October is Pastor Appreciation Month: Pastor's I Appreciate
The Pastors Who Have Made a Difference in My Life
This hub is not to glorify pastor's but to give thanks and appreciation for their service. These particular pastors have made a difference in my life. Some of the pastors I mention in this hub are prominent preachers in America today. But the pastors who have had the most impact on my life are not famous. Just loyal and faithful servants who have impacted my life on a more personal level. So I begin with them.
All have made a contribution to my faith and have helped me understand the Bible better, and how to live the abundant Christian life. I offer my deepest appreciation and gratitude.
Dr. Charles Wahlstrom - Pastor Chuck
Chuck Wahlstrom is the senior pastor of Oberlin Congregational Church in Steilacoom, WA. Pastor Chuck Wahlstrom is a very dear pastor of mine. I should probably call him a former pastor because he is no longer the pastor of my church; however as I always tell him, he will always be "my pastor." I met Pastor Chuck and his wife Jan in 1995. He'd been at the pulpit one year at our little country church of 100 people. He'd been a senior pastor for a few years previously in the Midwest. Though thirty-something when he began as pastor of our church, I felt he had an old soul. I don't think he'd like to hear the word "old," but it's meant in a complimentary way. He was very wise beyond his years and still is. Pastor Chuck's messages and style of preaching were different than what I was used to, but I must say, very insightful and challenging. Still more, they were a refreshing change.
When I do have the opportunity to visit his newest church and hear him speak or listen to one of his online sermons, it is like being sent back in a time capsule. Well grounded in the Scriptures and able to challenge us to live in a manner worthy of the calling of God, Pastor Chuck's unique style can make me feel like I am hearing a message from the Bible in a way I've never heard it before. One of Pastor Chuck's greatest gifts as a minister is his ability to match up people with their spiritual gifts. He often challenged us to find our spiritual gifts and if we didn't know what to do with our gifts he provided lots of direction. He was truly an equipper of the saints. And lastly, both he and his wife Jan are great encourager's. They both saw my gifts and strengths and challenged and encouraged me to use them for God's glory. Even more wonderful is that they encouraged and challenged me to allow God to work on my weaknesses so that I might help others with the similar issues.
I thank God for the gifts he's given Pastor Chuck and how God has used him in my life.
I want to publicly express my deep gratitude to Pastor Chuck and Jan for walking me through some of the darkest seasons of my life with unwavering love and compassion. You have gone so far beyond what most would expect from a pastor. I love you both from the bottom of my heart.
Do you pray for your pastor?
Pastor Dale King
Pastor Dale is my current pastor. He is pastor of Calvary Fellowship of Gig Harbor, WA. I began attending this church about 6 months ago and I chose it because I had the appreciation of pastor Dale's expository preaching and love for people. More, he practices what he preaches.
Pastor Dale has a living testimony. His priority is God, family, and church, in that order. It shows. I first crossed paths with Pastor Dale several years ago when a friend suggested his midweek Bible study. I was looking for something near my work and so for a year or so I attended. Immediately I saw his gift for his in-depth teaching of the word. He is a book by book, verse by verse Bible expositor offering practical ways to live the Christian life by what he teaches. Pastor Dale extends an invitation each week for people to invite Christ into their life. He challenges us, exhorts us to live faithfully unto Christ.
What I appreciate most about Pastor Dale is how much he loves his family. He honors and loves his wife, who sings his praises all the time (she calls him her honey) and his children are a testimony to the love and example he gives them.
Pastor Dale reaches out with compassion to us all and gives us every encouragement and opportunity to serve the Lord. I thank God for his ministry and appreciate his role as a pastor in my life.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Charles H. Spurgeon (1834-1892) was the senior pastor of Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, England. Spurgeon has been known over time as the Prince of Preachers. At age 20 young Charles began his ministry as pastor of the nearly defunct New Park Chapel, a church in London, England that held 1200 people. On his first visit to New Park, Spurgeon spoke to a congregation of 200 people. Though young, he was a bold and powerful preacher. God's anointing remained on him through the rest of his years on earth. Within three months of the start of his pastorate at New Park Street Chapel, Spurgeon's name and fame spread like wildfire through the press and around London. Eventually, Charles Spurgeon's popularity grew so much that Metropolitan Tabernacle was filled weekly with 5,500 people, with standing room for a thousand more.
