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EP 234 – Remembering Henry Blackaby with Special Guest Richard Blackaby

Replant Bootcamp
Replant Bootcamp
EP 234 - Remembering Henry Blackaby with Special Guest Richard Blackaby

Henry Blackaby was a servant of God. Henry Blackaby was an ordinary man whom God used in extraordinary ways. Henry recently passed away from this earth and is now basking in the glory of God and walking with Jesus.

In this episode, we’re back at the Replant Bootcamp Podcast with a heartwarming and insightful conversation with Richard Blackaby, a dear friend and an incredible leader in his own right and Henry Blackaby’s oldest son. Richard continues his dad’s legacy as president of Blackaby Ministries.
Richard shares his personal journey, growing from the influence of his father, the late Henry Blackaby, into a global leadership mentor. The passing of Henry Blackaby has reminded many of us of his deep impact on church revitalization and the way he modeled a God-centric life of service beyond the confines of church size. We dive into how Henry’s legacy has shaped Richard’s approach to ministry, emphasizing the importance of seeing God’s hand in every situation, no matter the challenges. Additionally, we discussed our shared passion for reading and how it fuels our growth, Richard’s upcoming back surgery, and a heartfelt prayer for our listeners. This episode reiterates the power of legacy, faith, and leadership through the lens of the Blackaby family’s journey.
Join JimBo, Richard, and many others at the upcoming Revive Summit in Pickerington, Ohio on May 21-22 – CLICK HERE for more information.
00:00 Introduction and Welcoming the Guest
00:44 Guest’s Background and Ministry Journey
01:57 Remembering Henry Blackaby: A Legacy of Church Revitalization
03:43 The Impact of Henry Blackaby’s Ministry
04:57 Growing Up with Henry Blackaby: Personal Reflections
08:34 The Challenges and Joys of Ministry
20:01 The Importance of Reading and Learning in Ministry
27:30 Facing Health Challenges and Trusting God
30:21 Closing Prayer and Encouragement

JimBo Stewart: [00:00:00] Here we are back at the bootcamp, back at it again. I hope you’re ready for the next episode. today we have a very special guest, a good friend. you know, I did not have on my 2023 bingo card. Becoming friends with Richard Blackaby, but, I’ve been blessed to get to hang out with Richard at several conferences that we’ve spoken out together and then running into each other in the airport periodically.

And, he’s one of the few people I know that travels more than me or Mark Clifton. Richard, welcome to the Replant Bootcamp Podcast.

Richard Blackaby: Jimbo, it’s my privilege to be with you.

JimBo Stewart: Yeah, I’m so grateful. I’m confident that most of our listeners. you are, but I’d love for you to give us a brief introduction of you and your ministry that you lead right now.

Richard Blackaby: Sure, I, I’m the oldest son of Henry Blackaby, that just passed away a couple of weeks ago. grew up in Canada, where he was revitalizing churches and starting them, and then became a pastor myself in Winnipeg for several years and then was called over to be the president of, the [00:01:00] Canadian Southern Baptist Seminary, trying to train pastors and leaders.

And God really just developed me into a leader, and a teacher of leadership. And so out of that, I ultimately took over my dad’s role as president of black could be ministries international. And so I just, I get to travel the world, speaking on leadership in the home and the church, and as well as in the marketplace.

And it’s a lot of fun getting to hang out with people like you and Mark Clifton, as well. That’s sort of a highlight for me each year.

even when you stalk me in airports, I, you know, once I get over the shock of that, it’s okay. for your listeners, I got a text one time from Jimbo, a picture of the back of me.

Saying, is that you? Are you at gate, uh, whatever, 27, at the Atlanta airport? And I was, so I turned around and there he was. So, just, it tells you, always, always be aware. Jimbo could be lurking somewhere at an airport near you. Ha, ha,

JimBo Stewart: never know where I might be. Well, I wanted to have you on the podcast [00:02:00]today. Just to honor your dad and his legacy, and you know, I was thinking about it, and it is very rare that I hear of a great church revitalization story that does not at some point involve um, I mentioned of Henry Blackaby, and it’s been interesting, you know, there are a few people that God uses to be truly part of a movement.

And I think Henry Blackaby is like the, godfather of the replanting and revitalization movement because he’s one of the first notable people, not the only, but one of the first notable people to really intentionally give so much of his life. to dying churches, and

I was impacted by that, personally, early in ministry.

