Monday, May 9, 2011


"As He was going along by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew, the brother of Simon, casting a net in the sea; for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, 'Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.'"(Mark 1:16-17, NASB)

We have now been in Barron County for 8 months.  So many exciting things are happening and God is laying a careful, strong foundation for Northcross Community Church.  There is still much to be done; leadership recruitment, training of leaders, facility search etc. etc.  But last week, my youngest son Easton so beautifully reminded me of why we are here in the Rice Lake area planting a church for Jesus. We are in the FISHING BUSINESS.  I was at the house busy doing a variety of tasks when Caleb (my oldest son) said; "Dad, Easton is down by the Damn and he has a big musky on the line. He needs you".  So, I jumped in the truck and drove a few blocks over where Easton likes to fish at the damn where Rice Lake exits back into the Red Cedar River.  Easton did not bring his cell phone that day fishing. Nor did he even bring bait with him.  Simply a rod and reel with 50 pound test line. Hearing mom and dad talk about budget challenges was not going to stop him from finding a way to do what he loves to do the most, FISH.  His recent strategy was to simply stand on the bridge and drop his treble hook down in the water and eyeball the blue gil / sunfish from above and snag them in the side and reel them in to use as bait (we just found out that is illegal in Wisconsin). So for his last time Easton did indeed get himself some bait and it wasn't long and he had snagged the biggest fish of his little 12 year old life, a whopping 47" Musky.
After fighting the musky for 15 minutes (and wondering how he is going to get this monster out of the water by himself) he managed to wear him out enough to leave his pole and trophy fish secured in some rocks to run up to the road to flag down anyone who could help.  The passion, the drive, the whatever it takes mentally came shining through as Easton got the attention of two rather rough looking Rice Lake college boys who couldn't help but stop and help a desperate (jumping up and down getting in front of their truck) kid who was in trouble.  As they asked "is someone drowning", Easton proceeded to tell them hurriedly, that he needed to use their phone to call his dad because he had a huge musky on the line. These two redneck Wisconsin boys were the perfect teammates for Easton to land his first big Musky.  They immediately pulled their old ford truck off to the side of the road and ran down the bank with unbridled enthusiasm.  They baby-sat the Musky while Easton stood at the road waiting for me to show up.  It wasn't hard to spot him as I arrived and he led me to his new fishing buddies and the Fish.  The net I brought from the garage was not big enough and when we got to the fish, his pals had already fetched him from the cold Wisconsin waters.  It was 29 degrees and that did not stop one of his new rescue heroes from taking his coat off and then his shirt to wipe down the fish for the pictures.  So there he stood, bare chested, smiling big with cigarette in mouth wiping down Easton's first big musky.  He proceeded to say, "I have been fishing this ******* spot since I was 8 years old and have never caught a musky this big"!   This was an emotional moment for me.  

Since arriving in Wisconsin, Easton became a Follower of the Musky Fisherman.  His mission has been clear. "CATCH A LOT OF FISH"!  You Tube this and You Tube that!  He has studied and learned by following, listening, watching and shadowing musky fishermen here at the damn in Rice Lake.  He then learned just exactly where the musky hang out.  He learned which bait would work.  He learned when and where to find them. And then ultimately and obviously; Easton had learned how to fish for them. 

On that cold spring morning, the Holy Spirit whispered to me how desperately he wants us to fish for men. Are we willing to jump in front of their path and do sometimes whatever it takes to catch that fish? How bad do we want to realize the vision?  The great commission to go, to preach and to disciple. If we are going to be Fishers of Men, then we first must remember that WE ARE IN THE FOLLOWING BUSINESS.  Secondly we must strategically BE IN THE FINDING BUSINESS. 
Think about this. Why do you live where you live? Why do you work where you work? Why do you go to school where you go to school? Because, God wants to take where you are and who you are and place you in the lives of other people where you can follow Him and fish for them and catch some of them and bring them into His family.  Your neighborhood, town, community…Your County is a lake full of fish. Your office is a lake full of fish. Your school is a lake full of fish. I know some of you think you could never fish. Some of you may not know how to fish. Some of you may feel like you are too shy to fish. Listen to what Jesus said, "Follow Me and I will make you become fishers of men."   

