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Rev. Dr. Robert Austell, Jr.

Associate Pastor for Worship and Adult Discipleship

I belong to God, through the gracious gift of Jesus Christ, in whom I believe and trust as Lord and Savior. I often speak of God’s grace and do so out of deep experience and gratitude for that grace. I also treasure God’s Word as truth, also a gift to us.

I have been married to Heather since 1992. We met through InterVarsity in college and have three wonderful daughters: Walker, Abby, and Liz.

I am an ordinary man who has been loved by an extraordinary God. I love the Church and the way God draws people to the hope of the Gospel in and through it. I am humbled by the grace of God in my life and I desire to share that grace with those inside and outside the church. At the end of the day, all talents, experience, qualifications, and personality aside, my desire is to show people the love, truth, and grace of God in Jesus Christ. I hope those characteristics shine through in my preaching and teaching ministries as well as in all the words and actions of my daily life.

I am on the front end of the GenX generation (b. 1968) and find myself culturally bi-lingual between the generations that came before me and those that follow. This ability to understand and communicate culturally with my elders, peers, and younger generations has informed my understanding of worship and mission for a multi-generational Church.

In a similar fashion, musically I read the notes and play by ear. I am a classically trained pianist (some 14 years’ worth), but have also been playing by ear since I was five years old. Before going to seminary I worked as a songwriter, session musician, and sound engineer in Nashville, and continue to be a frequent worship leader at conferences in and out of the denomination. I also write and record music, but probably enjoy even more working with younger or amateur musicians to record and flesh out their ideas.

I have found authentic friendships and community the best place to seek and speak truth in love. Even when differing theologically or otherwise, I have found a freedom and invitation to share honestly as I listen and learn from friends of all perspectives inside and outside the church.

I am deeply a people-person, but also cherish times of solitude to recharge and renew. I love technology, but as a tool rather than an end in itself. I am a laid-back, type-A person. That means I am naturally administrative and organized, but I also don’t stress over disorganization or disorganized people. I’m also pretty quietly competitive. Heather has unlocked the secret of my organization-meets-competition with “You couldn’t possibly fit all those dishes in the dishwasher… bags in the trunk… etc…” I take God seriously, but don’t take myself too seriously and love to laugh.

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