to the questions.

They decided to vote in front of me. They voted to announce to the congregation that I was their choice for the next pastor. I preached on the following Sunday, January 3, 2021, and this is when they made the announcement to the rest of the church. I preached on the 10th. January 17 was the Sunday they were going to let the church vote for me. Due to what is written in the church’s constitution and bylaws, I was not supposed to be at the church for the vote. So, on that Sunday, we went to my friend’s church.

As my friend was closing the service and going over some announcements, I received the message that I was the new pastor of Unity Baptist Church. I still have that text. I keep it as a reminder that God put me in this new pastoral position.

This church has been a blessing to my family. My boys and my wife look forward to going to church again.

I hope that as I get back into blogging again, that my words will offer you encouragement, insight, or spur you into becoming more like our Redeemer King, Jesus.

Thank you for following me on this journey.

I am blessed that God allows me to call you friends.

Until the next post: Grace and peace.

Photo by rashid khreiss on Unsplash