Pastor Rick

PERSONAL INFORMATION

Pastor Dawson was born and raised in East Liverpool, OH. He graduated from East Liverpool High School. He completed the Course of Study in 2009.

CALL TO MINISTRY

My call to ministry was no Damascus road experience. It was a long-drawn-out experience that continues today. Not that I am unsure that this is what I am supposed to be doing. Only that the Lord continues to confirm that this is what I am supposed to be doing.

I entered the ministry at the age of 35. Before this, I had been in the Air Force and worked mostly in construction after that. Neither one had prepared me for ministry. That may not have been a bad thing. I came into the ministry with no idea of what it was all about. Preach on Sunday was all I saw. I had an eye-opening experience that for the most part has been good.

Speaking in public was never easy for me. In school I would not give oral reports, I would just take a bad grade. Although still nervous the Lord continues to strengthen me.

My faith journey began at an earlier age than my call to ministry. I had grown up in a church in East Liverpool, Ohio. As a teen, I entered into a relationship with Christ. This relationship was nurtured by many in the church. But it was not an all-and-done type deal. I continued to waffle back and forth as to what I wanted and what the Lord would have me to do. It was not until a little later in life that I would make a firm commitment to Christ. I have continued to grow in that since that day.

Today, I find the most important things that I can do is have a period of time daily with the Lord in reading, praying, and being a long with God before anything else starts. Along with this time for vacation and things that I enjoy like golf help keep me focused. None of this would have been done without ta supportive wife and daughter.

THEOLOGICAL VIEW

My theological point of view is that God is in control and I am not. This means as the old song says, “where he leads me, I will follow”. This does not leave room for am I conservative, liberal, middle of the road or anything else. I am a follower of Christ. As such I go where Christ says to go and do what Christ instructs me to do.

I believe the Bible to be the Word of God, good for instruction, reproof, and living one’s life so that others may see the Glory of God in and through my life. I believe this to be the goal of Christ living in us. This is not just for clergy, but for all who call Jesus, Lord. I feel the church should take seriously the call to allow the world to see Christ in me. Do all that we can to reach and teach others about Christ.

As far as ministry goes the pastor has a role according to scripture to “equip the saints for ministry”. Preach, teach, pray and make ready those who follow Christ to do what Christ did. Go about doing good in order that the world may know Jesus.

In the church, people have been given responsibilities. I need to make sure they follow through with them and make sure they have the training and ability to do so. My job is not to micro-manage, simply to encourage and help to get it done.

For the most part, I can relate well with all age groups. Although I do tend to think outside the box for what is comfortable for some, I believe we should use what is available to us today in order to share the story of Jesus. Faith although personal is not private and we need to make Christ known.  The reason is so that others may become disciples of Christ for the transformation of the world.