I received Christ in 1969 at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa. In 1973 I was filled with the Holy Spirit. It was at that time that the Lord called me into ministry. Within a couple of years I discovered that meant pastoral ministry, and the ministry of God’s Word.
I was deeply committed to a home fellowship out of Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa (I eventually became its pastor), and although I was never on staff at “big Calvary,” Chuck Smith has always been my pastor, I studied and learned under Pastor Chuck for 4½ years before moving to the Monterey Peninsula to start my first church in February of 1978. Also during that time I obtained a degree in ministry from Melodyland School of Theology in Anaheim, CA.
My first official Sunday as pastor of what was then called Calvary Chapel of the Monterey Peninsula was March 1, 1979. I continued as the pastor of the fellowship for almost 27 years, until I stepped down in February of 2006. During those years, we grew into a solid church community, and were able to eventually purchase property and build a facility. God was very gracious—and patient. He allowed me to learn much about pastoral ministry as I grew in age and experience. My mistakes in ministry have probably been better teachers to me than my successes.
I think my most important spiritual growth came as I discovered some of the deeper realities of the new covenant. Some of those years brought depression and loads of self-doubt. The Lord used the hard times to teach me much about His grace. Also, He’s used the hard times to develop much greater compassion for people. He does not waste a single thing that occurs in our lives.
In February of 2006 I began functioning as a so-called “pastor-at-large.” In 2008 I started Poimen Ministries. In that capacity I’ve been able to teach in international and domestic Bible colleges, provide consultation for churches, spend time with pastors on an individual basis, write, speak at conferences and retreats, serve in a Korean-American congregation, function as a transitional pastor in five congregations, provide pulpit support, etc. The opportunities have been varied and interesting.
I’m passionate about pastoral ministry, and love to encourage pastors in what they do. Oftentimes, our peers in ministry have few places they can go to share their hearts. Or they have few relationally based resources to which they can turn. That’s why I started Poimen Ministries … to connect pastors to pastors in these ways. An interaction with a Poimen pastor is a safe experience. It’s also confidential. The pastor decides what to do with the input he’s given.
I see the remaining years of my life and ministry as being years of help, support, consultation, and training of others who are called to shepherd God’s flock.