Just the, the question of where is God already at work and joining Him there, even just that, that concept, was such a fresh concept for me as a young minister 20, 20 something years ago, when I started in ministry.

Richard Blackaby: know, it’s [00:03:00] it’s interesting too, because dad became very well known, a very popular And people always assumed that he must pastor a megachurch, like only megachurch pastors got the platform like that and were invited, was invited to speak in places like that. And he never did, pastor a large church, just a couple hundred at the, at the max.

he, he spent his whole life you know, Bringing churches back from the brink and, restoring them and, giving them hope and getting them excited about the fact that God was working all around small churches, struggling churches as well. And, so that was kind of unique. Usually the people that are talked about all the time, influential or.

People that have really big platforms to speak from and dad was kind of unique and that he never had a real large Platform never had a large church. He just God just entrusted some really encouraging truths to him He faithfully shared it and when he died a couple weeks ago I think the thing that struck me the most was how many people had a story, you know a lot of people say I was sorry to hear your dad passed but but anyone who’d ever met him and many [00:04:00] people who’d read his books They would always say, let me tell you my story about your dad and how God used him to change my life, to change my ministry, to save my marriage, to save my church.

And it just really struck me how he was the kind of person that left everybody with a story. And what a thrill to hear a bunch of those stories in the last couple of weeks.

JimBo Stewart: I always love hearing your perspective on your dad because we’ve all met people who have been given large platforms and are very good from the platform, but you get a chance to get to know them behind the scenes. And maybe they’re not

Richard Blackaby: they need to stay on the platform.

JimBo Stewart: Maybe they just need to stay

Richard Blackaby: Yeah.

JimBo Stewart: platform. And, and so I was, you know, I was.

I’m grateful to get to know you and hear you from the platform and then get to know you behind the scenes and see that you are genuinely the same person on the platform behind the scenes. and so what was it like [00:05:00] growing up, with Henry Blackaby, this kind of big figure historically for us as your dad?

Richard Blackaby: You know, he was not a superhuman person by any means. I mean, as a, as a father. I wouldn’t give him a straight A grade, you know, he was away a lot. He, took phone calls right during family mealtimes and then we never saw him again until after dessert was over and, you know, he’d go dashing off to the hospital to help parishioners out.

And, I mean, I, I remember at least two vacations that we went on without my dad because he couldn’t get away from his work. Like, so I mean, you know, folks on the family would be appalled at some of his fathering. but on the other hand, we also knew that he truly had a sense of divine calling and, being used of God and, uh, and he had five kids and all five kids kind of dealt with that differently, you know, but dad being away, dad often giving his time to others besides just his family.

but you know, for me, I just realized early on, this is a guy who he’s not trying to be famous. [00:06:00] He’s not trying to become a bestselling author. He’s just. He truly has a sense of stewardship and you know, I think later when dad was quite famous Probably the story that just symbolizes that to me. I told this story at his funeral He was going to speak at a very large gathering And, this guy was very nervous about introducing him, like, you know, some of these people they’re terrified that they might leave out some, you know, honorary doctorate you have, or some book you wrote 20 years ago that he forgets to mention.

And so he’s got like two pages of summary of my dad, all of his education and experience and everything. And he’s like, Dr. Blackby, I’ve got all this, but I’m just, I want to make sure I don’t miss anything that you think I need to say. And, and, you know, it just kind of looks like He’s going to read two pages worth of intro.

And so finally, my dad just says, look, this is what I want you to say. When it’s time for me to get up, just get up and say, here’s Henry Blackaby, a servant of God. And he said, then sit down, let me get going. He said, well, I can’t [00:07:00] just say you’re Henry Blackaby, a servant of God. What else do you want me to say?

And my dad said, well, after you’ve told him I’m a servant of God, what else could you say? What else could you say that would improve on being a servant of God? and that really was truly my dad’s, attitude was. I’m a servant of God, and you know, I saw God just put his hand upon my dad, a very ordinary pastor, and do extraordinary things with him.

Put him in front of world leaders, in the White House, other places. And then it just seemed like at a certain point he, He grew frail and old, and not that God took his hand off my dad, but he just was kind of finished with what he needed him to do. And he just kind of returned to being an ordinary person.

But Dad always knew that was going to be how it was, you know. He wasn’t, had no delusions of grandeur. He was just a servant of God, and I think that’s why God just entrusted him with so much. He knew he could, that my dad would never kind of reach out and try to touch the glory that belonged to God.

