Celebrating September 21: Thinking About Dad and Ministry Infuences

Dad was born on this date in 1903. His best ministry was over before I was born. He had a heart attack and several strokes during the several years before he died at age 62 in 1966. He tried to continue his work, but faltered terribly. Mom, my brother and sister, and I moved to Danville, Virginia where I was supported at the Baptist Tabernacle for experiencing God in a way I have never gotten over.
Other influences in my life that followed, including John Rice, John Rawlings, Lester Roloff, and Jerry Falwell, were significant in their own way. I also worked on staff with several leading pastors in the Baptist Bible Fellowship, but all were somewhat performance-driven. When I ended up in the pastorate I knew how to "grow a church," but I missed understanding how God relates to us through Christ in this age of grace (that it is organic) and ended up losing my family.

I learned, however, that God has a recovery plan, that he does not throw away the broken vessel but restores it again to usefulness in his own time and according to his purpose. Charles Stanley was my pastor for four years beginning in 1992. He was a welcomed and refreshing visual and teacher of God's grace. Last year my wife, Carole, and I began GracePoint to provide "faith-based counseling from a grace perspective to hurting people needing a new start in a new direction. We do not think too much in terms of to what extent God plans to use us, but have learned to be content in our service and leave the outcome to him.
DonLoy Whisnant/Journey Notes 12I21