two rivers church

Justin Pilcher

Elder

Truthfully, I never wanted to be a pastor. I never fancied myself a person who would stand in front of a crowd to speak on anything spiritual, and for the better part of my life, I really had no use for God or the Church. But it's amazing what can happen when you let go of all that you think you know and want and allow those things to be replaced and shaped by God. Every time I stop to reflect on my life and how I got to where I am, it's easy to see God's guidance and grace. I made a lot of poor choices and hurt a lot of people along the way. Had I known that every instance of heartbreak and disobedience was in fact just another step in the process of my growing into Church leadership and ultimately pastoral ordination, I might have pushed back even harder. As involved as God is in all of our lives, recognizable or not, I am most thankful that He allowed me to fail, to make mistakes, and to fall completely apart. Were it not for that, I doubt I ever would have come to a proper understanding of my own condition and of my need for a Savior.

I've struggled at times to find my identity. I've struggled at times to find my purpose. I've struggled at times to find my passion. I know I won't ever have all the answers and I know I won't ever see the full picture, but only through my pursuit of God's truth and allowing myself to be transformed more into his image through the Holy Spirit have I gained some peace in that regard. As I said, never once did I genuinely consider being a pastor. I have always cared about people and I have always cared about doing something that matters. What that meant for a career and what that meant for my life was always a mystery, but the more I pursued a relationship with God and the more I allowed myself to let go, the more it became clear that this may just be the very thing God had created me for.

My wife has been a fantastic source of support, encouragement, and thumps on the head when called for. We married in 2010 as two independent, stubborn, and strong-willed individuals who often cared more about being right than honoring God and displaying his character at the sacrifice of self. Being married has helped me grow as a pastor, and my growing as a pastor has helped me grow as a husband. Our church community has been and continues to be a godly source of accountability and guidance for us, and we acknowledge that in order to stay healthy we must commit to them just as much as they commit to us. As a church body, every member is important and invaluable to the growth and health of the body as a whole.

My hope for Two Rivers Church moving forward is that we'll continue to be a community that values health more than numbers and values honesty more than putting on a smile. We're a family. We laugh together and we cry together. We fail together and we celebrate together. None of us is ever in the same place at the same time spiritually, but we're all doing everything we can to pursue God, reflect his character, and live in the grace and mercy that he offers freely to all.