Pastor and Staff

BELIEVE  |  BELONG  | BECOME

WH

Sr. Pastor

Tell us about you and your family?

I’m an Atlanta native who grew up in Lawrenceville, Georgia. My wife Shelbie is from Brandon, Florida. Not growing up in the church, I gave my life to Jesus Christ in high school and soon accepted God’s call to serve in the ministry. I met Shelbie at Samford University, in Birmingham, AL. Directly after graduation, I served in Botswana, Africa for two years as a missionary with the International Mission Board and Shelbie served a year as a missionary nurse in Tanzania, Africa. Following our separate times of service in Africa, we got married and moved to Southwestern Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas in 1999. I’ve preached at numerous camps, conferences, and churches throughout my ministry. Following seminary we moved to Atlanta to serve on staff at First Baptist Church Atlanta. We were blessed with two sons, Evan Thomas Brown in 2003 and Corey in 2005.  Anytime I preach, a central theme is found, “We were created by God and for God. We will never realize the great potential of our lives apart from God. We will never experience the life God desires for us, if we don’t have passion for the One who gives life.”

 

What is your favorite book and why?

My favorite book would be The Pursuit of God by AW Tozer.  It is like drinking water from a fire hydrant.  A tiny little book jam packed with sugary goodness.  I got my first copy on a recommendation from a pastor friend while serving in Botswana.  It only cost 12 pula and worth every thebe.

 

What is your favorite scripture passage and why?

John 16:33 has meant so much to me, especially as a new Christian.  It is so important for us to know bad things will come our way on this side of heaven, but Jesus is in control and has taken care of everything.  Good stuff.

 

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

I’ve had a few and some don’t seem so appropriate on our church website... I was invited to preach a revival in northeast Georgia when I was in college.  I was pretty pumped and in all my excitement I forgot my Bible (sermon notes too) in my car.  I didn’t realize my mistake until I was making my way to the pulpit.  Great first impression in a revival, “excuse me Ma’m, can I borrow your Bible.”

 

If you could have lunch with anyone alive today who would it be with and why?

While I love hanging with my wife, I am going to choose someone that I normally can’t or don’t have lunch with.  It is tempting to choose the Dali Lama or the Pope or a president, or Dale Murphy (done that!), or even Nelson Mandela, or some of my favorite preachers but I think I would choose...  Brian Regan.  He is simply the funniest man alive.

 

What do you love most about WestHills Church?

My list is long. I have been a part of the church since its inception and have seen so many remarkable and wonderful things about our fellowship, but what I love most about WestHills is that we (all of us) actually try to do God’s will.  We don’t always get it right and we have to make changes along the way but that is our ultimate goal...  To do church God’s way.

 

WH

Teaching Pastor

Tell us about you and your family?

I was born in East Point, Georgia, but I spent my growing up years in Vidalia, Georgia. At the age of 14, I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior and as a college sophomore I surrendered to the ministry. After graduating from the University of Georgia with a degree in Psychology, I moved to Memphis, Tennessee to attend Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. During my time in seminary, my Mamma set me up with a beautiful south Georgia girl named Stephanie. After five dates, we got engaged and were married eleven months later. We have been married for almost twenty-four years and God has blessed us with four wonderful children. Our oldest daughter, Virginia recently graduated from the Grady School of Journalism at the University of Georgia. She currently works full time in the UGA athletic department and is getting married this summer. Our oldest son, Marty Jr., is a student at Kennesaw State University. He is also a certified Crossfit instructor. Our youngest daughter, Masey is an actress and she also attends Kennesaw State University. Finally, our youngest, Stephen, is a seventh grader at Landmark Christian School.  In addition to my degree from the University of Georgia, I have a Masters of Divinity from Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary and a Doctor of Ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. I have been privileged to pastor five churches.

 

What is your favorite book and why?

Unbroken is my favorite book. It is the true story of the survival of Louis Zamperini. It has more twists and turns than any book I have ever read. Just when you think it couldn't get any worse, it does. Louis somehow survives, and he is forced to deal with hatred and unforgiveness. He discovers that his only way out is through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I have never been more engrossed in a book nor have I ever been more emotionally moved by its conclusion.

 

What is your favorite scripture passage and why?

