Kingsland Baptist Church senior pastor, Ryan Rush, was just 14 when he felt called to ministry. And just one year later, he surrendered to that call by securing a job as a music minister at a small country church.
So, while his friends were worrying about dating and what to do on a Saturday night, Rush was scribbling down chord progressions and finding songs to speak to the hearts of the church’s small group of believers.
“I even had to get my hardship license to drive myself to my job,” Rush said. “But it was a great experience, and I’ve been in ministry ever since.”
A few years passed, and Rush moved from his Texas home to Lynchburg, VA where he attended Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. It was here that Rush became the family pastor of the historic Thomas Road Baptist Church.
Rush learned a great deal during his time in Virginia; enough to write two books, Home On Time: Life Management by the Book and Walls: Why Everybody’s Stuck (and Nobody Has to Be), and host numerous radio and television programs.
After many years in his second home, Rush returned to his Texas roots and became the senior pastor of Bannockburn Baptist Church in Austin.
“I was the pastor there for a little over a decade when I received a call from Kingsland Baptist Church,” Rush said. “At first I said I wasn’t really interested, but the more I looked at it, the more I realized that this is what God had for us. And I’m so glad I did.”
Rush knew Kingsland Baptist Church was the right fit after hearing about the church’s two biggest passions – families and missions. So, he packed up his family and moved them to Katy where they would begin their new ministry journey.
Even though Rush was an experienced family pastor and had his own dreams for his new church, he said that he was determined not to get in the way of what was already happening at Kingsland.
“My most important role is establish a vision [for the church] and help people pray towards that,” he said. “Over the last year-and-a-half we’ve really been asking the Lord to help us see 10,000 homes be transformed by the Love of Jesus Christ.”
Rush believes the congregation can accomplish this by introducing the image of God into every home.
“If you look back in Genesis, God made man in his own image and then created a family,” he said. “So, throughout the rest of the Bible he shows himself in family terms. If the family is messed up, it is difficult to understand the nature of God.”
Having experienced hardship inside of a family can leave people comparing those who have wronged them with their Heavenly father. If you didn’t experience faithfulness, graciousness, and love in your home, than it might be difficult to believe God can give you those things.
That’s why Rush and his team have come up with specific ways to transform households.
“We want to invite families to have three meaning mealtimes a week,” he said. “If they can put down the electronics and have conversations, it can make a huge difference. “
The pastor believes that his other passion, missions, coincides with the church’s desire to transform homes and families.
“Right now we have groups of students out of every grade level who are serving everywhere from inner-city Houston to Arlington, Chicago to New Orleans, to Nicaragua,” Rush said. “When [the students] get to see the global need, it impacts how they think about missions and their role in their kingdom when they return home.”
Kingsland Baptist Church donated more than a million dollars last year to missions, and their hope is that by changing the lives of people in their surrounding community and their global community will help to equip families to raise champions for Christ.
Rush is also seeing the church through an expansion that will hopefully give the congregation of over 3,000 a second campus to reach even more families.
“We believe the best churches in Katy are yet to be planted,” he said. “And we want to be a part of what God is doing.”
You can find the passionate pastor, alongside wife Lana, and daughters Ryley, Reagan and Lily, on Sunday mornings at all three services – 8:30, 9:30, and 11:00 a.m. at Kingsland Baptist Church at 20555 Kingsland Blvd. in Katy.