Joe Girdler (AGTS ’18)
Current occupation: District Superintendent of the Kentucky Ministry Network
What brought you to Springfield?
I grew up Baptist, and attended a Methodist seminary to pursue my master’s degree. I’ve been an Assemblies of God pastor and leader for many years, and as I looked into pursuing my doctoral degree, I felt strongly that I should obtain it from the most premier Pentecostal seminary in the world, the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary. Ultimately, I wanted the opportunity for Pentecostal scholars to speak into my life, so I enrolled at AGTS.
What did you find most impactful related to your experience at AGTS?
During my time at AGTS, I was surrounded by professors and speakers who challenged me. When you’ve been in leadership for a long time, as most doctoral students have been, you find yourself constantly giving to others. During my time as a student, I was able to enjoy others speaking into my life, affirming my calling, and pushing me on to be even better.
How did AGTS prepare you for your next phase of ministry?
I graduated last year, and since then, I’ve found myself writing again. In the last year and a half, I’ve published several books, with several more in process. I feel the Lord has equipped me to be a voice to the global Church. My desire is to offer resources to the Church and other colleagues in ministry.
I also found a great group of life-long friends within my co-hort. Multiple countries were represented among the individuals in the co-hort, and we celebrated the diversity and different perspectives that were represented.
What would you tell a potential student who may be considering AGTS?
Don’t wait to pursue your passion and your calling. If you have a push from the Lord to pursue an advanced degree, pursue it as early as possible. There will always be an excuse and life will always be busy. But anything that’s worth something, costs something. The Lord changed my life through my time at AGTS. You can’t keep giving and not have somebody speaking into your life, so I would encourage you to pursue your education now.