I don’t have much time to write tonight, but after reviewing last night’s post, I can’t help but spent a few minutes writing about Bim Rowley. Pastor Bim Rowley is the pastor of the Truth Baptist Church in Wast Hartford, CT.
I met Pastor Rowley at Galilean Baptist Church Camp as he served as a counselor there. I fondly recall many in-depth and quite long theological conversations by the fireside each night. During one of those chats I recall one kid going on about how bad the public school system was. he then asked Pastor Rowley for his thoughts. He turned and looked at me and replied, “I don’t know. But I don’t know that this guy goes to a public school and has kept up with us all night long.” That meant a great deal to an insecure kid like me.
It seemed like I was a frequent visitor in the Rowley home, and each time I usually walked away with a book or two under my arm. It became a tradition to spend New Year’s Eve at Truth Baptist. A few times I even got the chance to preach during that all-night service. My favorite memory during one of those nights was a family devotion time the next morning. I don’r remember the exact passage, but we were studying Proverbs. We went around the room to share our thoughts about it. I don’t know what I said, but Pastor Rowley had the audacity to say I was wrong. His wife tried to say me by suggesting I meant something else, but he wasn’t buying it. he called me out in front of everyone! But I wasn’t embarrassed, I knew this guy cared about me and wanted the very best from me. He corrected my thinking and I’m a better Christian because of it.
He often challenged me to think deeper and to actually study the Word of God. He loved to show me what his latest version of Logos Bible software could do. He introduced me to new ideas and a more in-depth theology that went far beyond just fighting about which Bible version to use. He was a mentor and a friend. He became a close confidant and a member of the circle of counselors I consulted when major decisions came my way.
Thank you, Pastor Rowley for not allowing me to settle in mediocrity. Thank you for challenging my thinking and investing in my life. Thank you for caring so much about this public school kid…