JimBo Stewart: You know, as well loved and appreciated as [00:08:00] your dad has been to so many, I know that there have been some who didn’t receive him as well, at least early on you know, Clifton has told me that, some early on gave him the nickname, the Looney Tune from Saskatoon. Clifton

Richard Blackaby: I’m not even sure I’d heard that one

JimBo Stewart: it.

Richard Blackaby: heard some other ones. you

JimBo Stewart: mean, he really did do ministry a little bit outside of the box of the normal way to approach ministry in a Western society. what were some of those things that you observed, that he did that a lot of people didn’t understand why he would do things the way he did them?

Richard Blackaby: I, I think one thing I would say is that he practiced what he preached and that’s what scared people. Like everybody says God’s all powerful, but to move a family of, seven to, you know, 1700 miles away to a church with only 10 people in it. And then think you’re going to [00:09:00] send all five of your kids to college one day when they’ve collected 90 in offerings the entire month.

Uh, people just told my dad, you’re crazy, you know, but dad said, but they, in fact, two pastors drove several hundred miles to sit down with my dad and urge him not to move to Canada. And they said, if you move to Canada, no one will know where you are. And my dad had said, well, God will know. And my dad really believed that if God knew where you were and you were where God told you to be that he would provide for you.

and people just kept saying, well, yeah, I mean, I know God provides, but you got to be practical. And my dad would say, no, you’re, I know what you’re saying. You’re saying in your head, your theology says he’s all powerful, but the way you live your life, you, you live your life as if he’s not. That he won’t, he’s not reliable, he’s not trustworthy.

Same thing when he got to Saskatoon. I mean. He literally, the first day he arrived on the field, he was already starting his first mission church 90 miles away. And people said, you’re crazy that you [00:10:00] have 10 people in your church. How could you start a mission with 10 people? And he would say, well, 10 people can’t start a church, but 10 people plus God can start anything God wants them to start.

And so he just had this, and so people just thought, he’s crazy. Like he, but I mean, you’d have, he’d say, well, how can you be crazy when you just take God at his word? And of course that, I think the key thing with my dad was, he didn’t believe that, well, we serve an all powerful God so we can just do any crazy thing that enters our head and God will bless it.

He never did that. But he would say, but if we sense God telling us to do something, then as crazy as it might appear, we’d be crazy not to move forward if we’d just heard from God. And so what seemed, and he even said sometimes, he’d say, you know, people think we’re crazy to. You know, support this mission and start this ministry.

we’re too small, they say. We have, don’t have enough money, don’t have enough people. And he would say, if you hadn’t been in the room when God spoke, it would clearly seem crazy. But if [00:11:00] you’d been there when we heard from God, you’d be just as convinced as we were. The difference is you haven’t heard from God and we have.

And so we’ve got to do what God told us to do. And, and so, you know, he wasn’t always, some people misunderstood my dad. And they thought. He just thought, hey, we serve a big God. So let’s just try and start a lot of things. He never did that. He always said, you got to remember who the master is and who the servant is.

He said, we’re just the servant. We don’t come up with a plan. But when the master tells us to get busy and fulfill his plan, we’ve got no choice but to get moving. And so once you heard from God, he said, you’d be crazy not, you’d be crazy to stay where you are when God told you to get out of your boat and follow him.

JimBo Stewart: I know you’ve heard a lot of stories about how your dad has impacted so many in a lot of different ways and aspects. What are some of the common themes of what you’ve heard in relation specifically to, church revitalization? seeing a dead church come back to life. what have been some of the best lessons that [00:12:00] you have learned and in watching your dad do that and that you’ve heard from others that his ministry has impacted them as they’ve been a part of revitalizing dying churches.

Richard Blackaby: You know, it’s one of the funnest things I think I’ve had is just how many people have come up to me and they’ll say, you know, I was at a Southern Baptist convention or I was at some conference and your dad was there and, and all of a sudden I found myself face to face with your dad and had about 10 minutes to talk with him and tell him kind of what I was going through.

And, and, and I can’t tell you how many times people have said, The next 10 minutes changed my life. This 10 minutes with your dad changed my life, and I’ll say well How could 10 minutes with my dad change your life? basically what they found was my dad had such a high view of God that it just it was contagious my dad would just Typically when he would talk with someone in a struggling church They would have become fixated on their problems.

