Cal Jernigan: [00:00:00] Well, hi everyone. Hey, and one more time. Welcome to central. So glad that you're with us and I am excited that you are, because I think you're going to be thrilled to meet somebody that I just can't wait to introduce you to. Um, this is my friend, uh, Reverend David Wade. Uh, he is the pastor of Mount Calvary Baptist church here in Maine.
And there are so many things I love about this guy and have known him for a number of years. I just, I just want to tell you about number one. He's a neighbor of mine. We live in the same neighborhood and, uh, we visit, uh, often out in the street and we talk and I've gotten to know him. Uh, we've also sat together on many occasions and just have conversations.
Uh, and a number of those conversations have been so meaningful and so significant that I walk away and I say this every time we're together, I wish I had a camera and could just capture what you just said. And so I've been dreaming about the possibility of doing this conversation on. Uh, for quite a few years.
And, um, so, uh, we're [00:01:00] actually doing that and we just, we're going to talk today. It's going to be a little bit different about weekend. If, uh, you're not familiar with how we do this, this isn't a typical weekend, but it's a very, very special weekend. I also want to let you know, um, that one of the things I love about this.
Is, he is a phenomenal preacher. In fact, I've been to his shirts, I've heard him preach. And then he actually said to me, uh, Hey, you need to come preacher. And I said, not a chance, not a chance, not, not after hearing you, uh, it's not going to happen. So anyway, there is so much about this. That I think is going to be so valuable for you to know and for you to experience.
And so, again, I'm absolutely thrilled. So David, first and foremost, uh, thank you for being here and for being our guests today. And, uh, David let's, uh, again, I'm going to walk through a number of things that are in my head about. Uh, one thing I do want to tell you is we've unscripted this. I don't have a, I don't have a sheet of questions.
I have not fed him a sheet of wood. I just want to recapture what we have often have, which is just these incredible conversations, uh, that are so, uh, [00:02:00] insightful, uh, that he just brings and makes me aware of things. Um, but, uh, there are a couple of things I do want to be very intentional about. I want to ask you first, David tells you about your church, and then I want to ask you to tell us about your family.
Okay. So let's start there. Tell us about your church.
David Wade: Um, our church is the oldest and for lack of a better phrase, uh, we're the mother church of the city of Mesa. Our church this year will be 104 years. And within the 104 years, I'm living. The third pass that they've ever had. Wow. I've been, uh, at our church going into my 24th year.
Our church started in a little small crush community that doesn't even exist, uh, moved to the Escobido community off of a university and Louis, and then after five and a half years of the crazy growth of our church. Uh, we moved back to Broadway where their first building was erected and, uh, we've had history in [00:03:00] the city of Mesa first.
Uh, Principle of color was a viewer Johnson, who was a Sunday school teacher at our church. Uh, the first, uh, man of color that graduated when it was back then, uh, Arizona teacher's college. Now Arizona state was a deacon in the trustee at our church. So our church, uh, is steeped in history in Arizona. But, uh, uh, the thing that I love most about our church has had our.
It's a church that loves people and loves God. And, uh, we have been effective by loving God's people and, uh, outreach and ministry outside of the church had become extremely effective. Uh, we believe in, um, housing clothing, the naked, uh, our Calvary's closet has given out more than 30,000 articles of clothes.
Uh, we feed, we partnered with [00:04:00] the national youth sports association where they do volleyball, soccer, and basketball, and those kinds of things, just a community church.
Cal Jernigan: I've been at central for, uh, 35 years, 22 or three of which have been as the senior leader in 1999. I began at central. He began in 1999 at Mount county.
Uh, I'm the fourth preacher in our 62 year history. He is the third preacher and they're a hundred plus. So it's just a, it's an amazing, that's an amazing legacy. One of the big differences between, uh, David and myself is I am a first-generation preacher. I literally came to faith when I was a high school student, and then God brought me into.
Um, David's story is radically different and he comes from an incredible line of preachers, his father, his grandfather, and on, and a whole family. And again, I know we can't, we can't take too long to explain how many people in your family are in the ministry, but just quickly, can [00:05:00] you summarize just kind of the legacy that you have inherited and, uh, who the, who the Wade family actually is?
