Pastor, Prof. and Ministry Trainer
I was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado. My father was a pastor for nearly forty years. He began his pastoral ministry in the Pilgrim Holiness Church in Colorado, and we became Nazarenes prior to the merger of the Wesleyan Methodist and the Pilgrims. My parents moved to Kansas, so I spent most of my growing up years near Wichita.
Having been raised in a parsonage home, I heard and responded to the good news of Jesus at quite an early age. I point back to the age of about 10 where I settled it that I was going to live for Jesus Christ.
I accepted a call to full time ministry at an early age and began preaching youth events in High School. I graduated from MidAmerica Nazarene University in 1979 with a B.A. in Religion then earned a Master’s of Divinity degree from Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City in 1983. During these years of education, I traveled most weekends, preaching in churches and at various events as an evangelist in the Church of the Nazarene.
In my teen years, I became more and more aware of a self-centered nature in me that tainted even my most noble desires and efforts. I wanted to control the process and the outcomes of my call to ministry. After several years of struggle, I came to a crisis defining moment in my walk with the Lord in April of 1977. It was a chapel service in college in which a student was speaking. I was sitting in the back, which was not my customary behavior. I was miserable and fully aware that I was at a crossroads of who was going to have first place in my life, Jesus or me. That morning I found a front pew in the chapel and spent the next two hours praying through to a place of full surrender. It forever changed my life. I have been led since that time to places and experiences I probably would not have chosen for myself. But every decision and direction in my life has been fulfilling and God has been good!
In 1982, I began pastoral ministry. In the past thirty-four years, I have served as a pastor in Ankeny, Iowa; Chariton, Iowa; Port Arthur, Texas; Des Moines, Iowa; and Urbandale, Iowa.
I have been involved in the educational process for ministerial training for over 22 years, including instructing for NBC for the past 12 years. I am currently serving as the Lead Pastor of the Greater Life Community Church of the Nazarene in Urbandale, Iowa.
I also serve as the Executive Director of Integrity Life Skills Learning Center in Urbandale, Iowa. This licensed center provides psycho-educational classes for men and women who struggle with strained, estranged, or abusive relationships. We have recently received our license as a Professional Center which allows us to offer the Youth Program as well. The “Learning to Live, Learning to Love” curriculum is the development of Dr. Paul Hegstrom, who founded Life Skills International.
My wife, Lesa, and I have been married thirty-nine years. We have three children. Andrea is a graduate of MidAmerica Nazarene University now living in West Des Moines, Iowa. Martin, our son, is on a mission assignment with the International Church of the Nazarene in Eurasia. Bethany is our youngest, and she lives in Kansas City. She is a graduate from Simpson College with a degree in performance music with specialization in Opera.
Rev. Leray Glendenning has been teaching for NBC for twelve years.
Filed Under: Communicator Published: 10/05/2020