I have made the commitment that at NORTHCROSS  we are going to train our team in a variety of ways,  how to build relationships and in a gracious, easy fashion begin to fish for people. Fishing was not in season last week when Easton caught this fish, so he had to throw him back.  One day fishing for men will be out of season.  We are living in a window of time where the fish can still be caught. That, my friend, is what we are supposed to be doing.  On Saturday morning, mothers day weekend, fishing season opened and Easton was down by the damn early at sunrise teaching a few friends how to fish. Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to lead a friend named Scott to Jesus while sitting at Applebee's.  NOTHING feels better than catching a fish!   So just remember, if you will get into the following business, Jesus will make sure you GET INTO THE FISHING BUSINESS.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Barron County Wisconsin

Map of Wisconsin highlighting Barron CountyA New Assignment
The Pierce Family is now in Barron County Wisconsin.  It's been well over 2 weeks now and it seems like we have been here for months.  Every day we are meeting new people in the community and getting acclimated to new roads, new food,  a new snap fitness, new fish, new lakes, new teams, new accents and most importantly, new people! We are very blessed and feel that we are right where God wants us for such a time as this. We are grateful to our dear friends Rick and Lori for opening their home to us while we look for a place of our own. We are currently in Dallas Wisconsin and will soon be settling into Rice Lake once we find a home to rent or purchase. We are praying for the sale of our home in Illinois and are trusting God.
In the mean time Caleb Noah and Easton are commuting 25 minutes every morning to school.
They are making oodles of friends daily.  With my iphone I managed to snag a shot of each of them as they entered their first full day of school.  I can't tell you how proud I am of my 3 sons as they embrace this change with courage and faith.  It is only making them stronger. James 1:2-3 "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you facetrials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops  perseversance."   
Caleb has his first FCA meeting this Sunday night and is already enlarging his circle of influence.  After only 3 days in school I went to the grocery with Caleb and discovered that all of the youth employees that worked there already new him by name!  What would take todays average teenager 4 years to befriend.....Caleb will surely accomplish in 6 months. Noah and Easton are both in Football.  Noah's 8th grade team is looking real tough. Noah's speed is increasing and has landed him a spot as running back #16 on the Rice Lake Warriors football team.   He is loving it and is handling the beating like a man.

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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Its not about our COMFORT or US being happy.

I needed windshield wipers on my eyeballs this morning as I drove from Goodfield to Eureka, thinking about the willing sacrifice that our boys are making as they embrace change and the call of God. So much change, so fast! For Caleb, this is his senior year....and to not graduate with all of the friends he has grown up with is quite a blow. I didn't want that for my son....but is it about what we want? But Caleb gets it!  He wants to enlarge his circle of high school influence for Jesus before he puts the tassle to the other side! He sees the eternal impact opportunity. It will be tough, to make that deep of an impact in 9 short months, but he is a strong weapon in God's arsenal. It is going to be amazing to see what God does through Caleb Dean Pierce at Rice Lake High School.

Noah and Easton are Mighty men of God in the making as well and will be tools in the hand of God. I was listening to new life radio while driving and heard a woman sharing how she lost both brothers in an 18 month period to tragic accidents and how her parents had to face that loss. Jesus is the only answer to that kind of loss. Each of us has to put our pants on in the morning to face a fallen planet. Faith is required each day and will be until the end. James 1:2-4  "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Pierce Boys

Our oldest son Caleb will be a senior this year.  He has been in the same school district since First Grade.  Knowing this is such a monumental year for him, we told him we would understand if he didn't want to move with us to Wisconsin this fall.  We asked him to pray about it.  He took a couple of months to seek God about what he should do.  He came to us and said he really feels God is calling him to enlarge his circle of influence his senior year at a new high school in Rice Lake, WI and see what God might do through his life.  Wow - how inspiring to see that kind of faith and courage come from a 17-year-old guy!  He has played varsity baseball since his freshman year and was the First Team All Conference Third basemen this year.  He is excited about playing ball in Wisconsin and leading by example.  

Caleb is modeling faith in front of his brothers Noah and Easton.  Noah has shown great character on the athletic field as well.  Easton and Noah both plan on playing football this fall.  

Easton is also very excited about fishing in Wisconsin.  He has gotten up at 5:30 a.m. four or five mornings in the last week to fish at a pond near our house.  When he hooks a muskie in Wisconsin he isn't going to know what to think.  I believe he is going to become a fisher of men.  

