A Tuesday I Will Not Soon Forget

Things are beginning to wind down in my ministry here at Grace
Community Church as I start the transition to become the senior pastor of Mission
Road Bible Church in July. Between now and then there will some significant
“last-time” moments. I had one of them early this morning.

For the last 14 years I have met with a group of men on Tuesday mornings at 6 AM in the basement of the “J Building.” Getting up at 4:30 AM is one thing. But seeing 40 other men do it consistently is quite another. There have been a lot of guys who have been a part of those meetings over the years and this morning provided me the opportunity to look back and thank God for this long line of godly men.

It is impossible to describe the influence of these men and those meetings on me. We have studied, prayed, laughed, and shed tears together. These meetings have been my favorite part of ministry at Grace. King
David wrote: “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1) I’m not sure there is a better example of this verse than those Tuesday mornings.

We call the group of men who brave the alarm clock on Tuesdays the “A-Team.” The “A” stands for “aspiration.” First Timothy 3:1 says that “if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do.” The aspiration for godly qualification and spiritual leadership among these men has consistently cured my complacency and motivated my Godwardness. I’ve experienced true accountability and I hope I have provided some in return.

Today we heard from Austin Duncan who is the next Crossroads pastor. I am excited for him and all that he will inherit in these men. And I’m equally excited for what they are going to get from him.

I will miss these men, a lot. But I know they are going to have their own A-Teams soon. It has been one of the joys of my life to do gospel work with them.

8 Comments on “A Tuesday I Will Not Soon Forget

  1. ‘A’ might possibly stand for amazing too. Hm, I’m trying to guess which one in the picture is Austin Duncan. 🙂 I hope you continue to share some more of your ‘last time’ moments with us along with the incredible insights. 🙂 (for example, way back when, I’d always wondered why you might’ve needed to go to bed before the clock struck 9pm…and now I know one of those reasons.)

  2. Rick,

    Those 5 years of Tuesday mornings radically changed my life. I can’t tell you how thankful I am for all that you poured into us those mornings. God used those early mornings to chisel away much of what needed to be shed in my life. Now I am getting to do that with other guys. Such a blessing.

  3. Those mornings are some of the most impactful and memorable of my time in college and seminary. I will never forget the rich fellowship and the many spiritual lessons that have shaped who I am today. Thank you for taking the time to shepherd us so faithfully.

  4. Rick,

    I’ve told you this before, but those meetings coupled with your modeling of godly character and pastoral skill, were the greatest aspects of my ministry preparation. It’s hard to tell you how valuable it was to learn from your insight and ability to care for God’s people with truth and love.

  5. I too was greatly blessed by those early meetings. I’m thankful for you and all the men who have been at those meetings..

    Jon Stricklin

  6. Rick,
    I will never forget my first A-Team meeting in the Spring of 2004. You said there are two legs that your ministry must stand on: knowledge and credibility. As you said that morning, every biblical ministry must have both, otherwise it is doomed to fail. Thank you for imparting to us this, as well as numerous other lessons every Tuesday morning.

  7. My goodness Rick. I read this and fell off my chair!

    I’m speechless. You’re heading to Mission Road Bible Church. I’m so excited for you, Kim and the boys!

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