By Tim Harlow
(From our series “The Best or Worst Advice I’ve Ever Received.”)
The best and worst advice I ever received was from Sky Allen, the previous minister at Parkview (then the Tinley Park Church of Christ). I got the same advice from my friend Haydn Shaw, who was a minister in the area. When I asked them whether I should accept the senior minister position here in 1989, both of them very strongly said “NO.” The place was a divided, leaderless, and visionless church that was being held together with duct tape by the area church planting organization. Looking back 24 years, I would have told me the same thing. It was good advice.
However, it was a very definitive call from God when we came to visit. (And Bob Russell had already filled his “preaching understudy” position with that Dave Stone guy.) We are now glad we didn’t listen to their advice, because when God calls, it doesn’t matter what anyone else says. But I have to admit, those early days made me think three days in the belly of a fish might have been a better choice.
Tim Harlow, senior pastor, Parkview Christian Church, Orland Park, Illinois