We recently had the chance to catch up with Ken Harrison, chief executive officer of Promise Keepers. We talked about the history of Promise Keepers, authentic manhood and the importance of voting.
This interview has been edited for clarity and length.
Talk a little bit about what God has been doing with Promise Keepers.
I was a Los Angeles policeman back earlier in the ‘90s. I became very successful in business, sold my company and had retired in 2012. In 2014, the Lord came to me in a really vivid way as I was praying in my closet. I find that God really speaks to us when we just really seek him with everything in us. And as I was seeking him with everything in me, all of a sudden…he said, “Ken, I did not put you through all I did and teach you all I did so you could ski and hike for the rest of your life,” which was my plan: finish raising my kids and ski and hike for the rest of my life.
And I said, “Well look, what do you want me to do?” He said, “Are you willing to be as ambitious for my kingdom as you were for your kingdom?” And it came with the stern warning of, “Be careful of your answer…it’s going to cost you your life.” I said, “I don’t know.” I said, “Lord, I’m tired, and I’m tired of firing people and being sued, and I ran a huge company and I just don’t wanna lead people anymore.” And the Lord said, “That’s okay, but you missed my full blessing.”
So I wrestled with him for a couple of hours because I understood I had two choices, and the inevitable choice was laying down my life and saying all my comfort will go away and that I’ll end up in the trenches for the rest of my life. And that’s of course the road I chose. …When I said, “Lord, yeah I will,” all I heard from him was, “I’ll tell you what I have for you when you’re ready.” That was it. For two-and-a-half more years, I waited.
When Promise Keepers was dropped into my lap, I was not in any way ready for or thinking about the conversation that God and I had had two-and-a-half years earlier. I just wanted to close it, clean it up and move on. …I scheduled a board meeting for 10 o’clock in the morning on a Friday, like Jan. 27, 2018, I think it was, and I got a text from somebody the night before: “I have to meet you tomorrow morning before that board meeting.”
So I met him at a coffee shop that I never go to 40 miles north of where our offices are, and he convinced me to keep Promise Keepers open. While he was convincing me, though, I was like, “Lord, this is going to be a nightmare to do. This is going to be so much work, and if this is really from you I really need supernatural affirmation because three hours from now, Promise Keepers ceases to exist.”
Just then, the president of Waterstone Foundation walked into that coffee shop 40 miles from his home and our office, in the coffee shop I never go to, and I said, “What are you doing here?” He said, “Well, I have a meeting, and this is weird…What are you doing here?” And I said, “Gosh would you guys talk about what we’ve been talking about?” And so after that person I met with talked to John, John looked at me and said, “It sounds like the Lord’s telling you not to close Promise Keepers.” I said, “Lord, thank you so much for that supernatural affirmation, that’s not a normal thing.” So I jumped in the car, and that’s when God downloaded the whole plan about how to relaunch Promise Keepers, about how we needed to do not massive amounts of stadium events per year but one stadium event a year, and that a simulcast was a key part of the plan: one event per year to gather [men] together, simulcasting it globally, centering on Dallas.
I called the board when I got back down to the office and said, “Hey, not only are we not shutting it down, we have this huge vision that we’re gonna do.” …We’ve seen a lot of stuff like that where God is about his business. He’s doing something amazing.
You shared a video of My Faith Votes during your virtual event and encouraged people to go vote. I know you got peppered with some questions about getting political. …How do you respond to that?
The word “political” has been changed dramatically. It’s leadership. We have leadership within government which involves, in America, politics. But we merge those words together so that Christians get confused: “Oh, I don’t want to be political.” Great, don’t be political: get involved in leadership though.
One of the things we’ve been calling people to do is get involved at the most local level we can, because we’re giving this country away. Not in the Senate and the Congress…We’re losing with school boards because these kids that are coming up today don’t even understand basic civics.
We’re saying if you feel helpless, don’t just vote and don’t just vote in an educated manner, but also get involved in your local government, not politics. Run for city council, run for the county commission, and for heaven’s sake, run for the school board. Both of you, husband and wife, run for the school board and start paying attention to what they are teaching our kids.
I’m so glad that you mentioned the local level because everyone right now is focused on this singular presidential election, but there’s a hundred thousand elections happening in November, and many of them are at the local level. We need to care a lot more about issues of civics, issues of history, knowing that people know the truth about our Nation. Your app is something that’s really helping men engage with each other and in their communities and includes resources from My Faith Votes. Speak to that a little bit and what you’re trying to do through this tool.
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: Christian Post, My Faith Votes