David Wade: My
grandfather's started, uh, in ministry. And a little small town called why bark Oklahoma. He preached his first sermon in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the St. Andrews Baptist church thereafter. They moved his family to Memphis and being in Memphis. Uh, he pastored a couple of churches and then one being the Riverside church, a strong church in the Memphis area, but then moving his family from Memphis.
He got called to. Whereby the church became the largest church even today, uh, of color in the state of Nebraska. Uh, he was there 44 years. Um, gospel music was a top priority. My aunt over the music had, uh, two songs that were, uh, given [00:06:00] invitations to the grandmas because of the songs. Uh, my grandfather had two sons, Melvin and Jason.
Uh, JC being my uncle and Melvin being my dad, all three, uh, began ministry behind each other. Uh, my uncle stayed at Zion, I believe right at 45 years, my dad was at Mount Moriah for 43 years. And from three generations being my little brother have taken the call, uh, very seriously, uh, to share the word of God is something that is.
Uh, it's undeniable, my cousin James, the third, who has now passed away. He and I started preaching together boys at 18.
Cal Jernigan: Um, David, you and I have talked, um, a lot over the years. Just about the difference in culture between, uh, this just say the white church and the black church, and, um, just some of the unique differences.
Um, as you look at it, Uh, I, my, my love for the black church is growing and my [00:07:00] understanding of it's growing. Uh, what, what is it from your perspective that makes, um, the world that you live in? Like, what is, where's the richness and all of that as you look at it?
David Wade: I think
the richness of our church culture is our love for God, even beyond treatment, um, whereby in the days of slavery, When we had nothing else, we had a song.
Uh, there was a way that we through music could express our pain. Uh, there was a time where music became the soul of our communities. Uh, there were ways to pass, uh, messages, uh, during the slave days through music, whatever it was, we had music and we had it sense of pride and. The things that were happening to us, it didn't crush us to the place [00:08:00] where we still didn't believe that there was a hope.
And I got that knew what we were going through and was familiar with what it was
Cal Jernigan: from perspective. When you look at, uh, issues of racism and the things that seem to be so divisive. Um, just, just begin again, like we've done on various occasions. Just begin to talk. What, what is your perspective on this?
What is it going to take? You know, we've talked about MLK's, uh, comment about the 11 o'clock hour segregated, our most segregated hour. What's it going to take for this to change? And again, that's one of the things I've so appreciated about you is our friendship. And we've been able to share, you know, Build a bridge where I don't understand everything you say and do, and you don't understand everything I say and do.
And we live in a little bit different kinds of worlds that we're really trying to bring together. But from your perspective, just address that, just begin to muse on that and give us some insight.
David Wade: If we're
going to look [00:09:00] at this matter of race, we've got to be honest to stop suggesting that it does not exist.
Uh, when we look at a race, uh, From a biblical perspective. If the word of God is true, that there is no difference between Jew and Greek. The same Lord overall is rich under those who call upon the Bible, talks about if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things are passed. The Bible talks about we all, we like sheep have gone astray.
It does not differentiate. White black, Asian, Latino. It doesn't, it simply says whosoever will let him come. And if that be the case, why do we feel that at 11 o'clock eight o'clock it's easier for, uh, the African-American community to go to a white [00:10:00] church because the ice looks colder on that side, but it does not seem to fit the culture of white America.
To come to a black church. And when we talk about eight o'clock, nine o'clock 11, or whatever time you have service, black people go to their church. Most whites would, and we look at it as it is. And we fuel, we intentionally want people to feel that there is a difference, the way we sing songs, the way we do meet.
Where, if you came to our church, hymns and anthems and, uh, songs that we sing for the most part, totally different than the kind of music that presents at central, but we don't find a bridge because for the most part, we like what we like and you like what you like, but we never find a median of where we in fact can come together [00:11:00] to appreciate each other's worship.
You know, when you come to art, It's going to be soulful. It's going to be exciting. It's going to be heartfelt. And the same thing when you go to central.
