The Lord has blessed me beyond measure. Raised in a loving Christian family, I accepted Christ at a young age at River Valley Ranch. The Lord protected me during a very rebellious phase of my life, from my early teens through my mid-twenties.
Growing up in the 1960s, I truly embraced the attitude of rebellion—the mindset to challenge all authority that decade is known for. Full of arrogance and pride, I had no cognitive understanding of the word “submission” and although I claimed Christ as my Savior, I lived to the gratification of my flesh.
Through a series of events, the Lord humbled me and I turned my eyes off myself and onto Him. He reminded me of the love that He had for me even in my sinful, rebellious state. In my state of brokenness, I was finally willing to hear from my Creator. He showed me from His Word that the restraints placed on mankind were for our protection. The things of the world that looked so enticing can be enjoyable for a season, but after a time leave you empty or worse yet, addicted.
They provide neither inner peace nor real lasting satisfaction. Although I was successful in many ways as viewed through the world’s eyes, I was miserable and well down the path of self-destruction.
In humility and brokenness, I repented of my sins and accepted His amazing grace. He restored me and placed me in scripture memory based Bible study for two years. Shortly after that, He blessed me with Ellie, a wonderful woman who loved Him.
His bountiful blessings continued with Joshua, Matthew and Michelle who are now grown. Yes, my family and I have been truly blessed, yet in this life there are always emotional highs and lows. Regardless of the trial, He is always there to carry us through to the end.
2 Timothy 2:11-13 expresses this clearly:
“This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him. If we endure, We shall also reign with Him. If we deny Him, He also will deny us. If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.”
Men Encouraging Men:
Men Encouraging Men is a fitting title as it’s our intent to do just that. We are blessed within this body with men who love The Lord and take their role as the spiritual leader of their family seriously. It is the Lord’s desire to see that scriptural knowledge and experience is passed to other men as we strengthen existing relationships and forge new ones. Proverbs 27:17 sums this up nicely: “As iron sharpens iron, So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.”
Dan leads the Men Encouraging Men Breakfast & Bible Study. He is a member of our Board of Overseers. Dan and his wife, Ellie, also serve as part of the Pastoral Care Team.