We have no money, have no people, no support, no partners. You know, we’ve got [00:13:00] these problems. And my dad would say, well that, I mean, I know all that’s true, but what, what do you have? You have Almighty God. The ruler of the universe is in your church. He’s the head of your church. He’s the provider for your church.

What, what more do you need when you have him? And people, when they got a glimpse of that, It just completely changed things. And my dad, of course, because he always had such a high view of God, my dad was also a raging optimist. He always, he always saw the positive, he saw the possibilities. And I’ll tell you, that’s just one of the, if you want to talk about the, just the worst kind of disease that a, a leader of a struggling or new church can, can contract, it is losing sight of the head.

You know, as long as you can keep your eye on, on Christ. It doesn’t matter what you face. You can have hope. It doesn’t mean you’re not going to have problems. It might not be difficult. But with Christ, you just know that you’re not going to face a problem that’s bigger than him. And so my dad always had that view.

And so [00:14:00] whenever he was talking with someone, they always came away with hope once again, with confidence once again. They just would say, Henry, I just really needed that perspective. My perspective had changed and all I could see were the problems and I was losing hope. but you’ve helped me to see the head of the church once again, and now I’m excited about getting back and joining him with what he wants to do.

And the other thing that I would just say is, it’s not you. You can’t revitalize your church. God’s going to do that. You just have to be a willing servant. Just find your role. And that was very freeing to a lot of people because they really felt like they had to solve all the problems themselves. And boy, there were some really tough problems that were just beyond them and they were feeling overwhelmed and inadequate.

When all of a sudden they realized, wait a minute, I’m just a servant, I just, I, I stand at, at alert, ready to respond to whatever my master tells me to do. It was very freeing, to just say, well, God, you figure out what needs to happen, just tell me what you want me to do. and all of a sudden there was real freedom and [00:15:00] joy about getting to serve someone that was never intimidated by any problem in a church anywhere.

And that he always had an answer and, always had the power and resources to follow up with. It’s whatever he told you to do and that made ministry fun and my dad, my mom, they served in some really hard places but I never remembered them not being joyful, not having a good time serving God. I mean, dad literally went early on in his ministry was like taking a shotgun out of a man’s hands that had barricaded him in his house and was threatening to kill his wife and the police were all outside SWAT team was there and dad’s in there.

Taking guns away from guys, and yet they, he’d come home at the end of the day and he and mom would just be laughing at the goodness of God, you know, and just, and the joy. They just had a good time serving God and I, even in the lowest, hardest times, I, I never saw them lose that.

JimBo Stewart: How has all of that impacted the way that you approach ministry?

Richard Blackaby: [00:16:00] Well, it’s made me want to have the same kind of walk with God that my dad did. and I don’t think I’m there yet, but I know, I know it’s possible. I know what can be done. and you know, it’s like my dad went down some ancient paths deep into the heart of God. And I know those paths exist.

I’ve watched my dad disappear on them. And so it’s a standing kind of invitation for me to keep going, never to be satisfied with where I am right now. And just to know that I need to have the same confidence in almighty God that my dad did. and wherever God puts me, whoever I’m talking with, I really come to see the value of conversations and you know, I’ve just heard so many times that a 10 minute conversation with my dad changed everything and so I, I know that when God is the one who’s guiding the conversation, 10 minutes is more than enough to forever change a person and their perspective, and to give them hope and so every time I’m in a conversation with someone after a conference or during a break, I’m just always aware.

[00:17:00] This might be one of those conversations that Didn’t seem like much to me, but 20 years from now, someone may still be in the saddle serving the Lord faithfully because of a 10 minute conversation during a break time. that’s what I learned from my dad. Just, never, never treat any moment as ordinary.

If God is present, nothing’s ordinary when God’s a part of it. It might have seemed like just a going out for dinner after a meeting. Might have seemed like just a 30 minute refreshment break. But when God is a part of it, nothing’s ever just ordinary. God always has far more that he intends to do than what we would ever imagine.

JimBo Stewart: where did this passion and this high view of God and joyful optimism in the face of difficulty come from? I mean, I know from the Lord, but like, who were the influences on your dad? Who were the spiritual fathers of your dad?

Richard Blackaby: you know, he, uh, certainly his own father had a high, high view of [00:18:00]God and, was a man of strong, strong convictions and integrity. he would get transferred. He was a bank manager in Canada. And he would get transferred to some town at the end of the railroad that was, like a wild west town still in western Canada.

