My “walk” began several months into my first church plant in 1987. A friend and member who had recently completed his walk began to pester me and wanted to sponsor me to attend a SoCal men’s weekend. I put him off repeatedly until I finally gave in to just get him to leave me alone. When asked if I wanted to walk as a pastor or layman, I said “laymen” because I liked the idea of being just one of the guys.

I did not disclose I was a pastor until the end of my 3 day walk and did so with incredible tears of joy. I discovered I was the first Vineyard pastor to walk in So Cal and shared that although my “tribe” was known for “power” evangelism, healing, worship and compassion, I had never experienced His overwhelming “power” in love through community – the tangible and palpable Presence of the Father’s love through His Body – like I did until my walk with Jesus and those men on E-44, in June of 1989.

Even though I have known the Lord since age 6, re-dedicated my life as a prodigal a couple of times, been filled to over-flowing by His Spirit, observed and experienced His miraculous gifts and power, I had never experienced His love through others like I did that weekend.

Since then, I have had the honor of serving on and off over the years as clergy for some 28 walks (a cook and a musician once each) and now for a third time on the community board member and spiritual director.

I met my wife Marla Joy on a Woman’s walk in 1992, and were married at Trinity UMC in 1993 by the Head Clergy of both our walks and have worked together in the Community off and on ever since. We have three adult children between us; all married with 6 grandchildren.

May your eyes be opened and your heart filled afresh even more so as you join us on your Walk to Emmaus. Until then, Every Blessing to you and yours…

Pastor Michael Maynard - Board Spiritual Director