Cal Jernigan: And one
of the passages that Paul talks about is in the, he just referenced it in the book of Galatians. I want to read that because I really do believe this is the foundation of what God intended for the church.
And I want to just say this. I really don't think the church that we have the church at large that has become the church in America is what God had in mind and the division and kind of that way and this way, and, you know, whatnot is not what God ultimately wants, but, uh, Paul said it this way. So in Christ Jesus, you are all children of God through.
For all of you who are baptized into Christ have clothed yourself with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female for you are all one in Christ. Jesus. If you believe, if you belong to Christ, [00:12:00] then you are Abraham's seed and heirs, according to the promise.
And all of that is about all that we have in common, but we are so quick to, uh, Uh, gravitate towards the differences. And again, we're comfortable in the differences and that's, that's a whole, a whole lot of the problem. And obviously this not maybe, obviously, but I know this is MLK weekend. Sure. And, um, uh, obviously I'm okay.
Is huge. Uh, in, you know, the subject that we're talking about as far as, uh, bringing people together and understanding the plight of other people and the journey of other people. So just reflect from your perspective, reflect on MLK and what he, as a leader means to you as a preacher. What he, as a leader means to a movement, um, that you obviously have a huge passion
David Wade: We are quick to quote Dr. King. Okay. But during the time that Dr. King was [00:13:00] gunned down, he was on a downward spiral. His power, his zest is Z. And his ability to get people involved in the things that were going on in the area of civil rights and social injustices. Uh, we, we love to quote him and then on his birthday, what bothers me more than anything is that there are two things that become a Travis' state to the life of Dr.
King. If I were to ask you as a Christian, not just as a pastor or anybody. What was Dr. King's favorite hymns? Most people have no clue because every song that is about him is secular. And he was a pastor who loved church songs. Then the second thing is we have been exposed to Dr. King's sermon on Washington, [00:14:00] and we know it as being called.
Cal Jernigan: Uh, we've been together. I know this. Yeah, I agree.
David Wade: Now the reality of that is not the name of that sermon. The name of the sermon is a call to consciousness and his whole endeavor was to change the mindset and the conscious of people who looked at a race as an entitlement, as opposed to a opportunity to this banish, this regarding this, it, because people.
We're losing jobs. People needed to be able to eat. People were being discriminated against. And he was saying it's time to change our minds. And in 2022, we still have people that need to have a change of mind because their conscious has not changed because of racism. And we can say what we want to say, that it doesn't exist.
It exists every day [00:15:00] and it even became more true in the last couple of years whereby people were being fueled to think that there were some superiority over racist matters all over the country.
Cal Jernigan: Yeah. Uh, we've talked in our church about how politics have. Really moved to the forefront of so many people's thinking and politics has really set the agenda of our day.
How has that affected you in world? You live?
David Wade: I mean, it, I think it affects everybody some more than others, but the truth is when we allow politics to creep into the church and we make statements even with the, the evangelical community. We say that we preach love. We say that we preach the love of Jesus, but our demonstration and embracing someone who infuriates and insights, [00:16:00] um, fury, they seek to incite riots.
We can call it whatever we want to. And the truth of the matter. We have got to get back to the
Cal Jernigan: Yep. There's a lot of money to be made in keeping you and me apart. Yes. In the end. Uh, yeah. And keeping us as people just segregated against each other. Yeah. A lot of money is changing hands because of that.
You and I both tried to lead as best as we knew how, uh, our churches through a pandemic, but, uh, your, your journey was different than ours. And you had, you had to overcome some obstacles. And I remember when we were just talking, I go, I just don't. Uh, so for the black community, talk to us about what was unique, what was, what was different that you guys had to experience that.
The typical white culture didn't have to face
David Wade: with my church. I've got a lot of people from the south that remember the day is the old [00:17:00] vaccines back in Alabama. And those areas, they were doing it as experiments. Well, automatically they were saying we don't want it, but because we did not have enough information, people shied away from it.
So it affected our people in several different areas. Um, The pandemic is very painful to me, Cal, because my nephew died. Uh, the second Sunday in August, her virus, and 11 days later, my superhero, my eldest brother, his son died 11 days later. So I had to fly back and forth to Seattle to barrier my family. I didn't want to be pastor.
