12 March 2012

...and hello, Houston!

by Dan Phillips

[continued from here]

Several months ago, I was contacted by regular reader Sir Aaron, whose church had begun looking for a pastor. Was I interested? "Sure," I said. "Where is it?"

"Houston," he answered.

"Doesn't that get awfully hot?" I asked. (I know that isn't deep, but it was the first association I had.)

"Only outside," he replied.

Thus began a process of conversation between the gracious folks of Copperfield Bible Church. After we'd asked each other a lot of questions and done our own investigations, they flew my family and me out for a week's visit.

For my family and me, it was an exhilarating joy. To say that they treated us warmly or friendly wouldn't come near to capturing how we felt. They welcomed us like long-lost, dearly-loved family. Though we were far from home, we felt as if we were home. We went through a number of group meetings and individual suppers, among many other activities. I preached twice (you can find those sermons here), led three other meetings, and participated in an evangelistic outreach. It simply was a joy.

So when they invited me to bring my family and serve with their elders in pastoring the church, my family was delighted for me to accept.

So I begin "on the clock" as pastor today, and am to preach my first sermon as pastor next Sunday.

Now you know why I've been busy, and why I'll be busy. You all know it isn't easy for a Calvidispiebaptogelical to find a home, but by God's grace I found one.

I just had to come a long, long way to find it!

I'm looking forward with great eagerness to get to know, to love, to teach and lead these folks, in the company of the good brothers who are my fellow-elders. I am thrilled at the opportunity to exalt Christ by preaching and teaching the Word emphatically and passionately, living it by God's grace, and bringing it to bear in pastoral discipleship.

Your prayers for them, me and my family would be deeply appreciated.


Dan Phillips's signature

119 comments:

Jeremy Morgan said...

CONGRATULATIONS! I wish you and your new congregation well. (I know they will be sitting under solid, Gospel-centered preaching!) May God bless you in this new endeavor

Puritan Physicist said...

Congratulations Pastor Phillips! I've already subscribed to your church's podcast.

Jay C said...

Awesome. Praise the Lord!

Gary said...

Congratulations!! May God continue to richly bless you and your family and your church family, etc., on this new adventure.

Manfred said...

Welcome to the swamp known as Houston! I am a few miles north and east of you, a member of Grace family Baptist Church. Peace to you and yours, in the name of our Lord Jesus.

Frank Turk said...

I hope you remembered to pack your theology books rather than your Star Trek novels. Otherwise Sunday's sermon is going to be rather odd.

Frank Turk said...

I think a neighbor church is Voddie Baucham's church, isn't it?

Jacob Abshire said...

Excellent! Dan, we are in need of some good ministers here like yourself. I am a native Houstonian. I might swing out and catch you some time. Secretly, I'll be meeting with other church in Houston and urging them to recruit the rest of the Pyro team.

For the record, it is very hot.

Jon said...

Congratulations Dan! I know from my time reading Pyro and your own blog that this has been a dream for some time.

May God bless your ministry and family in Texas!

Oh, I'm glad to see you are using a dual-monitor PC setup! The first sign of trouble is when I start seeing Apple contraband in pastor's offices. ;-)

Jacob Abshire said...

Frank, the church that Voddie pastors is in the Spring area of Houston probably a 30-40 minute drive from Copperfield. I think Joel Osteen is closer. But something tells me that Dan won't be grabbing lunch with him and shooting the spiritual breeze. :)

GrayDave said...

Great news! That's close enough to where I lived in Houston that I'd come to visit (had we not moved to Michigan.) Our church down there was flooded out during tropical storm Allison in 2001.

Scooter said...

I couldn't make the last picture any larger, so my first thought was, "They gave you a BBQ as a welcome present?"

A hearty congratulations on your new position! May God grace grant you the grace to faithfully minister there as long as He keeps you there.

Frank Turk said...

OMSNG I totally forgot that Osteen is in Houston.

Now this whole adventure makes complete sense to me.

