Pastors as Navy Seals?

Last night there was a segment on Nightline  about vacations offering the opportunity to train like Navy Seals.  The people who paid for these vacations were typically men who willingly paid $2000 per week to experience the grueling aspects of this elite military training operated by former Navy Seal instructors.  I had just finished stating my disbelief about anyone actually paying for such a vacation when I saw a familiar face on the screen–Pastor Alyn E. Waller of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church.

Although he probably would not recognize me, I have been in contact with Pastor Waller for most of my life.  He is good friends with my father-in-the ministry.  At one time, he preached at my old church’s afternoon service every year for Men’s Day.  However, the church eventually phased out the majority of its afternoon services and never managed to find another place for Pastor Waller in its preaching rotation.  In a lot of ways, I don’t think many of us fully appreciated the magnitude of this preacher because he was so accessible to us.  Besides, we knew of him before Enon grew into the megachurch that it is today.

As a minister, I have always admired the story of this man from Ohio who turned an average-sized congregation into one of the largest churches in the Philadelphia area.  Pastor Waller’s story is the quintessential dream for most budding African American ministers.  He is a gifted leader who preaches, sings, and plays the organ.  He is also a dedicated family man.  His life serves as proof of what God can accomplish through dedicated individuals.  I always knew that I would see him on a national news program someday, but I didn’t expect it to be on this particular episode of Nightline.  Nonetheless, he handled himself well and even explained his rationale for going on such an extreme vacation as a minister.

“I appreciate the military. I appreciate knowing how to handle myself. I don’t believe being a person of faith means you have to be a sworn pacifist,” Waller said during his Nightline interview. “At the end of the day I am a man and I like toys and running around with other fellas and learning how to fight. It’s fun.”

I am proud of Pastor Waller for showing that ministers do indeed have the right to take vacations, nurture their diverse hobbies, and have fun away from their congregations.

Here is the clip from his segment on Nightline.

video platform video management video solutions video player

What are your thoughts?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About Spencer

Spencer T. Clayton is a typical millennial who believed his mother when she told him that he was capable of accomplishing great things (and as a result has amassed a large amount of student loan debt). When he isn’t blogging, he is either out with friends, writing and performing music, or busy working as an Executive Pastor and Consultant while simultaneously pursuing a PhD in Public Affairs.

  4 comments for “Pastors as Navy Seals?

  1. Victoria
    June 20, 2012 at 10:50 am

    I am not sure about how I feel. I have a little mixed feeling. I don’t like war games.

    • June 20, 2012 at 1:27 pm

      I understand. still, people have very eclectic hobbies. although I probably wouldn’t have chosen the Navy Seal vacation for myself, no one could stop me from vacationing a place with an obstacle course inspired by Ninja Warrior.

  2. Louis
    June 20, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    I would agree with you, man. I think it’s pretty cool. I might like to try someday. He’s enjoying the man God created him to be; can’t be nothing wrong with that! We spend so much time being “religious” that we forget that God gave us gifts and talents meant for use, both for blessing and pleasure. It may be because of the religious history of America, but we only give value to things like work and church, even though God created everything on this earth for us to enjoy. The man likes to box and to be outdoors, then let him enjoy it. It’s not about the action, it’s about the intent. A knife isn’t evil, it’s the person that wields the knife for malicious intent that is committing the evil.

    • June 20, 2012 at 1:25 pm

      I agree. it’s just unfortunate that many of us feel that there’s no room left to enjoy our lives once we commit to serving in ministry. besides, Pastor Waller probably created some amazing sermon illustrations from his experience. that’s the beauty of being in ministry–God allows us to use the things that we enjoy in order to bless others.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *