A Picture is Worth…

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Welcome to my very first blog post! I’ve wanted to do this for a while, but I needed to sharpen my focus to hopefully bring value to you. The final prompt was this 1931 Model A.

Barn Find… A couple months ago, my father and I were headed to an auction…a favorite pastime of the Wigfield men. Before we even left for the sale, however, my father mentioned to me that an acquaintance of his had an old car sitting in a barn that he needed to sell. On a whim, we decided to forgo the auction and take a look at the car. This decision turned out to be the closest I will ever come to a reality TV show. Under old blankets, sheets, dirt, and other barn stuff, we found this car!

The Game Changer… If this was all there was to the story, it would be fun. But what we discovered next changed everything. When I was handed the title to the car, we discovered that the owner’s name was Daniel Hartley Kerns. My dad and I both smiled, and my dad asked, “Where did you get that middle name, Hartley? That’s an unusual name.” My dad would know, because that’s his first name. Before the elderly gentleman could answer the question, his wife chimed in, “He was named after a preacher.”

Turns out, Daniel Hartley Kerns was named after my grandfather! Years ago, my grandfather planted a church in Paw Paw, West Virginia, and he led Daniel’s parents into a relationship with Jesus Christ. These folks were both alcoholics, and their marriage had almost disintegrated. But they found freedom from their addiction, and God healed their marriage. When their son, Daniel was born, they gave him the middle name of Hartley in honor of my grandfather. I was planning to sell this car at a nice profit until that moment!

So What… You might wonder where all of this is going. Here’s the point. My grandfather was a church planter. He planted churches all over western Maryland, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. But he made a living selling paint and hanging wall paper. In his footsteps, my father served as a pastor for over fifty years, and for many of those years he supported our family by working as a banker and building houses. I did not plan to be a pastor. I am a businessman who planted a church. I guess it runs in the family.

So today I am dedicating my first post to my father and my grandfather…and to the idea that business can have divine purpose. I do not believe in the divide between the sacred and the secular. In fact, the call to business and the call to ministry are equally valid and sometimes joined at the hip. That is what this blog is all about.

I would love to hear your story!