It is a scary time for all of them and they have been so amazing during this process of us praying and asking God for his divine direction.  They have lived awesome Christian testimonies before their friends in Illinois and they will be greatly missed.  This is one of many transitions they will face throughout their lifetime and we are trusting God to keep them close to His heart as they are stretched in new ways than they have ever experienced before. 

We are so excited about what God is going to teach all of them as we are obedient to the call of God in planting a church in Barron County Wisconsin.  Please pray our boys have favor, wisdom, servant's hearts and a hunger for God like they have never had before.

Here's a quote that Caleb made after some family devotions a few weeks ago.  It has really stuck with me.
   "Beyond my reach, but faith is trust, and I'm trusting in faith to enlarge my reach."
                                                                                                                                   ~ Caleb Pierce

Monday, August 9, 2010

We're Heading North!

Welcome to our First Blog Post! 
Here's a recap of us and an update on the last decade of our lives!

Kim and I met 26 years ago this month and knew very early in our friendship that we were made for each other.  This was confirmed by the mutual call of God on both of our lives to serve him in a full-time capacity.  We married in August of 1986 and had the privilege of ministering to thousands of teenagers and college students over a 13 year period in Minneapolis, Dayton and Philadelphia. 

In 1999, after I (Rob) had endured a long grueling battle with Lyme's disease, we felt temporarily released from full-time ministry to recuperate, regroup and reconnect with our family in Illinois.  We asked God for a decade to pour into our own four children (Courtney, Caleb, Noah and Easton) and train them up!  During that ten years we owned a home building company and we learned a ton of things in the business world that we could never have learned in ministry.  In the fall of 2008 when the real estate market hit such a decline, our young company could not withstand the rapid decline in new home sales so we were forced to close our doors in the fall of 2009.  It was then that God reminded us that our 10 year request had expired.  We began to ask Him to reveal his plan for the next chapter in the life of our family. 

In February of 2010 we were contacted by our friends Rick and Lori Olson from Wisconsin who for the last five years have had a burning passion to plant a church in Barron County Wisconsin.  They felt God leading them to ask us to pray about leading in this church plant.  After many visits and much prayer, we felt this was God's clear direction as the next step for our family.

Our heart for Barron County is to plant a church that will be a cohesive agent of unity among the churches of Barron County, bringing them together as one force to reach the lost and hurting of this region with the gospel of Jesus Christ.  There are about 44, 000 unchurched people in Barron County.  We have a heart to train up leaders, serve the community, link to the businesses, connect with the 20s and 30s who are falling into the black hole of our culture, bridge the gap between the generations, be relational and compassionate, and unashamed of the gospel.  We have an expectancy that God is ready to move across this nation and He is calling us to Barron County!

We do not regret this last decade as God has taught us so much about the pressures and trials that people are facing as employees, business owners, spouses, teenagers, parents, children caring for elderly parents and so much more.  We trust that God wants to use all that we have experienced so that we are moved with compassion for people when they share the pain and suffering they are experiencing.  Compassion moves the heart of God!  We have also learned that "Mercy triumphs over judgment." (James 2:13).  We want to serve in humility and boldness!!  We love people and are excited about how God wants to use our family in this next chapter of life.

Our boys are feeling called to Barron County as well.  Watch for more specifics about that!  School starts in Wisconsin on September 1.  We have a house to sell in Illinois but are trusting God to provide as we take the leap of faith and head north in the next few weeks.

We will be about 1.5 hours east of Minneapolis, which is where Courtney is going to college at North Central University.  She is currently in One Accord for NCU and leading worship at youth camps this summer.  She is excited about helping out as much as she can with the new church plant!  

We really ask for your prayers!  Pray for favor, direction, anointing, wisdom, provision and whatever else God lays on your heart for us.  If you feel God speaking to your heart to support us financially, please contact us and we can give you more details on that.  You can email us at:

Check back often for updates (which won't be as lengthy as this!!)

We close with this verse:  "It's urgent that you get this right: The time has arrived - I mean right now - when dead men and women will hear the voice of the Son of God, and, hearing, will come alive."  John 5:25 (The Message)

In Urgent Obedience ~  Rob & Kim