Introducing the new Mission director, Clayton Coates

In Romans 11:34-36 we read, “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counselor?…For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be glory forever. Amen.”

In the front of my first Bible is written, “On September 23, 1982 I became a Christian.” That was the beginning of my journey of living out this passage as I knelt, with my parents by my side, and surrendered my life to Jesus. Several years later, in 1994, I surrendered my vocation to Jesus. I walked down the aisle and made that decision public. The next day, while enrolling at a Bible College, I received my first job as a youth pastor.

Over the past 25 years I have had the privilege of serving on staff at some amazing churches as a student, singles, as well as lead pastor. I heard it said that everything God plants, He intends for it to grow. I believe that is largely true and have found that with a focus on team, encouraging others, God’s word, and never asking someone else to do something that you are not willing to do yourself is vitally important. Together we can achieve great things!

I’m beyond excited to bring the experiences of my past 25 years in ministry, the best practices of the business world, join them with the blueprint and timeless redemptive truths of God’s word and watch what Jesus does in and through the beautiful ministry of the Mission. But it’s important to know that I do not come alone. In 2000, I said “I Do” to my wife Allison and in 2002 we began filling our quiver! Six children later we believed that God wanted us to transition from having kids to watching them grow. My family is the biggest blessing in my life and their heart for others and ministry is not just heard, but seen.

I want to say thank you to John Saltee, the past and present staff of the Mission, and all of you who have partnered with this amazing ministry to tackle a huge challenge we face as a community, state, and country. There are countless stories of life change which have been written, but there are still countless stories to come. Together with you, my family, the leadership of the Rescue Mission Alliance, those who have gone before us, and most importantly Jesus, the future is extremely bright and I, for one, am ready to lead and love like Jesus to the best of my imperfect ability. As Romans says and as this letter began, “To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”