His dad couldn’t find a church anywhere to take his kids, so my grandfather would just start one. And even if it was just his own family for church, I think one church they started, they went eight months and it was just my dad’s family there every Sunday. But my grandfather never lost hope. He was always upbeat, always smiling, always confident.

and it just kind of taught my dad, you know, if you could pastor for eight months and have not one visitor, even though they put out a sign and they did all they could to try to encourage people to come. And yet my grandfather never lost optimism or hope. He just kept telling his sons, we serve an awesome God.

And if we’re the only ones in this whole town that want to do that, that’s fine. We’re going to still be at our post faithful and trusting. And I think my dad just a lot of that he picked [00:19:00] up from his dad. And then, of course, he just read a lot of, folks like Oswald Chambers and, you know, a lot of the great, revivalists, the people that God used mightily.

He loved just getting around those people, reading about them, reading their stories, their sermons. just wanting to, you know, like Proverbs says, if you hang around fools, you become like one. But, uh, my dad always hung around great men of God Through biographies and their writings and so on and I just, there’s several people in particular that just had a very significant impact on him and his thinking.

Chambers certainly was one. It was his kind of go to devotional book to read when I was growing up and people like that you read what they’re reading and you’re writing and you realize, well that, a lot of that was sort of incorporated into my dad’s thinking. He thought a lot the same way.

Uh, and so I, I kind of took that from him, just whether you can get around people physically or through their books, just keep hanging around great men and women of God and hope that stuff’s going to rub [00:20:00] off in the process.

JimBo Stewart: lovin to read is one of the things you and I have talked about a lot together, and so, I just wanted to ask you, what are you either, what are you reading right now, or what have you read recently that has been really impactful or helpful for you?

Richard Blackaby: you know, I’ve read like, uh, yeah, I don’t think this is audio, but you can kind of see right behind me, it’s double stack of books there that is my, to read list. I’ve got a shelf over here with about two more rows of books. That are on deck after I clear that table off. I always have books with me, when I travel.

I, there’s a couple kinds of books I try to read. I’ve been reading, uh, always reading a leadership book all the time. Some way of speaking into leadership. reading biographies of leaders. so I’m, I’ve always got a biography on the go. you know, usually I always have a leadership book on the go. just picked up a couple of new ones here recommended to me recently.

I’m just starting to get into. and also just lately I’ve been reading a lot of, books, from sometimes Puritan writers or sometimes, some of the mystic writers, just the [00:21:00] ones who just really long to have a deeper walk with God. I just love getting around folks like that. I love Puritans, because they tend to just, you know, they’ll take, they’ll write a whole book on one verse, you know, they’ll just, they’ll just sort of tease out every, every word and.

The implication of that sometimes it could be overkill, but I love I love those people that just dig deep and their walk with God or in the word of God. And so yeah, there’s a number of books. I’m thrilled that I actually have a book club with my kids, all three of my adult kids, my son in law. I’ve got a cousin who’s a seminary we tackle a book, read it, and then we meet for lunch and discuss it. And I’ll tell you, that’s. Both my boys have PhDs in apologetics and my daughter’s got two master’s degrees and my cousin’s got a PhD I’ve got a PhD. So it’s pretty high level Analysis and I love it. We have all my kids my son in law just tackling hard books and trying to Evaluate, you know, where is this [00:22:00] biblical?

Where does this is this argument? Is it does it stand under scrutiny or where is it weak and listening to my kids just? Digging in and discussing it is just one of the thrills of my life at this stage of my life. but yeah, I just, you know, I tell you, anyone who ever says to me that they’re too busy to read, has a time management issue, because there’s just always time to read it.

Might be right before you go to bed. I, like, I never, I went and picked up my granddaughter today at school for preschool at lunch that time. I never go anywhere without A book, so if it’s ten minutes till she’s dismissed, I’ve got ten minutes to read. I, if I pick someone up at the airport and they’re delayed fifteen minutes, that’s fine.

Because I, I need to finish this chapter anyway. I just, I never go anywhere. I never meet anybody for breakfast without bringing a book into the restaurant. Or else, for sure enough, they’ll be late. And I’ll be sitting there just looking at, mindlessly at the menu over and over again. So, always have a book.

always just trying to learn, trying to just seize [00:23:00] moments to Be stretched and you know, I try to read people I don’t necessarily always agree with and then some books I try to read just because it seemed like everybody’s reading it and people may ask me what I think or you know How do I feel about that?

and I just kind of want to be aware of what others are that’s influencing others to just so I I Know kind of what it says and I can kind of help people think through stuff see the good in there and then maybe caution them where it’s gets off the rails a little bit somewhere else and So, uh, I’d sure encourage people, find a way to read.

