Scott

I loved God but did not like church and puffy hair evangelists

Going to a major denominational church was a common memory in my life up until I was in third grade. An abrupt change during this period in the life of our family, however, had a lasting impact on my views toward church. I remember the anger, mixed with pain and disappointment, that my father expressed as he stood in the center of the living room and read the letter from our church. Then, with great hurt and frustration, he ripped up the letter. We never went to church again.

Let me give you some background

My parents were hard workers and generous with people who really needed help. I remember watching my father, who was a methods engineer; build custom sized chalkboards for classrooms in the church. He fixed what was needed around the church and apparently gave a frequent tithe.

I don’t know all the details, but my parents invested heavily in a mining company. Like most in this country during the post WWII era, they were pursuing the American dream. Unfortunately, a business partner took assets from the company and left our family deep in debt. Determined to pay back the debt, my father worked long hours, causing a stressful family environment at home. He worked two to three jobs at a time, choosing swing, and graveyard shifts to free up extra time for other employment opportunities. In what little free time he had, he worked as a handyman fixing roofs, toilets, and anything else he could to make ends meet.

During this time, my mother also went to work to help with the financial situation at home. Growing up with both parents working long hours caused me to have to adjust to a different lifestyle. This meant that I was a latchkey kid for most of my childhood. I grew up watching Gilligan’s Island and The Brady Bunch after school most of the time. Because of his demanding work schedule, my dad was rarely able to attend my sporting events. He only saw a couple of my early little league baseball games up until about fifth grade.

Now back to the beginning

Walking across the living room, my father paused to read the contents of a formal letter from our church. After hearing him rant over the contents of the letter, I understood my father’s pain. It was just days after a loving, but meager Christmas. The church sent a letter to my parents letting them know that since they had not tithed in a while they would be taken off the church membership unless they tithed immediately. My mom and dad were working extremely hard just to make ends meet. They wanted to do the right thing and pay back the debt and the last thing they needed was a discouraging letter about money from the church.

The church did not ask them if everything was all right or offer any guidance or assistance. The church was concerned with money because they had to pay the denomination a certain amount per member. If the member was not tithing, then they could not stay on the church membership list. To their credit my parents did not bad mouth God or go on long rants against the church, but it was easy to see their deep hurt because of the situation.

I, therefore, always had a respect for God. I did not know Him personally; He was just the Man upstairs. However, I did dislike churches and had a special disdain for the puffy hair televangelists who seemed to always be motivated by money. When I was twenty a girlfriend started going to a home bible study. Her life began to change and I thought that I needed to protect her from this cult. All churches were cults to me.

I accompanied her to bible study with suspicion, but was met with warm hugs and food. They were not weird. They did not ask for money. They actually loved God and expounded the Bible. I was a little embarrassed that I said I loved and respected God, but did not know His Word.

I began reading the Bible on my own, and though I did not understand it all, one part was very clear. I needed to overcome my resentment and commit myself to Jesus. That is where my venture with God all started. I wanted to love and serve God in truth. I wanted real answers to life’s problems, not this fake Christianity I had seen in our old church and on T.V. I did not want to blindly follow someone. I sought out answers on why we should do things. If I could not find good Biblical reasons for doing something then I wasn’t going to do it.

I think that is what makes me the way I am and why I answer Bible questions live on the radio program No Other Doctrine. I am far from perfect and I do not have all the answers, but I know more than enough to enjoy a thrilling and satisfying life walking with Jesus.

I think there are many people out there like me who respect God, but are hesitant about church and preachers.

I know how you feel. That is why we don't take an offering. It is an honor to give so we make it available but it is not the focus of our services. There are no gimmicks and there is no pressure to give. We won't embarrass you as a visitor. I invite you to come talk to me at Cross Christian Fellowship.

You will find many people just like you who are warm and welcoming. I have found that Jesus and church makes sense out of life. I think you will too.

 

Blessed wishes,

Scott Thom

 

 

 

 

"Like"

No Other Doctrine

on Facebook

 

Profile

General:

Born and raised in Albuquerque, NM Scott moved to Houston, Texas in 1981. During his stay in Houston Scott met and married his wife Kathy. They moved to California so Scott could attend Bible College. Scott and Kathy have three children, Michael, Maria and Carissa. They currently reside in Albuquerque, N.M.

Education:

Scott graduated from Manzano high school and attended the University of New Mexico until he moved to Houston. In California he attended Calvary Chapel Bible College Twin Peaks and then Calvary Chapel West Covina Bible College from which he graduated in May of 1988. Scott also completed Calvary Chapel Golden Springs Master's and Pastoral programs.

 

Ministry:

In 1988 Scott became an associate pastor with Pastor Raul Ries at Calvary Chapel Golden Springs (a 12,000 member church) in Diamond Bar, California. He was heavily involved in many ministries. The Christian bookstore Scott managed was awarded as one of the top 100 in the country. Scott taught in the Bible College for 16 years and also was an instructor for Calvary Chapel Golden Springs Pastoral School. He taught many classes but specialized in Systematic Theology.

He recruited and trained over 3500 new believer instructors for the Somebody Loves You Crusades, 900 of which were active when Scott left. Scott also was involved in managing the computer network for Calvary Chapel Golden Springs and developing some of Pastor Raul Ries' books.

Notables:

Scott was heavily involved with the making of A Venture in Faith video (a documentary of the history of the Calvary Chapel movement).

        Law Enforcement Chaplain

He was a chaplain to the Los Angeles County Sheriffs putting in many hours in a patrol car ministering to the deputies and the public. He was an Albuquerque Police Department Chaplain and is currently a Valencia County Sheriff's Chaplain. 

Scott received the distinguished “Life Saving” medal for performing CPR on a man who died of a heart attack. Paramedics arrived on scene and were able to resuscitate the man. The man survived with some physical limitations.

Scott has traveled all over the United States, parts of South America and Israel.

Moody Monthly Magazine article Kingdom People 1996 "Miracle in the Details"

Book:

"Discipleship on Fire, A step-by-step process to discipling anyone

Click Here to Get 7 audio studies on Discipleship Free!

 

Podcasts:

Leadership from the Cross

We are excited to announce this leadership program exclusively for radio-on-demand format.  It is a half hour leadership training broadcast.  You will be able to subscribe to it on iTunes at the start of 2016.

No Other Doctrine

The apologetics radio program No Other Doctrine is available for subscription in iTunes and most podcast applications on your mobile phone.

Church:

Scott Thom is the pastor and founder of Cross Christian Fellowship of Albuquerque. This church started with five people on Sunday nights in a small Methodist church in June of 2004. They currently are located at 6721 Edith Blvd NE Suite C Albuquerque, NM 87113..

Radio Programs:

You can listen to Pastor Scott answer questions live on the radio on the Bible, doctrine and reasons for the Christian faith on the program No Other Doctrine. No Other Doctrine can be heard on Saturday Mornings at 9:oo MST on KNKT 107.1 FM, Albuquerque, NM.  

 

Follow Pastor Scott on Facebook

"Like"

Leadership From The Cross

on Facebook