You have probably met Michael on a Sunday morning. He is father to Morgan and husband to Edie. He works at two churches and also has been attending Rooted with his family since about a year ago.
Michael grew up with a Catholic father and a Jewish mother. His family was not very involved with church and Michael grew up without faith most of his early life through his school days. In 1997, he met his future wife, Edie. They dated, got married, and began their family a few years later. Here is what Michael writes of when God began drawing his heart to Him:
I thought all was going to be good from now on. I had a great wife, beautiful honeymoon, awesome house and soon to have a daughter on the way. I still was empty and lonely. We were doing okay in many areas moved multiple times in Durham, fixed up houses, worked, took care of our 3 year old daughter while out of work for 3 months, traveled but we were both so lost. We lived like that for 8 years and I almost left.
We moved to the Bethesda area of Durham, NC and Edie saw a sign for a Christmas Eve service December 24, 2005 at Bethesda Baptist Church. Now to the real question we all have to ask ourselves that she does not remember asking me…. What is going to happen to us when we die? How do you answer that when you do not know Jesus? I knew where to find the answer so we went back to church the next week. Edie filled out a connection card and the Missions and Outreach Pastor at the time was Ralph Thompson. He and his wife Carter asked us over for dinner. I kept asking why they would do that but there were many people praying for us that I was unaware of, including them. After dinner on January 20, 2006 Ralph took Edie and I aside and shared a gospel tract with us called Your Life a New Beginning. I still have the signed page. We both accepted Christ for the forgiveness of our sins and placed our faith and trust in Him alone to save us. Jesus still saves, even a wretch like me. On February 05, 2006, we made a public display of our faith thru baptism together. We poured out all of the alcohol and God removed the taste for it from me.
People who see me now think I was always like this but if they only knew my life before Jesus. Jesus certainly wrecked my life and I could never be more grateful for he who seeks to keep this life will lose it but those who lose their life for His sake will find it. The last 10 years are much better in the family of God than anywhere else is."
Here are some questions that Michael was kind enough to share his answers to!
What is your favourite passage of Scripture?
Hebrews 11:1 is my favorite verse:
"Faith is the substance of things hoped for; the evidence of things unseen. Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him."
Why is that? Edie and I had a Dessert business that we ran out of our home for 6 years. God told us to call it “Cakes By Faith”. This was just after we sold the Exterminating Business and had to trust God for the next step in our journey. He has been faithful as we have sought Him by faith.
What was important in a church that it brought you to Rooted? How long have you been here?
We were looking for somewhere close to our daughter Morgan and where Edie could intern at for her MDIV in Missiology. We have been involved for about a year.
What is something that COVID has grown you?
Although it is not necessarily COVID, I have had an increased time in prayer and with the Lord. I work in 2 churches as an Administrator in Durham and live in Oxford. This has definitely grown my faith and patience and awareness while driving.
What is your biggest hope to see happen within the Rooted family?
For it to grow and for the family to grow outwardly focused while keeping the inward growth. The body at Rooted would be built up in the faith and good works.
Prayer And praise to the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
Bro Mike Perra.
Take a moment out of your Tuesday and thank the Lord for how He is working in Michael's life! Lift up his family, ministry, and walk with Christ to the Lord and ask for His will to continue to be worked out in our brother's life.