Neil said...

Congratulations!

cb said...

Being from the Copperfield area in Houston: they desperately need a Biblical Church in that area. So happy for you and your new congregation.

Persis said...

Congratulations!! May the Lord bless you, your family, and your new flock.

Chris Brauns said...

Congratulations! Preach the Word!

Dave said...

I wondered if that's what was going on. Well, congrats, and welcome to the Bayou City.

DJP said...

Thanks, Chris. You're among those I'll need on my speed-dial for when I get out of my depth. Um, are you free like in fifteen minutes?

(c:

DJP said...

I so appreciate all y'all's kind words. Even the star-raters are showing love!

CCinTn said...

Wow! What an exciting time for you and your family. May God richly bless you, your family, your ministry and your new congregation.
May you be faithful to feed Christ's sheep and take care of His lambs.
Blessings to you!

Eric said...

Congratulations Dan. May God richly bless your ministry.

The Squirrel said...

I am so absolutely jazzed about this! WooHoo & all that!

& just think, NASA Mission Control is now a day trip!

Congratulations to both pastor & church!

:-)

Squirrel

Steve Drake said...

Dan,
There's a ole' sayin' here in the Lone Star State:

"I wasn't born in Texas, but I got here as fast as I could."

Welcome and blessings!

Solameanie said...

Overjoyed for you and your family. California's loss!

BTW, only Frank would bring up Osteen in the meta. In punishment, Dan, you will have to have Frank travel south from Little Rock to invite Joel O. over for coffee and a tone discussion. ;)

CR said...

I've been waiting to want to public thank you and gossip the great news! Congratulations, Dan!

Pedro said...

What a wonderful blessing and opportunity. I still remember some years ago when you shared with us your deep desire to go back into Pastoral Ministry. The Lord has rewarded your patience brother. May our Lord Jesus pour out His grace abundantly on you and family for this your new task.

CR said...

I meant publicly congratulate you.

Jim Rector said...

Welcome to Houston. I belong to Baptist Church of the Redeemer in Missouri City, about 30-40 minutes from Copperfield. Hope you can hook up with our Elders sometime. They have close relationships with most of the "Calvidispiebaptogelical" (Or close to it) pastors in the area.

Gilbert said...

I am absolutely against ANYTHING that keeps Dan from blogging on Pyro (tm Frank Turk).

Doggone you, Turk, look what you've done to me! ;-)

Dan...your prayers have been answered, and I am so happy for you and praise God that you have been faithful,a nd rewarded. As a deacon in my own church, I'll just offer you this simple advice that you have heard many times before, but now with greater meaning. 2 Timothy 4:2...

Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.(ESV)

Do so, so that your flock may live and grow in Christ. And if you need any forecasts for hurricane matters, just let me know. We'll also work on splicing your sermons into the video system at that "big" church down the road, so they can see their best sin now. ;-)

Robert said...

Not only is Osteen based here, but in the grand state of Texas, we have Benny Hinn, T.D. Jakes, Hagee, the Copelands, Ed Young, Jr., and Beth Moore.

Dan,

Glad to hear that you and Sir Aaron survived the long journey. I just got back from California, but at least I got to fly. You look at home in the new office. I'll definitely be praying for you, your family, and CBC.

olan strickland said...

Congratulations Dan,

Don't forget to be culturally relevant! I have read somewhere that Texas is pronounced Taxes by its natives. Just sayin . . . :)

GW said...

Welcome to Houston!

I am sure Joel Osteen, Ed Young Sr., Beth Moore and Kerry Shook will all welcome you with open arms also.

Congratulations and God Bless you on your new endeavor.

Kevin Zuber said...

Congrats Dan!

Just remember it's not the heat it's the humidity!

BTW I managed to get a few guys to buy the "Proverbs" book while I was at the Shepherd's Conference!

Gabby said...

