Jump directly to the Content

The Church That Saved Me

How pastoring a small church transformed my ministry expectations
The Church That Saved Me

When a church looks for a pastor, in most cases, it is looking for a leader who can revive its witness and vitality in the community. So I supposed Gages Lake Bible Church, a small, struggling church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, was looking for a human savior. And while we had some successes in the five years I pastored there—increased attendance, major structural changes, renewed vision, and leadership health—it wasn't me who saved the church. It was the church that saved me.

Of course I should begin with the usual Christian caveats. Yes, I realize churches don't save pastors, and pastors don't save churches. Jesus does the saving, both from eternal damnation but also from a self-serving life on earth. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

But God's instruments for renewal come most often in human form. For my wife Angela and me and our four children, Gages Lake was such a place.

When we arrived at Gages Lake, we had just spent a good season of our ...

January/February
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
Why Are Some Churches Trading Pews for Dinner Tables?
Why Are Some Churches Trading Pews for Dinner Tables?
A conversation with Dinner Church pioneer, Verlon Fosner.
From the Magazine
God Is the Good Samaritan
God Is the Good Samaritan
And he teaches us to value diversity and individuality.
Editor's Pick
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Learning to walk under the weight of ministry's many hats.
close