Published October 18, 2017
Recent BBS Graduate Influenced by Grandfather
Baptist Bible Seminary Master of Divinity student David Lee (’17) stepped up onto the stage to receive his diploma 26 years after his grandfather, Don LeMaster (’91), graduated from BBS with his Master of Ministry. Lee immediately stepped into full-time ministry as he became an ordained, full-time pastor at Grace Bible Church in Dunmore, Pennsylvania.
As a child, he watched his grandfather’s heart for God overflow into his ministry. LeMaster is not only a grandparent to Lee; he has also been his mentor and his pastor.
“My grandfather has been the greatest influence in my life for the Lord,” Lee admits. “He has been an example to me of God’s faithfulness, love and power. He has shown me what God can do through a man who is typically quiet and humble, but through God’s power and strength, can accomplish great things.”
Seeing LeMaster’s passion and commitment to equip and disciple people in the local church kindled Lee’s desire to pursue full-time ministry. His heart for the local church aligned with Baptist Bible Seminary’s value and focus.
LeMaster affirms his support for the seminary’s vision, “The emphasis that BBS puts on the local church has always been a big reason on why I continue to support BBS.”
As a teen, Lee would listen to his grandfather’s stories about his experiences, friendships and lessons learned at BBS. According to Lee, it was at that time, “God began planting a desire in my heart to one day attend the same seminary that my grandfather had.”
Years later, Lee left his New Jersey hometown and brought his young family to Northeast PA to begin his education at BBS, with the goal of becoming a pastor. He completed his studies while holding a job and parenting his three children with his wife, Melanie.
During that time, Lee and his family joined Grace Bible Church. A few years later, the same church was the setting for Lee’s year-long, paid internship, a unique element of the BBS Master of Divinity program. He focused on creating environments and opportunities for people in the congregation to connect, including visitors, members and ministry leaders.
“I am thankful for the internship experience that BBS requires,” Lee admits. “It really allowed me to take the knowledge and ministry strategies that I learned in the classroom and put them to use. It was great to be put in a position where I could learn from a team of godly men and women that were already on staff here at Grace and work alongside of them in a safe environment.”
His internship quickly developed into a job opportunity as he was hired full-time as the connections pastor in April 2017. He was also ordained after graduation.
After following his grandfather’s footsteps, Lee looks forward to faithfully shepherding the people at Grace Bible Church in their relationship with God.
He says, “I have loved my time at BBS. I have been given the tools to study and interpret God’s Word, a vision for what God can do in my life and the lives of others, and I have cultivated relationships with my classmates and some of the professors who have been a great blessing to me.”
Nathan Miller (’15) is a Communications-Writing graduate from Scranton, Pennsylvania