How wonderful! I, too, grew up in California - ended up moving to Texas 18 years ago. I can't even count the many times I've thanked God for His grace and kindness in putting us here in this great state. We haven't the beauty of California, but we have something better - more Conservatives. :) Welcome! In about 3 years you'll have a noticeable drawl.

Nash Equilibrium said...

BIG EXCITING news! I'm very familiar with the area since my in-laws lived there. The main thing you'll have to get used to is the crazy highway numbering system and occasionally, some humidity. Those are no biggies, really. Great area.
Congratualtions to you, and to the church!

Solameanie said...

One more good thing about Texas, Dan..as with most Southern states. Lots of bacon, barbecue, biscuits and gravy, plus fried taters. Nom nom nom.

Jason Brown said...

Welcome to the neighborhood, Dan! I think you will find many friends in the Houston area. I hope to bump into you some time.

Eddie Eddings said...

Congratulations, pastor Dan! Houston is my home town. I will be leaving Kuwait for a visit with my family, in Houston, this summer. Lord willing, I will visit Copperfield Bible Church and say hello.
Texans are a real friendly bunch of folks. You'll be well fed, that's for sure!

Marla said...

Awesome sauce! (or that's what my teenager would say). So happy for you and your family, and this new congregation! I'll have to check out the podcasts. May your church be an oasis for all those thirsty souls.

Sonja said...

What wonderful news. I know the congregation will bless you and your family as much as you will be a blessing to them.

God's providence never ceases to amaze, so I must ask ... did you and Sir Aaron know each other outside of blogging? IOW, did this blog serve as an introduction?

A hearty congratulations!

Pastor Pants said...

Overjoyed for you, Valerie and the boys (as well you know). Praying for you all daily, my friend. What a blessing for Copperfield!

Adam Rodriguez said...

Congratulations! That church is very blessed to have you as its pastor. And it's great to hear you and your family have been blessed by them too!

Sir Aaron said...

This upcoming Sunday is going to be Pastor Phillips' installation service followed by a fellowship meal if anybody wants to visit this Sunday. Of course, people are welcome to visit any Sunday.

Sir Aaron said...

@Jon: I'm one of the members of the A/V team at CBC. Let's just say I was emcouraged not to give an endorsement to anybody who wanted an Apple computer. ;)

@Squirrel: He was actually taken to NASA as part of his 1 week visit (we gave him a day off).

@Sonja: No. I knew of Dan entirely from the blogs. Until now he was merely a "paper pastor."

@Houstonians: I didn't know there were so many of us as readers. Sometime we should all get together for coffee.

Mike Riccardi said...

Congratulations brother! So happy for you!

Terry Rayburn said...

Congratulations, Dan!

In 1980, God sent me to Texas from Michigan, and sent Michele to Texas from New York. Still married, albeit in Tennessee :)

Keep writing.

James Joyce said...

Congratulations!

Merrilee Stevenson said...

I was in need of good news to be thankful for this morning, and yours was like a cup of refreshment to a weary soul. Praise the Lord!

Somehow I'm confident you can totally pull off the cowboy boots and hat look, and you've already got the third person plural "y'all" in its proper usage.

Rejoicing with y'all!

Rita Tomassetti said...

Dan I'm sooooooo happy for all of you!! :D Congrats!!!!! :D the Lord is SO faithful! praise be to his name! :) looking forward to hearing your sermons will they be online?

Mary Elizabeth Tyler said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bill Honsberger said...

May our Father richly bless the preaching of God's word there.
Just as an aside - Houston is not quite as hot as hell, but your socal sense are about to be crushed!

But our Father called yall there and that is the best place for yall to be.

So thankful He called us to Denver...
bill

Jim Kirby said...

Thanks for the update. Glad to hear of this providential leading in you and your family's life. Pray that your transition into this ministry goes well, and that the Lord truly blesses you and yours and the people of God there.

JG said...

That is wonderful news! Welcome to Texas :) And if you're ever in the far corner, you've got an open dinner invitation here.

