The following mentoring story is from my creative and courageous friend, Stuart Sutherland. We dared to dream huge together about what kind of Kingdom initiative could make the greatest impact in the City of Shasta Lake. Along with reading Stuart’s story below, check out the Heritage Roasting Company website. It’s awesome!
It was almost everything we wanted. In the Spring of 2006 I completed my BA at Simpson and was already headlong in a career with a local architecture firm. Sara and I were raising our two daughters, bought our first house, and we just got a dog. Life was finally settling in and we were content.
Our comfort was disrupted about a year later as the Lord very clearly called us to the mission field. As we obediently followed, we discovered a huge gap in what God was asking of us and what we felt we were capable of doing. Sara and I grew up with an understanding that we were quiet people looking to obediently follow Jesus in small tangible ways. We were not planning to be leaders of much, or create anything new. We just wanted to find our niche in the Church to quietly and obediently serve.
As a requirement of our missionary candidate process I began to attend classes at Tozer seminary. I took a couple classes taught by Bill Randall and instantly there was a connection in what he taught and what I needed to hear. Bill along with his wife Jill were able to walk with Sara and me through our pursuit of God’s call. Their discernment and wisdom soon found that I was living under a very truncated perspective of myself and of my heavenly Father. I can be a quiet person, but also a very apostolic, and entrepreneurial person. For the first time in my life I was given permission to dream, create and implement outside of the paradigms that trapped me in fear.
There was a gap in who we thought we were, and what God called us to do. Under the leadership, teaching, and friendship of Bill and Jill we were able to grow in an understanding of who we were and who’s we were. Out of that identity we have been able to step up to the Father’s call and find freedom. We have been able to create a business, community center, and missional community that is transforming an entire city.
Sometimes we wonder what life would look like without the influence of Bill and Jill and it’s impossible to know. What we do know, is their obedience to the Father placed them exactly in the perfect time and place to empower and equip us for Kingdom ministry. We are very grateful to these two: our amazing spiritual parents.
Heritage Roasting Company website: http://www.heritageroasting.com