Being married to Tony Gibson’s sister, I have had the blessing of watching Heart of the Bride from the beginning. “Watching” was this operative word until 2008. That was the year that it all became real to me. That was the year I made my first trip with HOB to work with the children of House of Hope in Kenya. It became a stake in the ground for the rest of my life. A burden for the abandoned and broken children of the world was sparked in my heart and the story of one little boy challenged me to consider adoption for the first time. I wasn’t able to travel again for several years but the burden in my heart didn’t diminish; it grew. After my wife, Sonya, was able to go in 2011, we traveled to Kenya with HOB every year, sharing the same burden and eventually leading our own teams. Our participation in the rescue of unwanted children and our desire to see increased discipleship among the rescued led to our calling to step out of 20 years of worship ministry and move from Missouri to accept a position with HOB in 2015. Again, our burden continued to grow and led to our own family’s adoption in 2017 and the tremendous blessings that have come out of great sacrifice.
Early in 2019, God asked us to step away from my official position at HOB to walk with our church staff as Executive Pastor. It has been a very exciting and challenging year as I was blessed to develop new ministries and refine long standing ones. I had so many plans for 2020. But, when the Board of Directors of HOB called in November, things changed quickly. Just like the Christmas Story shows us, God often has other plans that interrupt ours for His purpose. We began to fast and pray immediately but the answer came quickly. It was as close to the audible voice of God as I’ve ever heard. “This is why I brought you down here.” Over the next two weeks God confirmed this message through Godly believers, His word, and life circumstances. Not to mention, that burden on our hearts that just continues to grow.
Sonya and I, and our children, are thrilled to return to HOB with renewed vision and an ever increasing burden. We are pumped about the future and, with God’s help, we are ready to embrace the immediate challenges that come with the opportunities before us. I know I haven’t met many of you but I look forward to that privilege soon. Let’s work together to offer hope to the hopeless, rescue the lonely, feed the hungry, educate the forgotten, and offer family to the abandoned.
For His Glory,