When Rear Admiral Barry Black, USN (Ret.), 62nd Chaplain of the U.S. Senate was still in his mother’s womb, she prayed a special anointing over his life.
She was a brand-new Christian, finding religion when she was first pregnant with Black. Early on in his life, she noticed that he had a “special inclination of the spiritual,” Black told the Regent University and Christian Broadcasting Network communities at a combined University Chapel service on Monday, February 20th.
This manifested itself in Black while “playing church” with his siblings – taking the assumed role as pastor preaching sermons and replacing the word “sin” for “dirt.” He’d also hide in the church building, waiting until the janitor had left before he would kneel and pray.
“I knew even then that I felt more at home in a church than anywhere else,” said Black.
But the calling on his life was met with an obstacle: Every pastor he knew of was poor. His education took on an “anywhere but Nineveh” vibe as he burned through majors he knew were outside of his calling.
His junior year of college in Huntsville, Alabama, he remembers praying, “Okay, God. I will be a ‘poor pastor.’”
“I felt something in my spirit say, ‘Who said anything about being ‘poor?’”
As he’s following his mission, leading more than 7,000 constituents on Capitol Hill, he’s learned that the will of God isn’t always “happy-go-lucky.” This, along with the human inclination to focus on “the exterior,” according to Black, feeds the universal reluctance to live in God’s will.
Another element of refining character toward Christ and following the will of God comes from focus; to eliminate distractions and temptations that come as easily as through a smartphone device.
Those who keep this in mind will be “champions” for the Kingdom.
“You can’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires,” said Black. “My food, my meat, is to do the will of God.”
Learn more about Regent University’s Campus Ministries.