July 10, 2022
Larry Titus and Bob Kapp
I was only two years old when my Mom became a born again Christian, and our family began attending a small church in our town. For the first few years, my parents loved it. They were involved in everything, and they basked in the feeling of community in their new Christian family.
Everything was good until there was a pastoral change. The new pastor brought with him a scandal that ended in the church splitting. Although I was too young to remember, because Adessa is MUCH older (really only three years, but I like to tease her), she remembers a lot. It was brutal! Because my parents were so involved and my Dad was on every committee, she saw and heard all of the ugliness as people who were once friends now chose sides and devoured each other.
Eventually, that pastor left, but things didn’t get better. By the time we left when I was eleven, the church went through several splits, the people endured a lot of abuse by leaders, and we’d seen far too much hypocrisy by men who acted one way in church and treated their families differently behind closed doors.
Adessa often says that by the time she was thirteen, she knew she loved Jesus, but didn’t have much to say for the church.
Thankfully, our Mom followed the advice of a former pastor and said, “Enough. We’re finding another church.” Our search led us to Christ Community Church in Camp Hill, PA, where we met Pastor Larry Titus and his youth pastor, Pastor Bob Kapp.
Adessa will tell you for her, she loved this church immediately. As soon as we attended our first service, she knew there was something different about this place. Over the next decade, these two men modeled for us how to do Christianity and ministry well.
They were men of integrity—committed to doing things honestly and truthfully.
They modeled generosity, not just encouraging people to give, but practicing and modeling generosity in their own lives.
Each week they shared the truth of God’s Word in a way that could be understood. They didn’t compromise or bend the truth, but they were practical in their application.
Neither one was perfect. They were just men who genuinely loved God and wanted to do their best to serve Him and people. They shared that often through self-deprecating humor.
They were committed to quality and excellence, believing that you give God your best, not what’s leftover.
Pastor Titus showed us what it meant to minister to men in prison.
Adessa was impressed by how Pastor Titus allowed his wife to flourish in all of her God-given talents. (A new concept for us.)
I was impressed that even though we lived far away and were not the most active or popular kids in the youth group, Pastor Bob gave us special attention—even taking me golfing.
In so many ways, these men modeled for us what it means to be a true ride or die man of God. Adessa wrote in one of her books that she doubts she would have been open to the idea of going into ministry without their influence on her life. Even today, we still model our ministry after what we learned in those teenage years.
Today, both of these men are still in full-time ministry. Even in his seventies and fighting Parkinson’s disease, Pastor Titus still travels to speak, holds men’s conferences, writes books, and teaches in a Bible College. I hope I still have their ride or die attitude when I am their age.
Even more, I hope that someday people will say about me what I can say about them: “He taught me how to represent Jesus well. He showed me how to do Christianity and ministry right. He made a difference in my life.”
That’s the legacy of a ride or die man of God.
By: Jamie Holden, Mantour Ministries
Today’s Scripture: An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient.
Since an overseer manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain.
Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it. (Titus 1:6-9, NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.