Lynda O said...

Congratulations, Dan, and best wishes for you and family and the church congregation.

Looking forward to listening to your sermons there.

Mary Elizabeth Tyler said...

I'm so excited for you and your family. I almost feel like we're all along for the ride. I look forward to hearing future sermons from you. This is awesome!!!

Also prompted me to look for my Texas cookbook that I bought in Katy, Texas. I can't find it, now, and I am really upset. :(

Listening to your sermon now!!!

greglong said...

Congratulations and praise the Lord!

P.S. I'm having difficulty proving I'm not a robot, so hopefully this comment will appear.

SolaMommy said...

Yay!!! That's great! So excited for you!

Rob said...

Great to hear that you are in the neighborhood, Dan! I'm just a little bit north in the Woodlands, and I'd love to stop in and hear you preach some time. Just no illustrations involving the tv show 'Lost', 'kay? :)

(BTW - Copperfield needs to update their website with your info/bio.)

donsands said...

That's wonderful Dan. One thing is for sure, the congregation will be fed true food for their souls.
There's nothing more important than to have our souls feed on God's food:-His Word.

And we need shepherds to feed us, as we also feed ourselves.

Lord pour out Your most full blessings upon Dan, and his fam, and his new spiritual family! Amen.

Aaron said...

I served in Copperfield for 4 years as the youth minister of St. Cuthbert Episcopal Church. When we left for me to go to Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, we left ECUSA for the Evangelical Free Church. St. Cuthbert relocated from Hwy 6 right near you to West Road a couple years after I left. I have no idea what it's like there now.

Anyway, we left 4 years ago, but I absolutely love Copperfield. It's excellent to know that you can serve at CBC. I've been edified by your posts here for years (in fact, I remember reading Pyromaniacs after hours in my office at St. Cuthbert and feeling my theological convictions shift away from Anglicanism as I sat there). If Larry Newcomer is still the pastor at Mills Road Baptist Church (about 10 minutes north on 1960), you should look him up. He helped me a great deal when I came to the realization that I was a reluctant credo-baptist and needed to exit Anglicanism.

sonofthunder7 said...

From someone who lived in Houston for a year(and now lives in Scotland!), congrats!! I see some of my old church has already welcomed you..*waves up at Jim Rector*.

And yes, Houston is hot.

Again, let it be said - God is good!!

Sir Aaron said...

@Rob: we know. We are working on a total redesign at the same time.

Brendt said...

Congrats, bro!

Cameron Shaffer said...

Congrats, and welcome to my great state. You'll love it here.

Allison Gray said...

Dan, that's wonderful news! Congratulations to you and your family on this new adventure. I'm sure your new congregation will be blessed to pieces as well!

I also hope that your sermons will be available, because as blessed and edified as I have been by your blog posts, your sermons will be more fantastic(er!) :)

God's richest blessings on you and yours, Pastor Phillips!

Magister Stevenson said...

Congratulations! Now can we expect your sermons will be available on line each week along with your posts here?
I've been considering relocating. Huston just bumped up in my city rankings.

tobekiwi said...

"Then He said to His disciples, 'The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” Matthew 9:37-38

I really love it when this particular prayer is answered!
Congratulations!!!!!

Nash Equilibrium said...

I'm going to wait at least a couple weeks before I show up in the CBC pews on Sunday morning, stand up and say "Ah have uh Word from God for y'all!"

(checks priceline for plane tickets to Bush Intercontinental)

David Regier said...

Great. Now I have to pay California's bills all by myself.

Wendy said...

Awesome!!!

DJP said...

You're all very kind and encouraging. I appreciate it.

Nauvoo Pastor said...

I thank God for His faithfulness toward you and your family and will be praying for you daily now. It is wonderful that God's place for you is pastoring and the blessings that He has in store will be phenomenal as you move forward.

Audrey said...

Congratulations and welcome to Texas! You will love it here!

(From a daily reader but rare commenter.)

dac said...