You know, you can do it electronically. I’m still kind of an old school guy. I think you can see my screen behind me. That’s, those last three rows of shelves are all biographies. I just, I love reading about leaders. I get around leaders of all sorts and just see what rubs off. What, what I learned from their mistakes and their successes and you do that all the time, you’re gonna keep getting better.

You’re gonna keep picking up wisdom from all kinds of Of other people who’ve lived [00:24:00] in centuries at times before, before you did.

JimBo Stewart: you know, you talk about the legacy from your grandfather to your dad to you, and, God has used you in some pretty mighty and incredible ways. And then to your kids, my family is currently going through, God’s heroes and everyday


Richard Blackaby: Good.

JimBo Stewart: The devotional by your boys. so I’ll recommend that, to our listeners as a good devotional with your kids.

My kids have loved it.

Richard Blackaby: Oh, I’ll tell him. I’ll tell him


JimBo Stewart: it’s been neat to see how God’s continued that legacy through you and into your kids.

Richard Blackaby: Yeah. You know, I, I’ve led a lot of different things over my lifetime, but no question, the most rewarding has been leading my kids and, and just influencing them, I think so much of the rest of my leadership. Would just, uh, be very dissatisfying if my kids had all gone off the rails and rejected my God or maybe rejected me as their parent.

and I, and I feel fortunate, in many ways, but, [00:25:00] I, in terms of what I find joy in, just watching my kids and knocking it out of the park, writing books themselves, all three of my kids are in ministry. and just, to me, I, every day I get joy from that. And so I, I, you know, I might just add and I, all my dad’s five kids are in full time ministry.

All three of my kids full time ministry. but, you know, don’t ever think that you’re turning that church around or getting that church started. It’s so important that you neglect your kids along the way because, invariably you’ll walk away from that church at some point. You won’t be the pastor, the leader there anymore, but those kids will still look to you as their dad.

You know, just having come from my dad’s funeral last, just less than a week ago, you realize what people remember about you and what they don’t. What, what they want to get up on stage and tell everybody about you and what they don’t. and so much of what I’ve put time into, you know, it’s not even going to get mentioned in my funeral.

Won’t even show up in my obituary anywhere. but, but your [00:26:00] family and friends, what they stand around and remember at your funeral. It’s sort of humbling sometimes to realize what they remember, what they don’t. and I just would say invest your life in stuff people are going to remember and appreciate long after you’re gone.

JimBo Stewart: So good. Hey, we’re coming towards the end of our time, for our listeners. I’d love to encourage you to join me and Richard and Mark Clifton and Joe Kreider and Frank Lewis and others from the replant team, will be there. as well, David Keteroa, Colin Pugh. and Rick Fisher and at the Revive Summit in Pickerington, Ohio, May 21st and 22nd.

I’ll leave a link to that event in the show notes. It’s going to be two days of encouragement and equipping, looking to the Lord and, with that high view and joyful attitude and hard places that was modeled by Henry, passed down to Richard and has influenced so many of us. So we’d [00:27:00] love to have you there.

Richard Blackaby: said, it’s just a great team. It’s if you just need to be encouraged, just find your way there. Those, you, you, you grab any of those speakers, and leaders, and they’ll give you a time, and they’ll speak into your life, and if nothing else, just get around those guys, because you’ll pick some things up along the way that’ll really bless you.

JimBo Stewart: Absolutely. Richard, two things. One, how can we be praying for you and your family, And then, after that, I would love it if you would just pray over the listeners of this podcast.

Richard Blackaby: Sure. You know, I just, uh, found out, about a day or so ago that I’m going to have to get some pretty major back surgery,

JimBo Stewart: Yeah.

Richard Blackaby: and, I’ve been kind of struggling for a couple of months with some, some pain, some numbness in my leg and, and all of a sudden I’m told, you got to get better.

