Torin Olsen

Working for the kingdom

Religion | God’s calling on Tom Sharkey’s life seemed irresistible, but 31 years of pastoring a sometimes-resistant flock was challenging
by Charissa Koh
Posted 4/23/20, 05:02 pm

Third in a series on long ministry

Atheist Tom Sharkey became a Christian in college and was surprised when people urged him to become a pastor. “I kept hearing the word preach,” he says. “I just kept trying to push that out of my mind.” When a campus ministry asked him to preach for its service, he said no. But the group insisted, and afterward he received positive feedback. 

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Robert Bush/iStock

Praying for rain

Lifestyle | In Northern California, a prayer group’s weekly entreaties include the weather, coronavirus, and spiritual renewal
by Shayla Ashmore
Posted 4/09/20, 03:51 pm

Professional engineer Jeff Morrish can’t engineer the weather—no matter what fellow members of his Susanville, Calif., church say. But after several drought years, in 2015 he started a group praying for rain, even though others said prayer would do no good at all. 

Rain or shine, Morrish and others in the Pray for Rain group at Susanville Church of the Nazarene, known as SuzNaz, kept meeting on Monday evenings. Sometimes a few attended, sometimes as many as 25.

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Todd McInturf/Genesis

Lessons in humility

Lifestyle | Steven Thomas entered the pastoral ministry full of pride. But painful trials reminded him God is in charge of outcomes
by Charissa Koh
Posted 2/27/20, 04:15 pm

Second in a series on long ministry

For 37 years, Steven Thomas has served as pastor of Huron Baptist Church in Flat Rock, Mich. Looking back, he sees his own ambition as a persistent challenge to his ministry. But fully recognizing the problem took years.

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