Flew through Houston on the way to Baton Rouge Louisiana - Houston was hotter and more humid than Baton Rouge - indoors or out. Anyplace hotter and more humid than Louisiana - that's obnoxious. #justsayin.

Is it congratulations to the bride and good luck to the groom or is it....both to you, Pastor.

Merrilee Stevenson said...

Second person plural. You All. You's (here in Philly). Y'all (everywhere else). My husband graciously pointed out my little mistake. This former English major is blushing. And y'all were so gracious to overlook it.

Aaron said...

The second person plural is so common in the NT Greek and OT Hebrew, but English Bibles struggle to translate it. As a result, we often read Paul's letters and don't remember that the understood audience is all the faithful at a particular location. If the translators would just use "Y'ALL" for 2pl, this problem would be solved and English translations would be even more awesome.

Jim Pemberton said...

Copperfield is getting a great man of God for their pastor, solid in theology and message. Grow them well in faith and truth, Dan.

Gryphonette said...

The only way this would be better would be for you to come to Fort Worth, but there...not everyone can be so blessed. >;^>

Houston's a great city (my nephew lives there) and you're going to love it, I've no doubt.

Praying for travel mercies and for a richly rewarding season with your new church.

Cathy M. said...

Best wishes to you and your new church home. I think your new flock is mighty fortunate.

Charlene said...

Very awesome! Congratulations!

Allen Gregory said...

Congratulations to you, your family and your church! What a joy to hear of a body of beleivers gaining a pastor to care for and shepherd them. I know they are excited and can't wait to hear you preach Christ and Him crucified!

allen said...

I knew it was just a matter of time (God's timing!) No way someone writes like you do and not get snatched up by a discerning, scripture-loving congregation. Happy for you and flock. "Houston, we have one less problem."

SamKnisely said...

Congratulations, Dan! May God strengthen and help you, your family, and your new ministry! I've greatly appreciated your teaching and books (& H & T) and look forward to catching some of your sermons.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Congratulations to you AND the church. It's a win-win, for sure.

So glad you're 'back in the saddle' as a pastor, for which you are so abundantly equipped.

Julie and family

Seth said...

Houston... we've got a blogger pastor... Congratulations! May you be a blessing to many.

Daryl said...

Great news!

The IT world will never be the same...

So happy for you Dan.

jmb said...

Mazel tov! I hope your greatest expectations will be exceeded, and I'm sure your church will be nothing like a bleak house.

Susan said...

I say Sir Aaron's church got a wonderful 2-for-1 pastor/IT expert deal! :)

We will miss you here in CA, though.... :(

Terry T said...

Congratulations!

Jason Engwer said...

I'm glad to hear about that, Dan. I'll be praying for you, your family, and your church.

VcdeChagn said...

Congrats Dan! What a blessing for you and for the church!

Pierre Saikaley said...

Wishing you all the best at this new church. This is the culmination of a few years of prayer and planning isn't it? I'm glad you found the place where God wants you now.

Blessings

GrammaMack said...

Congratulations, Dan! What a blessing for everyone!

WT said...

That's super! Welcome to Houston where the people are always very sweaty!

I used to live up near your (new) neck of the woods. It will be good to have a church I can recommend to my friends/family up that way.

I go to Cornerstone Christian Fellowship (cornerstonecf.net) waaaay down south where Hi-way 6 curves towards 288.

Pony and Petey said...

YAY! You're here!!! You look great in the office = )

The church restocked World-Tilting Gospel (the first shipment sold out before I could get a copy) and I started reading it last night. I think it may answer some of those questions I have for you.

So I'll leave you alone for now...thanking God for our new shepherd.

Sincerely, one of your sheepies = )

mike said...

Welcome to Texas.

Thomas Louw said...

Oh Pastor Dan Phillips.

I’m so glad someone picked up your hat, praise God.

I wish I lived in Texas so I could walk over and give you a bear hug.
(How about a post on how God carried you through all these years of “waiting”)

Rachael Starke said...

