Now that I have taken the time to write about my first mentor that guided me into manhood, it’s time to write about a constant mentor in my life that has now become a good friend of mine. This second mentor is Kevin King and as you can already tell, he loves coffee. But more than coffee and even his two kids, he loves the LORD.
When trying to remember when exactly Kevin and I met is hard to say, but I do know that it was about the same time when Dr. J became a mentor of mine. Growing up, some of us called him “California Kevman” since he’s native to California and is considered the spiritual uncle to most of the kids that grew up at “Calvary Chapel Aurora.” Usually, if Dr. J was planning an event with the 5th & 6th grade joint-class, chances were likely that the King family was going to be there.
A lot of those events that were planned were concerts. We went to a lot of them and saw dozens of musicians like The Whosoevers, Kutless, Fireflight, TFK, KJ-52, The Letter Black, Disciple, Lecrae, and a ton more through the years. Although, we always went and saw Skillet if they were in town because that was the favorite growing up. In fact, for one Skillet concert we waited hours outside in below freezing temperatures just to see them live.
As I progressed in age, Kevin would become not just my Dad’s friend, but my friend as well as we tend to have similar taste in film, comic books, and always memes. Whenever the latest nerdy film would arrive in theaters, we would gather the gang together and enjoy our favorite comic books come to life on the big screen. Kevin is also known around town as the most faithful Transformers fan you may ever meet in your life and also for his theological prowess that he learned mostly from being a self-taught student in apologetics. That in itself is an impressive feat for a guy who knows so much yet is so humble when you encounter him.
It was his influential mentoring that led to my love for apologetics as he was the one who introduced me to William Lane Craig and later on to the Judeo-Christian school of thought called Molinism, which I now have adhered to for a few years. Especially in my high school years, Kevin has been there when I have wrestled and been challenged with the toughest questions I have ever encountered in my faith with Christ. And he has done the same for all those kids that he has always been the spiritual uncle to as they matured into adulthood.
Through the years, some of our best memories were when we would gather around the dinner table at one of our friends or one of those students houses, and just talk about what was on our hearts. It could be funny, it could be uncomfortable, or even depressing, but nevertheless no stone was left unturned. Absolute honesty was poured out at those late talks through the night with some of our closest friends. It was those late nights that gave me some of the most spiritual insight into the world around me and strengthened the relationships of those I loved like family.
As a widower for several years now, Kevin has had the opportunity to be there for those who are hurting most as he can relate in a very real way to their suffering as he has suffered through the years as a single father whose children, Alex and Cassie, I grew up with in my upbringing. In another respect, he also knows the reality of isolation as he is both an apologetics man and a single father. If anyone knows anything about apologetics, it’s that the apologist is in absolute surrender to the truth and the worldview that they are defending. In contrast, they are surrounded by lukewarm churchgoers that just want sprinkles of reassuring lies to satisfy their sin cravings coated in outward “righteousness.”
It’s sickening to those who abide by the Word of God. Kevin and I are some of the few that strive to bring Judeo-Christianity back to the intellectual powerhouse that it once was during the Enlightenment era. Due to our passion for inconvenient truths, we stand isolated from the masses that just want to hear what feels good, instead of hearing what is the only good thing: God Himself.
Above all, Kevin has a vision to reach out to foreign countries and teach apologetics to pastors who are not educated enough to suit the needs of their local congregations. His zeal for the missions field is inspiring and uplifting to all who know him as a faithful brother in the LORD. He is huge on apologetic-evangelism, active service within the local church, and investing in the youth as we are the future of the church here on Earth.
I’m thankful for the impact he has had in my life both in helping course-correct me in personal devotion to God and instructing this systematic theologian in the making on how to be a coherent, yet caring Christian apologist. As he has repeatedly said to me over the years, “I believe God has put me in a position to train up the next William Lane Craig and I believe that Adam Brill (a mutual friend of ours) and you could be that guy.” So whether Adam, myself, or the both of us become the future of apologetics down the road, then I hope that Kevin realizes the great influence he has had on those he has met in his life. Those he has pointed right back to God when they came to him for answers to their puzzling questions.
Kevin, like other notable godly men of the past, is a man of prayer and this makes him an absolute sin-slayer as he can rightly divide the truth from the lies that creep in from every side. The lies that may turn one into a prodigal or even into an apostate are the very lies that Kevin cuts down with the truth of the Gospel and the Bible with the methodology of a well-skilled apologist. It’s kind of awesome just watching God use him to draw the thinker to belief and the believer to think. All in all, Thank you Kevin for being a mentor that made me a man. With that, Godspeed and Jesus bless!