I didn't want to be the senior leader at Mount Calvary. I wanted to be a. And because of necessity was laid upon me. I had to do what I've been called to do and how many times I'm thankful that even in [00:18:00] this 2000, 19 and 21, I cannot remember that I've had to bury one member of my church. Yeah.
Cal Jernigan: For the book of revelation, it talks about what heaven's going to look like, and heaven's not going to be a white and a white cloud bank.
Um, it's gonna, it's going to be, and it's not gonna be sectioned off, you know, but we're going to be together and all skin tones. And we believe even when we say different ethnicities, you know, that there's one race and it's the human race. And we're all part of that race. The problem of course, is. Um, the structures that have been put in place in the history of, uh, certainly of the United States, but the history of mankind, but, but then in the history of the church, um, that keep us separated.
And, uh, it is, it is a hard battle. And, um, you have a, uh, you have a very good friend who you introduced me to, uh, Dr. Joel [00:19:00] Gregory, and, um, uh, we were sitting together the three of us and, you know, he just talked about the w really. Was moving to me, it was just talking and he's, he's a white guy, he's a white, uh, professor, a preacher.
And he was talking about one of the things that becomes so difficult to talk about, uh, racism with white people is that they're so quick to, we're also quick light, quick to respond and have an adverse reaction. And then, you know, his comment that I thought was really insightful was it's because we feel.
We carry with us, deepen our core. We feel a guilt for what we know to be wrong, and yet we've allowed it and we've lived with it and we sustained it and we've encouraged it. And to, you know, to take the stands that we've taken and say, look enough is enough. And let's, you know, let's break out of this mold and let's learn how to live differently.
Um, I was sharing with my wife, uh, recently. I don't think there's been any. That we [00:20:00] have as a church, paid a greater price for, in terms of people, uh, being upset and even leaving our church and saying, you know what, we're all in this together. And we're w we're all loved by God equally. And, uh, there's no one race, what unquote, race better or greater than any other race.
Um, And just being able to call that out and make a, make a point of it has, has come at a high price, but it's a price that we're willing to pay. And we've also then seen our church transformed into what we believe is a better church, a more biblical church as a result of that, let's think of the future.
What, what do we do? What do you as a church leader and I, as a church leader and you as a congregate, you as a congregation and we as a congregation, what do we do different? How do we get, how do we get beyond this from your personal.
David Wade: I believe one of the initials is we've got to look at it and be honest about it.
So often we have not been honest. We we've turned a blind eye and a [00:21:00] deaf ear to racism. And within that, we have people that can see wrong and try and justify it to make it right. Right.
Cal Jernigan: Well, and I've, uh, I've explained this to, um, the, the privilege of being white. You can turn a blind eye to it. Right. Um, and, and I've said this, I don't, I, I would not say I live with racism every single day of my life.
I don't, I would say you do. Yeah. And I think you would, yeah, you can't, you can't ignore this issue. The white culture can ignore this issue. And in many parts chooses to ignore this issue instead of standing up and going, this is just not what God intended,
David Wade: you know, we say we love. Uh, and whom we've never seen.
And then we won't love our brother who we see every day. Yep. And I think one of the things that if the church is going to be effective, if the church is going to be able to embrace people, [00:22:00] we've got to have a heart like Jesus, where Jesus sat with publicans and sinners. He didn't see a certain crowd that was.
The attraction to him, you know, he had an, any man's gospel. He didn't have a circumscribed gospel, and if we're going to promote Christ and Christian them, we've got to, first of all, be honest that there have been some wrong done in the church and it's, it goes beyond just the culture. We have mistreated people in the church.
And within mistreating people in the church, we have just swept it under the rug rather than being honest about it, to acknowledge it. And until we acknowledged that, Hey, listen, we have made some errors. And then the errors that we've made, it becomes an opportunity [00:23:00] for us to go back and make right what has been done wrong.
And we have to love people beyond skin.
Cal Jernigan: And you just said, uh, he just said a phrase. That's very much a part of our culture. And I talked about it last week and this idea of loving beyond loving, beyond, and there's lines that we draw and limits that we put in and church has gotta be a willingness to, uh, play.
