Pastor Joe Faldet

I am told that visitors to Hosanna’s website might like to know who I am and where I came from. So, while it feels unnatural to speak about myself, here it goes…
I was raised in the small Northern Minnesota farming community of McIntosh. My home congregation was Trinity Free Lutheran. It was there that I was baptized and confirmed. I can honestly say that I have known Jesus as my Lord and Savior as far back as I can remember. However, I am also still learning what all this means.
It was the summer between 2nd and 3rd grade that I started reading my little Red Gideon New Testament. It fascinated me. There was always more to learn. There were always more questions and answers. As I read and studied I continued to learn that there was always more to learn and apply. I continue to stand amazed at the working of the Holy Spirit. The fact that He can use His word in the mind of a seven year old boy and yet over 30 later, I know He is only beginning.
When I was a Senior in high school, Jesus began to reveal to me that my desires and emotions needed to be redeemed as well. When Jesus revealed to me this huge area of my life that also needed to come under His Lordship, I doubted that I even could be saved. I struggled under the reality of my unworthiness, praying and reading God’s word, for over a year. It was during January in my first year at the Free Lutheran Bible College that God made real to me that salvation was not based on my worth, but on His shed blood. He did this through Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” He is still working to make this glorious truth real.
I learned to pray through the World Mission Prayer League. A group of college students would gather every Tuesday evening at 7:30 for worship and prayer. We would pray and watch God work. We prayed for missionary needs and saw our Lord provide. We would pray for unreached people groups and watch God raise up workers. We would pray for each other and see the Creator of the Universe touch our lives. I still pray, because Jesus still upholds His creation by the word of His power (Hebrews 1:3).
God began to call me to be a pastor through a Bible Camp councilor, when I was in 8th grade. She simply told me that I should consider it. Through various circumstances, God put me on a path to the Free Lutheran Seminary. During my Junior year at seminary I took a short term mission trip to Uganda and Burundi to see if God was calling to to foreign missions. While in Uganda, God reaffirmed my call to the people of the United States. God called my new wife, Kirsten, and I to Hosanna Free Lutheran in Saint James during my Seminary internship in 2009. Here we have sought to serve God through the encouraging of His people in their relationship with Jesus, whether they are members of Hosanna or not. So, I encourage you as well, Jesus has more for you. Are you willing to give yourself to Him, the One who gave everything for you?