Oh I am having a full on Charismatic "praise Jesus" hand-raising moment over this.

(On the inside only, Frank. Don't panic.)

I may have shed a tear over Sir Aaron's comment about Dan moving from being his "paper pastor"...

And please, Dan, put those years of mad IT skillz to good use and setup things like a regular podcast, YouTube channel, the works.

The Bible Christian said...

Dan

Keep emitting the Word and give Him all the glory and He will be faithful.

Congratulations!

Thomas Louw said...

Dan.

You need to update you blogger profile:)

Nash Equilibrium said...

Dan will now get to be in charge of Missions Control in Houston. Wow that must be God!

candy said...

Congratulations Dan! When you get a hankering for something elevated because you miss the Sierra mountain range...go visit Enchanted Rock in the hill country not that far from Austin. It is a beautiful red rock monolith with campgrounds. In the area is a river (forgot the name) that has beautiful pools and rock areas. I will look up the name of the river. Go to the Dallas botanical gardens too. Very beautiful. The nature center near Dallas is also beautiful. God bless your new venture!

Robert said...

I see that you even got a new haircut to prepare for the heat! Just be sure to keep a hat and sunscreen handy...I speak from experience.

Esther said...

Second the vote for Enchanted Rock...was just there yesterday, though we didn't stay (ummm, DON'T try to go on Spring Break, eh?). I live near Austin, in the hill country. Welcome to Texas! God bless your ministry, and I do hope we won't have to give up reading your blog posts.

michelle said...

Congratulations to you!! May the Lord bless you and your new church family!!

JT said...

Congratulations, Dan! Psalm 37:4 proves true again. May God be with you, brother.

Aaron Snell said...

May your labor there among the saints be long and fruitful...though not necessarily "fruitful" :)

And enjoy the green of east Texas! Though you pay for it in humidity...

Stan McCullars said...

Congrats, my brother!!!

Now make that bookcase look more like a, well, BOOKcase!

May God richly bless you as you continue to serve him.

Steve Lamm said...

Dan,

I am overjoyed for you and for your new flock. I know that you have long desired to be teaching God's word in the local church full time.

I'm thankful that God brought you and this church together. I also look forward to being able to hear your weekly sermons on line very soon!

Blessings,
Steve Lamm

DJP said...

You've all been very gracious and encouraging (including, unusually, the raters), and I appreciate it. I particularly appreciate your prayers.

Dave Sherrill said...

Pastor Dan,
You won't have enough energy for this. But God...

You won't have enough patience for this. But God...

You won't have enough wisdom for this. But God...

You won't have enough money for this. But God...

You won't have enough words for this. But God...

In other words, you will have everything you need, amply supplied by your gracious Father through the Son by the Spirit.

Congratulations Pastor Dan. Shepherd the flock and be gracious enough to let them serve you with joy and generosity.

Congratulations, Sir Aaron. You have blessed your church, your city, and your state by seeking a man who knows the gospel of Christ.

Many of us look forward to attending vicariously through podcast.

Dave Sherrill said...

Time to update that Blogger profile, eh Pastor? This ain't Californy anymore.

DJP said...

Good point, all. Profile = updated.

Morris Brooks said...

Dan,

Welcome to Texas. We are a better state now that you are here. It is good to have another Calvidispibaptological pastor in Texas.

LeeC said...

So very happy for you and your family!

Don't forget to pray for those of us still trapped behind the Rainbow Curtain.....

Sye TenB said...

Congrats Brother! The Calvidispiebaptogelical is moving closer (well physically anyways) to the Calviamilwithpostmilleaningspresby Ten VarfenKlavermann. I'll make it a point to darken your door if I'm ever in the neighbourhood.

DJP said...

Yes! Do!

trogdor said...

Congratulations! Awesome news!

And now Sir Aaron can post questions here and be immune from the "did you ask your pastor?" retort. Well played.