Literally the words of Jesus and, and the idea and the command of Jesus to love one another above all the inconvenience of the change, all the inconvenience of the, uh, you know, being uncomfortable and having to admit that we've done some things wrong, we need to change some things. Um, and this is, this to me is the challenge of this conversation.
Uh, David and I have been conversing. We're trying to figure out even among pastors, how. Lead differently and, [00:24:00] um, set of different examples of different tone. And, um, he's, he's been to central, I've been to his church. W we're learning how to build bridges. The idea is. Uh, Jesus said, you know, there's one thing that's going to differentiate us from everybody.
And that is that we love remarkably well, and we love in a way that's that you're not going to see it anywhere else. And church has got to start with us. It's got to start, it's got to start among leaders. And then it's got to go through through the ranks of the entire church and everyone has got to get the message and we've got to do it differently.
And I hope that you're being challenged to do that. Let's just think practical, practical, what can we do? What are practical ways we can do to build bridges. You, you and I have conversation. That's practical. You and I sit and enjoy. We sit around a campfire, a fire pit. We talk, we, you, you make me aware of things.
You, you tell me things that I don't always want to hear. I tell you things you will probably don't always want to hear that's practical. What can we do, Dave? What can we
David Wade: I think we are to start [00:25:00] with a honest conversation and put all the cards on the table to say, Hey, listen, Cal, I've heard that. My church, me and my church wants to come over and find a way to be able to worship with you.
You know, the Bible talks about we sitting together in heavenly places. Now, how do we prepare for the sitting down in heavenly places when we haven't practiced it down here, if we're going to be able to bridge the. Conversation must take place. That's number one with sincerity and honesty. But then the second thing is we need to know you and you need to know us.
And the only way to do that is to come together and reason, not what chips on our shoulders, not with attitudes of saying before you even know what the full conversation about. I don't believe that I'm against that, and I'm not going to hear it [00:26:00] because to start with what you're saying is I'm not open and.
It is going to be effective. People must see the leaders come together, then it must be embraced by the leadership teams to come together. Then the laity will follow when they see us trying to do it. When's the last time you all had a man of color to come and preach a central. If they don't see it in front of you, then how do they see that you, my pastor.
Not so much about who's doing the serving because the greatest miracle when Jesus fed the multitude was not about who's doing the serving, what they wanted to know, what they were going to eat. Did it come from Jesus' hands and we're more concerned about who's doing the serving as opposed to what we going to eat.
Did it come from that book? And if people see us being [00:27:00] diverse and who we expose our people to. Then it starts a spark to say, Hey, listen, this is different, but it's good because I trust my pastor when it comes to allowing who feeds me at the time.
Cal Jernigan: You know, one of the things that I think is so difficult about talking about racism is that nobody wants to, um, nobody wants to be called a racist and nobody wants to admit anything, uh, as far as any tendency towards racist thoughts.
Um, and so often I think what happens is we think back to. You know, the abuses that took place in the 1960s and, you know, fire hosing and setting dogs on people. And we go, I've never done any of that. How can you possibly, um, you know, I don't have, I don't have a, a racist bone in my right. The problem is these were not, it's not about our bones.
It's, you know, it's about our, our head and the thoughts that go through our minds. And one of the things that has made a lot of people uncomfortable is just as I've come to [00:28:00] realize that, well, I would not say I grew up racist by any stretch of the imagination and I just didn't, I didn't grow up in a culture.
Uh, it was just not the, it was, it was not the issue that I struggled with, but. You know, grown and become friends with people and had my world expanded. I've really come to understand that while I would not say I'm racist, I would absolutely say I have racist tendencies and they've been, they've been embedded in me and bred in me.
And, uh, I, you know, at some point I think that you have to have, and what's a practical step is you have to have an honest conversation with your. And so, you know what, I'm just not being truthful because I do have tendencies to think certain things that how I know I have racist tendencies. If I, if I'm walking down the street, right.