Something done like in, you know, the next two weeks you need to get under the knife and get that thing fixed, or you may have permanent damage. and then I think for three months, I, I’m not supposed to lift more than eight pounds and so , so, uh, when I get to Ohio, I’ll with you guys, I’ll have [00:28:00] someone, Rick will be carrying my bags for me, , because I won’t be able to.

but you know what, I, just really trust in, in the Lord. I’ve had to cancel a couple of meetings just right around the surgery date. or get one of my sons or someone to do it for me. But, but you know, that kind of stuff happens. And, I just refuse to let that get me down. I really have for three months, I’ve had pretty well chronic pain.

And, yet, how do you have the joy of the Lord? How do you still get excited about what God’s doing when you, you can’t sleep at night because the pain is, is too excruciating. and, uh, and the Lord’s going to put me in a little school. And can you still have joy when you’re in, you know, you can’t feel your left leg or you’re what you’re walking to the neighbor’s house and you trip and fall cause your left leg just suddenly went out on you.

And so I appreciate your prayers. surgery got coming up on two weeks and I’m really praying that number one, they do a good job and get me all fixed up. And number two, I [00:29:00] can resist the temptation to try to get back at it before I’m supposed to. But, you know, I know everybody’s got stuff they face and, I just, I think maybe watching my dad, I just determined I’m not going to let stuff, even when it is painful, when it is difficult, I still, I still get to choose my attitude.

And I’m just, I just not going to let it get me down if I can possibly help it. With God’s strength, I, every time you go through a dark valley, you just ask yourself, so God, what, What can I only learn in a dark valley that you’re going to teach me during this season in my life? I know I know I know that a dark valley is not where I’m going to be spending the rest of my life But in this season there must be some things you can learn best there So teach me those lessons so that I’m a better person when I get out the other side And that would be my prayer for this this journey as well But but Jim I’ll be glad to pray for your listeners as well

JimBo Stewart: Before you do, what day is that surgery on? So we can

be praying for you

Richard Blackaby: March 15th.

JimBo Stewart: March 13th.

Richard Blackaby: yeah.

JimBo Stewart: this [00:30:00] episode will actually come out on March 13th.

And so we’ll


that out.

Richard Blackaby: a bunch of ear listeners praying for me, I’ll have extra confidence in that surgeon.

JimBo Stewart: all five of our listeners will be.

Richard Blackaby: Yeah, but if they’re, if they listen to you every week, they’ve got to be godly men of great patience and perseverance.

JimBo Stewart: Thank you. Yeah. Would you please pray over our listeners?

Richard Blackaby: Lord, thank you for these, who’ve listened to our discussion here today and Lord, I, I don’t know all their journey. I don’t know all that they’re facing right now, the problems that they’re trying to overcome, but I, I suspect they have them. They have some challenges they’re facing right now.

and some pains, perhaps just some real discouragement that they’re battling. And yet, Lord, I just pray that even in these closing moments, you would just take a moment just to shift their focus from their problems to the person, that they serve, the person that they gave their life to.

Lord, that, no matter what they face, they’d always see [00:31:00] you as a backdrop, that no matter how bad their problems might be. You’re still greater than their worst problems and and Lord for some just I pray that you would just Buy your spirit. You would just invade their life their mind their heart their emotions in such a way That they would just be overwhelmed by the joy of the Lord.

It might not even make sense to them why they were Feeling joy with all the problems they have yet Lord. I know even with chronic back pain Lord with lack of finances with criticisms That, that doesn’t exempt us from the joy of the Lord. That’s, sometimes when we feel it the most profoundly. And so I pray you would just, Lord, would you put your hand upon these listeners.

just draw near to them in a way that they can just tangibly feel your presence in their life. Lord, as they get up to preach, may they feel your hand upon them as they proclaim your word. May they speak with power and boldness and confidence. Not because of where they went to seminary, but because of [00:32:00] who fills them, and puts their words in them, and, blesses, their ministry.

And so, Lord, may these be the most blessed, fruitful, encouraging times that we’ve had in our service for you. May these truly be the best days we’ve had, Lord, the most fruitful, and all to your glory. and Lord, I pray even before this week is done, that, we would just feel the pleasure of God upon us as we serve him.

Faithfully, and for His glory, and I’d pray this in Jesus name, Amen.

JimBo Stewart: Amen. Thank you so much for taking the time to be on the podcast today.

Richard Blackaby: Always a pleasure.

church replanting, church revitalization, Experiencing God, family, Henry Blackaby, joy, Joy in hard times, legacy, Perseverance, Richard Blackaby

Jimbo Stewart

Replant Bootcamp Co-Host

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