VIVIAN WORTKOETTER, staff WRITER
Heath Carruth is a youth pastor at Cross Roads Baptist Church and started there in 1998. I first met him from a friend of mine that goes to church there, and I started going to their youth groups when I was a senior in high school.
He graduated from North Greenville University when it was only a college and not yet an established University. Some of his favorite things about the school at the time was their football team, chapel services, friendly atmosphere, and genuine professors.
“Their chapel services were always so enjoyable to attend. I remember one service when I could feel the Holy Spirit just fill the place, and everyone there in that room was absolutely blown away, crying, and worshiping the Lord with their whole heart. It truly changed me, and I could tell that it changed many others, especially the ‘trouble-makers’ of the school.”
Heath has always been a genuine man with a good heart and a love for ministering with teenagers and young adults. He described to me that the college/young adult age is a crucial period of life when there’s some huge decisions that need to be made, such as: further educational options if desired, dating/spouse decisions, housing, career, and many other life-impacting choices after branching off from parents.
His major at North Greenville was Christian Studies (known as one of the hardest majors on campus), and he uses his degree every day of his life. Having that major has helped him in his work life at the church, his family life, and his daily life. He mentioned to me that though he has a Christian Studies degree, any solid Christian can be a pastor or youth pastor with or without the degree. You don’t have to be a Christian Studies major to spread light and the hope of God to others. We just have to have a relationship with our Maker.
Some of his favorite quotes are:
“"You can say what you think, but you will only live what you believe!" (Mark Hall)
"A Bible that is falling apart is owned by someone whose life isn't" (C.H. Spurgeon)
"Christ is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him." (John Piper)
"You can't be a leader until you've been a follower"
"The man who walks with God always reaches his destination."
"If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all." (Jesus Christ)
Heath has impacted many lives, including mine. He has always been there to listen, support, and encourage me. He leads his youth groups to Summer Salt summer camps and Meltdown services in Tennessee, and those Christian gatherings have always been such a help to students. He knows how to connect with the younger crowd, and that’s what students need in mentors.
I thank the Lord that Heath has been so bold in his faith while impacting lives all around him.