New Elder Affirmation | David Gantenbein
Church family, my name is David and my wife is Jordan. In God’s Word the apostle Paul instructs his pastoral protégé Timothy to not be quick to ordain and appoint leaders in the local church and to allow a time of period for testing and observation. Both Jordan and I agree that a church body should choose those who will be their pastors and that the congregation should only do so after they have had ample time to observe the life and doctrine of that man. So we wanted to tell you a bit about ourselves, as well as share with you my call to ministry leadership.
Jordan and I have been married 7 years and we have three children. Our son Levi who is 5, our daughter Maelie who is 3, and our 3rd born son who will arrive in September. We have lived in Indiana for a little over a year and joined this church summer of 2021. Before that we lived and served in ministry in Phoenix Arizona at another likeminded, Jesus-first church. I want to say “thank you” to you, or church family, for welcoming us and making Indiana become our new home.
We moved here from Phoenix Arizona. This Fall marks my 17th year in local church ministry. Before Graceland I served as a Children’s & Student Minister in a church in Orange County California for two years and as a Student and Family Pastor at a local church in Phoenix for 13 years, before God called us to Indiana.
When I was nine God saved me and rescued me from my sin and the punishment of sin and gave me new life. Just before my senior year of high school He called me into pastoral ministry. I went to California Baptist University and studied Christian Studies and then attended and graduated from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary with a degree in Educational Leadership. Currently I am finishing a post-graduate degree in Education at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
I share a bit of my background with you not because it qualifies me to be a pastor, but because I am still getting to know many of you on a personal level, so I want to share as much about myself with you as I can, as you make a decision on me being one of your pastor-elders.
God’s word is clear that it is CHRIST who calls men into pastoral ministry for the purpose of equipping the body and fostering unity and maturity in the church. God’s word is also clear that there a requirements for any man who would serve as a pastor-elder. He must be above reproach, self-controlled, respectable, gentle, not a lover of money, able to teach, and lead his own family well – among other things. I’m not perfect, yet I believe I demonstrate the qualifications for being an elder. We have requested that the church wait a full year to consider him for eldership so that you have ample time to observe him and collectively discern if I possess these character qualities laid out in God’s Word.
Church family, as an Elder within our local body, by God’s grace my goal is to be faithful first to Jesus, then to my wife, then to my children, and then to you. My heart is for our church. To be a peace-maker, encourager, protect us against false doctrine and people who want to prey upon the weak, faithfully teach God’s Word, pray for the body, and to help every person get in the game and be involved in hands-on ministry. We love you, we know our love for you will grow with each passing year, and thank you for loving us.