Tommy Barnett, global pastor of Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona, doesn’t have many regrets. But if pressed, there are two things the 82-year-old pastor wishes he would’ve done differently over the course of his decades-long ministry.
“I don’t live in the past; I live in the future,” he told The Christian Post. “But there are two specific things I would do over if given the chance to do my life all over again: I would dream bigger dreams and I would take bigger risks. Every dream I have, God fulfilled. Every risk I took, God did exceedingly abundantly above all that I could ask for or could ever think.”
It’s this kind of tremendous faith and boldness that has made Barnett one of the most influential pastors of today.
Barnett, who also serves as chancellor of Southeastern University, entered the ministry at just 16 years old. He became the pastor of Phoenix First Assembly (now Dream City Church) in 1979. Under his leadership, the church quickly became one of the largest Assembly of God churches in the U.S., with an average weekly attendance of over 16,000.
Now led by Barnett’s son, Luke, the church has become known as “The Church with a Heart” because of its more than 260 ministry outreaches.
In his autobiography, What If?: My Story of Believing God for More… Always More. In it, Barnett looks back over a lifetime of walking with God, being directed by the Spirit, and boldly taking risks to reach more people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He shares the story of his life’s journey to highlight the power of living in obedience to the call of God.
The title, he told CP, is “not one of regret, but one of opportunity.”
“God speaks through different people in different ways, visions, dreams, and various things,” Barnett said. “God speaks to me through opportunities. In other words, when presented with an opportunity, I say, ‘That could be Godand I’m going to go down that road because if I don’t go down that road, I’ll never know if God was in it or not.
“I went down that road and God blessed it and opened another opportunity and road, and another and another. It’s looking at opportunities that God opened up and with those opportunities come miracles.”
Barnett’s ministry extends far beyond the four walls of the church. In 1994, the pastor and his son, Matthew, felt God calling them to open The Dream Center in Los Angeles, an inner-city church and outreach center that touches the lives of 50,000 people each month.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leah MarieAnn Klett