Ever since I was born, I’ve been going to church. Both my parents were Christians before I was born, which helped a lot in my growth towards Christ. As I stayed in the church, I slowly learned that I was a sinner heading straight for hell, and that Jesus was the only one who could save me. Around the age of 7 I made a profession of faith and was baptized. As I grew, I was a fairly mediocre Christian. I went to youth group, played guitar in the praise band, etc. At the time, our pastor Kenny D’Auria, was the worship leader at our previous church. His mentoring while I was in the praise band tremendously helped me grow more in Christ and in music.
While I was in high school, God turned my heart towards a life of ministry, with a deep and lasting passion that I will act upon to the best of my abilities. It was also during this time that I was first exposed to the doctrines of grace, particularly predestination. I was fairly resistant to it. It was the first time I really had to study the Bible to understand deeper theology, as youth group and Sunday sermons only scratched the surface of what I needed to grow.
After I graduated high school, I went to Thomas Nelson Community College for a year, then transferred to Liberty University for the remaining three years. During my time at college, my parents started listening to preaching by Mark Driscoll and Alistair Begg. By then my eyes were opened to the truth of what Scripture taught; that we are radically depraved, predestined in love, fully atoned for, drawn by the work of regeneration, and kept in Christ until the end. At this point of my life, our old church took a sour turn. The senior pastor passed away due to cancer, and the elder’s restrictions on what teachers taught in Bible study caused me to question my dedication. Long story short, the church reestablished a statement of faith that rejected the doctrine of eternal security, and therefore I could not, under good conscience, submit to our elders or commit to the members of the body. It wasn’t easy since I had grown up in this church most of my life, but I saw the importance of being united in Christ and in doctrine, rather than in a single person or in a feeling of family. Unity in doctrine creates family; not the other way around. This change set things in motion that resulted in the birth of Reformation Christian Fellowship, as Kenny D’Auria, Michael Carpenter, and my dad (Steve N. Simkins) cast our statement of faith and constitution.
I graduated from Liberty University in May of 2013 with a B.S. in Worship and Music Studies with a specialization in Biblical Studies. I gained lots of experience there and learned much more about reformed theology thanks to our church’s podcast and other reformed resources. After graduating college, the staff at RCF hired me as the part time worship leader, where it is my honor to continually serve the body by leading in worship on Sunday mornings. At RCF we strive to have theologically rich songs that profess all of who God is and what He has done for us; these songs usually come from new arrangements of hymns and newly written songs with the focus of depth. It is my passion that the body of Christ would respond to God’s special revelation of Scripture and His general revelation of creation with a worship lifestyle that gives God the glory for every single moment and sings praises to His name!!