My Pastors

With tomorrow being the last day of Pastor Appreciation Month, this post is about 30 days overdue.  Lately I’ve been thinking about how grateful I am for the many people who pastor me, and those who have pastored me in previous seasons of my life.

So here is my tribute to some of those people that God has currently placed in my life to be my pastors (this list is not comprehensive and the names are not in any particular order):

  • Berry McCready.  Whenever I hear the word “pastor,” Pastor McCready is always the first person who comes to mind.  He is one of the truly great men this world has known.  It was under his ministry that I became a follower of Jesus Christ and heard the call to vocational ministry.  He’s the one who performed our wedding.  Even in his retirement, he’s my pastor.
  • Daryl McCready.  In this case, the apple really doesn’t fall far from the tree!  When Carolyn and I got married, Daryl was my best man.  He has been a true friend, mentor, encourager, and pastor for the past decade.  Except for my wife and my parents, he has probably influenced me more than anyone else.
  • John Coleman.  Like Daryl, John is part of the group of pastors I meet with weekly.  (Bryan Pugner and Kyle McDaniel are also in the group and are also men who I consider my pastors, but I haven’t known them as long and hey–I had to draw the line somewhere!)  Anyway, John is one of the first people I go to whenever I need someone to hear me out and offer some feedback.  He’s been a great encourager.  Other than my wife, I don’t think I have as much fun or laugh as hard as I do when I’m with John and Daryl.
  • Josh & Christi Engle.  I don’t even know where to begin with these two.  Amazing servants of God, completely committed to His church, faithful friends, gifted leaders, role model parents, excellent encouragers….  God has repeatedly used these two to keep me going.  Whenever I’m plagued by doubt or discouragement, they’re still holding to God’s vision for our church.  If every church member was like the Engles, everybody would want to be a pastor.
  • Steve & Linda Doherty.  My in-laws and two of my closest friends.  They’ve been cheering me on for nearly 10 years now.  Steve & Linda have supported and encouraged Carolyn and me in so many ways it’s just unbelievable.  They share their lives with us so generously, and even feed us every week!  And for some reason Steve seems to have an inside connection to God when it comes to praying for me.  To find out what God is going to do in my life, all I need to do is find out how Steve’s been praying for me.  Our little baby who will arrive in about seven months is going to be very blessed to have Steve & Linda, as well as my parents, for grandparents.
  • Merv Stoltzfus.  Good ol’ Merv.  He’s one of those people I can just talk with all day.  And we’ve nearly done that several times!  Merv is a great listener and is one of those honest people who will tell me what I need to hear, not what I want to hear.  Like the others on this list, he has been a great encourager.  Even though I haven’t known Merv for even two years, whenever I’m with him I always feel like we go way back.
  • James Wenger.  James is an absolute treasure.  Our church conference assigned him to me as a mentor, and what a blessing it’s been!  He has so much wisdom and experience that he applies to the situations I’m going through.  His life has been so adventurous they could make a Harrison Ford movie series out of it!  Yet he’s so modest that it’s a long process to unearth all the incredible experiences he’s had.  On numerous occasions, James has driven from Baltimore to Ocean City just to meet with me, then turned around and driven back.  He’s so committed to Christ and His church that he’s only gotten more active in ministry since his retirement!
  • Carolyn Hyde.  Like I said, this list is not in any order.  If it was, my bride of over four years would be at the top.  I would’ve given up long ago if not for her.  She believes in me so much that it makes me uncomfortable!  As encouraging as everyone on this list is, she’s definitely my number-one encourager.  Even as I get to watch God at work in her, she encourages me to let God work in me.  I can never doubt God’s grace, because He has given me so much better than I could ever deserve by letting me be married to Carolyn.  And in about seven months she will become the best mom that ever lived.  I’m so grateful that I get to share my journey through this life with this magnificent, Christlike, loving, faithful, funny, sweet, beautiful woman!

To all of those who God has so generously placed in my life to pastor me: THANK YOU!  I appreciate you with all my heart!!!!

Published in: on October 30, 2008 at 5:52 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. *Wiping tear from eye*

    We love you guys. And your line “She [Carolyn] believes in me so much that it makes me uncomfortable!” made me smile.


  2. Thanks!

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