I grew up in a small farming community in the Mississippi River bottoms of western Kentucky. There were as many cattle as people, and it was a thirty-minute drive to the nearest McDonald’s. My younger brother and I spent much of our time exploring the multi-acre woods behind our house and the rest tossing a baseball in the back yard.
I came to faith as a 9 year old. While I didn’t understand much more than I was a sinner in need of what Jesus did for me on the cross, the simple truths of the gospel were enough to change my heart and change the course of my life.
After high school, I attended Union University; my first intentional step towards a call to the ministry. The Christian environment and the opportunity to serve at Calvary Baptist Church as Youth Minister/Director of Urban Outreach confirmed this calling. I joyously changed my major from computer science to a double major in Christian Ministry and Psychology—joy fed in part by the freedom from Calculus II.
During my final year at Union, on a second blind date with the same young lady, I began dating the woman who would be my wife. We dated for nine months and were engaged for six.
That fall, Sallie and I departed for Wake Forest, North Carolina to attend Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS) where I completed the Masters of Divinity in Biblical Counseling and after that a Th.M. in applied theology.
It was during these years that a passion for counseling built upon the core convictions of the sufficiency of Scripture, the centrality of the local church, and the necessity of the local church began to solidify in my approach to ministry
I left SEBTS for Crossroads Counseling in Augusta, Georgia with one general goal – to learn how many ways biblical counseling could effectively benefit and interact with the life and mission of the local church. This was a challenging and rich nine years of ministry. During this time a fourth conviction began to emerge in my approach to counseling — a balanced perspective on how the gospel speaks to both sin and suffering.
Then in January 2011 our family moved back to Raleigh-Durham, NC when I accepted a position as Pastor of Counseling at The Summit Church and Adjunct Professor of Biblical Counseling at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. The exploration of how counseling can bless and advance the mission of the local church continues…
Brad Hambrick, M.Div., Th.M.
Pastor of Counseling, The Summit Church (www.summitrdu.com)
Chief Editor, The Journal of Counseling & Discipleship (www.christiancounseling.com)
Adjunct Professor of Biblical Counseling, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (www.sebts.edu)
Council Member of The Biblical Counseling Coalition (www.biblicalcounselingcoalition.org)