RonnieHolderby was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, raised as part of a family of seven—fourboys, one girl, with a loving Mother and a hard nose but loving Father. Ronniewas taught to always work and play hard. His goal? Become a real man’s man. Heset out to out think, outwit, outwork anyone he came across, and outfight them,too, if the situation required. He didn’t talk about his feelings and nevercried—he was taught real men don’t do that, and they never give up. He becamesuccessful in the world as an owner and CEO of a large construction company.His craft was finish carpentry, He loved to build homes and owned multiple homes,had nice cars, trucks, boats and all kinds of recreational toys. He was a husbandto a beautiful wife and father to three strapping boys. He was good at the gameof baseball and played many years for the love of the game. He and his twinbrother managed and coached a men’s traveling team that went around beatingteams in other states. When he was out with the boys, he laughed heartily, wentto strip clubs, drank hard, snorted cocaine in crazy amounts, and stayed out solate that some nights, he never came home at all.
Yup, makeno mistake about it, big Ronnie Holderby, Texas drawl and all, who lived forhimself first, knew the definition of a man. Problem was he didn’t know God’sdefinition of a man. And he was about to find out.
It allhappened the day his eldest son, Lance, told him he was addicted to crystalmeth. Ronnie, having just recently kicked his life of addiction to cocaine andalcohol abuse, felt something bubbling to the surface that was unfamiliar. Tears.He felt responsible for his son’s affliction—that his own addictions had led tohis son’s addiction—and it broke him. He fell to his knees and cried out toGod, a God who he hardly knew, and told Him that he would do anything to sparehis son from his own struggles in life. The prayer seemed to set in motion theman Ronnie was about to become.
When hefound out that Lance was stealing tools from him and selling them to supplementhis addiction, Ronnie found himself being thrown right into the fire—he had todecide whether to handle the situation himself or call the police. It was thehardest decision of his life. Lance was handcuffed and arrested in the houseand taken away as the family watched in horror. Ronnie was once again aheartbroken dad, husband, and man who had made a mess. But the tears were justgetting started.
Alongsidethe D.A., Ronnie pleaded for custody of his son, informing the court that hewould get him into a rehab facility in Louisiana, far from his circle of badinfluences. The judge agreed.
A year anda half later, the Holderby’s flew to Louisiana to take part in a week longintervention with Lance who had been clean for a year. Ronnie, Teresa, andsons, along with eight other families, took turns sitting in the middle of alarge circle to share how their child’s actions had hurt them. If the tears hadflowed in the past months, it was nothing compared to the crying that tookplace that week.
On theplane ride home, Ronnie felt wiped out. His twelve-year-old son, Brett, seatednext to him, turned and said, “Pop, this family needs to go to church.”
Ronniedid a double-take, then said, “You’re right, son. Yes we do, and I’ll find usone.” A friend suggested that Ronnie and family should go hear a young pastorby the name of Miles McPherson over at Horizon Church. After attending forthree months, Brett once again delivered a jaw-dropping bomb. “Pop, I want togo to the front when the altar call is given this Sunday to ask Jesus to comelive in my heart, but I think we should all go as a family. I don’t want to goalone.”
Thatfollowing Sunday, when the altar call was given, Ronnie, Teresa, and sons Brettand Luke prayed and gave their hearts to Jesus. But it wasn’t until they wentinto the room to the right of the stage to receive prayer that Ronnie’stransformation went into high gear. “I could feel the sin pull off me in layersand the weight of my sin being lifted off my shoulders,” says Ronnie. He stayedin that room, and cried for what seemed like hours. “When I came out, I was anew man. I new God was giving me a second chance with my new life,”
Months later, Ronnie was drivingdown the 15 freeway on his way to one of his job-sites when he felt God tellinghim to turn his truck around, go to the Miles Ahead office and tell Pastor Milesthat he was willing to serve in any way Miles needed.
“I’m on myway to work, God,” Ronnie answered back. “I don’t have time for that.”
But God waspersistent with the CEO. “Turn your truck around.”
Finally herelented. He arrived at the office about the same time Miles was arriving. “Hi,do you remember me? God told me to come and offer myself. I’m here to dowhatever you need.”
Soon afterthat, Ronnie was using one of his flatbed trucks to haul equipment for a MilesAhead Crusade happening at the Sports Arena. From the way his back and legsfelt, it was grunt work, but from the way his heart felt, he knew somethingsignificant was happening. “I suddenly started to feel a joy and fulfillmentwith purpose that I had never known,” Ronnie adds. “The more I gave to the Lord, the more Hegave back.”
And hehasn’t looked back since. He and his wife are “all in” when it comes to theGod-given vision of the Rock Church, and an example of what it means to begenerous with time, talent, and treasure. He and Teresa are grateful for theirnew life in Christ serving faithfully as volunteers in many ways since theRock’s inception nearly fifteen years ago: Ronnie started and led Sundayministries, including Parking, and Set-up/Breakdown; he helped develop AltarCall, Small Groups, and served on Sunday’s as a volunteer pastor and counselor.Fourteen years ago, he established the Rock Men’s Ministry, and volunteered formost of that time as the leader, though today, he is on staff as the group’sPastor. “The Rock Men’s Ministry has been assigned by God to cultivate and reproduceimpactful Men of God, who are also spiritual servant leaders. Real menare humble. Real men are servants. Real men forgive. Real men don’t manipulateor cause division. Real men sacrifice their desires for their families. Realmen give their lives away. Real men love and know Jesus, pointing others toHim. And therefore, real men in surrender to God pray, worship and cry.”
Note: Lance Holderbywas delivered from his addiction and saved. He is married to Jenny Holderby whois saved and they have two beautiful little girls Allie and Carley who loveJesus.
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