The Lord Jesus saved me in September 1981 while beginning my freshman year at the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, in Aero-Astronautical Engineering. I was baptized on November 15th, 1981, in a nearby small lake that still had a layer of ice on top! Before my rebirth, my church experience was Espicopalian. While I learned some important truths, I was never confronted with the Biblical truth of my depraved nature and my need to repent and turn to Jesus. After my rebirth, I attended the independent fundamentalist campus church, a member of which had presented the Gospel to me. After a couple years, I fell away from their fellowship and wandered spiritually during and a few years after college. God drew me to a Southern Baptist church in Hampton Virginia after I began working for the Air Force in communications and computer systems in 1986. I grew in my knowledge and faith of God during those twelve years, married Amanda, began raising our three children, served the church in numerous capacities, and was promoted to various supervisory positions in the Air Force beginning in 1989.
In 1998, I accepted a supervisory position in Ramstein, Germany. God brought us to a new church, new homeschooling group and new people — and our first real exposure to Reformed doctrines and distinctions. It was also an opportunity for me to serve as treasurer and deacon. When we returned to Virginia in 2003, we returned to the same baptist church as well. While I served as treasurer and taught Sunday morning Bible study, I was thirsty for expositional preaching, and I started checking out other sources– Alistair Begg of Parkside Church, Cleveland, Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill Church, Seattle–unbeknownst to me, sources with a Reformed bent–followed by RC Sproul of Ligonier, Matt Chandler of Village Church, Dallas, and John Piper, Bethlehem, Minneapolis. With the death of the senior pastor, several strategic planning efforts tried to address the superficial problems of a church in decline. Because of the church majority support for church leaders who held a doctrinal position contrary to mainline evangelicalism, we knew it was time to leave and find a Reformed church, or start one. Pastor Kenny D’Auria, Elder Mike Carpenter and I in early January 2012 decided to found Reformation Christian Fellowship Church. We addressed the state and federal legal requirements, established a bank account, found several locations to meet, and with many like-minded people, purchased or built the equipment and created processes for a functioning church. We held our first worship service February 5th, 2012, my youngest son’s birthday!
My passions are
- for deep, accurate, passionate preaching and teaching through whole books of God’s Word,
- for conveying the whole gospel,
- for employing organizations, systems and processes within the church that are effective before they are efficient, using information technology to improve both,
- for the Simple Church philosophy of disciple-making, so that the church enables, not burdens, the believer
My favorite verse is Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” God’s awesome sovereignty, power, majesty, justice and holiness is a reminder to me to be still, to revel is who He is.