Philippians 4:6-7 helps me deal with circumstances that are beyond my control. I would rather experience God's peace over my worry any day of the week.

 

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

It was my first day of class at the University of Georgia. I didn't understand the bus schedule, so I was late to my first day of Chemistry. When I opened the door to the class, I was stunned to discover that I was right by the professor looking up at 300 students in stadium seating. I tried not to cause any commotion, but I could not find a seat. As I walked up the stairs looking for a seat, I tripped and almost fell on my face. I was so embarrassed that I took off walking as fast as I could until I reached the back of the auditorium.

 

If you could have lunch with anyone alive today who would it be with and why?

I will always chose my wife, Stephanie. I like being with her more than anyone else.

 

What do you love most about WestHills Church?

Missions and how they are able to get so many people involved both locally and globally.

 

WH

Student Pastor

Tell us about you and your family?

I will never forget the night that Sarah walked into my life.  We were in Dallas, Texas at the House of Blues watching a Needtobreathe concert.  The moment she smiled and said “hello” changed my life forever!  We married in 2009, just nine months after meeting.  I graduated from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in the fall of 2010 and moved into full-time ministry shortly after that.  We welcomed our first son, Brackston, in August of 2011.  Tyson was born in November of 2012, and Lydia in February of 2014.  #diaperfreein2016

 

What is your favorite book and why?

Aside from the Bible, I would have to say “Follow Me” by David Platt.  The first time I read this book was with a group of students.  I was trying to challenge them, but I was challenged too.

 

What is your favorite scripture passage and why?

One of the first passages I memorized while being discipled is Psalms 119:9-16.  Verse 9 says, “How can I young man keep his way pure?  By living according to your word.”  Verse 15 says, “I meditate of your precepts and consider your ways.”  These verses are a constant reminder for me and help me do my best to stay in relationship with Jesus.

 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

During seminary, I was the campus housing inspector.  One Valentine’s Day I had my normal inspections to do.  After a few awkward romantic encounters (not my own!), I realized it wasn’t the best day to make rounds and stopped inspecting.

 

If you could have lunch with anyone alive today who would it be with and why?

Mark Richt, head football coach of The University of Miami.  I believe the majority of our conversation would be about Jesus and our faith in Him.  We could discuss football too and I might give him permission to begin recruiting Brackston and Tyson.

 

What do you love most about WestHills Church?

WestHills is amazing for so many reasons.  This is where I was discipled as a young adult.  I was given opportunities to hang out and teach students, and I was baptized.  WestHills allowed me to travel to Africa - where I heard from God about surrendering my life to full-time ministry.  WestHills sent me to seminary in Texas in 2008, and in 2015, they called me back to be the first full-time Student Pastor.  Oh, I love WestHills!

WH

Worship Leader

Tell us about you and your family?

I am originally from Jacksonville Florida, I moved to Villa Rica around the 5th grade. I grew up in church (my dad was a pastor) and at 13 I gave my life to Christ.  Music has always been a huge part of my life and I have played guitar since I was 12.  I met my wife, Laurice, through a friend and we were married in March of 2008 and were blessed with our son, Weston, in May of 2009.  Then along came MJ (Molly Jane) in June of 2013 and she is a spitfire for sure. We’ve have been at WestHills since its inception and truly are blessed to be able to serve and see God’s hand at work in this church.

 

What is your favorite book and why?

Rise to Rebellion by Jeff Shaara. I am not that much of a book individual but I am fascinated by American history, so this book just turned out to be a good read!

 

What is your favorite scripture passage and why?

James 1:22 because we cannot be the body of Christ if we only take in. We have to get up and MOVE!

 

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

 

What is your most embarrassing moment?

I have done this one plenty of times, but it’s always super embarrassing for me to forget the words of a song and/or lose my place…That’s always followed by a tremendous amount of nervous sweating!

 

If you could have lunch with anyone alive today who would it be with and why?

Lunch with Tom Petty and go ahead and throw the Heartbreakers in with that. Hey, because its Rock and Roll!

 

What do you love most about WestHills Church?

WestHills has a strong community of Christ Followers who seek to hear truth each week and put that into action through their own lives.  It’s so encouraging to be at WestHills!

 

 

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Phone: 770-456-9378

Fax:  770-459-3400

Email: info@westhillschurch.org

 

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