Spurgeon is on my top 10 list for many reasons. Here are a few of them. Although I never attended his sermons (obviously) most of his sermons were published. He was a prolific writer and his great work "Morning and Evening," the great devotional, has been what I have turned to time and time again for daily strength and sound biblical insight. I love Charles Spurgeon for his tender and compassionate heart. He had a genuine love for God and for people. He was a tower of spiritual strength despite his constant ill health and battle with depression. Charles Spurgeon had one of the first mega-churches in the world and his duties and responsibilities were great. He was a man of eloquent speech and they ring true every time I read something he wrote. Preachers around the world, often quote Spurgeon's great words and insights. He was one of a kind, and not soon forgotten.
Pastor Chuck Swindoll
Chuck Swindoll is the senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church, Frisco, TX. Swindoll is a prolific writer of over 70 titles, most notably, Strengthening Your Grip, Improving Your Serve, Great Lives From God's Word Series and many more. Swindoll also has a worldwide radio ministry called Insight for Living heard by millions every day.
God has been doing a great work through Chuck Swindoll for decades. What I love and appreciate about Chuck Swindoll is that his messages are practical. I have grown tremendously because of it.
God has given Chuck Swindoll a gift in communicating. What I mean is I love his use of words and word pictures. He reminds me a lot of Spurgeon that way.
I am thankful that Mr. Swindoll doesn't beat around the bush or pull any punches. He is willing to deal with the hard subjects of authentic Christian living. In other words, walking the walk, not just talking the talk.
I got more out of his book series Great Lives From God's Word than I have with practically any other books besides the Bible. He is brilliantly meticulous about breaking down the stories of great Bible heroes such as Joseph (OT), Job, Moses, Abraham, David, and Jesus. In this series, he shows how God worked in and through these great heroes of the faith through their strengths and weaknesses.
I thank the Lord or the gifts he's given Chuck Swindoll, and the work He has done through him.
I thank Chuck Swindoll for his faithfulness to Christ through his service.
A message from Chuck Swindoll
Pastor Greg Laurie
Greg Laurie: Senior Pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, CA and founder and speaker for Harvest Crusades, and Harvest America which are large-scale evangelistic events. Stadiums and large venues fill around the world and there is always a great harvest to the Kingdom of God.
I am grateful to Pastor Greg for his example and message that evangelism is our great calling. Whether one agrees with crusades, altar calls, mega churches or not, there is no question that Lord has done a great work through him.
I also appreciate his biblical integrity, expository preaching which helped me in my early years to learn the Bible, and his emphasis on the importance regular Bible reading to help us know God and His will better and to help us grow in our faith.
I thank God for His call on Greg Laurie's life and the gifts He's given him that have influenced my life in the ways I mentioned.
I thank Pastor Greg for his obedience to Christ, for using the gifts God has given him for His glory, and for his humor, another gift from God.
A message from Greg Laurie
Pastor Chuck Smith - Papa Chuck
I have just written a hub on Pastor Chuck to honor him specifically. His recent passing has left a deep sadness in the Body of Christ, and yet we all rejoice that he is with Jesus. And what gratitude we all have for the impact he has had on many generations. I will not elaborate too much here because I have dedicated a special hub to honor him. But just to say, God did a mighty work through Pastor Chuck which changed a generation of young men and women whom the world called, "filthy hippies." God raised him up and gave him a heart for them and as a result, the Jesus movement of the '70s was born, an unlikely revival which is still bearing fruit today. Three of the pastors I mention here came to Christ as troubled, drug-addicted young men through the ministry of Chuck Smith. Today there are thousands of pastor's whom he taught and mentored.
Pastor Chuck Smith is known as the father of the Jesus movement and the founder of Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa. He did not like accolades or the praise of men, but gratitude is most appropriate. He will be deeply missed.
I thank God for taking this humble man and using him in such a powerful way.
© 2010 Lori Colbo