And I walk at night a lot. If I see two white guys walking down the canal toward me, and then I see two black guys walking down the canal, as much as I would love to say there is absolutely no difference in my response. I know that I have attended. If there are two black [00:29:00] guys, I have admitted that to myself.
I admit that to you church. And I have before, these are the things that I'm talking about. And again, I don't want to be racist. I want to get beyond that. But the very fact that I would have a different reaction, reveals something about my heart. And I think one of the things that has to happen is literally the word of God.
Um, it not only does it become a lens in which you learn and understand yourself, it literally becomes a magnifying. Where you're willing to look through the word of God and say, you know what? I, I cannot not see this about me and I have to admit it and I have to be willing to say, God, I, I I've sinned and I'm, I need to repent.
I need to change the way I think I need to change the things I do.
David Wade: And we got it. We got to continue to work at the involvement of recognizing and repenting for we repentance is not just for one it's for all of us, because on one hand, The racism that has happened to us has brought [00:30:00] resentment for us to you.
Yup. And nobody is acknowledging, Hey, listen, I have resentment. And God has brought us to a place of where some of that has been purged, but there are still some people that are still holding on the Bible says, love one another, be kind one to another. Edify one another, pray for one, if you go through just the one another's of the Bible that becomes the start, and if we're going to be practitioners of Christianity, then the one another's of the Bible become a springboard for us to be better.
Um, when we look in acts chapter five, where it talks to. Uh, because of their behavior and they belong to Christ. It says they were called Christians first at Antioch. [00:31:00] Now, if we're going to promote Christianity, we got to live out those days. We've got to be able to be a promoter of the kingdom's agenda and not our own agenda.
And if we're going to be effective, Uh, we've got to demonstrate more love than ever before, because there are people that need love. And what better way to give love from a Christian perspective,
Cal Jernigan: if we would represent Jesus better by being the kind of people that he actually called us to be, uh, the message of Jesus would be heard much more clearly and tragic.
Um, uh, that people love the thought of Jesus. They don't want the thought of Christians and they don't want the thought of the church. And the reason is we've been such a poor reflection on Jesus of Jesus. And we, we can change that. Okay. Well, let me wrap this up. Um, I [00:32:00] want to, again, thank you, uh, on so many levels, uh, but.
Uh, I, I certainly want to thank you for being our guests today and for sharing your heart and opening up about these, these things. But more than that, I just want to thank you for your friendship, which I know, you know, I love you to death and you mean a lot to me. And, um, I have, uh, through the years, uh, just so deeply grown to appreciate you.
And, uh, I am going to have him preach at central and, um, we got to have an understanding. I, I didn't get my job. Uh, no, the guy seriously is a wonderful communicator and, um, but a wonderful leader and all of that, but he's a better friend and so feel very, very blessed. So thank you for taking the time and thank you guys for being here and I'm gonna, uh, literally, I'm going to pray.
We're going to end this and then we're going to, um, your campus, pastor will, uh, take it from here. So God, thank you for the time that we've been able to spend together. I thank you so much [00:33:00] for, uh, Reverend Wade and just his, uh, heart and God, his history, uh, the journey he's been on God. I thank you for bringing him into my life.
Thank you for, uh, using him to help me to think differently, to think better and to understand things. And, uh, God, thank you for his patience that he has shown to be. And, uh, just giving me a space to be able to get things over time. Uh, God, I do pray for his church, uh, Mount Calvary Baptist. I pray that you continue to bless them and fantastic things come into their future.
Uh, as they have a storied past, God may even have a greater story in their future. And then, uh, Lord. And I thank you for the diversity that we're experiencing in our church. And I think that, um, uh, we're becoming more of who you wanted us to be all along and that's not come without a price, but God we have, um, we we've seen the change happening and it's a wonderful, wonderful thing to experience and God, again, we help us to just be faithful to you and, and to reflect you in [00:34:00] always, um, all possible ways in the very best light, um, God, may we get it right?
So people. Good picture of who you really are and forgive us for the times we have failed in the times. We've misrepresented you and Lord, we just, we, we give these two churches to you again and again and again, and ask you to do with them what you will. So thanks for being with us father in Jesus name, we praise you.