Phil Allen, Jr…”Investmentor”
I often read the story of the prodigal son in the Bible and I think about my prodigal life. A kid who grew up in church, attended every youth event, and served on the youth choir and usher team among other things growing up. When I graduated from high school, however, I also graduated from church. I went off to college to play basketball and live what I thought was “freedom” on my own away from the rules of my parents and grandparents. I didn’t attend church for at least the next six years and my self-imposed disfellowship from the church was evident in the way I lived my life, as a prodigal “living it up!”
Some years later after experiencing “rock bottom” I returned to my roots and accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior much like the son in the prodigal story in Luke 15 return home to his father. Since then I have been called to serve in ministry full-time as a pastor and I have seen my story play out similarly in the lives and stories of so many people I see leaving the church or that I meet as they are returning. The question arises, “Why do we walk away from what we know is the right path?” I realized that the answer often times is that our faith as teenagers was likely not our own, but we believed because it was what our parents and grandparents believed.
I didn’t “own my faith.”
What I mean by that is I didn’t invest in it. I didn’t guard what I believed in my heart. I didn’t investigate and learn for myself. I didn’t practice my faith. I didn’t nurture it at all.
Since being called to ministry in 2005 I have had this passion to walk alongside those who desire to be more than just churchgoers, but to mature and grow and truly be impactful on this earth for Jesus. In other words, I want to see believers THRIVE in their faith not merely survive. After all, Jesus said, “I came that they might have life and life in ABUNDANCE” (John 10:10).
Christian Standard Magazine (Twitter: @ChrStandard),
- 40 Leaders Under 40 (2012),
- They Need to See Faith (August 2012)
Favorite Food: Seafood, Grandma’s “shrimp and grits”
Hobby: Bowling, poetry, basketball, golf, billiards
Favorite City: London