Pastor Appreciation Month: Part Three
Today is my third installment for a blog series honoring pastors who have blessed me repeatedly in my life over the past 8-9 years. I’m using Pastor Appreciation Month as an excuse to brag on these brothers for all they’ve done for me and for the Kingdom of God in their sacrifice. These are pastors with day jobs, or more appropriately, with two jobs. Bi-vocational pastors are the unsung hero of the local church, especially in the church planting world. Men who are qualified and called to lead and equip God’s people, but humble and willing to serve as they can, often behind the scenes, counseling, praying, training, and meeting to serve the needs of the local church.
Timothy James Ganger
Today I’m have the privilege of calling attention to one of the best friends I’ve ever had. Tim Ganger. Timmy G. Rin Tim Tim. The Tim Man. Timothy James Ganger. I met Tim and Sarah Ganger through a mutual friend during their first semester at Southern Seminary. Joy was about 8 months pregnant with our first-born, Reid. So we’ve known them for longer than we’ve been parents. Since we’ve met them, they’ve been by our side. Tim and Sarah were the first people we dreamed about church planting with. They were the first to sign up to come plant with us. Heck, Tim came up with the name Covenant Community Church. He and Sarah have been faithful friends, and fierce followers of Jesus. I have watched, first-hand, God transform Tim and Sarah, maturing them, stretching them, breaking them, healing them and using them for his kingdom.
Tim and Sarah have been two of our best friends for a long time now and I’m thankful for the span of it, from two couples in our mid twenties with no kids, to the present day when we’re all in our 30’s, 8 kids between us. Our lives have grown infinitely more complicated and chaotic. Praise God, our friendship is found, not in the consistency of our lives, but in the constancy of our God. He has sustained us. We’ve fought hard to honor God and plant a church for His glory and God has been faithful.
Here are some fast facts about Tim Ganger.
Tim is a nerd. He knows more about wrestling, comic books, fantasy novels, than just about anyone I’ve met. As an only kid, he got WAY into his hobbies. This has made him a brilliant conversationalist. Nerds are underrated.
Tim is ridiculously disciplined. He gets more done than most people I know. He runs, reads, serves, leads, and sacrifices constantly. He is an exemplary (and, he would want me to add, flawed) man of God.
Tim really loves Jesus with integrity. He puts his money where his mouth is. Hang out with him. You’ll see what I mean. He loves people who don’t know Jesus. He gives sacrificially. He adopts orphans into his family. He practices what he preaches.
Tim is a good friend. He’s a way better friend than I am, which doesn’t mean much. I’m a jerk sometimes. But he has been as steady, sincere and very needed brother. God has used him to bring me through a lot of hardships. I am grateful for him in more ways than I can express here.
Tim is a good and godly pastor. Seriously. He loves his church. He prays for God’s people. He considers them constantly and reminds me regularly of the great charge Christ has given us in the care of his people. He opens up his home and he preaches his heart out. He sharpens me and has cared for me well. Like I said, he's a good pastor.
Tim married up. Sarah Ganger is the best thing that’s ever happened to him since he met Jesus. She has been a faithful and fun friend to my wife for as long as we’ve known them. She leads and teaches and loves other people, clearly gifted by the Spirit for the task. She loves and honors her husband. She sacrifices and prays for her church. And she loves, loves, loves her kids. Way to go Tim. You got yourself a keeper.
So, everyone, it’s October. Thank your pastor, Tim Ganger. Thank his wife, Sarah. Honor them in some way. Pray for them! They need it. All of your pastors do.
Tim, God has been faithful to sustain us as pastors, brothers and friends for 5 years on this field. I am expecting and praying for many more.
Thank you for being my pastor.