Generations Church

Generations Church's lead pastor, Troy Knight, with his wife and children. Courtesy photo

Generations Church’s lead pastor, Troy Knight, with his wife and children. Courtesy photo

Many marriages in America are built on the foundation of religion. Thus, couples often look to their church’s leader for counseling before the wedding and during their matrimony. In Southport, members of Generations Church rely on their lead pastor, Troy Knight, as well as a free small group devoted to supporting married couples, “Marriage on the Rock.” We sat down with Knight to learn his advice for a blissful marriage.

Generations Church is located at 4874 Long Beach Road SE. For more info, call (910) 454-9302 or visit www.generationschurch.com.

Southport Magazine (SM): Your wife was able to pluck you from Jasper, TX, and get you to move to North Carolina. Share with us the story of your meeting and how you and your wife have a successful marriage.
Pastor Troy Knight (TK): We met at Southwestern Seminary in Fort Worth, TX. We were both getting our master’s degrees and preparing for ministry. I actually met her at a singles’ event at a church we were both attending. It’s true when they say, “you just know.” After I talked to her for 20 minutes, I had this thought, How am I going to get all my family and friends to NC for the wedding? I knew at that moment that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with Tabitha. We shared the same love for Jesus and the same passion for ministry. We still do.

SM: Tell us about the beginnings of Generations Church and its commitment to being non-denominational.
TK: I pastored a traditional Baptist church out of seminary. I grew up Baptist so it was a natural thing to do. A couple of years into it, I figured out I wasn’t traditional at anything. I’m a very pragmatic person. I believe we should do whatever it takes to reach people for God’s Kingdom. I’m willing to try anything as long as it’s not unbiblical or illegal. That philosophy doesn’t always work well in a traditional setting where you have to move very slow to make changes.

Rather than make everyone mad and give myself ulcers, I resigned and we began Generations Church six months later. We began as a non-denominational church because we didn’t want the name on the sign to keep anyone from coming inside the building. People have pre-conceived notions of what denominations and religions are; we wanted them to make their mind up after experiencing a worship service, not before.

SM: In your opinion, what is the #1 mistake married couples make?
TK: At some point in their marriage they stop pursuing each other. They did when they were dating. They couldn’t keep their hands off each other when engaged. Now they are just existing. Stop existing and start dating again. Remember what made you fall in love in the first place and repeat that behavior.

One of the best marriage books ever written is called “His Needs, Her Needs” by Willard F. Harley, Jr. He explains that marriage is like a bank account. When you are pursuing each other and meeting each other’s needs (and usually men and women have different needs), your bank account is in the black. But when needs are not being met, every little disagreement becomes a hot check and a major crisis. Couples can only write so many hot checks before the bank account is closed.

SM: What is your best advice for couples trying to lead a long, happy marriage?
TK: 1. Pursue God together. Praying together and volunteering your time together is a powerful glue and a good aphrodisiac, too.

2. Pursue each other. The grass is not greener on the other side. Pornography and adultery is a cheap substitute for doing the hard work of marriage. It leaves you empty, bankrupt spiritually and sometimes financially, and humiliated. Your greatest mean of happiness is the one you share a last name with: Pursue them.

SM: As you officiate weddings, can you share with us how it feels to be able to bring two people together as one?
TK: I’ve done a lot of weddings so I’m a bit of a skeptic. It gives me a lot of joy to see couples five years or 10 years later still in love and growing together and raising a family. I can’t imagine the joy I’ll have seeing a couple I married celebrating 40 or 50 years. I hope I live to see it.

SM: Favorite food?
TK: Beef brisket, slow-smoked at 250 degrees for 10 to 12 hours over mesquite wood. Heavily seasoned with a thick crust on the outside and lots of juicy meat on the inside. Served with dark pinto beans, creamy cole slaw and potato salad. My mouth is watering as I speak.

SM: Favorite book?
TK: I love to read so this is hard. The Bible is number one but number two is probably “The Hiding Place” by Corrie ten Boom.

SM: Favorite music?
TK: I listen to sports talk radio and podcast more than anything, but when I listen to music it’s Christian contemporary, pop, and country, in that order.

SM: Favorite place to travel?
TK: My family still lives in Texas so I look forward to our visit there a couple of times a year. The Tex-Mex and “real” BBQ is unbelievably good.

SM: Favorite thing about Southport?
AT: The friendships I’ve made since living here. I’m surrounded by people who love me for who I am. I can just be Troy and they are cool with that.

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